The month of October always seems to spark interest in the paranormal and an increase in ghost hunting. With the help of our friends at hauntedplaces.org, we have come up with a list of some of the most haunted locations in Indiana based on electromagnetic field ratings, or EMF ratings.
What are EMF ratings? They are one of the ways ghost hunters measure spirit activity at a given location. EMF is a field of charged particles, or an energy field. Spirits are believed to disrupt this field with their presence, which results in a higher reading.
If you choose to visit one of these locations, it is your responsibility to acquire appropriate permission. Private property should be respected at all times, as should all posted signs concerning trespassing, hours of operation and other local regulations.
Many “ghost hunters” have been arrested because they failed to contact property owners or local authorities ahead of time.
To go along with our top 10 picks, there a few bonus locations that have been added, as well.
For more haunted locations across the state or across the country, visit www.hauntedplaces.org.
10. HACIENDA RESTAURANT
Once a private mansion, Hacienda Mexican Restaurant is rumored to be haunted by apparitions of those who used to live here. Some stories say one apparition belongs to a maid with whom the mansion’s owner had an affair. When the maid became pregnant, he shunned her, so she hanged herself in the attic. Other stories say the owner became one of the apparitions after he shot himself in the basement. Odd things have been reported, such as lights, electrical appliances and water faucets working on their own.
EMF rating: 83.6.
Address: 700 Lincolnway West.
9. AVON HAUNTED BRIDGE
The Avon Haunted Bridge is a railroad bridge built in 1906. So the legend goes, a mother was walking with her baby on the tracks when they fell to their deaths. Locals would say every time you drove under the bridge you had to honk to drown out the sound of the ghost of the mother’s wails. Some locals still honk today.
EMF rating: 84.0.
Address: Half-mile south of U.S. 36 off County Road 625 East.
8. WHISPERS ESTATE
Featured on some TV shows, the estate is said to be the site of many paranormal occurrences including apparitions, voice phenomena, jiggling doorknobs, tremors, unexplained smells, shaking furniture and a vortex.
EMF rating: 84.4.
Address: 714 W. Warren St.
7. ROADS HOTEL
The 1893 hotel, once patronized by John Dillinger, is rumored to be haunted by many spirits. Witnesses have reported shadows and apparitions of men, women and children as well as disembodied voices, footsteps, lights that work on their own and doors that open and close — or even slam — by themselves.
EMF rating: 84.9.
Address: 150 E. Main St.
6. JAMES ALLISON MANSION
Built from 1911 to 1913, the mansion is said to be haunted. Sources may be a little girl who was visiting and drowned in the basement pool, or James Allison himself. The little girl’s apparition has been seen, and witnesses also have reported voices in the attic, objects that move by themselves, objects that disappear, and furniture that is rearranged.
EMF rating: 85.0.
Address: 3200 Coldspring Road.
5. ELKHART CIVIC THEATRE (BRISTOL OPERA HOUSE)
The Elkhart Civic Theatre, housed in an 1897 building, is said to be haunted by ghosts who send books and papers flying off shelves, levitate small objects, run sewing machines and project moving shafts of light. Shadows and an apparition of a floating dark-haired woman have been seen by both staff members and theater guests. Staff members claim to have been grabbed by a ghost when no one else is around. Percy, a.k.a. Percival Hilbert, is the name of a ghost believed to reside here. He was a handyman who lived in the basement with his wife and two daughters after they were evicted in the Depression era. His spirit is said to manifest as moving shafts of light. He is also believed to have turned up in a photo during a ghost hunt.
EMF rating: 85.7.
Address: 210 E. Vistula Street.
4. FRENCH LICK SPRINGS HOTEL
This historic resort hotel complex is said to be haunted by former owner Thomas Taggart, who lingers around the service elevator as mists and phantom tobacco smells. He is said to expertly operate the elevator from beyond when the place gets busy. He also is said to appear riding a horse in the ballroom or down the halls, and holds ghostly parties that the staff have heard through closed doors when no one else is in the ballroom. A red stain is said to appear in a guest room bathtub where a bride committed suicide, and the cleaning staff claim the whole sixth floor is haunted by shadows, breezes, footsteps, disembodied laughter and ghosts who call the front desk from unoccupied rooms. Also, a ghostly African-American bellhop has shown up in photos of the bellhop stand.
EMF rating: 86.1
City: French Lick.
Address: 8670 Ind. 56.
3. FINCH CEMETERY
The late-1800s Finch Cemetery at the Jay County Conservation Club is said to hold the grave of a boy named Cinderella. Rumor has it that the gravestones here shift or disappear. If you count the gravestones on the way to Cinderella’s grave, you will count 13. But on the way back, there are only 11.
EMF rating: 86.4.
Address: 6243 S. 325 W.
2. SAINT MARY’S COLLEGE – LE MANS HALL
A scary apparition of a girl hanging from a noose has been witnessed at the Le Mans Hall bell tower. Legend has it that she committed suicide in that very spot years ago. Also, the infirmary on the fourth floor is said to sport blood stains resulting from a girls’ death.
EMF rating: 87.0.
City: Notre Dame.
Address: 149 Le Mans Hall.
1. ZION UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST CEMETERY
The spooky sort love Zion Church Cemetery, say locals. The area is a hot spot for unexplained lights and sounds, ghostly whispers, eerie sensations, and the feeling of being watched. Some say a helpful ghost is known to leave the cemetery to stop cars and tell folks to turn back if they get too close to cursed ground.
