Alton Il offers some unusual opportunities for visitors whether your tastes run to scenic, historic or the supernatural.
After reading about the Alton, Illinois: one of the most haunted small towns in America and writing about the tours offered, I was intrigued. So this is the second in a series covering the day I spent in Alton IL. Some friends and I decided see the sites and to take the ghost tour ourselves for fun.
Without giving away everything that happens on the ghost tour, the last stop was the most intriguing and not without incident.
Our tour guide, Len Adams, a wonderful storyteller, had mentioned that the Unitarian Church was the one place even he was afraid of as we passed by earlier in the evening. As the intensity of the rain increased that evening, our tour was cut short. To make up for it, we headed back to the church where we were allowed to explore parts of the building not usually available on the tours. Read More
(This post will be broken into 3 sections because of its length)
After reading about the Alton, Illinois: one of the most haunted small towns in America and writing about the tours offered, I was intrigued. The tours are actually offered almost year-round and offer more than just a Halloween scare. The tour company’s website is well developed and promised lots of local interest and history as well as few ghost tales reportedly based on eyewitness accounts. The idea is captivating and fun so some friends and I decided to book a tour. What could be better for the weekend before Halloween? So I took the tour and this is my account of it.
The confirmation of the guest’s reservation directs them to arrive early at the tour’s starting point: History & Hauntings Book Co. The book store offers a unique selection of historical books, paranormal tomes and fiction based on the supernatural. Hauntings and ghost stories can be found sorted by geographic location or by the type of phenomenon they contain. Historical references are primarily sorted by geographic region. Enthusiasts could be lost in the stacks for hours.
With check in completed, the tour began promptly at 7 pm. The party of 50 or so walked excitedly to the first stop, the Enos Sanatorium. Built in 1857 by Nathaniel Hanson, a farm implement manufacturer, the Read More
Choate Mental Health and Development Center has history, mystery and a Pumpkintown to see in October.
Southern Illinois has its share of supposedly haunted places and the 140+ year old facility called Choate Mental Health and Development Center is one of them. I visited last fall during Union County’s Colorfest Celebration and learned about the history of the place. As you plan your fall or Halloween activities, keep Choate Mental Health and Development Center in mind.
The original building was known as the Anna State Hospital for the Insane. It was built in 1869 and the firs residents were housed in the north wing in 1875. A fire damaged the north wing in 1881 and was the wing was rebuilt the following year. A series of fires over the next several years caused more damage and ultimately several upper floors were removed.
Theresa Leschmann is a freelance writer, movie lover and city girl living on a farm in southern Illinois. She is a frequent contributor to many online content sites and a fledgling novelist. Writing is her livelihood and her passion.