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10 of the Most Haunted Colleges in America

When it comes to having school "spirit," these haunted campuses have more than their share.

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University of Oklahoma College of Arts and Science

When your peruse the University of Oklahoma website, you might be surprised that among the more standard information about staff or academics, there’s actually a link to the History of Haunted Ellison Hall. Home to the College of Arts and Sciences, Ellison Hall may also be home to some roving spirit, that of a young boy roaming hallways on his roller skates. In 2013 a medium investigating the spot said the boy was named Bobby. According to the school’s website “Bobby” was either hit by a car or had an asthma attack and died after being brought into Hygeia Hall, the infirmary. In later years Hygeia Hall was renamed Ellison Hall and with it various reports of roller skates being heard gliding across the second and third floor hallways. Even the Dean’s staff has noted strange occurrences, including motion-sensor lights going on and off with no one there, strange sounds coming from empty halls and vacant offices, and the sound of voices and dishes clinking on the first floor. These spooking incidents have prompted various media and paranormal investigators to check it out. Besides ‘Bobby’, there have been sightings of a nurse, a man and maybe even Dr. Ellison himself who ran the infirmary. These chilling real ghost stories will make a believer out of you.


Drew University

Recently making the news for lowering its tuition rates by 20 percent (here are some weird college scholarships you can actually apply for), Drew University in Madison, New Jersey is making college more affordable for students, but its ghosts have always attended for free. Whether it’s sightings of the student that supposedly hung them self from the rafters of Asbury Hall or the dark haired woman spotted on the fifth floor of Hoyt Hall, these ghosts are forever residents. To keep things running smoothly with all those other ghosts around, the spirit of Roxanna Mead Drew, wife of the university’s founder, is said to float about Mead Hall, her namesake. Rumor has it that while fighting a fire that broke out there in 1989, two firefighters attempted to rescue a trapped woman but the flames burned right through her and then she vanished. They noted she was dressed oddly, in a 19th century garment.

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Denver University

Could the namesake of The Mary Reed Building and Margery Reed Hall have been murdered? That’s one rumor that explains why the buildings are said to be haunted by Margery. According to The Ghosts of University Park, Platt Park and Beyond by Phil Goodstein who attended this Denver mainstay, Margery and her hubby met on campus, but while she was well-off, he was not and stood to inherit some serious bucks if she died. “Some people have said it was a jungle disease, but there’s rumors that she had a falling out with her husband, who used an exotic poison on her while in Peru [she died shortly after returning to the States],” Goodstein says. The theater department is housed in Margory Reed Hall and performances have been plagued by weird echoes and whispers over the years. A portrait of her is said to have eyes that follow your every move (makes sense if your husband was out to get you). Goodstein notes that another building, the historic Buchtel House, has been known to make its guests uncomfortable with chilly drafts, thumps, and slamming doors. Goodstein explains that it might be Henry Buchtel’s spirit protesting parties serving alcohol in his former home. He was DU’s chancellor and Colorado’s governor, and a “militant prohibitionist,” said Goodstein. Find out about infamous ghost stories that actually have logical explanations.

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Gettysburg College

Known for its proximity to the historic Civil War battleground site where many men lay wounded and dying, Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania has a reputation for ghost sightings galore. A field hospital and communications outpost were located within Pennsylvania Hall during the war which may explain why its the sighting for many a spirit. And watch out for the elevator. Two college administrators attempted to go to the first floor and ended up in the basement staring at a gruesome hospital scene. According to the administrators what should have been a storage space was instead a Civil War era hospital scene filled with ghostly orderlies and soldiers bleeding out and dying. The buildings cupola is also said to host the ghost of a soldier dubbed “the Lone Sentinel’. Another ghost, “the General,” has also been sighted in the theatre area. Not to be ignored, Glatfelter Hall’s bell tower has an apparition that was dissed by her lover in a suicide pact gone awry. And then there’s the sorrowful story of “Blue Boy.” During a snow storm he hid out in the girl’s dorm, but froze to death when he was locked outside on a window sill while the house mother made her rounds. Here are some of the best haunted houses in the country.

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Moravian College

This Bethlehem Pennsylvania school is one of the oldest in the country and has attracted some haunted tales over the years although science says they can explain that all away. During the Revolutionary War the Brethren’s House was used as a makeshift hospital. Today the building is frequented by students for music and arts, in addition to ghostly occurrences, In an article on Moravian’s website student Katie Bahnck relays what happened when she took a non-believer to the house: “The door at the top of the stairs clicked funny behind us. Because I had spent a great amount of time in this building, I knew that is not what it should have sounded like. I brushed this off and we proceeded down the first floor hall. Not even a minute later, it was so loud in the building it almost sounded like a train went by; we couldn’t hear one another speak. It sounded like there were carts rolling, almost 25 to 30 people running up and down the hallway above us. It was so loud! We looked at one another in terror, and ran out the side door closest to Main Hall. We stood outside for a few moments before he said to me, ‘What the heck was that?’ What else? Ghostly nurses running up and down the hall. And haunted gurneys, rolling up and down the hallway.”

