Reportedly haunted locations in Oregon

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The Geiser Grand Hotel in Baker City is one of the state's many reportedly haunted locations

There are a number of widely reported haunted locations in the state of Oregon in the United States. Many reported hauntings in Oregon are linked to such historic places as the Oregon Trail and early coastal communities. Portland, the state's largest city and metropolitan area, was justifiably considered the most dangerous port city in the world at the turn of the 20th century.[citation needed] Its gritty history includes many famous (and not so famous) haunted places.[1] In 2012, USA Today named Portland among the top ten most haunted cities in the United States.[2]

Reportedly haunted locales in Portland include the Bagdad Theater, a vaudeville theater built by Universal Studios in 1927, which is reportedly haunted by a maintenance man who committed suicide in the building; Pittock Mansion, a mansion overlooking the city that is reportedly haunted by its original owners; the Roseland Theater, a former church and music venue that is haunted by a club promoter who was murdered there; and, perhaps most widely reported, the city's Shanghai tunnels,[3] made up of various passages that run beneath the streets of Northwest Portland that were used to smuggle prostitutes and sailors onto ships in the port, where they were often sold into slavery or forced labor.[4]

Other sites widely reported[who?] to be haunted include the Hot Lake Hotel in Union; the Multnomah County Poor Farm in Troutdale; Rhododendron Village, a stop along the Oregon Trail near Mt. Hood; and the Welches Roadhouse, where a pregnant woman jumped to her death.[citation needed]


Hot Lake Hotel circa 1920s, located in Union County
  • Candy Cane Park is a small park located in central La Grande, and is said to be haunted by a woman, Dana DuMars, who was murdered there with a hatchet in 1983.[5][6] A merry-go-round that was once on the premises was said to spin by itself.
  • Geiser Grand Hotel in Baker City is reportedly haunted by various residents and persons murdered there.[7]
  • Granite is a ghost town located in Grant County that is reputed to be home to supernatural activity.[8]
  • Hot Lake Hotel is a supposedly haunted hotel in Union County. The hotel is known for a massive fire that occurred in 1934, as well as suicides and hauntings from ghosts during its days as a sanitorium.[9] Countless people died on the property, including a caretaker who killed himself in an operating room, as well as a nurse who died after falling in the scalding hot springs.[10] The building served as a hotel and resort for its homeopathic mineral waters, as well as a hospital and elderly home, and housed a restaurant in the late 1980s. It was in disrepair by the early 1990s, but was restored for the public in 2003. In 2001, the hotel was featured on the television show The Scariest Places on Earth.


  • The Asahel Bush House in Bush's Pasture, Salem, is an Italianate-Victorian house built by Asahel Bush II in 1877. It is rumored to be haunted by Eugenia Bush, his daughter. Witnesses have described shadows, cold spots, and hearing voices.[11]
  • Dammasch State Hospital was a psychiatric hospital located in Wilsonville that opened in 1961, and was reported to be haunted before and after its closing in 1995.[12] The hospital was frequently investigated for medical malpractices and inadequate care of patients, with multiple patients dying under unusual circumstances at the hospital.[13] The hospital was demolished in 2005 and apartments were built in its place.[14]
Multnomah County Poor Farm, which now operates as restaurant, hotel, and brewery, is said to be haunted by numerous ghosts; the property also contains countless unmarked graves.
  • Kuhn Cinema in Lebanon, built in 1932, is reportedly haunted by the ghost of a young girl who died there.[11]
  • The Multnomah County Poor Farm, now known as McMenamin's Edgefield, located in Troutdale, is supposedly haunted. The construct, built in 1911, operated as a poorhouse, and also housed the mentally challenged, the disabled, and the elderly;[15] since death was common in poorhouses, many people were buried on the property in unmarked plots.[16] The property later served as a sanitorium and a reform school for troubled children before falling vacant in 1990. It is now a hotel operated by McMenamins restaurant and brewery, and has several restaurants and bars on the property as well as an outdoor stage for concerts. Hotel guests have frequently reported hearing a woman's voice reciting nursery rhymes, as well as unexplained crying in the building. A woman dressed in white is also often seen roaming around the property.[15]
  • Multnomah Falls is reportedly haunted by the ghost of a Native American woman who, according to legend, jumped to her death from the Upper Falls in order to save her village from a plague-like illness.[17]
  • Rhododendron Village, located near the town of Rhododendron along the Barlow Trail, is a campsite that was used by pioneers on the Oregon Trail in the mid-1800s, and is reported to be haunted. The site, which houses several log cabins and mess halls, is near Laurel Hill, the steepest hill along Barlow Trail. Conestoga wagons were often hoisted up the hill by ropes, and many deaths occurred there; the Rhododendron Village served as a gravesite for many of these people. Volunteer workers there have reported doors slamming open and shut as well as lights turning on and off, and several graves have been discovered around the property.[15]
  • South Eugene High School in Eugene is supposedly haunted by the ghost of a student, Robert Granke, who died in the auditorium after falling from a catwalk.[11]
  • The Welches Roadhouse is a two-story house in Welches near Mount Hood that is supposedly haunted by a woman who killed herself on the property.[15] The woman purportedly jumped from a second-story door used for snowdrifts after the man whose child she was bearing—an escaped convict whom she had taken in—left her.


