Investigating the Haunted Hannah House


Kayla Moriarty, Staff Writer




Indianapolis is well known for the Indy 500, its multitude of museums, historical landmarks, and bustling city life. However, a select few flock to Indy for something peculiar; its hauntings and paranormal activity. Indianapolis is home to some of the most haunted places in the Midwest, with the Hannah House being one of them. At the beginning of August, I decided to tour the Hannah House, and see for myself if the ghastly rumors were true.

Historical Background:
Alexander Hannah, a prominent part of the community, built the Hannah House in 1859. Hannah was thoroughly respected publicly, and took on a variety of roles, from the sheriff, and postmaster, to Indiana State Legislator. While these careers in helping the general public were important to Hannah, the role he was most passionate about could be detrimental to his reputation. As it turns out, Hannah was a notable contributor to the Underground Railroad and often assisted enslaved people in finding freedom in Canada. He set up oil lamps in his basement, and let them stay there until they could continue on their journey to freedom. One fateful day, someone knocked over an oil lamp, which engulfed the entire basement in flames. Everyone down there unfortunately died, and their burial was extremely tragic. To avoid public suspicion, Hannah had his servants bury all of the bodies underneath the dirt floor. Since then, concrete has been placed, so it’s unknown where exactly the bodies are in the basement.
Given the mansion’s unfortunate backstory, it’s no surprise that rumors about restless spirits have been circulating since the mid-1960s. The Hannah House has been turned into many businesses, from a jewelry store to an antique mall. The mansion wasn’t officially recognized as a historic landmark until 1978. While it was an antique mall, the owners reported many strange occurrences within the brick walls. Apparitions, whispers, and strange smells have all been common accounts of anyone stepping foot inside the Hannah House. A semi-forgotten event was the grief that Alexander Hannah and his wife encountered before the horrific fire incident ever happened. Elizabeth Hannah miscarried, and the healing process was extremely difficult for both her and her husband. Visitors have also reported hearing the cries of an infant, which has been linked to this unfortunate occurrence.
My Experience:
Hearing these rumors piqued my curiosity, and I had to see for myself if the Hannah House was truly haunted. My initial reaction to seeing the house was a concern for its structural stability. To say it had seen better days would be an understatement. Nevertheless, my group and I piled into the main living room area. The house is decorated for the period, with some decor being original to the home. A beautiful antique fireplace was the first object that met my eyes. Our tour guide explained the history and showed us a painting whose eyes were supposed to follow anyone who dared to look back. Touring the home was like being inside a time capsule, but I wasn’t questioning whether or not the house was haunted until we went upstairs. The first room we went into was affectionately called “grandma’s room” and had a large, creepy portrait of her that seemed to be alive. She loved collecting boots, and her collection was sprawled out in the room. Our guide told us that most people say they either smell rose petals or rotten flesh, but luckily she had only ever smelled rose petals. Another room had a bookcase that was secretly a sliding door that gave way to a small room. Our guide showed us a photo she had snapped when no one was around, which showed a clear figure standing behind the door. Seeing that picture was surreal, and I took some of my own to see if I would get similar results with little success. Last but not least, the basement. Walking down the stairs caused a pit to form in the bottom of my stomach, and finally being down there was otherworldly. Our guide explained the tragedy, and let us explore it on our own. I waited behind everyone to go through the main room and the main pitch-black hallway that led to more rooms. When I was the only person there, I started snapping pictures and taking short videos. Being alone in those rooms was unexplainable, which could be because of the unfortunate backstory of everything that happened. In those videos, I caught some particular footage that caught my attention. Clear orbs are floating around, and while these could be dust or bugs, their movements were certainly interesting. I also have a video of a light traveling around the room. Keep in mind, I was the only person there, with no lights. Those videos will be linked, and are on my channel, where I plan to do more in-depth reviews in the future. So, the most important question of all is, is it haunted? My answer is extremely subjective, but in my opinion, there are things that happen at the Hannah House and what I filmed that can not be logically explained.


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