A ghost that forced a remodel of City Hall and haunted campuses are some of the places in Minneapolis that are rumored to be haunted. The city may be famous for its cold weather; the IDS Center, which is the tallest building in the state; and for being St. Paul's twin, but it also has some notorious ghosts.
John Moshik, a convicted murderer, has lurked around Minneapolis' City Hall since he was hanged there in 1898. The Chapel Courtroom, rumored to be the courtroom where he was convicted, was so jinxed that it was removed in a 1950s renovation. Moshik is believed to hang out on the fifth floor, which currently houses the detention center. Inmates commonly report seeing a man peeking into the common room wearing nothing but boxer shorts. The Minneapolis City Hall covers a full block between South 4th and 5th Streets in downtown Minneapolis, and is open to the public Mondays through Fridays, except on certain holidays.
Washington Street Bridge
The Washington Street Bridge has the notorious reputation for being the most popular place to commit suicide in the Twin Cities. John Berryman, a poet and former professor at the university, is one of its famous victims. Some of the troubled souls that ended their lives here are believed to linger. University of Minnesota students who use the tunnel to travel back and forth between the East and West Banks of the campus report hearing footsteps behind them -- but when they turn to look, there is no one there, according to Chad Lewis and Terry Fisk in their book "The Minnesota Road Guide to Haunted Locations."
University of Minnesota
The Washington Street Bridge is not the only part of the University of Minnesota campus (www1.umn.edu) that is haunted. Three of its locations have also seen paranormal activity according to Leslie Rule in her book "Coast to Coast Ghosts." Unexplained howling has been heard in the Walter Library, and a security guard claims that a phone book was hurled at him by an unseen force. But strangest of all is Pioneer Hall, believed to be haunted by a dorm official who was murdered there by a religious cult.
The Guthrie Theater, once an old opera house on Vineland Place, is rumored to have been haunted by a former usher, Robert Miller, a student at the University of Minnesota who committed suicide in 1967. A few weeks later, patrons and workers at the theater reported seeing him walking up and down row 18 and in the catwalks during performances. Miller is believed to have moved on after an exorcism was done in 1994. Twelve years later, in 2006, the theater was torn down.
Venture past the curved entrance of the First Avenue nightclub (first-avenue.com) and you may experience its resident ghost, but think twice before using the restroom. Women patrons claim to have been terrified in the upstairs bathroom by a blond ghost in a green jacket that enjoys recreating how she died -- hanging herself in the 5th stall of the woman's restroom. DJs have also reported hearing strange noises in their headsets, and a disembodied pair of legs has busted a move on the dance floor on several occasions.
College of Art and Design
Students at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (mcad.edu) believe that it is haunted by a former student. Students report awakening in the middle of the night frozen, unable to move while hearing someone screaming inside their heads. The ghost is believed to be a female student who had been raped and killed in a basement apartment. Not to be outdone, the Minneapolis Institute of the Arts (artsmia.org) also claims to be haunted. According to Jennifer Olivarez, the associate curator at the Institute, several of the period rooms are believed to be haunted. The Connecticut Room was investigated by the Minnesota Paranormal Society.
- "Coast to Coast Ghosts: True Stories of Hauntings Across America"; Leslie Rule; 2001
- "The Minnesota Road Guide to Haunted Locations"; Chad Lewis and Terry Fisk; 2005
- "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Ghosts and Hauntings"; Tom Ogden; 1999
- "Haunted Places: The National Directory"; Dennis William Hauck; 2002
- Minneapolis Institute of the Arts; The Curator is in Q & A; February 2011
- Ghosts of the Prairie; Minneapolis City Hall; Troy Taylor; 2000
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