Freedom's Corner Haunts & History
The legends, lore and ghost tales of Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton & Philadelphia counties.
If you have comments or stories to share, please contact us at Haunts & History
Visit us at our blog Pennsylvania Haunts & History
CABRINI COLLEGE (Radnor, Delaware County) Cabrini, a small Main Line Catholic college, was founded in 1957, and its' campus sits on 112 acres with 25 buildings and a handful of spooks.
- Grace Hall: This is Cabrini's urban legend. It's said that there was a tunnel connecting Grace Hall (the old carriage house of the main home) with the Mansion that was used as a hideout for people during the Revolutionary War days. The tunnel collapsed while there were several people in it, trapping and killing them. Ever since then, the basement of Grace Hall has been sealed off from the rest of the building with strange sounds heard coming from the underground. Are their ghosts there? No one knows until they open up the cellar again. And they're still not sure that they really want to know.
- Mansion at Cabrini: The Mansion is currently offices for Cabrini College, but it was once the country retreat of the well-to-do Dorrance (Campbell Soup president, mmm good) and Paul families. The star spook of this tale is Mary, although I'm not sure which family she's from. I've heard versions placing her as a Dorrance, others as a Paul, and it's immaterial to the story. As a young girl, she used to play with the son of the carriage master, Xavier. But as they became older and the social strata took hold, her father forbid her to meet him anymore. But it was too late. She had fallen in love with him, and was shortly carrying his baby. When her father found out on one wintry evening, he put on his top hat and cape and went out to the stables after the lad. Fearing the consequences, Xavier ran to the bell tower and hung himself. In fact, it's said the tower has been sealed since that fateful night, and that the rope he used still dangles from the rafters. After hearing of the suicide, Mary threw herself off a balcony, killing herself and delivering a stillborn baby. (Some versions say the baby was stillborn before her leap, some say after, and some say the dead baby was taken from her.) They were buried in the peach orchard nearby where Woodcrest Hall now stands. It's alleged that Mary, with long blonde hair and a dress described as either white or blue, still roams the area in front of Woodcrest in search of her lost baby. As for the father, during the first snowfall of the year, his footprints can be seen on a driveway between Grace Hall (built over the old stables) and the Mansion that suddenly end. He's also been seen as a tall man wearing a top hat and a black cape walking along the driveway. He's been described as wandering around and looking lost (although other versions have him storming along the path, head down), and reportedly been hit by a car or three on the driveway. The drivers can hear the thud, but when they get out to check on the man, he's gone. There are other tales. A group of students, bothered by a creaking noise in the upstairs room of the mansion, popped through a trapdoor and found a cradle that had been rocking back and forth. When they tried to remove the cradle, they couldn't get it through the door. They claimed something was holding it back on the other side. Once, during a dance, the students rolled up a rug to uncover the hardwood floor. There was blood seeping between the boards. They've never held another dance in the Mansion.
- Woodcrest Hall: Besides Mary's visits, Woodcrest is also the home of the "Old Hag" syndrome (no, I'm not going there, so don't ask.) Many girls have felt a weight on top of them as they were in bed, and can't move or speak. They report hearing voices whispering around them, although no one else was in the room with them. Electronics have also been reported to turn on by themselves, even when unplugged.
- Xavier Hall: A lady in white has been seen reflecting from the door mirrors there, apparently in response to a ouija board session. Colleges should ban those dang things! They're nothing but trouble.
