Oregon’s Haunted Hotspots
The following is a working list of places that are alleged to be haunted in the state of Oregon. As the paranormal is experienced differently from person to person, please let us know if you have had any experiences so we can update our page. For pictures, click names, and for local maps, click addresses. All authors notes will be in green.
Lithia Park – 59 Winburn Way
There is a story about a girl who was killed and raped in the park in 1875. Witnesses passing the duck pond have seen a glowing blue mist floating directly over the center of the pond. They watched for about thirty seconds, at which point it flickered and vanished like a flame being blown out. The diffuse blue light has also been spotted wandering other areas of the park. In 1975, a car passed through the misty form which was standing in the middle of a winding road. Passengers reported feeling a damp coldness penetrate them at the moment they “hit” the form.
Oregon Shakespearian Festival Theater – 15 South Pioneer St.
(Formerly Chautauqua Theater)
A tall male figure appears on the third floor of the Elizabethan Playhouse. The friendly ghost is said to sing madrigals almost every night. Also, the ghost of Charles Laughton appeared at a 1946 performance of “King Lear” held at the theater. He had always wanted to play Lear at the Ashland festival but died before it was staged. During the next performance of the play, an eerie vibrating sound moved from the audience onto the main stage.
The ghost of a Dog-Faced-Boy has been seen near parked cars along this street several times in the last 30 years. The boy was a deformed child who supported himself by selling pencils and stealing from cars. He is thought to have been murdered near here in 1926, after being caught stealing from someone’s vehicle. He has been reported on Pioneer St. and in the parking lot of Lithia Park, site of the old Chautauqua Theater, which was replaced by the Oregon Shakespearian Festival Theater in 1935.
Baker Hotel – map of Baker City
There have been reports of parties on the second floor, especially in one room. Also, ladies of the evening are showing their ghostly appearance coming down the long stairway.
O’Kane Building – 115 Northwest Oregon Ave.
Many people have reported seeing ghostly smoke, weird lights, footsteps, and voices. On the ground floor, in a restaurant, people have reported a ghostly voice (maybe of a long dead waitress) shouting names and orders. The basement of the building is also haunted by the ghost of an old man.
Approach road from Highway 101 to Cannon Beach
The phantom of a man completely wrapped in bandages haunts this small community. The blood figure, smelling of rotting flesh, jumps into vehicles passing on a road outside of town. “Bandage Man” has appeared in pickup trucks, sedans, station wagons, and even sports cars. Sometimes the mummy breaks windows, or leaves behind bits of foul-smelling bandages. Some believe he is the ghost of a dead logger, cut to pieces in a sawmill accident. The “Bandage Man” is said to eat dogs and may have murdered several people. He appears on the short approach road connecting US Highway 101 to Cannon Beach. The phantom always vanishes just before reaching town.
Oregon Caves Chateau – 2000 Caves Highway
The Chateau has a ghost named Elizabeth that roams through the rooms and the halls at night. It is said that she hung herself on her wedding night after catching her husband with another woman.
Harmony House – 15730 Southeast 130th Ave.
This restaurant has had many sightings by workers and customers. A worker was trapped in a supply closet and then was suddenly let out. Two workers were cleaning up when they heard someone clearing their throat. When they looked up toward the sound they saw only smoke and smelled pipe tobacco. People have also witnessed a girl laughing and things moving from one place to another. There was an article written about this place in “The Oregonian” newspaper.
Oregon State University – Intersection of Jefferson and 30th
In one of the rooms in Sackett Hall is the site of numerous disturbances including fire starting and things being thrown around the room. It is said that a girl was killed in that room. Her name was Brandy and she lived in room 121. She was known to be very loose particularly since it was the 1950’s. One night she was killed by accident by a drunken frat boy. She still roams B-long, her physical body having been turned to dust ages ago, all that remains is her angry spirit which is seen at times to be a swirling cloud, twisting and turning in constant eternal anguish for an unpunished crime. Very few have seen her.
Cottage Grove High School – 1000 Taylor Ave.
A student was on the catwalks, in the high school auditorium, when he fell off and died. His spirit has rarely been seen, but often you will hear the sounds of someone walking when no one is there.
