Traveling to see renowned haunted areas has become a favorite pastime of many people nowadays. Some folks will travel to other countries seeking the spirits that haunt the lands or famous landmarks. Meanwhile, others will set out on adventures in their own state to seek the local areas that have been designated as haunted.
One of the most popular places people visit is cemeteries where they seek out the ghosts from the past. Iowa has many cemeteries that people claim have strange things taking place after dark. Take for instance the lights in the trees at Fairview Cemetery in Council Bluffs. At the cemetery a black angel statue follows anyone who dares to visit around with her eyes and casts a sickness curse upon them.
In Iowa City at the Oakland Cemetery or, better known by most as “The Black Angel of Oakland Cemetery”, stands the eight and a half foot tall angel on the burial monument of the Feldevert family. Shortly after Teresa Feldevert died and her ashes were buried at the base of the glorious bronze angel statue, it started to turn black. One legend claims that any girl kissed at the angel's feet in the moonlight will die within six months. The black angel has her wings down and her head facing the ground. However strange this one might be, there is no date of death on this grave site for Teresa.
At the St Mary’s Cemetery in Hamburg you can hear wailing sounds of a woman as she kneels down and weeps in front of the three “Virgin Mary” statues. Others claim they have heard the statues wailing.
At the Mt. Hope Cemetery in Madrid, Iowa a small child named Sara and four other children are buried at the back of the cemetery. Many visitors claim the child has followed them around asking if they have seen someone named Ree. If you don’t respond to Sara she will touch you or pull on your clothes. Many people who have visited this cemetery have left claiming they actually heard her voice.
No haunted state would be complete without a famous haunted area. In Clear Lake, many townspeople and visitors alike have reported seeing a plane crash on the exact spot Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson’s plane crashed in 1959. Some have recorded orbs on tape at this exact spot.
The haunted legends of Iowa have many tales of young men and women taking their life in the name of love. Some tales tell of young men and women who lost their lives in the war or an accident. There is one tale that tells of a young woman who hung herself off the Giblin Bridge on her birthday. This is near U.S. 218 and Kentucky Avenue where they meet near Mount Pleasant. Town folk claim they see this young woman hanging from the bridge on her birthday. What caused this young woman’s despair was the affair she had with the town’s local doctor.
At the Old Chapel or College Hall a young man took his life one night. It is said that his heart ached over a lost love affair. Still today you can feel his spirit as you walk down the halls of the Old Chapel.
At the Indian Dam, a few miles south of New Albin, the locals claim that the Sauk Nation people haunt the dam. Locals have heard drumming and chanting coming from the area as the Sauk Nation people dance under a full moon. The land now is part of the Indian Fish Trap State Preserve. There is a 3 acre mound and Native American burial site that was owned by the Fish family prior to 1935 before it was sold to the state.
These are just a few of the eerie tales and places you can visit in Iowa. Ghost hunting can be a fun adventure for your family during the summer months. Traveling and visiting the haunted grave yards, bridges, and landmarks can give you some great stories to tell your family and friends.