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Bennington College

Shirley Jackson’s novel The Haunting of Hill House, is said to have been inspired by this Vermont school where her husband taught. According to the New York TimesBennington’s students noted Jackson was “just another faculty wife, and a fat and creepy one at that, someone who drank too much and whose house stank of cat pee.” But Jackson has her fans, including fellow horror author Stephen King and Bennington College certainly seems to have its share of ghosts like in Jennings Hall. It wouldn’t be unusual to hear music coming from Jennings Hall since it houses the music department, but when instruments are playing themselves it can make your hair stand up. Students have also seen footsteps and heard strange voices in the building. It doesn’t bode well that the location of the school is also in the Bennington Triangle, which is known for having people disappear within its boundaries. Caught the spooky spirit? You’ll love these adorable DIY Halloween decorations.

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Smith College

Sessions House is a dormitory situated on the Smith College campus in Massachusetts. The building contains a secret passageway that was used by the colonials to hide from Native Americans. The spirit of Lucy Hunt, the granddaughter of Captain Jonathan Hunt who built the house in 1710, is said to haunt the dorm because she was jilted by her lover. A British general, Johnny Burgoyne, was held captive in the house during the Revolutionary War and Lucy and him would meet in the hidden passageway for some nooky time. He was sent back to England and never heard from again. Supposedly, they are both roaming the halls and passageway looking for each other in the afterlife. According to Living at Smith – Sessions House Encyclopedia of Haunted Places by Jeff Belanger, the ghost of a woman who allegedly killed her children with an ax because she mistook them for intruders also roams the building. Finally, there are the more recent spirits of two female students who fell while searching for the secret passageway in the house.

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Centenary College

In 1886, the body of an 18-year-old woman was found in a field behind this Hacketstown women’s college. The victim was Tillie Smith, a boarder and kitchen worker at the school. James Titus, the janitor on premises had promised to unlock the doors for her after curfew as she was going to be late, but instead strangled her to death in a botched rape attempt. He served 17 years in prison for the crime. A burial stone erected in Union Cemetery at her grave site reads: “She died in defense of her honor.” There are frequent Tillie sightings along the grounds and school, and even the campus grill is named after her. A story in the Asbury Park Press notes that one time when a repair man came to fix a light in the theater sound room the fixture began to swing and a moaning voice called “Get me out of here.” Tillie may also be the original photo bomber. Supposedly, she appeared in a Sigma sorority picture taken years after her murder. A bit of a prankster, she has a thing for turning on music, swinging doors and moving objects about.

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Penn State University

From the ghost of a mule that helped plow the school fields back in 1855 to a murdered co-ed that roams the library, there’s more than enough spirit at Penn State to fill their football stadium. In fact, A&E created an entire reality series, Paranormal State, around this school’s haunted haunts. Most famous is the 1969 murder of Betsy Aardsma. Betsy was your average college 22-year-old student until she was slaughtered among the stack of books in the Pattee Library. The killer was never caught. Then, years later on the anniversary of her death, a flickering candle surround with clippings about the murder were found in the library aisle she died in. A message scrawled across the floor that read “R.I.P. Betsy Ruth Aardsma, Jul. 11, 1947 – Nov. 28, 1969. P.S. I’m Back.” Creepy. Here are more super haunted places in America.

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Ohio University

The only university with a room that’s been permanently sealed off because of a ghost sighting, Ohio University in Athens, Ohio could be considered the spookiest campus in the country. The FOX episode of the series the Scariest Places on Earth voted Ohio University number one for the numerous amount of haunted places on campus, but Wilson Hall takes the scare factor up to ten. According to, part of the reason for its spine tingling reputation is the building is centered in the middle of a pentagram of five cemeteries. The pentagram is known to symbolize power and magic. Room 428 has been sealed off in the dorm in response to the many strange sounds, footsteps, and moving objects that have been reported by students over the years. Deemed uninhabitable by school officials, the history behind this off limits dorm room is rather freaky; perhaps practicing some type of black magic, a female student died violently. A mental hospital called the Athens Lunatic asylum was built next to the university in 1874 and was in operation until 1993. In the early 1980s a newspaper reported that Wilson Hall was actually built over the hospital cemetery as if channeling Steven Spielberg’s movie Poltergeist. Here are five stories of the spookiest places in the world.