Haunted Michigan: Detroit's Best Spooks

A pal and I were talking about the new Pet Sematary coming out early April, and, as I am pretty much a constant ghost lurker, I'm pretty pumped about this update. I decided to step away from travel woes, hacks and whatnots to bring you something really juicy; true accounts of local Detroit spooks and ooks going bump in the night. And day.


Disclaimer: All interactions happened to me specifically, or while present during a friend's interaction.

First, an education. There are six main types of spirit or entity haunting categories:
  • Intelligent Haunting- marked by communication or response, usually human-like, typically classified as "trapped" or "multi-plained", can move freely for the most part. Cemetery ghosts, Ouija talkers, silent watchers and so on. These are also your typical orbs, mists, etc. Instincts.
  • Residual Haunting- Thought to be the most common entity. They live like an old film loop on repeat, meaning it's the same scene or situation on repeat year after year. An imprint. Psychic impressions. They exist without knowing you exist. They're stuck.
  • Poltergeists- Manipulate a physical environment. They're called "noisy ghosts". These are the ones tapping, turning off lights, doors, random fires breaking out, the usual. They can also manipulate smell perceptions, some say.
  • Demonic Haunting: Malevolent spirits with no set shape, can transform at will. Basically, they hate you and want you to leave or worse. These guys start out like a Poltergeist- simple, easy enough to live with, but they turn evil and in some cases, murderous, like in The Sallie House Haunting, or Amityville. (Sometimes it's just a bad feeling, an urge to get out or uwantedness that won't kill you. But those make for dull films.)
  • Demonic Possessed Human Entity- Intelligent, negative entity, no physical form for themselves. They are the seeking to harm, hurt, oppress, tease and nightmare types. They require physical bodies to exist such as the (alleged) case of Anneleise Michel in the 70s and The Exorcist.
  • Shadow People- They are ghosts that either flash by or do not have enough power to manifest into human/animal form. These are the things you see out of the corner of your eye that make you question if you even saw anything.
Finally, the juice!
Masonic Temple Detroit: I do believe this place to be active, if not completely haunted. Some haunts are there because they choose a place they felt at home in whilst alive. I can understand the move into this building- it's stunning, interesting and free concerts and theatre shows. The Theatre has a constant feeling of being watched. I've been inside many times during my Theatre Bizarre work and every time I felt like someone was on the balcony looking down at me. The Elevator near the Theatre has a lurker. Even alone it feels like two's a crowd. It's not scary, just uncomfortable. Sometimes I would talk to it on my ride up and sometimes I felt stupid. There are about 27 more instances I noticed personally but these two were constant. I have more encounters as told by my friends. Many more. Ask in the comments for a bigger list. Possible Spirit Types Witnessed: Intelligent, Residual, Poltergeist, Shadow People


The Detroit Institute of Arts: Many stories have been told- artifacts being brought in that never should have left their lands, mummies, haunted paintings. Recently Mystic Mitten Paranormal and I went in to investigate for ourselves and speak to security about stories or encounters. While there Hillary made a comment about how she felt someone brush past her, a shoulder bump like when someone walks past and bumps into your shoulder bag type. Alas, nobody was near. Just us. Didn't think much of it. Later, while speaking separately to security guards they all asked us if we heard about the runner, or running man. They all mentioned that the runner hangs out near the Diego Rivera Court and blasts around like a rocket. When it's quiet you can hear a whirl and/or its footsteps, feel wind. All Hilary noticed was being bumped though, out of nowhere near Diego. We also investigated Rembrandt's "Court of Death" painting which "falls" nightly, and the Nail Figure down in Africa, which also has movement rumors, among other tales. Weirder than its appearance- it's the only piece in the whole section with condensation on the inside of the case. Spooky? We also learned that "in Dutch" (3rd floor) there is a painting of a woman (the guards didn't remember the name) that is seemingly the only malevolent  (caught on film, alarm triggering) spot in the whole building according to most but one guard we spoke to insisted she's unwanted in Whitby Hall in American by way of being audibly followed. We don't know much about the DFT yet, but we know the rumors. We tried to do some readings but ran out of time. We're going back in a few weeks for quality time. Possible Spirit Types Witnessed: Intelligent, Poltergeist, Shadow People, Demonic


The Leland: I spent some time here a few years ago on an impromptu walk about with a friend. We were looking for Jimmy Hoffa and The Purple Gang hung out here so we went in. The uppermost floors are either apartments or abandoned, sometimes on the same floor. Real weird. But on the 14th floor (13, really, if you can count but 13 is too unlucky) we heard a TV. It was loud enough to hear through walls, but muffled. Not so weird, generally, but the Outer Limits part of the story is that we heard it throughout the entire floor of mostly abandoned apartments. Once we noticed the noise we walked through every corner of the floor back and forth and the volume never changed nor did it become any clearer. Never. Bizarro. Possible Spirit Types Witnessed: Intelligent, Poltergeist



Historic Fort Wayne: Absolutely the most ghost action I have experienced. I've near vomited in a "dark spot" of the gymnasium only to walk ten feet feeling fine again, had spirit box conversation with a man named Tom in the jail, saw a man walking in the Commander's House for a flash and also saw lights go on and off down Officer's Row. As seen in my short documentary, the group also heard movement and disembodied footsteps in the Barracks on the 3rd floor, but that whole building is basically alive. There was some weirdness in the sallyports as well, echoes of sounds nobody was making, port doors moving that are a foot thick. Possible Spirit Types Witnessed: Intelligent, Poltergeist, Shadow People

Eloise Asylum: (Westland, but used to share housing hospitals in Detroit with other sordid details over the years) Without a doubt this place is completely zoinks! Todd from Detroit Paranormal Expeditions welcomed me in for a private tour of D Building. We discussed history of the building since its shut down, disrepair and ghost adventures he's had since his first investigation there. There is something to tell about every floor, in almost every nook and cranny of this slightly decrepit and creeptastic building. This place has a GRIM history so it only makes theoretical sense that more than a few passed on patients find comfort in the only place they may have really called home. Personally, though, in the few hours there, the only experiences I had were a crippling feeling of nausea/knee weakness in the Short Hall North on the 5th floor and the loud and lengthy disembodied footsteps in the main hall during our sit down interview which did not get picked up on the recording. But we definitely both heard them because  thought it was Todd and he thought it was me until I said something! I a hoping to be welcomed back this spring for another go and I'm not so secretly hoping the spirits housed there will remember me like they remember Todd. He's heard his own name before! Exciting! So, here's hopin!
Possible Spirit Types: Intelligent, Poltergeist,

Is there a story you'd like to see investigated that you don't see here? Have a story you'd like to share? Feel free to drop a comment with ideas or questions about haunted or "haunted" locations below. And let me know your Pet Sematary thoughts, too!

It's only at a 2 here, but that's more exciting than the nothing it was before we got into this room in Dutch! Check back to see if we rediscover any haunts on the 3rd floor.

Comments

  1. Great article! Lots of really neat places here I hope to visit myself one day!

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  2. Once at Masonic, it was pretty empty during the day and I was setting up for a wedding so I went snooping around after I was setup. I took the elevator up to the 10th (I think?) floor and as soon as the doors opened, even though it was totally empty, it felt like someone told me (telepathically?) to get out. I didn’t physically hear the voice- I just felt it.
    Lisa

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    Replies
    1. Thats so rad!!! It doesn't seem particularly dark there but I had a slightly similar leave this place twist of the stomach by the 5th floor gym. Just on the other side of the wall there.

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  3. Amazing article!

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  4. I loved this. I can't wait to see what you come out with later. Keep up the great work.

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