Any town with a dark past is sure to stir up paranormal activity. Ghosts tend to stay at the site of their death, especially if it was sudden and unexpected. This is the case for Alton, Illinois, a small town with lots of history. In fact, Alton has been called one of the most haunted towns in America. The town's dark history includes murder, war, and death. Most of the town sits on limestone and neighborhoods in the town have been built partially with limestone. It is believed that limestone increases the chances of paranormal activity as it traps spirits. The town was the home of the first civil war prison, which was constructed out of limestone. When the prison was torn down, the town used the limestone in the construction of other building and afterward experienced paranormal activity.
What is said to be Alton's most haunted house is the McPike Mansion which has been investigated many times by professionals who have all agreed the place is haunted. The house was build in 1869 and has not been occupied since the 1950's, however, some people claim the property was haunted even before the mansion was built. They say the haunting was caused by Native American ghosts and potentially an underground railroad stop.
Those visiting have seen orbs and ghostly figures in the windows. While the current owner's don't live on the property, they have experienced paranormal activity while on site and are confident the property is haunted.
Another haunted tale from Alton is the First Unitarian Church where one of the pastors, Phillip Mercer committed suicide. His death shocked everyone who knew him. They never believed he would take his own life and believed something sinister must've been involved. Since his death, the church has been home to weird occurrences and many people claim there is a male presence that seems to want to make people leave.
For more haunted stories from Illinois, check out this weeks podcast featuring John Kauchba, author of Ghost Hunting Illinois.
by Michelle Adshead, a digital marketing expert