All references are from The Loquitur "The Haunted," October 30, 2003 & "Footsteps From Beyond The Grave And Other Ghost Stories," October 25, 2001
CAFE' DEL MAR (Belfast, Northampton County) Located on Route 33 by the Sullivan Trail, the Cafe' Del Mar takes up the first floor of the old Belfast Hotel. The building dates back to the 1800s, and was a train station, hotel, cathouse, and now is a restaurant and bar. The staff reports a house spook roaming the Cafe' that they call ED. They even convinced the owner to call the Ghost Breakers, a paranormal investigative group from Jersey, to check it out. They combed the building one night - the first floor is all that's finished; the upper floors are pretty much gutted - and came out with a picture of a gazillion orbs, but not much else. So the jury's still out on ED and the gang. Ghost Breakers
CARPENTERS HALL (Chestnut Street, Philadelphia) The Carpenters Guild (actually, they were an architect's group) began building the Hall in 1770 and opened its' doors in 1774. The First Continental Congress met there that year to discuss their beefs with the Crown. When the Revolution began, it served as an arsenal and hospital for the Colonials. It's said that strange smells and sounds greet the Hall's visitors, probably from the residual energy of the old infirmary. It's also said to be haunted by Philly's first two bank robbers, who strolled into the Bank of Pennsylvania, then located in the building, and made off with its' receipts in 1798. It was supposed to be an inside job, and a third floor tenant of the Hall was a prime suspect. He was questioned, but never charged. The pair's footprints can be seen in the dust that settles on the first floor of the Hall, retracing their larcenous journey. It's also said that the robber who lived on the third floor died there, and odors and strange sounds have been reported coming out of that room ever since. Smelly old building! Haunted Pennsylvania
CEDAR CREST COLLEGE (Allentown, Lehigh County) This all girls school is haunted by the spirit of Wanda. She's said to have hung herself in the Butz Hall stairwell in 1956. People have heard her cries, the sound of a chair being kicked over, and the swoosh of something swaying in the air. If you see her roaming the Hall, her face is supposed to be featureless. Wanda's reportedly been seen in Butz Hall by both students and staff alike. Students have also reported being locked out of their rooms and experiencing poltergeist activities in the dorm. (Associated Content "Charming & Haunted Allentown Pennsylvania," October 1, 2007)
CEDAR GROVE MANSION (Fairmount Park, Philadelphia) The Cedar Grove Mansion was built in 1746 for well-to-do Quaker widow Elizabeth Coates Paschal as a summer home in Frankford, then known for its' mineral springs. But industrialization reared its' ugly head in the area, and the owners decided it was time to pull up their roots and head for greener pastures. But they loved the old house and couldn't bear to leave it behind. They had it taken, stone by stone, to a new site in Harrowgate in 1926. The grand dame of the Mansion came with it. The ghost of Elizabeth has reportedly been spotted looking out the fan-shaped window on the third floor. There's also been reports of whispering, giggling, and the sound of footsteps coming from the second floor. Some think that's the spirit of Sally Apthorp, who scratched "Charming and Accomplished" on a second floor window. Better there than on the men's room wall, we suppose. The mansion has been operated by the Philadelphia Museum of Art as a historic showcase since 1928. Digest ezine
CEDAR GROVE PARK (Whitemarsh Twp., Montgomery County) Cedar Grove hosts the Whitemarsh Art Center, a community barn, and several ball fields backed by a wooded park. It's said that you can hear screams and see figures roaming the woods at night. The spirits are thought to be caused by a violent death that occurred in the barn some years back. The Shadowlands
CHADD'S FORD INN (Chadd's Ford, Delaware County) Chadd's Inn was converted from the family home in 1736, and hosted Martha Washington and Lafayette (is there an Inn he didn't stop at, the lush?) in its' day. Now it's known for having several Wyeth paintings hanging on its' walls, and goes by name of the Brandywine Prime at Chadd's. Befitting a building of its' age, there's much poltergeist activity going on, such as water taps turning on, flickering lights, sliding water glasses that shatter on the floor, and the opening and shutting of doors. And of course, some spooks. There are supposed to be a half dozen of them in the building. There are three main sightings. One is Simon, a little boy that appears at the top of the stairs on the second floor landing. Katie is spotted often too, a young girl in an old-time dress and a frilly hat. Then there's the old Sea Captain, who haunts the second floor and can be seen staring out the window. The new owners have gutted the old building and redone its' interior. We'll see how the spooks take to their new haunt. There haven't been any sightings yet. Maybe the new owners renovations sent the spooks packing. Del Co Ghosts
CHALKLEY HALL (Frankford, Philadelphia) Built in the 1720's by Thomas Chalkley, the home is demolished and a factory site now. But when it was one of Frankford's mansions, it had a pair of ladies haunting it. The first was the spirit of a Quaker girl, who according to East Ghost, committed suicide and was seen floating in the night. The more famous spook is the "Little Grey Lady," who would pop up to preshadow a death or momentous occasion for the family, as written in Harold Donaldson Eberlein and Horace Mather Lippincott's 1912 Colonial Homes of Philadelphia.