Wizard Island – located in Crater Lake
Shamans were the only members of the Klamath Indian tribe who dared approach this sacred lake. They assembled on Wizard Island to perform secret ceremonies. According to legend, the spirits of the World Below live in this lake, while the spirits of the World Above live at Mount Shasta. The deep, sky blue Crater Lake was created by the collapse of a giant volcano nearly seven thousand years ago.
Highway 97, between Culver and Crooked River Bridge
There are many freaky myths about this stretch of road in the high desert of ghosts walking the road at night. Cows all of the sudden appear in the road with glowing eyes, and the vehicles travel night through them. This stretch of road is very windy and treacherous. There have been many death due to car wrecks.
On the map the stretch of road is between the red star (Culver) and Terrebonne, where the Crooked River Bridge stands.
Elgin High School – 1400 Birch St.
Custodians, teachers, and students have all heard the sounds of running and basketballs late at night in the gymnasium, as well as in other parts of the school. One year, on the way to a basketball game, two high school lovers were killed in a car accident, never making it to the game. It is rumored that it is the ghost of these two student that cause the noises at night.
Opera House – 104 North 8th St.
In the late 1800’s there was a gun fight over one of the local young women that lived in town. The two men are said to be seen fighting on the front steps with there big six shooters firing at each other. They are both seen holding their chest and falling to the ground.
Fox Hollow Elementary School – 5055 Mahalo Dr.
Many people have spotted a ghost named Opal here. At night you can always hear someone saying “Opal” over and over again. The playground shakes as if someone is playing on it as well.
Kmart – 846 Goodpasture Island Rd.
Janitors working over night tell stories of doors in the stock room opening and closing by themselves. They also reported seeing signs hanging from the ceiling swaying back and forth like they were being tapped in a row. A night stocker witnessed a 10-foot section of talking Elmo’s all begin talking and moving at the same time. They are not sound activated. There is also an ominous presence that can be felt in the closed auto center.
Lane Community College – 4000 East 30th Ave.
The elevator in the center building is haunted by a janitor that fell to his death in the 1960’s. You can hear his yells for help at sunset. He likes to play tricks on the people that use the elevator after sunset by taking people to the creepy basement.
South Eugene High School – 400 East 19th Ave.
A seat near the center of the auditorium of this high school is haunted. in 1957, student Robert Granke fell from a catwalk to his death onto the seats below. Now, students who site there report a “chilling presence,” as if they were sharing the spot with an invisible person. The huge empty space between the auditorium ceiling and roof is also haunted. Stage managers have reported strange sounds and a mysterious blue light moving around in the area. Once, a brick mysteriously fell from the overhead crawl space into the haunted sear, narrowly missing a student about to sit down.
Heceta Head Lighthouse – 92072 Hwy. 101 South
The ghost of a frail old lady floats across room and through closed doors in the caretaker’s house here. Sometimes the spirit screams in the middle of the night or rattles dishes in the cupboard. At other times, the Lady in Gray eavesdrops from the stairs or spies through closed windows. Once, a repairman fixing a broken window in the attic saw her float up in front of him. He jumped off his ladder and never returned. The owners then heard the swishing of a broom and found all the broken pieces of glass swept into a neat pile on the attic floor. Spanish explorer Bruno Heceta discovered this costal point in 1775, and the lighthouse was built in 1894.
The caretaker’s house has been turned into a Bed and Breakfast, and there are tours conducted of the area, and the lighthouse. Goto www.hecetalighthouse.com for more information.
Pacific University – 2043 College Way
The ghost of Vera, a former music student who died in Knight hall, is said to still haunt the building. The ghost’s singing and piano playing can be heard echoing through the halls here. In the 1960s, watchmen investigating the sounds encountered the form of a woman enveloped by a shimmering blue light. in the late 1980s, the spirit grew stronger, and even voiced its displeasure at some students’ performances at the keyboard. Vera’s presence has been witnessed by students, reporters, and professors at the college. Assistant director of admissions Jeff Grundon has experienced firsthand some of the phenomena and now believes there is indeed a ghost in Knight Hall. According to the school’s public relations directed, Steve Sechrist, several parapsychologists are currently studying the phenomenon.
