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Haunted Cemeteries in Ohio


Chestnut Grove Cemetery

Chestnut Grove Cemetery is in the city of Ashtabula in Ashtabula County. It has over 5,000 interments dating back to the 1810s. Twenty-five of these are from one tragedy.

On December 29, 1876, at approximately 7:30 in the evening, a train operated by the Lake Short and Michigan Southern Railway began crossing the Ashtabula Bridge over the Ashtabula River. The train consisted of two locomotives pulling eleven railcars with 159 people on board. The bridge gave way and all but the lead locomotive dropped 76 feet to the ground and river below. The cars that had lamps and heating stoves caught fire.

When it was over, 92 of the 159 crew and passengers had died. Of these, 48 were unrecognizable or completely consumed by the fires. Another 64 were injured. Only three people survived relatively unscathed.

It is no wonder this cemetery is considered one of the most haunted in Ohio. Charles Collins, the architect of the bridge, and Amasa Stone, his assistant, are often seen here looking sadly in the direction of the accident. Collins committed suicide less than a month after the disaster. Amasa followed suit seven years later. But not all ghosts are sad in their afterlife. Many claim to hear children laughing and playing and adults actually having picnics. People have also reported seeing all of the victims standing around at the bottom of the bridge every year on the anniversary of the accident.

A worker at the cemetery, Andrew Skarupa, says he sees ghosts here all the time. He’s more surprised when he doesn’t see or hear them than when he does. The ghosts Mr. Skarupa have seen at the cemetery include a top hat wearing older gentleman searching for his grandson, a woman, a horse and, believe it or not, a chicken.

He claims to have always had the ability to see ghosts and the Chestnut Grove Cemetery is very busy. Even when he doesn’t see anything it is very noisy with voices and bangs and crashes.

Chestnut Grove Cemetery in Ashtabula


Johnson's Island Confederate Cemetery

The Johnson’s Island Confederate Cemetery is located in Danbury Township in Ottawa County on the 300-acre Johnson’s Island. It was built in 1862 and named after L.B. Johnson, the original owner of the land. The exact number of interments is not known. The cemetery register has 224 names on it, but there are only 202 graves, 153 known and 52 unknown.

The ghosts here are of the Confederate soldiers who died in the prisoners of war camp. Visitors claim to hear gunshots and then screams of agony. Every other year there is a Memorial Day parade held on the island and people have reported Confederate soldiers marching along side them.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, there was a stone quarry on the island where Italian workers were hired to dig. The superintendent said that most of the men did not speak any English, but one day they all started singing an American song. The song was Dixie.

A paranormal investigator taking pictures here saw red and orange orbs. He thinks he might have made a mistake in not asking the ghosts’ permissions to take pictures, because shortly after leaving the cemetery he was involved in a fender bender. Thankfully, no one was injured.

Photo Credit: Sweet Pea

Photo Credit: Sweet Pea

Maple Grove Cemetery

Maple Grove Cemetery is located in Vermilion which straddles both Erie and Loraine Counties on the south shore of Lake Erie. The cemetery itself is in Erie County. There are over 4,000 interments here dating back to 1811. United States Congressman Albert David Baumhart, Jr. was buried here in 2001.

The legend associated with this cemetery is called The Dark Angel. A woman named Alice killed her young daughter. She was regretful for what she had done and had a very large angel statue erected at her daughter’s grave.

Not long after, she lost her mind from grief and eventually died. Soon after local farmers began reporting that their livestock were being killed and dismembered. At about the same time blood started to be seen on the mouth and hands of the angel monument.

The theory was that the spirit of Alice was living in the statue and killed the animals at night. The decision was made to clip the wings of the angel and to cut its hands off.

There were no more cattle mutilations after that and people reported seeing tear stains on the angel’s face.

Johnson's Island and Maple Grove Cemeteries

Photo Credit: PennyKaye

Photo Credit: PennyKaye

Camp Chase Confederate Cemetery

The Camp Chase Confederate Cemetery is located in Columbus in Franklin County. Established May 1861 and covering two acres, there are 2,398 interments here, 2,260 of them are Confederate soldiers. Camp Chase was a training ground for volunteer soldiers from Ohio. It was also used as a muster outpost, parole camp, and prisoner of war camp. The cemetery is all that is left.

There is a heartbroken ghost that haunts the cemetery known as The Lady in Grey. Her real name is possibly Louisiana Rainsburgh Briggs. She is often seen weeping over the grave of Benjamin F. Allen. He was a private in the 50th Tennessee Regiment, Company D. He died on September 8, 1864 when he was 20 years old.

The Lady in Gray has also been seen walking straight through trees and the iron cemetery gates. During a Civil War reenactment in 1988 several people claimed to hear a woman crying, but no one could ever find her.

For many years fresh flowers have been found on Private Allen’s grave, but no one has ever seen who leaves them.

Camp Chase Confederate Cemetery

Photo Credit: Fred Day

Photo Credit: Fred Day

Woodside Cemetery

Woodside Cemetery was officially established in 1891 and covers 135 acres. The name was changed to Woodside Cemetery and Arboretum in 2001. Located in Middletown, Butler County, it has around 25,000 interments. The oldest dated marker is from 1807. There are two Congressmen and a World War II Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient, Patrick L. Kessler buried here.

There was a “lynching” tree in the cemetery and five men who were hung there are said to haunt here. Sometime in the mid 1800s these five men were convicted of bank robbery and hung from the tree. Visitors would often see their ghosts hanging from the tree, so they had the tree cut down. It didn’t help though. The ghosts are still there, apparently hanging from thin air.

Woodside Cemetery

Photo Credit: John M. Higgins

Photo Credit: John M. Higgins

Woodland Cemetery

Woodland Cemetery is located in Ironton, the county seat of Lawrence County. There are a little over 15,000 interments here, dating back to 1815. The cemetery was officially established in 1871 and is referred to as The City of the Dead. It covers 50 acres. There are several famous people buried here including four Congressmen and a World War I American Fighter Ace.

There are several ghosts haunting this cemetery. One is the ghost of Imperial Russian Ballet dancer Antoinette Sherpetoska Peters, often called Teenie. On nights with a full moon she can often be seen dancing outside the mausoleum where she lies. She was married to a local industrialist and settled in Ironton. Sadly, she was killed in a car crash in Illinois. Not long after her interment vandals broke in and stole a broach given to her by a Russian Czar. They also cut off two of her fingers to steal her rings. Still, she continues to dance.

There is a beautiful statue here of a woman coming down a flight of stairs. The statue is that of Osa Wilson. She is also called The Slapped Lady. The story is that she had a very abusive husband and one night he slapped her and she fell down a flight of stairs to her death. Her unborn child also died.

If you stand in front of her statue the sides of her face look different. One cheek always looks red. Cemetery groundskeepers have tried to sandblast the redness away, but it always comes back. Also, she is said to cry real tears and her stomach always feels warm; sometimes the baby’s faint heartbeat can be heard.

There is another ghost here named Dr. Joseph Lowry. He also haunts the Briggs Lawrence County Public Library which stands on the spot where his home had been. He has been seen in the cemetery walking with his mother. She died of a broken neck after being thrown from a carriage and is also buried here. They are seen walking to the front gates but always disappear before reaching them. Dr. Lowry died under strange circumstances in 1933. Strangely, he was found in his bed in the middle of summer with the heat set on high. The official cause of death was stroke, but people thought he had been murdered, possibly by his heirs.

Woodland Cemetery

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