CHARMING FORGE (Marion Twp., Berks County) A young girl is supposed to haunt Womeldorf's Charming Forge mansion by the famous Iron Works founded in 1749. She allegedly met her end when her skirt caught fire as it brushed against the kitchen hearth. There's also a spook in a tri-cornered hat that's been spotted in the second floor bedrooms, and the sound of footsteps can be heard going up and down the steps. PA Researchers
CHESTER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY MUSEUM (West Chester, Chester County) The museum building was taken over by the Chester County Historical Society in 1940 and has served quite a few different purposes over the years. Built in the mid 1800s, it was an opera house, meeting hall, and GAR headquarters before becoming a museum. It's alleged to have been originally built over a graveyard and used as a stop in the underground railroad. Many people have reported spotting apparitions in the museum, and they speculate that they're the spirits of runaway slaves that were captured and killed there. We wouldn't be surprised if a couple of the spooks aren't remnants of the boneyard, though. Spooks hate changing plots. The Shadowlands
CHESTNUT HILL COLLEGE (Philadelphia) Located at the northwestern edge of Philadelphia on 75 acres overlooking the Wissahickon Creek, Chestnut Hill College opened in 1924 as a Catholic college for women, then named Mount Saint Joseph College. The College was renamed in 1938 as Chestnut Hill College, but that didn't fool any of its spooks.
- Chapel Basement: The basement is said to be haunted.
- Fonbonne Hall: The ghost of a girl, either a nun or student who died during a flu epidemic, haunts the hall along with a male spirit. It has catacombs and tunnels underneath it that lead to the mother house and are allegedly haunted by a crying woman.
- Fournier Hall: The "Red Eye Room" is located on the second floor, so named because at night, it's said that two red
eyes appear floating throughout the room. One suite across the hall features paranormal phenomena like slamming doors, window shades that fly up and radios that turn on and off. The third floor is reported to be haunted by the ghost of a young
boy, dressed in 1920's clothing.
- Logue Library: Books move on their own, as do their carts. The library was built on top of a cemetery, which according to lore had to be relocated twice. If you're in the building after 11, it's said that you may share the stacks with some disgruntled spirits who were disturbed during the construction.
- Lower Parking Lot: Located by the sports field, it's said to be spooked by the spirit of a girl that was raped and murdered at the site.
- St. Josephs Hall: On the fifth floor, you can sometimes spot the spook of a young sister in a long robe floating by, taking her suicide leap from the Bishop's Steps as she did many years ago when she found out she was bearing a priest's child. There are a set of locked doors with a crucifix above them that some say was where the sister put her newborn before her jump. The lore is that if you knock three times on the doors, you'll get three raps back in return. the The basement is also haunted, and the fifth floor is supposed to be the realm of a departed art teacher.
And we're only tapping the surface, thanks to the lore recalled by LC. The Ghosts of Chestnut Hill says "...the College’s paranormal activity chronicles an extensive record spanning generations of curious, unexplained noises, doors seemingly locking and unlocking on their own, and several ghost sightings. The sightings have included, among several others, visions of a young lady with a beautiful brooch, a benevolent old man in robes, little girls playing dice games, and a boy with a hair of fire and emerald eyes." So if you have any local knowledge, give us a yell.