Fort Stevens State Park – Just outside of Hammond, Oregon
The ghost of a man carrying a bright flashlight haunts the stone walkway known as Battery Russel at Fort Stevens. The phantom makes a noise like heavy, clanging chains while he makes his rounds late at night. Some witnesses have discerned the form of a man behind the bright beam of light he carries, only to see the phantom disappear as he approaches.
Oregon Vortex – 4303 Sardine Road
People have felt there was something not quite right about this hill for hundreds of years. Indians called it the “Forbidden Ground,” and white settlers in 1864 talked of “something wrong” here. The unease felt by people on the hill may have made them receptive to paranormal experiences. Native American legend says that horses will not come into this area. John Litster, a Scottish physicist, for instance, came to the site in 1914, and spent the rest of his life studying what he considered to be “aberrations in the light field and gravity.” The site became a tourist attraction in 1930, and thousands of people have experienced both entertaining illusions and the authentic effects of the Oregon Vortex. The House of Mystery on the site was used as an assay office for a gold mining company until it collapsed sideways in a thunderstorm. The strongest cortex concentration is said to be directly behind the building. The whirling energy is believed to distort photographs taken there. In a 1994 investigation, William Moffitt concluded that the site exhibits some genuine phenomena, but compared with other sacred areas it is “a lesser vortex infused with commercialism.” Several visitors to the vortex have reportedly seen the ghost of John Litster standing at the top of the sloping floor of the old log cabin. He is usually seen resting against the wall, laughing and plucking his eyebrows. The visitors have asked the guide the identity of the man who somehow got ahead of the tour. One tour guide looked inside and recognized Litster from an old photograph. After the quick look, Litster disappeared.
Griswold School – 120 Main St.
The school is haunted by Dr. Griswold, the founder of the school, and his wife. They can be seen looking in the left window in the gymnasium, although Dr. Griswold has been seen more often.
The Rock Piles – located just outside of Idanha
This place has been said to be inhabited by loggers and other ancient spirits. Many people have seen a woman hanging, a skinless dog, a headless logger, and even a little girl in white.
Herman Helms House – On Oregon St.
Two ghosts haunt this old wood-frame house, which dates back to 1862. One is an elderly lady who walks through the halls weeping; and the other is a little girl who site at the bottom of the stairs, also crying. The lady is Herman Helms’ wife August Englebrecht Helms, who is mourning the family’s numerous tragedies. Epidemics, murder, and suicide claimed a dozen members of the Helms clan in the late 1800s. Mrs. Helms herself died in the house in 1911, at the age of seventy-two. The little girl ghost is her youngest daughter, Herminne. She died of smallpox in 1868. Because of the epidemic, the child was buried in the front lawn. When an addition to the house covered her grave site in 1878, her tombstone was moved into the basement of the new section.
See Bella Rooming House in Portland, OR.
Mc Cully House – 240 East California St.
Some people that have stayed the night in the house, have reported seeing a woman in a white gown, wandering the halls late at night.
Wallowa Lake State Park – 72214 Marina Ln.
A black serpentine creature, called the Wallowa Monster, with the head of a hog has been seen swimming in this lake since the early 1800’s. In the 1950’s, reports were received of two creatures feeding on bluebacks at the head of the lake. One was 16 feet long and the other was 8 feet long. their weight was estimated at several hundred pounds each. Legend says: the horned lake serpents lie in wait for anyone to cross the deepest park at the lake’s center. Not a single drowning victim has ever been recovered from the lake. Because of the stories, Nez Perce Indians will not go out on the water although they fish in the streams that run into it.
Hot Lake Hotel – 65182 Hot Lake Lane
This former sanitarium was featured on Fox Family Channel’s “Scariest Places on Earth.” The ghosts of former tenants walk the corridors of this deserted resort at night. Footsteps on the upper floors, the sounds of a piano, and an occasional scream echo through the empty building. Sometimes it sounds as if the departed spirits are throwing a party on the third floor. The hotel was built next to the 205-degree sulfurous Hot Lake in 1851. The first structure was gradually expanded into an elegant gabled building in 1907, when Dr. W.T. Phy established a health spa at the site which was considered the “mayo clinic of the west.” A fire in 1934 destroyed the ballroom and library, and all that is left today is a neglected and unfriendly brick building next to a few smaller houses. After the fire, the remaining buildings have been used as a hotel and then an insane asylum and finally a restaurant in the 1970’s. There have also been reports of a piano playing when there isn’t a piano in the building.