Cathedral Park is said to be haunted by Thelma Taylor, a teenager who was murdered there in 1949.
  • The Bagdad Theater is a theater built by Universal Studios in 1927 that was used as a cinema as well as a theatre stage for plays and vaudeville shows. A theater maintenance man hanged himself behind the stage, and the women's bathroom is reportedly haunted by a spirit.[18] It is now operated by McMenamins as a cinema and pub.
  • The Benson Hotel in downtown Portland is reported to be haunted by the hotel's owner, Simon Benson, who built it in 1912. An apparition of a ghostly man descending the staircase of the hotel has also been reported.[19]
    The Benson Hotel in downtown Portland, Oregon, is reportedly haunted by its original owner
  • Cathedral Park in the St. Johns neighborhood of Portland is said to be haunted by Thelma Taylor, a teenager who was stabbed to death under the St. Johns Bridge (as the story goes), after being abducted and held for a night in August 1949.[20]
  • The Heathman Hotel located in Southwest Portland, is a hotel that was originally built in 1927, and is reported to have several haunted rooms.[21] A psychic visited the hotel in 1999 and claimed to have witnessed an apparition standing at the foot of a bed.[citation needed]
  • The Hollywood Theatre located in the Hollywood District of East Portland, was a venue built in 1926 that exhibited vaudeville shows and silent movies. It now operates as an independent, non-profit cinema. Staff and patrons have reported the apparition of a ghostly male in the upstairs lobby of the theatre, as well as the apparition of a woman who sits in the back rows of one of the upstairs screening rooms.[21]
  • Lotus Isle was an amusement park located on Hayden Island, reportedly haunted due to its dark history.[21] The park's ballroom burned down in 1931, the year after a young boy fell off a roller coaster and drowned in the river below. The owner of the park committed suicide after the boy's death, and the park went into bankruptcy in 1932 before being demolished.[22]
  • The North Portland Library has been reported to be haunted. The security cameras in the upstairs meeting room would show someone sitting at the table when nobody is there, and footsteps were heard in the middle of the night outside the library. No paranormal activity has been reported after the church across the street was torn down.[23]
  • Oaks Amusement Park is an amusement park located in southeast Portland. Known as the "Coney Island of the Northwest" upon opening in 1905,[24] many people have reported seeing the apparition of a lone child in vintage clothing there who disappears before their eyes.[25]
  • Old Town Pizza is reportedly haunted by a ghost named Nina, a prostitute who was murdered in the elevator shaft of the building in the late 1800s, when it was then the location of the original Merchant Hotel.[26][27]
  • Pittock Mansion is reportedly haunted by its original owners, Henry and Georgiana Pittock, who built the house and died there.[15]
    Reed College is reported to have hauntings in one of the college's residence halls
  • Reed College has a reported share of hauntings, including a ghost on the third floor of the Prexy residence hall.[28]
  • Rimsky-Korsakoffee House is a coffee shop located in southeast Portland where poltergeist activity has been reported.[29]
  • The Roseland Theater is reportedly haunted by Timothy Moreau, a 21-year-old publicity agent who was murdered there by the club's owner in 1990, and whose body was never found.[30] In 2008, Willamette Week named Roseland the "Best Haunted Venue" in a retrospective "Best of Portland" list highlighting the best of 1988.[31]
    The Shanghai tunnels that run beneath the Northwest district and downtown Portland are widely reported to be the most haunted location in the entire state[4]
  • The Shanghai tunnels located in the Old Town/Chinatown district were used during prohibition, Immigrants, laborers and prostitutes were smuggled through these tunnels and would be sold to ship captains passing through on the Willamette River. The tunnels are reportedly the most haunted location in the city of Portland.[32][2]
  • Tryon Creek State Park is a nature preserve in Portland where people have reported hearing the sound of horses whinnying and disembodied voices of men talking. It is believed to be haunted by the ghosts of men who worked as loggers in the area in the late 1800s.[33]
  • Villa St. Rose, a former convent and Catholic girls' school, is reportedly haunted by disembodied voices and footsteps.[25]
  • The White Eagle, built in 1901, is a saloon and hotel located in northeast Portland that is reportedly haunted by a woman who was murdered there when the building functioned as a brothel and opium den.[29] The saloon was nicknamed the "bucket of blood" after being the site of violent brawls.[34] One patron reported being inexplicably locked in the women's bathroom for fifteen minutes, only to find that the door had no lock on it.[29]


