LEBANON, Ohio—The sun is setting on this small town in southwest Ohio, and when darkness reigns, strange things happen at the Golden Lamb Inn. Or so I’m told.
The Inn, owned by the family of Ohio Sen. Rob Portman for the better part of the last century, is the oldest hotel in the state. Since it opened as a simple lodge in 1803, 12 presidents have visited and scores of notable guests like Charles Dickens and Mark Twain have walked the halls.
In that time, at least three guests have died here. Some believe that the spirits of the unlucky trio never left.
A prospective vice presidential candidate owns a haunted hotel? Get me a reservation.
The Inn’s website in case you’d like to book a night: The Golden Lamb Inn
As we continue our journey into the asylums of long ago, I feel compelled to speak a bit about the state of mental health care today. De-institutionalization was enacted by President Ronald Regan in the 1980s, releasing many patients who were functional yet still had the need for more assistance in the outside world. This assistance did not come easily and in some cases, never came at all. The conditions in many of these hospitals were awful and the treatments barbaric–and yet to many of the patients, it was far more frightening when they were turned out of the only home they ever knew. The system is far from being perfect, even in today’s modern age. The mentally ill continue to face much ignorance-based prejudice and state hospitals are still crowded and understaffed. We’ve changed the language to make it all sound better when the first step should have been to actually work to make it better.
I am fascinated with old homes. I always have been. The architecture, the detail…and the fact that many of these homes, if they are properly maintained, can last for centuries. However, if they are not…there is nothing more beautifully nostalgic and sad than a home that has been abandoned and uncared for.
Thankfully Prospect Place (built 1857),in Trinway, Ohio has been gaining new life as a popular haunted spot. It has been listed in the United States Park Service National Register of Historic Places, and is in the process of being restored by the great-great grandson of the original builder, George Willison Adams. It also has the honor of being mentioned as a home used in the Underground Railroad, to help slaves escape to freedom. Continue reading
I’ve been sitting here reading newspaper clippings about the infamous house in Amityville, Long Island, New York (link on the right over there). The particular clip that prompted this post was written in 1978 about the Cromarty family who moved into the house 2 years after the Lutzes moved out. While the experiences of the Cromarties is hardly unique, it’s something that completely boggles my mind.