Farmer’s ghost haunts farmhouse
Saturday, 30 October 2010
By KAREN CAMPBELL
Assistant Managing Editor
In an abandoned house, a few miles southwest of Wapakoneta, the ghost of a father is said to remain still distraught over the loss of his family.
According to legend, in 1966, the family living in the five-room farmhouse fell into extreme poverty. They all became ill and died off one by one, until only the father remained.
So depressed over his family’s deaths, he eventually killed himself, according to the story posted in the Ohio Exploration Society’s list of haunted places in Auglaize County.
“His ghost now haunts the home,” the posting read. “Mysterious lights have often been seen on the top floor of the home, despite the fact the home has been abandoned for 30 years.”
A listing on the haunted house on StrangeUSA.com, which places the house between Owl Creek and Burr Oak roads, is similar.
According to it, the farming family kept falling deeper and deeper into debt until they all got sick. The father’s depression led him to take his own life.
“It’s said that his soul got trapped in the in-between world and stays at his old house,” according to the description on StrangeUSA.
Those who claim to have seen evidence of the haunted house say there is a light that will be on upstairs in the house, which has no electricity running to it.
Of the 831 people who have viewed the site’s posting about the farmhouse, it was rated “average” as far as ghostly places to visit go, with five skulls of a possible 10.
An anonymous visitor to the site from Wapakoneta said he had gone to the house at night with a group of friends and although he had no idea at the time how the haunting was supposed to manifest, he saw the upstairs window glowing as they left.
Chris Woodyard, the author of the “Haunted Ohio” book series, describes the Kohler Road House haunting as a “rural” legend, the kind which involve abandoned houses, crying babies and phantom hitchhikers, and all of them, involving the same kind of story over and over at locations throughout the state and country.
“There do seem to be certain areas that are more apt to attract and manifest things,” Woodyard said. “Some people are more sensitive, who will feel more there.”
She said areas with strong magnetic fields, water and rich American Indian histories all may be more prone to these types of stories and feelings. Sometimes spirits may be attracted to certain people, who had terrible things happen to themselves with which they never dealt.
“There are definitely places which are much more atmospheric because something terrible happened there,” Woodyard said.
The author, who does many of her own investigations, said it’s not sensationalized like one might see on TV, she takes notes rather than use machines, and she asks that she not be told about the site before going in.
“It’s always fascinating to me,” Woodyard said. “I can usually validate my notes. I don’t go looking to talk to or see spirits, I don’t use Ouija Boards or seances, but they have made contact with me.”
Growing up in the 1950s, Woodyard said she was afraid of her ability to see things others couldn’t before finding out that her grandfather had the same ability. So does her daughter.
“I consider it a kind of another sense that runs in the family,” Woodyard said. “We see things others can’t see.”
She said she doesn’t consider it a gift, but it is interesting. Sometimes her skills are used to make someone else feel better, to prove to themselves, if no one else, that they aren’t crazy.
“Not everything can be proven and it can be easy to fool yourself,” Woodyard said. “You have to try to not be gullible.”
She said ghosts can be seen in the day or night so don’t risk it in the dark. She encourages novice ghost hunters to do their homework and to stay off private property as there are plenty of haunted public places to check out.
“Sure the interest spikes in ghosts at Halloween time, but you don’t just see ghosts at Halloween time, that’s just when everyone is out looking for them,” Woodyard said.
Copyright © 2010, The Wapakoneta Daily News
Thank you to Karen Campbell for mentioning the OES for this article about the haunted farmhouse on Kohler Road.