CHESTNUT STREET TRACKS (Leesport, Berks County) there's all kinds of stuff going on here by the tracks and a little further up the hill. First, a bright orb has been reported several times coming down the tracks and veering into the woods. The track equipment recognizes the ghost train; the crossing arm comes down, the lights flash, and if you're at the crossing, you feel
the train blow by - but there is no train! If you get past the crossing, people have seen a female spirit on Chestnut Street. She's been described a gray lady, usually spotted off to the side of the road. Reading Eagle
CHILDREN OF MARY (Croydon, Bucks County) The local tale is that Mary Devine, a teacher for whom the elementary school was eventually named after, and her husband Jonathan got into a fight one day. Jonathan, who allegedly hated kids, kidnapped her class and tied them to trees in the woods behind the school. He set the trees afire, roasting the children. It's said at night you can see bonfires and hear childrens screams in the woods. Jonathan is still supposed to be there, too, looking for students trying to escape. Personally, we find it kinda difficult to believe she'd get a school named after her under those circumstances. Sounds to us like an urban legend started by some disgruntled Bristol young 'uns with time on their hands, probably thought up while serving detention. Unsolved Mysteries
CITY HALL (Penn Square, Philadelphia) Over 30 years in the planning and construction phase, Philadelphia's City Hall opened in 1901, topped by a 37' statue of William Penn. It's built on one of the town's five original public meeting places first known as Center Square. It was also used for public hangings. In 1783, an Indian named Joseph Hightower was accused of murdering a Quaker family. Found guilty, he proclaimed his innocence all the way to the gallows, and he cursed the people that put him in that spot. His curse worked on the lawman that arrested him and his prosecutor. Like Hightower, they both suffocated. The man who arrested him, James Mann, drowned, and lawyer Robert Tanner had his windpipe crushed in a carriage accident. It's said that when you're in the Square, you can sometimes see feet swinging in the air at eye level. That would be the ghost of Joseph Hightower. One amusing factoid - it's been reported that an ironworker doing some patchwork on Penn's statue stood on the brim of Willie's hat (nearly 550' in the air), dropped his trousers and mooned the city. Digest ezine
CITY TAVERN (Old City, Philadelphia) The City Tavern was first built in 1773, and its' customer list was a who's who of Colonial America - Penn, Dickinson, Franklin, Jefferson, Revere, Washington and the gang. It was even used as a meeting place for the First Continental Congress in 1774 until it moved to the roomier digs of Carpenter's Hall. It hosted the Congressional bash on July 4th, 1777 in celebration of the first anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. But in 1834, the structure was partially demolished by fire. One of its' victims was a young bride, upstairs with her maids of honor, several of whom also perished in the flames. The groom and his party were downstairs in the tavern, and couldn't get upstairs to rescue the girls. Many staffers and guests have reportedly seen her spirit walking the Tavern, looking for her husband. She's supposedly even been photographed. Another tavern spook is that of an old waiter who bumbled into a duel in 1790 and became an accidental fatality during the swordplay. He's upset because the murderer was never prosecuted, and his spirit can be seen in a bloody shirt, collapsing to the barroom floor. The fire damage eventually led to the demolition of the original Tavern in 1854. It was rebuilt exactly in replica, spooks and all, in 1976.
CIVIL WAR LIBRARY (Pine Street, Philadelphia) The museum, founded in 1888, is a comfortable spot to spend an afternoon. Even spooks can relax there. In the second floor Lincoln Room, it's reported that you can sometimes find a group of Civil War era soldiers at a table playing cards, with the aroma of cigar smoke wafting through the air. The room was featured on the TV show Unsolved Mysteries. PIRA
CLIVEDEN/BENJAMIN CHEW HOUSE (Germantown, Philadelphia) Benjamin Chew was an influential Philadelphia lawyer (he would become a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice), and built a summer house he called Cliveden in Germantown between 1763-67 from stones quarried from the property. He was also a Tory. During the battle of Germantown, his house was a British fortress, and held off fevered colonial attacks, leading ultimately to a Redcoat victory. The stone walls of the house are still pockmarked from the musket balls. And that's not all it left behind. One famous set of ghosts are the soldiers whose bodies were thrown into the well (now non-existant.) According to Ancient and Modern Germantown, an 1889 tome written by Samuel Fitch Hotchkin, the spirits of the dead colonials would come out at night. The more famous spook, though, is the headless woman. She's an elderly shade who was decapitated by a soldier (there's some debate whether he was a Redcoat or Colonial) who paraded around carrying her gory head aloft. She's been seen stumbling along the grounds, looking for her head. Philadelphia Weirdness
COLEMAN SISTERS (Center City, Philadelphia) Ann and Sarah Coleman had it all - except luck with men. They both killed themselves in their sister's house at different times on 6th and Chestnut. Ann was forlorn because she thought that James Buchanon was fooling around on her (see Inn 422 and Wheatland), and Sarah fell in love with a preacher man named Muhlenberg, and her uptown dad quickly doused that relationship. The two are sometimes spotted in the neighborhood, dressed in the 1800s outfits, arm-in-arm. Thanks to LC for digging this tale up.
