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The Haunted House of Prospect Place Ohio
October 16, 2021
With the slew of comments OHU50K receives about orbs and mysterious shadows in our featured photos, it seems some readers are fascinated with haunted houses. I haven’t decided if I am a believer or not in paranormal activity, but I do love researching old houses. In celebration of Halloween, here is a haunted house story that intrigues me.
NOTE: This house is NOT for sale.
After abolitionist George Willison Adams freed all his grandfather’s slaves and sold his Virginia plantation, he moved to Ohio. It is here, in the tiny town of Trinway, that Adams became one of the wealthiest men in the state, building bridges and canals and owning two flour mills. He eventually built his 29-room Greek Revival/Italianate mansion called Prospect Place in 1856.
It was in the basement of this mansion, that Adams provided safe refuge for slaves who had escaped the South. Prospect Place, in fact, was one of the largest stations of the Underground Railroad in the state of Ohio, and its cupola would shine a light alerting slaves of its safe harbor.
Adams died in 1879, leaving his vast estate to heirs who squandered it all away by the mid 1950s. Abandoned and falling prey to vandals, the mansion was slated for demolition in the 1980s before Dave Longaberger, founder of Longaberger Basket Co. of Ohio, rescued it.
Today, Prospect Place has the reputation of counting as one of the most haunted places in Ohio. The spirits of slaves are said to linger in the home as well as that of train accident victims who were brought to the home when the basement was used as a temporary hospital. The footsteps and laughter of a young girl who suffered a fatal accident in the mansion is said to be heard throughout the house, and the ghost of George Adams himself has been seen periodically in the staircase of an upper floor.
William Cox, Adams’ son-in-law who had a large part in squandering Adams’ estate, is the creepiest ghost in this ghost story. He mysteriously disappeared after absconding with Adams’ daughter Anna’s inheritance, never to be seen again. Some believe the house, angry at having fallen into disrepair due to Cox’s theft of monies, keeps his soul captive to pay eternal retribution at the scene of his crime.