Halloween is coming and a lot more might be going on than you’d think—stories of hauntings, ghosts and poltergeists are abound. Strange and mysterious happenings are reported in Missouri during this season more than any other time of the year. Linn County is no exception.
In Marceline, Missouri, for example, there is an abandoned nursing home some say house spirits of dead former employees, patients and residents awaiting to re-enter their former home. Known by multiple names over the years such as “Hillhaven, Meadowbrook Manor” and “Chastains,” the three-story construction has a long, mysterious history within the community—what is particularly striking about this place is not so much the known detail exactly, but the unknown.
“It started as a memorial to his father Benjamin B. Putman. The original structure was constructed in 1923 by a Marceline contractor for Ola Putman, and consisted of 10 beds. The name given to the building was the B. B. Putman Memorial Hospital. Dr. Putman had served the Marceline community for 47 years as a surgeon and physician.”
While working at the facility, Putman had a son named “George,” who also subsequently became a doctor and was eventually employed there alongside his father. The younger physician died mysteriously in a car accident on the way to assisting a local pregnant mother.
The hospital closed shortly thereafter in 1942, but only temporarily. The newly named “Sisters of St. Francis” reopened after a lengthy four-year restoration under the direction of two women, Elizabeth Robertson and Mary Guthrie, but again, the facility shut its doors unexpectedly after a series of strange occurrences and rumored deaths. The facility changed ownership more than times over 60 years. The old nursing home finally closed unexpectedly forever when everyone left abruptly, August 1994, and to this day still, according to some, no one knows why. According to Missouri Entity Trackers, one local may have a tale to tell about the more modern goings on inside that may lend some clarity to the untimely exodus, according to one worker.
“One night, in 1998, the then building caretaker received a call at home about the empty building with a light on. She asked her then-teenage son to drive to the building and turn off the light. He did, but discovered he wasn’t alone. In a room on the second floor, Straub saw an old woman sitting in a chair looking out the window. The woman turned her head toward him.”
To this day, some say there are still strange noises, sights and sounds emanating from the Howell Street site. Next time you’re in Marceline, stop, look and listen--you might not be alone.