Lafayette Cemetery – In Lafayette, Oregon
The witches’ grave is said to be haunted by the witch that was hung. Before she died she cursed the town and said that the town would burn to the ground 3 times. So far it has burned completely to the ground twice. If you go to her grave at night, usually you can see her standing around, or walking through the cemetery. Many people have reported being chased by the witch, and some still have scars on their backs from being scratched. The marks look like razor blades have been sliced down their backs.
The spirits of massacred Spanish pirates guard a lost treasure on the coast here. In the early 1700s, Indians watched as two sailing vessels fired “thunder” at each other. One of the ships was badly damaged and ran aground near this mountain. They watched as men from the ship buried a heavy black chest in the sand. Later, they befriended scores of these “white and black men.” But the arrogant Spanish pirates wasted no time in wearing out the Indians’ hospitality. One night a band of 1,500 united Tillamook, Clatsop, and Nehalem Indians descended on the sailor’s camp and killed them all. They buried the bodies on the beach next to the black chest. Mysterious markings on rack on Neahkahnie Mountain may hold clues to the whereabouts of the lost treasure chest. A Giant W with a mile-long base formed with mounds of rocks has been found here, as well as several smaller rock carvings of the letter. The Indians believe the spirits of the lost sailors guard their treasure, and indeed, since 1900, five people have died in separate accidents while searching for the lost chest.
Dibble Cemetery – 1 mile West of Molalla
Some people have heard a strange howling type noise, without a known source.
Western Oregon State College – 345 North Monmouth Ave.
The theater building of this liberal arts college is haunted by the ghost of George Harding, the schools first professor of theater. The site was previously a gymnasium, and Mr. Harding’s ghost did not appear until the theater building was erected. His slow, methodical footsteps can be heard pacing across the stage, and he is known to sabotage productions not up to his standards.
Providence Benedictine Nursing Center – 540 South Main St.
Past residents walk up and down the halls, stand in their old rooms, or sit on their old bed. There is a story that a nun walks the halls at night, but only if you have seen her. People have felt a tap on the shoulder and heard “Can you help me?” only to turn around and find there is no one there.
Upper Multnomah Falls – 16400 Champion Way
The spirit of an Indian maiden who leapt to her death from the 542-foot-high Upper Fall is felt here. She sacrificed herself after being told by an old medicine man that it was the only way to stop the spread of a deadly epidemic among tribe members. The sickness left the Indians, but the girls spirit never left the falls.
Newberg Graphic – 109 North School St.
This small newspaper is housed in an extremely haunted location. Over the years, employees have experienced strange time lapses and sightings of many apparitions.
Yaquina Bay Lighthouse – map of Newport
This deserted three-story lighthouse is haunted by the ghost of a murdered sea captain. The crew of the whaling ship Moncton took over the ship in January 1874 and cast Captain Evan MacClure adrift in a row-boat off the coast here. The captain was never seen again, but his ghost started making appearances at homes and taverns along the coastline. The legend of Oregon’s wandering ghost grew until dozens of people had reported seeing the red-haired man with “the face of a skeleton.” The ghost had told one housewife that he was just looking for “a place to stay and someone to join him in death.” The Newport Lighthouse abandoned in 1874, was just the kind of place Captain MacClure had in mind. Not long after his ghost moved in, a young woman (whose name varies) was picnicking here with her friends. After she ran back into the lighthouse to get something she forgot, her friends heard her scream. When they ran to her aid, the door was locked and she was nowhere in sight. She was never seen again. Captain MacClure’s apparition, and that of a young woman in a dress, would be encountered by scores of witnesses over the next 120 years.
North Bend High School – 2323 Pacific Ave.
There used to be an old pool underneath the sophomore hall of North Bend High School. A young man died in the pool of an unexplained drowning. The hall has been rumored to have more than students wandering the halls: it is believed by some to be the home of a long lost soul that died there many years ago. There have been flashed of light, doors opening and closing, strange gurgling sounds, and even items being tossed across the room. The staff at North Bend doesn’t like to talk much about the rare, yet strange, occurrences. But, they have been talked about by the students for many years.