EMF rating: 87.5.
Address: 3005 N. Bowling Green Poland Road.
The house was said to be haunted by more than 200 demons. Witnesses have reported levitating children, swarms of flies that mysteriously appear in winter, footprints and apparitions. The demons were believed to have possessed the three children of the family who lived there, and caseworkers, priests and police called to the scene all testify to the story. However, reports say that the family doctor visited and determined the children were mentally unsound and simply putting on a performance, and that their mother, Latoya Ammons, had put up many religious shrines inside the home. The children were taken to child services. Zak Bagans of TV’s “Ghost Adventures” purchased the house. After filming a documentary, he had the house demolished.
EMF rating: 79.5.
Address: Near 3868 Carolina St.
BONUS: HOTEL ATTICA
A glowing apparition has been seen in several hotel rooms late at night or in the early hours of morning. Guests have reported seeing their closet doors open and close by themselves, as well as hearing ghostly voices and ballroom music.
EMF rating: 82.9.
Address: 126 N. Perry St.
BONUS: TUNNELTON TUNNEL
The apparition of a man who was decapitated during the tunnel’s construction has been reported; many folks say he appears to be searching for his head. One rumor states that there is a graveyard atop the tunnel, and during its construction, some of the bodies fell through into the tunnel. Another legend tells of a ghost family killed long ago when their horse and buggy crashed into the river down the hill. Witnesses say they have heard the family’s screams.
EMF rating: 82.0
Address: River Road.
BONUS: BAUMS BRIDGE INN
This inn is reported to be home to an apparition surrounded by a dim light. He is said to appear around midnight and may be a bit shy: Rumor has it that if you look at him too long, he will become enraged and appear in front of you in a split second.
EMF rating: 81.8.
Address: 1092 S. Baums Bridge Road.
BONUS: HANNAH HOUSE
Some of the ghosts at this historic house are said to be hidden slaves, one of whom accidentally tripped over a lamp, igniting a fire. Those killed were said to be buried in the very cellar where it happened. Witnesses have described a lot of activity in the cellar, including apparitions of slaves, moans and groans, and cold spots. Former owner Mr. Hannah himself also has been seen upstairs and on the balcony, and an older woman’s apparition has been seen here as well.
EMF rating: 81.5.
Address: 3801 Madison Ave.
BONUS: INDIANA CENTRAL STATE HOSPITAL
The 1848 Indiana Hospital for the Insane turned into the Central State Hospital in 1926. It is said to be haunted by many patients who suffered abuse here in the hospital’s dark past. Witnesses have described shadows, apparitions, women’s screams, electrical devices that turn on and off by themselves, unexplained noises, footsteps and moans.
EMF rating: 80.3.
Address: Tibbs and Washington.
BONUS: ROCKPORT INN
This inn was built in the 1850s as a private home and was one of the first buildings in the area to have glass windows. It is rumored to have been part of the Underground Railroad. It also is rumored to have a ghost. An apparition of the wife of an owner is said to walk the halls, seen — and heard — by both guests and employees for many years.
EMF rating: 79.5.
Address: 130 S. 3rd St.
BONUS: BOONE-HUTCHESON CEMETERY
An apparition of a 1950s policeman is said to sit inside the graveyard with a blue light. Other apparitions and phantom dogs with glowing red eyes also have been seen, and a cave said to be on the cemetery premises has many spooky stories attached to it.
EMF rating: 78.3.
Address: Off South County Road 450 West.
BONUS: INDIANA REPERTORY THEATRE
To avoid cold and rainy weather, a former artistic director used to jog indoors, around the upstairs mezzanine. He was killed during his jog on a foggy day when his nephew hit him with the car. Now, on cold and rainy days, witnesses say you can hear the floorboards creak as his ghost jogs around the mezzanine.
EMF rating: 75.0.
Address: 140 W. Washington St.
BONUS: STEPP CEMETERY
Small Stepp Cemetery has about 25 graves and has roles in many local legends, from its founding by cult members to a grieving mother who committed suicide after losing her baby. Her apparition, according to witnesses, appears dressed in black and crying over the baby’s grave.
EMF rating: 72.3.
Address: Near Forest Road and North Bean Blossom Road.
BONUS: IVY HOUSE
Built in 1921 by Dr. Jess E. Ferrell, the Ivy House bed-and-breakfast is said to have a haunt that came with the purchase of an antique piano. The owners say the instrument brought with it a ghost who makes the decidedly nonmusical sounds of banging and footsteps.
EMF rating: 68.8.
Address: 304 N. Merrill St.
BONUS: SLIPPERY NOODLE INN
The historic buildings that house the Slippery Noodle Inn have been around for since 1850, so it has its share of spirits. Among those seen are the ghosts of slaves, a cowboy, a caretaker and a prostitute.
EMF rating: 66.7.
Address: 372 S. Meridian St.
BONUS: INDIANAPOLIS ATHLETIC CLUB
Built in the 1920s, the Indianapolis Athletic Club is believed to be haunted by the ghost of a fireman who attempts to wake guests in the middle of the night. Reports say the man died in a fire that occurred here in 1992.
EMF rating: 60.0.
Address: 350 N. Meridian St.
BONUS: PAUL RUSTER PARK CEMETERY
The ghost of a little boy who was killed beside the nearby train tracks is said to walk along the paths or the nearby roadway playing his harmonica.
EMF rating: 56.0.
Address: 11266 E. Prospect St.