COLLENBROOK FARMHOUSE (Upper Darby, Delaware County) The house dates back to 1710, and a stone addition was built in 1794. It's on the national register, and operated as the Farm House Museum by the Upper Darby Historical Society. As with any house that old, there were bound to be a couple of spooks. The Delaware Ghost Hunters investigated, and found footsteps, cold spots, shadow figure, and got voices on their EVP. And they even found a pair of ghosties - one was a male in a long black coat and wire-rims, and the other a little girl that stayed in the corner.
CONSTITUTION DRIVE (Allentown, Lehigh County) Constitution Drive is a long road that runs along the railroad tracks into town. And if you're ever on it, watch for its most famous sight - a man walking two dogs with glowing red eyes. The story goes that he was hit by a train, according to Paranormall, but still keeps to his now eternal schedule. One urban legend we heard adds that the place was home to a family of albinos that would attack people passing by.
SARAH CONWELL'S GHOST (Broad Street, Philadelphia) Preacher Russell Conwell laid out the framework for Temple University in the 1880s with his classes at Grace Baptist Church in a room that his students called "The Temple." His wife Sarah died in 1910, leaving him alone at the old home with a maid. As he approached the end of his life, he was trying to get his papers in order. But neither he nor his maid could find his Civil War military records. That night, Sarah came to him and told them where they were. She was right. He told his maid about the encounter, and she thought the old geezer had finally lost his marbles. To prove his point, he told her to hide a pen somewhere in the house. Sure enough, Sarah again came to him and told him where to look. And that was her last visit. According to legend, she was insulted to be part of Russell's little game with the maid and never again left the afterlife. It didn't make much difference. Russell joined her in the nether world shortly thereafter. (The Temple News "The Supernatural: Graves and Ghosts at Temple," October 30, 2007)
CORNERSTONE B&B (University Park, Philadelphia) The Cornerstone is a restored Victorian mansion built of stone in 1865. If you get a room there, you may also be tapped by its' resident spook. The spirit is that of an ethereal female surrounded by a floral scent. It's said that when you catch a whiff of her perfume, it's followed by her tapping you gently on the forehead. Some say she's an angel while others think she's just a ghost. Either way, once you're knocked on the noggin, you're under her watch. Pennsylvania Researchers
CRAVEN HALL (Warminster, Bucks County) The House of Craven dates back before the Revolution, perhaps existing as a log building in the 1720s. It was famous as an early preaching stop of William Tennent, who's Log College was a predecessor of Princeton. It was also the field hospital for the colonial wounded of the Battle of Crooked Billet. The cemetery behind the house, the Craven Van Sant Burying Ground, has nine Revolutionary soldiers buried in it among the family members. It's believed that the Craven Hall ghost is one of those soldiers. A young man dressed in colonial clothes has been seen looking through the first floor window and bangs on it on night, as if trying to get out. Locals believe that he's the spirit of a soldier that died in the hospital, was buried in the cemetery, and is still trying to leave Craven Hall to go home. The Shadowlands
CRESHEIM COTTAGE (Mt. Airy, Philadelphia) Now a cafe, the original cottage was the first home built on Germantown Avenue in 1748. It's spook is the prankish Emily, a ten-year old Victorian girl. She's been spotted on the second floor dressed in pink with a satin bow and dark, loosely curled hair. She's appeared in photographs (ghosts are such hams) and plays poltergeist games like flickering the lights, playing with the cafe computer, thumping on the wall, and opening and closing the attic door. Her poltergeist activity allegedly spooked contractors who were renovating the cafe, but owner Kenneth Leger thinks Emily "...is a nice touch to the restaurant." (The Temple News "Get Freaked Out In Philly," October 25, 2005)
