Chicago Hauntings

Every U.S. state and city has history and with history, there are stories of restless souls. The Chicago Hauntings tour was one of 2 tours I wanted to check out, the other being the Chicago Gangster tour. Luckily, the 2 are affiliated, tell roughly the same stories, and stop at some of the same sites, the difference being that the Hauntings tour focuses on spiritual activity and the Gangster tour focuses on previous mob and gangster activity.

The Hauntings tour was led by a knowledgeable tour guide that was a total crackup. He kept the suspense going, provided (objective) facts, joked around, and let us experience a few of the areas. He reminded us to be respectful and explained that in the past, there has been speculation of spirits following disrespectful visitors home.

The tour described occurrences dating back to the 1800's including the great Chicago fire that decimated the city, Al Capone and the Chicago Outfit, the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, and more. We visited a mausoleum of one of the first wealthy families to settle in Chicago, the Couch family. While the mausoleum has not been opened, it has been suggested that the remains of Ira Couch and few family members are within the tomb. Within the area, there was said to be approximately 30,000 bodies buried as a result of the Great Chicago Fire and while efforts were later made to relocate the bodies due to health issues within the city, there are many bodies that are still there.

We visited a barren plot of land said to be the site of the Valentine's murders and to this day, passerby's smell gunpowder, hear crying, and experience other chilling occurrences.

We visited a theater that succumbed to a fire, causing over 600 deaths. Our guide described how the theater was not built to code, the owner bribed city officials, and on opening night, the fire trapped all who sat within. People climbed to the tops of balconies and attempted to jump out of windows to the alley below.

Our next stop was the Jane Adam's Hull House, said to be the current home of the spirit of Jane Adams

Our last stop was along the banks of the Chicago river where Eastland Disaster occurred. As the story goes, 2,700+ individuals, most of who were employees from Western Electric Company's Hawthorne Works boarded the top-heavy boat for a leisure holiday cruise. The passengers rushed to one side of the boat as a canoe race passed by and as a result, the boat capsized, killing 844 people.


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