1870 Mag

Campus Haunts Redux

Five more campus ghost stories to tell in the dark.

Last year, we dug through old newspapers and online archives to find the spookiest and creepiest horror camp stories. Our search led us to Frederick Converse Clark who took his own life on the hill where Pomerene Hall now sits as well as Clark’s wife who is rumored to roam the halls to wreak havoc on anyone who passes through. We found Herbert Atkinson’s ashes are allegedly hidden behind a plaque in Bricker Hall, and perhaps even more creepy, that his ghost has been seen sipping fruit punch at the front desk or dropping in on a Board of Trustees meeting.

But the spooky season tales about ghosts and the immortal still haunting campus didn’t just end when all the new construction came in. Through some more digging and research, we found five more of the creepiest tales to be told so just like last year: turn off the lights, light a few candles, and hold a flashlight under your face as you read these stories. It’s time to
get spooky.

Morrill Towers Dorm Room 541

Are you finally getting comfy in your dorm room at Morrill Towers? Good, we are about to ruin that for you. The past of infamous serial killer, Jeffrey Dahmer, is all but too well known. Dahmer committed his first murder in the summer of 1978 when he was living alone in Wisconsin. And just a quick six weeks later, history shows Dahmer would’ve been [email protected] potentially majoring in business had the internet and email existed in the 70s. His short-lived time as an undergrad wasn’t fruitful as he struggled with alcohol abuse and three months into his undergrad career, Dahmer dropped out. Probably for the best, but that doesn’t change where he was sleeping from night-to-night on the fifth-floor in room 541 at Morrill Towers, as reported by The Lantern in 2013. Rumor has it that Dahmer still haunts Morrill Towers to this day and there has been some eerily coincidental occurrences on that floor. In February 1998, a fire broke out on the fifth floor where minimal damage occured and students were evacuated. Fast forward just a few more months in 1998 and the fifth floor caught fire again, this time in suite 550, resulting in room 553 being completely destroyed.

Trapped In An Elevator At Hopkins Hall

Legend has it that a female student was staying late one night at Hopkins Hall to complete a large art project—much like we all do when it’s crunch time and final projects are due. After putting the finishing touches on her project, she entered the elevator to leave Hopkins Hall. Little did she know, she wasn’t going to be leaving that elevator anytime soon. As the rumor goes, the female student spent the entire night trapped inside the elevator where she cried and screamed for help only to find no solace. She was found the next morning with no physical damage to her body, but the isolation had clearly taken a toll on her mental state. The inside of the elevator was rumored to be covered in handprints from the frantic student attempting to escape, but the weird thing is, after an investigation, there was no evidence to prove that anything had happened to cause the elevator to malfunction the night before. Yikes. The identity of this student is still unknown and the legend remains that she passed away due to a car crash years later, but the rumor also includes that she never forgave what the university did to her. And if that doesn’t send chills down your spine, have you ever noticed the immovable handprint on the side of the pillar in the front of Hopkins Hall? We’re willing to bet you will now.

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Creepy Canfield Hall

What continues to haunt Canfield Hall is still a mystery to this day. Canfield Hall used to be an all-girls dorm at Ohio State as well as one of the oldest buildings on campus that didn’t have any plans to remodel or revamp, according to a story posted on Forgotten Ohio. It started with small things—a student’s Bible was constantly being hidden throughout the room—and continued evolving into scratching noises in a main pipe. The scratching continued for two hours before the two students approached their RA about it. When the RA entered the room, the scratching stopped. And this pattern would repeat anytime the two students would hear scratching in the pipes and run to get their RA. Odd. Things took an even creepier turn when one student noted she was about turn in for the night after all her roommates had already went to bed. She said she heard “three unmistakeable footsteps” approach her bed, but she didn’t see anything when she looked due to the canopy that covered her bed. She hoped it was just something moving in her closet like a plastic bag, but there were no bags in her closet when she checked the next morning. A few months later, she had a friend visit from out of town where the friend claimed she had saw a ghost in the bathroom and refused to step foot into
the room again.

Oxley Hall

When you pass by Oxley Hall on your way to class or what have you, you probably don’t think too much into what is merely just office space. But according to the lore the surrounds one of the oldest buildings on campus, things weren’t just staples, copy paper, and office desks on the inside. The exact details of the story are still unknown, but the general consensus is things get extremely spooky at Oxley Hall on December 17. Publications like The Lantern as well as Forgotten Ohio report that on December 17, when Oxley Hall was still the first ever women’s residence hall at OSU, a woman had committed suicide in the building. Students who have visited the attic on the specific day have reported seeing the ghost of the former student as well as hearing screams. On the other 364 days of the year, students and visitors have reported feeling strange things while near the building and even a few mentions of ghost sightings.

Orton Hall

If there is a theme lingering amongst all these ghostly stories about campus, it’s death and old buildings. And that’s pretty much the story behind one of the ghosts that allegedly haunts Orton Hall. Rumor has it that Edward Orton, the university’s first president and the namesake for Orton Hall, still haunts the building to this day. According to some accounts from Weird Ohio: Your Travel Guide to Ohio’s Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets, Edward supposedly resides in his favorite reading spot located in the bell tower of the building. Stories tell that you can see the light from his lantern flickering from the vertical openings and people have even noted that you can see scorch marks on the walls and ceiling in the bell tower. And if you walk past it during the day and get a cold chill, it’s rumored that Orton is simply trying to spook students into behaving more correctly. That’s, uh, really freaky. But it gets even weirder. Another ghost is said to haunt Orton Hall, but who this person is and what relation he has to the university is a mystery. The ghost has been described as a “caveman” with a humped back, thick hair, and a rather large and protruding forehead. Couple all that with groans and grunts along with him being rumored to slam doors at random times, and that seems like a good enough reason to us to never step foot into Orton Hall ever again.

A huge shout out to publications like Haunted Ohio, Weird Ohio, and Forgotten Ohio for their online catalog of spooky stories surrounding Ohio State and the state at large!

1870 Staff

1870 Staff

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