CRY BABY BRIDGE (Bowman's Tower Hill, Bucks County) The bridge is officially known as the Van Sant Covered Bridge, built in 1875. It's said to be the haunt of many a spook who died at the spot. One story concerns a young mother who was abandoned by her child's father and tossed out of her house by by her parents. In a dark depression, she threw her child off of the bridge and then she hung herself. (Other versions have her leaping into the waters with her baby cradled in her arms.) You're supposed to be able to hear the baby's screams, see the mother in your rear view mirror, and spot a swinging rope swaying from the bridge if you stop your car on the deck at midnight and shut of the motor and lights. The remorseful mother has been alleged to roam the bridge looking for her lost child - a bit late, if you ask us. There's also supposed to be a black, shadowy figure (some say wielding an ax) at the edge of the bridge that disappears when you approach him. (Why you would want to approach a black blob with an ax is another question entirely.) Others believe that the spirits of two robbers hung on the bridge for their crime also haunt the span, and the swaying rope belongs to them. Sometimes it's said you can see one of the robbers swinging at the end of the hangman's noose. It's also told that the ghostly image of a horseman (perhaps one of the hanged highwaymen) will ride beside your car, waiting for an apple for his spook steed. Weird USA
THE CRYING MOTHER (Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia) The Laurel Hill Cemetery is as much a sculptural showcase as a graveyard. Opened in 1836, this National Historic Landmark boasts of hundreds of grand monuments. One of the better known ones is the Mother and Twins, a statue of a mother, identified as Mary Schaaff, cradling her infant twins. It was crafted by the grieving father, Henry Dmoghowski Sanders, a Polish sculptor who returned to Europe after finishing the monument, never again to return to the sad memories he left behind in America. It's thought that the children drowned in an boating accident in 1855 on the Schuylkill River, and the broken hearted Mary joined them in death in 1887. The tale goes that an amateur photographer went to the scenic cemetery with her five year old son to shoot some pictures. While snapping away, a figure flashed across her viewfinder and she heard crying. She put down the camera and tried to follow the figure - and instead saw her son a step away from the Schuylkill River. She snatched her boy to safer grounds, and to this day is thankful that the Crying Mother is still keeping watch over the children in the cemetery. (MISSING Angels Newsletter "Crying Mother" May/June 2003)
COLUMCILLE MEGALTH PARK (Bangor, Northampton County) We can't say for sure that spirits roam this place, but it's crackling with spiritual energy. The park has been called America's Stonehenge, and is drenched in druid mysticism. There are megaliths, stone huts, and the St. Columba Chapel. So if you're looking for a spiritual experience dating back to the mists of time, with or without actual spirits, spend a day here. It's a heckuva lot cheaper than hopping across the pond. Columcille
DARK HOLLOW (Warwick Twp., Bucks County) If you're in Buck's Dark Hollow and run across an old ramshackle school house, look in. You'll allegedly see the spook of an old teacher still sitting at his desk, waiting for pupils long gone. There's also supposed to be a Native Aamerican ghost that haunts the Hollow, too, and you'll be cascaded by screams and other eerie noises during your journey. This tale was told in William Joseph Buck's 1887 book Local Sketches and Legends Pertaining to Bucks and Montgomery Counties.
DARKTOWN (Whitehall, Lehigh County) Darktown is near an old abandoned village with the Delaware Indian name of Hockentaqua. There's only ruins left, mostly of the deserted Thomas Iron Works. Close by is an area the locals call "The Alamo." As you approach it, you're supposed to hear strange noises and see eerie lights. It gets better. The Alamo is supposedly home to ghostly human forms, trolls, and huge hell hounds. So if you're in the area and feel like checking out a juicy urban legend, this is your place. The Shadowlands
DAVY ESTATE (North Philadelphia) Built in the late 1880s, this Victorian home was the digs of the Davy family, who bought the house in 1955. But the spook isn't one of the family. It's thought that a servant girl haunts the halls, and she's especially fond of a third floor bedroom (the old staff quarters) although she may pop up anywhere, and makes herself known more to men than the ladies, the flirt. She's dressed in white, and the strong scent of bayberry follows her around. The wraith made her presence known as recently as the 1960s, on several occasions spooking banker William Davy and his family, along with ghostly footsteps and rappings. Though not certain, the Davy's surmised that she may be the spirit of a hired girl that had an affair and was killed because of it. This tale is told in Hans Holzer's book The Ghost Hunter.
