Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Haunted South Side Pt. 1

The South Side of Chicago is known for many things: Irish pubs, the White Sox, the South Side Irish Parade (now defunct), John C. Reilly, violence, Catholic churches, Michael Flatley, and did I mention Irish pubs? However, most people forget that the South Side is lousy with ghosts.

One of the most haunted sites on the South Side is the Beverly Unitarian Church or "The Castle." The Castle is located on 103rd and Longwood in the Beverly neighborhood of Chicago. Robert Givens, a successful real estate developer turned author, built the Castle in 1886 and requested that it be modeled after the ancient estates in his native Ireland. Some people say that Givens built the house as a gift for his fiance who died before the house was finished. At any rate, Givens lived at the Castle until 1894 when it became the Chicago Female College. According to legend, a young woman died there in the early 1930's from a serious case of influenza. 30 years later after the Castle had been bought by the Beverly Unitarian Fellowship, a custodian encountered a woman in a long dress standing in one of the rooms. The custodian claims that the two talked for several minutes about how much the place had changed since she lived there. After the custodian left the room, he remembered that the Castle had been a church for more than 20 years and realized that she could not have possibly lived there. The custodian then rushed back to the room where he had seen the woman and discovered that she had vanished. After examining the Castle, the custodian noted that all the windows and doors were locked and there were no footprints on the freshly fallen snow.

More recently in 1994, the church's pastor saw two small hands embrace her husband's waist. Others believe the woman's spirit takes the form of a candle flame which has been observed passing by windows and floating up staircases while no one was in the building. Unexplainable noises have also been attributed to the ghost and a former pastor said that he often tried to track down the source of the noises but was never able to.


Driving from the West:
I-294 to 95th Street East
95th Street to Longwood Drive
South on Longwood Drive to 103rd Street

Driving from Downtown:
94 East (the Dan Ryan) to I-57 South
Take I-57 South, exit shortly at Halsted
You exit onto 99th Street Westbound
Take 99th Street west to Longwood Drive
South on Longwood Drive to 103rd Street

The church parking lot is on the west side of the castle.

The Chicago Transit Authority's 103rd St. bus stops near the church.

1 comment:

  1. Wait--who is flying-body-attack???? Is that a wrestling move? I'll murder you at Rage in the Cage on Pay Per View! Or is that Hell in the Cell!?

    This was a very professional blog post! I appreciatre it. I also plan to use it! I want to get down there and check things out.