Barclay House – 719 Center St.
Several ghosts haunt the home of Dr. Forbes Barclay. The apparition of a small red-haired boy appears to be so real that residents have called the police. His phantom dog even leaves paw prints on the carpets. Another ghost in the house, called “Uncle Sandy,” is thought to be the brother of Dr. Barclay. Uncle Sandy stays near his old bed, where encounters with his spirit are most likely to take place. This is the ticket house for the McLoughlin House.
McLoughlin House and Museum – 713 Center St.
The hulking ghost of Dr. John McLoughlin walks through the upstairs hall and bedroom of this old mansion. He founded Oregon City in 1829 and built this house in 1845. Standing six feet five inches tall, with shoulder-length hair, McLoughlin was an imposing figure. He was also a remarkably generous man, serving as the community’s doctor, mayor, and investor. Not long after he moved into his new house, the US Congress divested him of all his holdings because he was a Canadian citizen. He died on September 3, 1857, a bitter and broken man. After his death, his home was used as a camp for Chinese laborers and later became a whorehouse. In 1909, the house was moved to a hilltop location and restored as a museum. In the 1970’s, the graves of McLoughlin and his wife were also moved to the new estate. That was when the ghostly manifestations started. In additions to sightings of McLoughlin’s tall, dark shadow, objects in the house seem to move by themselves, and disembodied footsteps are heard on the stairway and upstairs. On the anniversary of the date and time of his death, September 3, at about 9:35 am, his portrait above the downstairs fireplace radiates a brilliant golden aura as the sun strikes it. The ghost of a woman has been reported standing by an upstairs window, and a phantom dog scampers through the first-floor halls.
Eastern Oregon Correctional Institute (EOCI) – 2500 Westgate Rd.
Guards have stated hearing people down below yelling: “Help, help, help.”
Pendleton High School (Auditorium) – 1800 Northwest Carden Ave.
The ghost of a former student, Ryan, resides in the auditorium. It has been seen in the light loft and in seat J-26. Ryan has also been known to run across the stage. During shows, pieces of scenery have moved and maniacal laughing has been heard.
Pendleton Public Library – 214 North Main St.
The ghost of Ruth, a former librarian here, haunts this building. In the late 1940’s or early 1950’s, Ruth was working one Sunday when the library was closed and became suddenly ill. She passed out and was not discovered until the next day, when she was transported to a hospital and died. Rumors that she was despondent over a failed love affair and ate a can of lye in the basement have been proven false. In any case, her dainty footsteps are still heard at the library, and her ghost knocks books from shelves, turns on lights, and opens windows.
Bella Rooming House – 655 Southwest Washington St.
Another tragedy struck the Herman Helms family here on January 6, 1907. Emma and Anna, daughters of Herman Helms, operated a rooming house here. On the fateful morning, Emma’s estranged husband, Fred Martin, burst into the sitting room and killed Emma with a gun. As Anna tried to escape, he mortally wounded her. Then, he ran into the cellar put the gun into his mouth, and pulled the trigger. His suicide note requested that he be buried next to his sister-in-law Anna, with Emma’s body “as far from us as possible.” The tangled web of emotions from this day still hangs over this old haunted house.
See Herman Helms House in Jacksonville, OR.
Cathedral Park – St. John’s Bridge
In the summer of 1949, fifteen-year-old Thelma Taylor was murdered under the St. John’s Bridge. In the present day, disembodied scream can be heard late at night during the summer, and the police have been dispatched numerous times to the area without finding any evidence of foul play.
Fairmount Apartments – Corner of 26th and Vaughn St.
Malevolent and benevolent hauntings have been experienced here. This is the last building standing from the 1905 centennial celebration of the Lewis and Clark expedition. It was once a grand hotel and it is now an apartment complex. Some of the residents, over the years, have reported seeing apparitions late at night. Others have felt somewhat of a threatening presence, mostly on the lower floors and especially in the halls. Upstairs, the presence is not as threatening.
Oaks Park – map of Oaks Park, Portland
This amusement park, built in 1890, has been plagued with a ghostly apparition of a lone child in 1970’s style clothing for over 20 years.
