Post by Joanna on Oct 28, 2017 3:22:36 GMT -5
Most Haunted in Salem, Oregon
Who doesn't love a good ghost story? Tim King, who runs Salem Ghost Tours and is soon to release the book Haunted Salem, sure does, and he says there are many to be found in Salem. So does Wesley McDermott of the United Kingdom who runs the website hauntedrooms.com, which features lists of allegedly haunted places in various cities, including Salem. In honor of Halloween, these are some of Salem’s “haunted” locations, according to both these spook seekers:
Mission Mill Museum. The Mission Mill Museum consists of a collection of historic buildings, including the Thomas Kay Woolen Mill (above), built in 1889. According to Haunted Rooms, two apparitions have been seen on the property. One is thought to be the spirit of a former millwright named Wayne Mentzer. King claimed that finding someone who has worked at the heritage center and couldn’t tell you a ghost story might prove difficult.
Kylie Pine, curator and collections manager at Willamette Heritage Center, confirmed paranormal researchers visited in the past, but found no paranormal activity. “We like to think that we help preserve the spirits of people that used to live in Salem, but I am not sure we have any active ones hanging around,” she said.
Hometown Buffet. This isn’t your average buffet. Legend has it that the wife of a former owner haunts this restaurant on Lancaster Drive. According to Haunted Rooms, it is reported that doors sometimes slam by themselves, while others have heard phantom footsteps in the women’s restroom. “Yes, that’s in my book,” King confirmed. “I personally know people who have had really awkward experiences in there. Particularly in the bathroom.” The restaurant’s manager didn't want to comment.
Oregon State Hospital. This hospital was built in the 19th century and is used as a psychiatric hospital. But it’s more than meets the eye; tunnels below it used to stretch for miles. “Many of the tunnels have been recently filled in,” King revealed. These tunnels were allegedly used for transporting dangerous patients between buildings, according to Haunted Rooms. It is said they were also used for unethical practices and experiments. Kathryn Dysart, board president of the hospital’s Museum of Mental Health, said that while the paranormal may be intriguing, they do not like the stigma it creates.
Oregon State Prison. The Oregon State Penitentiary was also built in the 19th century and is the oldest prison in Oregon. King said it is considered a paranormal hot spot, particularly two of the towers where the guards operate. According to Haunted Rooms: “This could be due to the fact that the tower was built on top of the former prison graveyard.”
Oregon State Capitol. The main structure of the current Oregon State Capitol building (above) was completed in the 1930s and people have reported hearing phantom footsteps and disembodied voices, King revealed. “I was personally in the elevator when I was new with Channel 2 (KATU) and I felt a human hand on my shoulder,” he claimed. Oregon Legislative Media even produced a four-part YouTube series called The Haunted Capitol from 2002 to 2005.
Sandra Allen, who used to work in the House Speaker's Office, wrote a book called Ghosts in the Capitol. Stacy Nalley, the capitol public outreach coordinator, said Allen kept a ledger of stories during her time at the capitol. “I do know that, historically, there has been some talk and some people have recorded some stories,” she asserted. “I personally haven’t heard anything since I got here in 2014.”
The Elsinore Theatre. The theater opened in the 1920s and has long been known for a number of different paranormal incidents, King said. One is the image of a transparent person walking up to the stage. “There is a lot of history and stories about the theater. I do know back in the mid-2000s, there were a lot of ghost investigators in the building that left some very haunting documentation,” Tom Fohn, executive director, said. “I cannot say that I have personally experienced anything, but I have only been here for two years.”
Source: Abby Luschei, The Salem Statesman-Journal, October 27, 2017.