Wednesday, October 26, 2016

McCulloch House Dreary Past

Photo:  Source

The McCulloch House has been landmark in Fort Wayne, IN since 1843 and it was originally built for Hugh_McCulloch, a wealthy statesman who served two terms as  U.S. Treasury Secretary.

What we only found out recently on a "Murder, Mystery and Mayhem Tour that was hosted by ARCH (Architecture & Community Heritage) that Hugh McCullough was present at the Ford Theater when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.  He was also present at Lincoln's bedside when he died.   McCulloch himself was the last surviving member of Lincoln's cabinet and died at his Maryland home in 1985.

His son, Charles sold the house in 1887 and it was divided into housing tracts, then resold again in 1892 to the Fort Wayne College of Medicine.  Back then the main way budding medical students learned about anatomy was through examining cadavers.  As there was sometimes a short supply some scoundrels resorted to robbing local graves and would sell them illegally to the college.  

What was particularly gruesome was that instead of digging up the entire grave, robbers would dig down at the top of the grave and use a giant tong-like thing to grab the upper portion and pull it up and the cadaver would not be "intact" due to this practice and this also allegedly caused the building to become haunted by the spirits.   

Because of the uproar by the community, the school was pressured to close, which it did and the building sold again in 1906.

Although I have lived in town my entire adult life, this was the first I had heard of this or any allegations of the place being haunted, but the house is also near where there had been a cemetery in town that was moved near Superior and Main Streets that the tour guide noted it was alleged not all of the bodies were moved and I had heard of paranormal activity in the West Central neighborhood in general over the years.

The house was registered as National Register of Historic Places in 1980 and is currently privately owned.


ARCH "Murder, Mystery & Mayhem" tour

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