St. John’s Theater – 8704 North Lombard St.
An unidentified presence has been encountered by actors and employees at this theater house. The ghost has been reported backstage and in the main auditorium.
White Eagle Cafe and Saloon – 836 North Russell St.
This old tavern and whorehouse, built in 1899, is haunted by a wide variety of ghostly presences. The basement and second floor are sites of much strange activity, including objects tossed out of nowhere, groping invisible hands, old coins materializing on the floors, and teardrop-shaped apparitions. An invisible presence walks down the corridor from the bar, enters the men’s room, and flushes the toilet. The phantom flushing continued even after a new toilet was installed. The unexplainable crying of a woman is heard on the second floor. There are many candidates for the ghosts here. The basement used to house black prostitutes, while the second floor house white prostitutes. A tough Chinese bouncer, who kept the peace among the surly customers, disappeared while working one night and was never seen again. An abandoned ten-year-old boy, named Sam, was taken in by one of the owners. Sam worked as a roust-about housekeeper and died in the 1930’s at the age of 30 in his second-floor bedroom. The room was sealed for many years with all his belongings inside. Chuck Hughes bought the building in 1978 and quickly became a believer in ghosts.
Willamette River – map of Willamette River, Portland
Over the past several years, a phantom rowboat has been sighted along this river. It has no one inside, but when the coastguard goes to retrieve the boat, it disappears right in front of their eyes.
Yellow Brick Road Antiques and Collectible Store – 5916 Southeast 91 Ave.
This antique shop is housed in a fourteen-room former funeral home in which some unseen presence pushes people, lifts hats off their heads, plays pranks, and makes odd swooshing noises in the walls. The ghost is believed to be a caretaker who died in the building many years ago.
New Redmond Hotel – 521 6th St.
People have claimed to hear footsteps walk back and forth in the halls. There have been pictures taken and in the pictures there are clearly orbs in the lobby hall. Some have even noticed having the feeling of a strange presence in the rooms in the middle of the night. There have also been apparitions of a woman reported.
Bush House – 600 Mission St. Southeast
The Bush House is now an art gallery that has a ghost from the turn of the century. She was a young woman who suffered from schizophrenia, and her family kept her in the basement in shame. She died there, and now haunts the house. The owners have residents who live in the upstairs who state that the ghost of a young will play with the thermostat.
Capital Building – 900 Court St. Northeast
The capital was burnt down twice by fire. One of the elevators shows its history when the carpeted floor mysteriously smolders. The capital has had to be evacuated because of this unknown fire.
Governor’s Mansion – 533 Lincoln St.
The Governor Neil Goldschmidt moved into the mansion in 1987, and was dually warned about the ghost there. Former owners spoke of the apparition of Thomas Libesly, a millionaire commodities broker who built the Tudor-style mansion in 1925. Every 3 or 4 days at around 7:30am, his ghost wearing a blue-gray robe makes an appearance in the master bedroom. Although Goldschmidt later admitted to needing “all the help he could get” in the running the strange household, no governor has yet admitted to seeing the ghost.
Mission Mill – 1313 Mill St. Southeast
This, once thriving woolen mill, is now a museum and home to museums such as the Salem Art Center (SAC). Also on the grounds, you can find the original home of Jason Lee, the founder of Salem, and several other historical buildings that were transplanted to the grounds. Employees have had experiences of a young woman running across the bridge (from her spouse; she was rumored to have been murdered on the bridge), meetings with Wayne the groundskeeper (who, after death, is still caring and watching over the grounds), and can sense extreme again and pain from the turbine room, where a male employee lost his leg while maintaining a turbine. Some people can also feel the vibrations of the old machinery running and weaving wool on the top floor of the museum; a room void of machinery, and often rented for parties and receptions.
Little Crater Lake – 16400 Champion Way (Main Forest Office)
Lots of people camp at Little Crater Lake Campground in the Mount Hood National Forest. Some have reported hearing crying at night, and seeing a white cat that disappears every time they get close to it. Hikers by the lake have seen 3 teenagers (one girl, and two boys) swimming, yet no living people could handle water that cold. The teens reach there hands out of the water as if asking for help.
