Here Are 8 Of Iowa's Most Famous Ghost Stories To Tell Around The Campfire
Iowa’s towns and cities are full of creepy, haunted spots that make up local legends. If you grew up in rural Iowa, chances are you’ve heard some of the stories of haunted roads, cemeteries, and abandoned buildings. We’ve gathered up a collection of our favorite ghost stories – do you know about any of these haunted Iowa places?
1. Hotel Blackhawk, Davenport
The Blackhawk is one of the most famous hotels in Iowa, but it has had a bit of a rocky past. In 1986, Cary Grant died in his room after falling ill at a nearby club, and in 2006, a meth lab exploded on he sixth floor. Since that time, it has been restored to its former glory, but it is a popular spot for paranormal investigations.
Read more about these spooky spirits right here
2. Mathias Ham House, Dubuque
This mansion is now a museum! In the 1800s several members of the Ham family died in the home. They included Margaret Ham (1874), Mathias Ham (1889), May Ham (1890s). Sarah Ham, the oldest daughter, shot and killed an intruder in the home as well. That intruder's lamplight wanders through the home after sundown, and guests often hear voices and footsteps.
3. Edinburgh Manor, Scotch Grove
Edinburgh Manor was once a "poor farm", where workers were treated terribly, and several died on the site. Eventually, it was turned into a primitive Psychiatric Hospital, where unspeakable horrors occurred in the name of "experiments". Today, you can visit this landmark institution and experience the eerie hauntings for yourself.
4. Ashton Cemetery, Mingo
The gorgeous and peaceful Ashton Cemetery is one of the most haunted places in the state. It was built on a sacred Native American site, and the graves date back to the 1800s. Visitors report seeing orbs, hearing sounds, and feeling chilly spots throughout the graveyard.
Read more about this sacred resting place here
5. Villisca Axe Murder House
In 1912 an entire family and two of their guests were brutally murdered by an intruder in this very house. No perpetrator was ever identified, and many believe the house is still haunted by the ghosts of those who perished. You can tour the home if you want to check it out for yourself.
6. Mason House Inn, Bentonsport
The beautiful and historic Mason House Inn is located in the charming town of Bentonsport. Those who are looking for a getaway find this to be one of the finest bed and breakfasts in the state! It's also incredibly haunted. Numerous paranormal investigations have been done here, and there are at least five ghosts that make their presence known on a regular basis.
Read more about these ghosts right here
7. Independence State Hospital
The Independence State Hospital was built in 1873 as an early psychiatric hospital. Those admitted included alcoholics, drug addicts, criminals, and psychiatric patients. If you visit today, you can see the graveyard and lobotomy equipment. Ask the staff and they'll tell you what sections of the building are the most active with spirits and ghosts! Visitors have felt ghosts push and pull them, they have heard them whisper in their ear, and faraway laughter has echoed through the halls.
8. Lovers Leap Bridge, Columbus Junction
Lovers Leap Bridge was built in 1886, and it collapsed with two people in 1922. Since then, rumors have swirled regarding the bridge's supposed paranormal activity. In fact, it is named for a legend that says a woman tossed herself into the gorge after her heart was broken. Today, people can sometimes hear screams or wails from the depths.
Read more about this haunted bridge here
What are your favorite haunted Iowa stories? Tell us in the comments below!
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