The Oregon Caves Chateau is reportedly haunted by a poltergeist
  • The site of the old Galesville Hotel in Douglas County is reportedly haunted by a phantom stagecoach which can be heard there.[15]
  • The Linkville Playhouse in Klamath Falls is supposedly haunted by the ghost of a former actor, Ralph McCormic, who starred in local plays there.[11]
  • Lithia Park in Ashland is reportedly haunted by a young girl who was murdered there in the 1800s. Visitors have described seeing a blue light glowing above one of park's ponds.[17]
  • Several locations at Southern Oregon University in Ashland are reportedly haunted, including the Susanne Holmes residence hall where a child died, and the basement of the Plunkett Center.[35]
  • The Oregon Caves Chateau in Cave Junction is a rustic lodge reputed to be haunted by a poltergeist named Elizabeth, a woman who committed suicide in the chateau in 1937.[36]
  • Wolf Creek Inn in Wolf Creek is an inn that opened in 1883 and served as a stop for carriage travelers. It was later frequented by several celebrities and writers, including Clark Gable and Jack London, who finished his novel Valley of the Moon while staying at the inn. Strange occurrences have been reported at the inn for years, as well as a commonly told legend about a vampire-like being who reportedly attacked a traveler there in the 1970s.[17]


  • Malheur Butte, an extinct volcano in Malheur County is, according to legend, a place where witches met, and is reportedly haunted by shadowy apparitions.[11]
  • Ye Olde Castle Restaurant in Burns is reputedly haunted by a "lady in blue."[25]

Oregon coast[edit]