St. Helen’s High School – 2375 Gable Rd.
The high school auditorium is haunted by the ghost of a woman that died there. People have seen her in the lighting booth, and sitting in the chairs.
Tillamook Lighthouse – Located on Tillamook Rock
This lighthouse was built in 1880 on top of a jagged rock that the local Indians considered to be possessed by evil spirits. A few weeks before the cornerstone for the lighthouse was laid, 25 people lost their lives when several fishing boats sank at the mouth of the nearby Columbia River during a storm. Witnesses reported seeing a ghostly boat sail through the floating wreckage, as if collecting the souls of those who died. Keepers at Tillamook started reporting “Low, chilling groans from the stair cylinder leading to the lantern,” and the place soon gained a reputation for being haunted. In the 1950s, a Coast Guard crew reported sighting a ghost ship in the fog immediately below the lighthouse. The lighthouse was abandoned in 1957. Since 1980, it has been used as a depository of cremated human remains.
Edgefield Winery – 2126 Southwest Halsey St.
This complex is now owned by the McMinamin brothers and is run as a vineyard, brewery, restaurant and bed and breakfast. However, its original use was that of a poor farm and then later as a nursing home. It is said to have strong activity above the wine cellars (which was once the morgue) and in the cellars themselves. Many photographs taken here have mists and orbs in them. The McMinamin’s even post some of the hauntings in their pubs, hotels, or on the website.
John Day River – Off Highway 97 where the Oregon Trail crosses the river
The ghost or Mary Leonard haunts the riverbank here. She and her husband owned a hotel on this site in the 1880’s. It is said they robbed several wealthy guests at their hotel and buried the bodies nearby. Mary was sent to jail for murdering her own husband, and when she was released, spent the rest of her life searching the riverbank for buried loot. Strand floating lights are seen in the area, as well as the ghost of an old lady with long white hair.
Welche’s Road House – Roberts Ave.
Tenants and visitors to this mountain cabin have witnessed the presence of a female ghost. She is described as wearing a full-length dress, with her hair done up in a bun. The ghost has been spotted looking out over the river from a second floor window in the upstairs bedroom. One cocaine-using tenant claimed the ghost appeared to him on numerous occasions and warned him that she did not want “anything negative” happening in the house. The house was built in 1890 by Samuel Welche, who founded the town. Some believe the presence in the house is a former caretaker who became pregnant by an escaped prisoner she hid there. When the man wanted to leave she became hysterical and flung herself out the north door, where she ran into a tree and broke her neck.
Diamond Peak – Southeast of McMinnville on Highway 222
On November 22, 1966, a biochemist traveling across the Willamette Pass pulled off the highway to take some pictures of the scenery. When he saw a fuzzy object start to move upward from the valley, he took a single picture before it zoomed out of sight. His photo showed a metallic object about 22 feet in diameter. Surprisingly, three separate images of the object appeared on the film in the split second that the shutter was opened. One explanation was that he object moved by fading in and out of our space-time, much like the motion of atomic particles in quantum physics. Dr. J. Allen Hynek and photo analyst Adrian Vance pronounced it genuine; a 1990 study by Dr. Irwin Wieder concluded that it was a picture of a road sign taken from a moving vehicle.
Wolf Creek Inn – 100 Front St.
The Owner, workers and guests at this lovely Victorian Inn, built in the late 1800’s, have all seen the apparition of a vampire creature with blood dripping from his mouth. Passing motorists on the old country freeways have seen him as well. One such story, which made national news, was when two hikers in the area witnessed the vampire while hiking around the Wolf Creek area; then later that night, at the hotel, they were bitten on the neck by the creature when they were in bed. It left strange unidentifiable marks on their neck.
Applegate House – 512 Applegate Rd.
This enormous house was built between 1852 and 1856 by lumber mill operator Charles Applegate. Today, the ghost of Charles, his wife Melinda, and their fifteen children haunt their former home. Disembodied voices and footsteps are heard throughout the house, and the swooshing sounds of long skirts come from empty hallways. The crying of babies can be heard in the dust attic. Fiddle and banjo music is heard in the deserted parlor. The apparitions of a man in baggy pants and a woman wearing white have also been encountered in the parlor.