DEATH HILL (Phoenixville, Chester County) There's a graveyard on top of the hill on Dayton Street (St. Mary's, we believe - it's the only one we could find there) where the ghosts pass the time running Chinese fire drills. It's said at night you can see the spooks come out of their graves and switch plots. It's also reported that they'll come after you and try to put you in a grave, though we'd suggest avoiding joining them in that little game. There are also claims that the spirits can be seen dancing after midnight. It sounds like the afterlife is a ball, after all. The Shadowlands
DELAWARE COUNTY SPCA CEMETERY (Media, Delaware County) It's said that people have reported that the spirits of animals that were put to sleep can be seen briefly running around the grounds of the pet cemetery behind the SPCA, and can be heard yelping, looking for an owner. But there's one hell hound loose, too. The dog went by the name of Bear and its' spirit can supposedly be seen any evening after 11 o'clock. It was put down after mauling a person. The local legend says that if you grab the fence by the sheds and face the SPCA building, you'll see Bear's misty white form with blood red eyes come racing towards you. It disappears when you let the fence go. So far, no one's been brave enough to find out what would happen if they held on long enough for Bear to reach the fence. Strange USA
DELAWARE VALLEY COLLEGE (Doylestown, Bucks County) One of the dorms is allegedly haunted by the ghost of a person that hung itself. The dorm building dates back to the late 1800s, before DVC was established, so no one's quite sure whose spirit it is. You can hear the spook walking the halls, and sometimes it gets into a room and moves objects to the middle of the floor. The Shadowlands
DEVIL'S HALF ACRE (Upper Black Eddy, Bucks County) If you take River Road up past Lumberville, you'll come across a lone stone house. Legend has it that in the 1800s that house was a speakeasy for the area's rivermen and canal workers. More than once, a drunken brawl would erupt resulting in the death of one of its' participants. Being an unlicensed dive, the owner would bury the unfortunate victim in a shallow grave. Eventually word of this leaked out, and the bar was shut down by the authorities. But the ghosts of the men remain, and it's said that at night you can see them going in and out of the building, still hollering and arguing. Some people think it was called the Devil's Half Acre because the barkeeper buried the bodies within a half acre of the bar. But there's another story, too. In June 1906, some boatmen were headed to the watering hole for a night of carousing. Caught in a sudden thunderstorm, they took shelter in an old barn. Then a man they called Crazy Bob ran into the barn, yelled "The Devil made me do it!", and then ran back out into the storm. The men rushed out after him, chasing him along the canal. Then they stumbled across the body of their friend Jesse, dead in his barge. They spotted Crazy Bob under a maple tree and took off after him. They saw a figure sitting on a rock by the tree, his arm pointing up. But a flash of lightning lit his face, and it wasn't Bob sitting on the rock but the devil himself, grinning like a Cheshire cat. The boatmen took off into the night. They returned in the morning with the sheriff. Reaching the tree, they looked up and there was Crazy Bob, hanging 20 feet in the air. The Devil had gotten his due, and the area was known to the boatmen as the Devil's Half Acre ever since, the distance between the canal and the tree. Philly Burbs
DEVIL'S HOLE (Durham, Bucks County) These limestone caves are near Durham Creek where it empties into the Delaware River. The Durham Cave is a popular archaeological and tourist spot. The cave is ancient, with many fossils and Indian relics discovered within its' walls. The early settler wives blamed Devils Hole, the alleged home of the "Satanic Majesty," for the everyday evils of frontier life - drunken husbands, cows that wouldn't produce, crop failure, an old maid daughter, etc.. The local reprimand for an unruly child - and we understand that it's still used to this day - is the threat of being tossed into the Devil's Hole. Lenape Nation (pdf file)
DEVIL'S ROAD (Chadds Ford, Delaware County ) The lore is that the devil was invoked and appeared on this road, and let out such an unearthly howl that the even the trees deformed. It's said to be the home of the Cult House, and once was where the "Skull Tree" existed, but that woody bit of weirdness been gone since 2004, when the locals, tired of the activity surrounding it, destroyed it. Weird US