Friday, November 8, 2013

Chestnut Hill College

Chestnut Hill College Entrance
Chestnut Hill College entrance: Image by Kiran from Wikipedia Commons

Philly's Chestnut Hill College is located on the northwestern edge of town on 75 acres overlooking the Wissahickon Creek. The College opened in 1924 as a Catholic school for women, then became Mount Saint Joseph College. The College was renamed in 1938 as Chestnut Hill College.

And that's given the school plenty of time to pick up an unexplained spirit or three to help expand the students' worldview...

Fontbonne Hall: The ghost of a girl who is thought to have died during the 1793 flu epidemic haunts the third floor, along with a male spirit. She isn't just seen in the hall, but it's claimed that she even appears in roomies' dreams simultaneously. There are also tales of poltergeist type shenanigans involving doord, windows and electronics. The hall has catacombs and tunnels underneath it that lead to the mother house and are allegedly haunted by a crying woman.

Fournier Hall: The "Red Eye Room" is located on the second floor, so named because at night, it's said that two red eyes appear floating throughout the room. One suite across the hall features paranormal phenomena like slamming doors, window shades that fly up and radios that turn on and off. The third floor is reported to be haunted by the ghost of a young boy, dressed in 1920's clothing.

Logue Library: Books move on their own, as do their carts. The library was allegedly built on top of a cemetery, which according to lore had to be relocated twice. If you're in the building after 11, it's said that you may share the stacks with some disgruntled spirits who were disturbed during the construction.

Lower Parking Lot: Located by the sports field, it's said to be haunted by the spirit of a girl that was raped and murdered at the site, near a marker erected in her memory.

St. Josephs Hall: On the fifth floor, you can sometimes spot the spook of a young sister in a long robe floating by, taking her suicide leap from the Bishop's Steps as she did many years ago when she found out she was bearing a priest's child. There are a set of locked doors with a crucifix above them that some say was where the sister put her newborn before her jump. The lore is that if you knock three times on the doors, you'll get three raps back in return. The basement is also haunted, and the fifth floor is supposed to be the realm of a departed art teacher.

And we're only tapping the surface. Other sightings have included visions of a young lady, a kindly old man in robes, little girls playing, and a boy with a hair of fire and emerald eyes. The mausoleum, the Chapel basement and the old gym in the basement of Fournier Hall are all supposed to have tales to tell, too.

And every year, CHC Student Activities hosts a lecture on ghosts and the paranormal, followed by a ghost hunt around the campus led by paranormal investigators.


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Anonymous said...

I attended Chestnut Hill College, and while I was skeptical (to say the least) when they told us all of the ghost stories during freshman year orientation, I've seen and heard plenty of things there that cannot be explained. Not often and you're unlikely to see anything amiss by a short visit, but if you're there long enough you'll notice things. Like room 203 in Fontbonne (my freshman dorm). The door would fly open, even when locked, the faucets would turn on and off, the radio would turn on by itself and stuff would fly off of the desks. It wasn't a scary presence, more playful than anything else.

Anonymous said...

I attended all four years and did not hear or see anything. Even went looking on my own. Although my friends heard some things and one was even video chatting with his girlfriend freshman year and she asked him "who is that little boy behind you?".....

He was scared shitless

Anonymous said...

Lived in Fontbonne and had my door slam open on its own multiple times. At first I thought someone was messing with me and running away but I saw the inside handle go down each time... then I realized the outside handle doesn't move the inner one.

Another time I was hammered, went to go throw up and only made it to the showers. I open the door, vomit all over the entrance (isn't college great?), and a shower curtain flies shut. I apologize, say I'll be right back to clean everything, go finish my business, come back and the floor was spotless. Nobody could have cleaned it that fast and it was completely dry. Then I realized it was 3 AM, no showers were on. Who knows.

Also a lava lamp got smacked off of its base and hit my roommate in the junk.
After we cleaned that we came back from break and there was some kind of angel/demon looking thing on the floor. A triangle body, clear wings, triangle head with horns pointed downwards.

One time my backpack started rolling across the floor but we were beyond giving a shit about ghosts at this point. It was actually hilarious.

Also a stuffed chihuahua moved it's head towards me in the middle of the night. Both me and roommate watched it happen. We cracked the hell up.

I had to open the library at 8 am on a snow day and I couldn't bring myself to go turn on the lights in the pitch black basement. The whole place was very eerie alone. Going floor to floor turning on all the lights I felt like I was being watched.

Also the fire escape in St. Jose is very uncomfortable. Me and a few of my friends were hanging out and we hear the door above us open and slam. Then the bottom floor. We think it's security and start getting ready to run but by the time we're out every door seemed to be opening and slamming and there was stomping everywhere. It was the only legitimately scary thing I experienced at CHC. We never went back.

Had a friend who said she woke up to her coffee pot floating in the middle of her room and when she realized what she was looking at it exploded. I saw the room and glass was everywhere. She changed her story later saying maybe her roommate kicked it but it looked like there was a firecracker in the pot or something. 360 degree glass everywhere.

Another friend lived in the red eye room and the first night her laptop started blasting classical music out of nowhere whole they were asleep.

Also a lot of my friends have seen "shadow people" while living on campus. They all describe having a really uncomfortable nightmare (usually a faceless man in a pinstripe suit and hat) and then they wake up to a black figure over their bed. Thankfully I never got him, but it's VERY common.

My roommate in Fitzsimmons once woke up to screaming coming from the foot of my bed. I wasn't in the room.

All in all it's a fun place to be.