  • The Argonauta Inn Beach House in Cannon Beach is haunted by a man named Ghengis Hansel who disappeared there without a trace during a storm in 1952.[25] Hansel was never found, and guests have reported a foreboding presence there.
  • The Liberty Theater in Astoria, a theater built in 1924, is reportedly haunted by the apparition of a young man in a white tuxedo.[37]
  • The Egyptian Theatre in Coos Bay is reportedly home to a ghost who touches guests.[25]
  • Fort Stevens, now the site of a state park in Warrenton, is said to be haunted by the apparition of a young soldier who walks the outlying paths searching for enemy soldiers. Built in 1863, the fort operated as a military base until 1947, and the battery itself is also said to be haunted.[38]
  • The grounds of the Heceta Head Lighthouse in Florence have long been associated with a "woman in gray" who walks the property.[17]
  • The Old Liberty Theater, known as "The theater on the bay," is a restored former cinema in North Bend that is haunted by apparitions of a woman and her sons in period clothing.[11]
  • Siletz Bay in Lincoln City is reportedly haunted by a phantom schooner named the Blanco which capsized in the bay in 1864. It has been reported that apparitions of the schooner have appeared and disappeared in the water.[8] The bay is a graveyard to three other schooners: the Sunbeam, Uncle John, and the Phoebe Fay, all of which sunk there before the turn of the 20th century.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kennedy, Sarah. "The Shanghai Tunnels". The New York Times. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
  2. ^ a b Moore, Jamie (November 12, 2012). "America's 10 most haunted cities". USA Today. Retrieved October 24, 2015.
  3. ^ Horton, Kami (September 26, 2013). "Portland Noir". Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB). Oregon Experience. Retrieved May 1, 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Shanghai Tunnels reveal Portland's sinister history". KGW. February 4, 2012. Archived from the original on November 7, 2014. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  5. ^ "Man Charged with Murder in La Grande". Eugene Register-Guard. February 17, 1983. p. 12c.
  6. ^ "Candy Cane Park (La Grande, OR)". Strange Destinations. Archived from the original on February 5, 2015. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  7. ^ Rule, Leslie. Coast to Coast Ghosts: True Stories of Hauntings Across America. pp. 156–157.
  8. ^ a b c Weeks, Andy. Haunted Oregon: Ghosts and Strange Phenomena of the Beaver State. Stackpole Books. p. 26. ISBN 978-0811712637.
  9. ^ Jewell, Judy (2005). Oregon (Compass American Guides) (5th ed.). Compass America Guides. ISBN 978-1-4000-1587-0.
  10. ^ The Scariest Places On Earth: Hot Lake Resort. ABC Family. October 23, 2001.
  11. ^ a b c d e f James, Tyler. "16 Haunted Places in Oregon That Will Send Chills Down Your Spine". That Oregon Life. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
  12. ^ "Dammasch State Hospital: Corridors". Archived from the original on March 2, 2015. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  13. ^ Janice Perciano, Rick Vachio, Jonna Schuder, Bob Joondeph (December 17, 1993). "Five Deaths at Dammasch Hospital" (PDF). Disability Rights Oregon.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)[permanent dead link]
  14. ^ Zezima, Kate (January 15, 2006). "NATIONAL PERSPECTIVES; Abandoned Hospitals For the Mentally Ill Morph Into Housing". The New York Times. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  15. ^ a b c d e f Smitten, Susan (2001). Ghost Stories of Oregon. Lone Pine Publishing. ISBN 978-1-894877-13-8.
  16. ^ Frazier, Karen. "Strange Happenings at Edgefield Manor"[permanent dead link]
  17. ^ a b c d Johnson, Cari (October 22, 2013). "The 5 Most Haunted Destinations in Oregon". Portland Monthly Magazine. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  18. ^ "The Portland Basin". Ghosts and Critters. Retrieved August 4, 2011.
  19. ^ Scott, Courtney (October 31, 2013). "Top 5 Ghastly Halloween Getaways". The Huffington Post. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  20. ^ Becker, Tim (May 9, 2013). "Thelma Taylor: Phantom in Cathedral Park?". Koin. Archived from the original on August 8, 2013. Retrieved September 20, 2013.
  21. ^ a b c Chilson, John (October 19, 2010). "Haunted Portland: Where Things Go Bump in the Night". Neighborhood Notes. Retrieved May 1, 2015.
  22. ^ Thomas, Josh. "Lotus Isle: Backfiring Bamboozle". Center for Columbia River History. Retrieved May 1, 2015.
  23. ^ "Fugitives and Refugees 10 Years Later: An Omnibus". Willamette Week.
  24. ^ Beck, Dana (December 12, 2012). "Oaks Amusement Park, and its beginnings". Portland Tribune. Retrieved September 15, 2014.
  25. ^ a b c d e Stewart, Donna (September 9, 2014). Ghosthunting Oregon. Clerisy Press. ISBN 9781578605491.
  26. ^ "Haunted Location". Old Town Pizza. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  27. ^ "Old Town Chinatown dining". Travel Portland. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  28. ^ "The New (Olde) Reed Almanac". Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  29. ^ a b c "Ghostly Gourmands". Portland Mercury. October 29, 2009. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  30. ^ Van Buskirk, Audrey (March 9, 2005). "The Hunt for the Starry Night Killer". Willamette Week. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  31. ^ "Best of Portland 1988". Willamette Week. Portland, Oregon: City of Roses Newspapers. July 24, 2008. Retrieved January 8, 2014.
  32. ^ "Shanghai tunnels". Legends of America. Retrieved August 4, 2011.
  33. ^ "7 Haunted Places Near Portland OR". Red Tricycle. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  34. ^ "Ghouls Night Out". MSN Local. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  35. ^ Greer, Morgan (November 4, 2013). "A Southern Oregon University Haunting: a story not for the light of heart". Retrieved October 24, 2015.
  36. ^ Lankford, Andrea (2006). Haunted Hikes: Spine-Tingling Tales and Trails from North America's National Parks. Santa Monica Press. p. 328. ISBN 978-1595800091.
  37. ^ Hagestedt, Andre (2006). "Oregon Coast Ghosts and Other Paranormal Legends". Beach Connection. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
  38. ^ Hauck, Dennis William (August 27, 2002). Haunted Places: The National Directory: Ghostly Abodes, Sacred Sites, UFO Landings and Other Supernatural Locations. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-0142002346.