A bewitching trip around Second Salem

Whitewater Spirit Tour


Dauntae Green

Dan Richardson explains the legends of the Whitewater Water Tower or known as the “Witches Tower.”

Dauntae Green, Managing Editor

Halloween is just around the corner! So it’s time to hear spooky stories, learn about Whitewater’s strange paranormal history (also called Second Salem), and get some goosebumps while on the annual Spirit Tour that took place Oct. 15 and 16.

The tour’s first stop was the menacing city water town, also known as the Witches Tower at Starin Park. Next up is the ghostly history of the Hamilton House, and don’t forget the spine-tingling feelings that always crawl up your back when you come upon Calvary Cemetery. There are some very “interesting” stories to be told at the Whitewater Historical Society about the Winchesters, as well as while fending off the blood-curdling haunting vibes coming from the Hillside Cemetery.

The U.S. Paranormal Research team will teach you about the poison widow Nellie Horan (a possible serial killer), about Mary Worth, the Winchesters and all of Whitewater’s wicked cast of culprits. 

Witches Tower

  • The water tower located at the Starin Park is one of the oldest water towers in the area, and there are so many witchcraft stories that surround it. Legends of the tower tell that witches used to live there who would perform rituals on the site. The fences now there with their barbed wires were made to keep something sinister from getting out. There was a story about a student from the school who found a VHS tape from a trailer nearby about the witch tower. They decided to climb over the fence of the Witches Tower, climbed up the railings, and went inside through the tower window. The city Parks and Recreation Department went to check it out, opened the doors, and the student ran out to attack the official. They got the student down, but the student was confused about what was happening. While touring this exclusive tower, beware of windows and doors opening without warning. Extending the tower’s power, there is also an altar between the Witches Tower and Knilans Hall where some spooky incidents continue to happen to this day. 

The Hamilton House

  • Hamilton House on Main Street of downtown Whitewater has some hauntings happening of its own. The owner of the house recently said that a little boy appeared inside, running around the halls, and a woman walking around the gardens outside. A ceramic tile with an image of a boy was found in the garden, matching with the tiles around one of the fireplace’s inside. They replaced it and now the boy and woman are gone. There are underground tunnels in Whitewater that exist in the depths beneath the Hamilton House and Starin Mansion on Fremont Street. No one knows what the tunnels were made for and if they were made to bring escaped slaves to reach Canada before the Civil War or if they were used for witches to get to places around Whitewater unseen. 

Hillside Cemetery

  • The Hillside Cemetery is where Mary Worth, the Winchesters and Morris Pratt are buried at. A couple of incidents have happened  at this cemetery in the past. In one incident, a community member was walking their dog in the cemetery and got startled by the apparition of a woman walking from the bottom of the hill, up and around the corner. That person’s dog followed the spirit and barked at it to no avail. There have also been flowers throughout various parts of the cemetery that would make weird shapes or patterns, as if influenced by the spirits in the earth beneath them. A line can be drawn connecting Whitewater’s three cemeteries to form an exact isosceles triangle. It’s an important shape because five isosceles triangles make up a pentagram, which is a symbol for witchcraft or the occult.

“We’ve been doing this spirit tour for seven years, and it has been changing over the years,” said Spirit Tour committee member Bob Herold. “We’re glad the community and many people enjoy this.” 

To learn more information about our Second Salem right here in Whitewater and to watch some creepy video clips, visit https://www.whitewaterchamber.com/spirit-tour/.