Note: Please do not trespass or cause damage to any of the places you may visit. Respect the incredible heritage we have!
There Will Be Blood
In the Riverside Cemetery in Appleton, mysteriously tucked in the woods behind the other tombstones, lies the grave of Kate Blood. For years, rumors surrounded her life and death, ranging from one tale that claimed she murdered her whole family before killing herself, another saying that her husband killed her in a drunken rage. The story that rings closest to the truth is simply that Kate was a young mother and wife who died at the age of 23 from tuberculosis. Some visitors claim that on the night of a full moon, you can see a reddish liquid seeping from the stone. Others say that Kate’s stone is warmer than nearby markers. Many find Kate’s grave a tranquil resting place to quietly reflect on life. To reach the site, park near Section D of the cemetery and follow the small path through a wooded area. Kate’s grave is located on the left side of the path. Some say that Kate’s grave was put off, away from other graves because she was a murderer. What’s the truth? Hunt through the cemetery on a full moon and see if you can uncover the mystery.
It seems we may have a Phantom of the Opera right here in Oshkosh. The Grand Opera house, built in 1883, is the stomping ground for many ghosts from the building’s past. After its heyday in the early 20th century, The Grand fell into disrepair by the late 1970s. Reopened in 1986, many speculate the renovations stirred up ghosts, and stories began to surface. Workers became familiar with Percy Keene, a man who dedicated his whole life to the Grand, working there from 1895 to his death in 1967. His smiling, bespectacled face is a startling, but welcome sight to many. It’s even said that he saved a film student from harm by holding a fraying rope together, giving the student time to get to safety. Audience members occasionally find themselves sitting next to a ghost, seeing a glimpse of a spirit or feeling a cold spot brush against them. Some have even seen an otherworldly dog patrolling the theater. The Grand Opera House holds ghost tours in from 7 – 10 p.m. October 18–31, so you can see for yourself if the stories are true.
The Abandoned Hotel
Looking for something a bit scarier? Check out the Maribel Caves Hotel in Maribel, known better as “Hotel Hell.” The stories surrounding this abandoned building are endless, from the numerous fires that gutted the building, killing many guests, to a rumor that it was once owned by Al Capone. The moniker “Hotel Hell” comes from blood splashed on the walls and the sounds of moaning, ringing bells and ghostly carriage wheels. One of the more spectacular rumors states that the plethora of ghosts on the premises caught the attention of a group of evil witches, who used the spirits to open a portal to hell in front of the hotel. In 2006 the property was gutted, and only the exterior walls remain. Explore if you dare.
New Moon Cafe, quaintly sitting on the intersection of Algoma and Main street in Oshkosh has a troubled history. Formally the Beckwith House, the building fell victim to a devastating fire started by a kerosene lamp that trounced the inside of the house in 1880, killing several guests. In its heyday the Beckwith was a hotel that housed hundreds of patrons over its life span. Visitors loved that they were in the center of the city. The brick building that now stands alone on the corner hasn’t changed much over the years as some past occupants have yet to check out. Workers at the cafe say that the haunting is isolated in the kitchen — the area where the old lamp room used to be. Those who have worked in the building have been reporting strange occurrences for years. So next time you take a step into the New Moon Cafe, walk up to the counter and take a peak around the corner. You might see something (or someone) unexpected.
Stay tuned for more ghost stories this week!
—By Rebecca Turchan & Andrew Scholz