His ghost now haunts the attic, and this was the only graffiti on the entire property.
Second floor view looking up in an abandoned infirmary tower stairwell.
The structure is filled with natural light, but is haunted by the living.
We left a number of stones unturned on this first haunting explore.
Vintage arcade machines still reside in the lobby (and called out my name),
a cage trap housed a mummified raccoon on the main floor,
and several abandoned vehicles sat entombed in a deep sub-basement below.
…in the basement, apparently. You’ll never guess who was up in the rafters.
I am plagued by several odd daydreams and fantasies that become prominent during these urban explorations. I’ve had them in one form or another since childhood. One is the thought that I am the last man on earth. Some terrible war/plague/zombie apocalypse has wiped out all humanity save me. I’m left in a deserted, decaying world. Though terrifying, I find this strangely compelling, even soothing.
Another is the idea that the whole world is imbued with spirits good and bad, but mostly fickle and pernicious. Each place is haunted with forces whose strengths grow when people leave the area. Thus when I walk through an abandoned building, I am tempting malign forces around every corner. I really shouldn’t have read all that Lovecraft when I was young.
I grew up hearing a lot of stories of the Polish resistance during World War Two. Partisans in the woods sabotaging rail lines or urban squads launching daring raids on German supply depots. As a kid, every trip was imagined as a mission. Though rarely nowadays, I’ll still look at a copier ominously crouched in the middle of a wrecked office and think, “there’s a Nazi on the other side of that thing.”
One of the more amusing parts of the “haunted” school was the warnings spray painted at the entrances, just so you know that you’re entering someplace “dangerous”.
First you have some one attempting to, bless(?) the place, I suppose. It is hard to tell what they meant by this piece of graffiti really. Then someone else came along with their commentary; I kind of hope that by the time we visit this next there will be a counter commentary.
Inside you get this, though the stories say it is haunted, not cursed.
Up at the main entrance someone passingly familiar with Dante had this to say:
I seriously doubt that this in an entrance to hell though.
You may also notice the paintball splashes in this shot, seems while this place is “haunted” it has also been used as a Halloween haunted house and a paintball court.
The other day Tabula Rasa, his son and I took a little trip through the town of Hammond, Indiana. We weren’t intending to stop and try shooting a photo of the BP plant, but we both saw something we liked and stopped to give it a try. We were there for maybe 2 minutes before security had our car surround and was questioning us.
This is why I prefer urban exploring, at least if security or the police are talking to you they have actual cause and it isn’t just to intimidate and harass you. Either way Tabula Rasa took the reins and stayed much politer than I would have and the security guards told us about a purportedly haunted school in Cedar Lake Indiana. Curiosity got the better of us and we decided to abandon our plans for Gary and go farther afield than usual.
The school itself is behind a locked gate and hidden behind about an acre of mature oak trees, since we were in the hinterlands people would notice if we just left our car on the street and we were not so far into the hinterlands that there wasn’t any traffic at all. We drove around a bit and finally found a nice out of the way place to park that also got us far closer to the building than we had hoped to park.
Walking through the woods and rubble of destroyed outbuildings Tabula Rasa’s son commented “This is getting a little Blair Witch.” And he was right. It was a bright, sunny winter morning and the place had a definite air of the creeps about it.
We did a quick walk around to the front and then decided to just go inside. After a through explore we did a longer walk around and decided that this building was best appreciated from outside. It appears to hold a lot of promise, until you go inside.
It is most definitely not haunted. Local lore holds that the priest in charge of the school went crazy one night and murdered a bunch of his students, afterwards the school was closed. In reality there is no evidence at all for a grisly murder spree (come on people, it was 1977 or thereabouts, there would be newspaper reports on this kind of thing, national reports!) and the fact is the school went broke, had a nice little closing party for the students and everyone went home safe, sound and unmurdered.
But that isn’t an exciting story to tell your friends when you are 14 and trespassing in the dead of night to go poking around an abandoned school. What amazing me the most is that the people who told us that this is a haunted place were adults my age and they never thought to question the ghost story!
I am a realistic person. I don’t believe in ghosts, ghouls, afterlife, spirits or hauntings. I do believe in the power of suggestion, that somethings have yet to be explained well and the mind’s ability to fool us into seeing things that are not there. I wanted to go to a “haunted” place because places like that usually have an aesthetic that our minds link to the feeling of creepy or disquiet feeling that I like and want to capture in a photo.
This is somewhat detracted from by the laziest and most unimaginative graffiti I have ever seen.