The air has a bite to it, the leaves are changing colors, and spooky decorations are increasing in numbers by the day. Halloween is fast approaching and scary stories are taking their rightful place at the helm of the seasonal zeitgeist.
Illinois is the perfect home for haunted happenings as a midwest stronghold with a range of lore to hold down the fort. If you’re looking to go on a spooky adventure or simply are curious about what haunted spaces Illinois is known for, read on!
- Greenwood Cemetery in Decatur, IL ; 606 S Church St 62522
It’s almost a given that cemeteries induce a good degree of spook, but this cemetery has a higher-than-average level of paranormal speculation due to its age and fixtures. The graveyard is reported to have been a Native American burial ground before its official designation as a cemetery and also contains a section commemorating deaths from the civil war era. Horrifying screams, a “devil’s chair” that allows you to make a pact with the devil, and ghost lights are among the reported elements that make this cemetery spooky.
- Cave-in-Rock State Park, Cave-in-Rock IL; 1 New State Park Road
Located on the Ohio River, this state park attracts people with its beautiful nature and its treasure-hunting reputation. Between 1790 and 1870 it’s speculated that as much as $1 million in stolen loot was exchanged or hidden for later discovery on these grounds. Naturally, with money on the line, tensions ran high and stories say that many river pirates, thieves, and outlaws met their death. To this day, tortured noises are said to be heard echoing in the caves with a ghostly tone which many believe belong to the people who perished on site.
- Robinson Woods, River Grove IL ; 4601 N East River Rd 60171
Like cemeteries, forests have a reputation for containing larger-than-life forces of many varieties. The Robinson Woods are said to be cursed based on their long history of misfortunes paired with experiences that point to paranormal activity. In the 1800s Alexander Robinson, chief of a Native American tribe, inhabited the land until his family’s house unexpectedly burnt down at which point the property ownership reverted to the park district. Years later, three people were found dead on the property and the crime remained unsolved until 1994. Throughout the forest’s tenure, plenty of visitors have reported strange sights, smells, and sounds including the sound of tom-tom drums and specific vibrations that feel eerie. Proceed with caution if you plan on going here at night!
- Bloods Point Road in Flora Township, IL
Yes, even whole roads can be haunted! Not only is this road said to be one of the most haunted in Illinois but some speculate it’s one of the most haunted in the world. Vintage cars go mysteriously missing, phantom dogs with glowing eyes roam the streets, and the ghosts of kids whose school bus fell off a bridge look for opportunities to harass cars that drive by. If you’re faint of heart and slotted to navigate this road perhaps consider a detour.
Illinois has much more spook to discover beyond what’s listed here for those who are brave enough. And remember, ghosts (unlike spiders) are not more afraid of you than you are of them! Be careful out there.