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The Malicious Spirits of Ashmore Estates

Lauren Bluthardt

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Many say they aren’t afraid of ghosts. That is, until they head to Ashmore, Illinois.

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Built in 1916, the once almhouse for the elderly was created and operated  as a private psychiatric care facility in Ashmore, Illinois until 1959, when it was purchased by Ashmore Estates Inc. During this time, the greatest amounts of deaths occurred as hundreds of patients entered; most never leaving the site. This historic building has a reputation for terrifying locals and bringing hundreds of people across the nation to check it out.

The land was originally a part of the Coles County Poor Farm, which served as a home for the poor and mentally ill from 1857 to 1869. Living conditions were reported as extremely unsanitary and led a reputation of a very unsafe place. People came to find hope and ended up with sadness for many patients, creating an uncomfortable aura for visitors.

Reports of dark shadows, apparitions of a child, flying boards and echoing voices have been rumored at the stand alone location.

“There are some things that happen that you can’t explain,” junior Leo Clune said. “I know family members who have seen somebody walking in the living room.”

According to Syfy, the now abandoned building once had 30-40 people working there at a time and as many as 200 people reportedly dying on the property.

The building stands alone with reviews from visitors that an energy draws them away from the structure, reports Haunted-Places-to-go. Around the year 1987, government funding ceased for the building and was shut down from the public. During this time, gossip circulated discussing the paranormal activity.

One commonly depicted ghost is the child Elva Skinner, who died in a fire at Ashmore Estates in the 1880s. Tiny footsteps echo throughout the halls, with witnesses of childlike figures that would have been related to little Elva Skinner.

“I don’t really have a strong opinion of the existence of ghosts,” senior Denae Eldridge said. “I can’t deny their existence, but I’m not sure they are real.”

Overnight ghost tours are available year round at the location just 4 hours south of Antioch. Ashmore Estates has been investigated by popular ghost hunting Syfy TV shows such as Ghost Hunters and Ghost Adventures.

Do you have the guts to check out this ghostly destination?

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The Malicious Spirits of Ashmore Estates