The Mysteries of the Matthew’s Mansion

The Mysteries of the Matthews Mansion

Kayla Moriarty, Staff Writer

John Matthews, nicknamed father of the limestone industry, struck “gold” when he discovered the mineral-rich area of southern Indiana. Initially from the United Kingdom, Matthews found his hidden talent at extracting limestone, and was looking for a prospective area to further his career success. His business in the area of Ellettsville, Indiana was incredibly lucrative, and Matthews Stone Company took off. 

When money started flowing in, Matthews decided to build a larger home to accommodate his growing family. It is thought that Matthews commissioned the same architect who designed the Paris Opera House in France to start laying out the blueprints for his mansion. The home was built somewhere between 1879 and 1880, however the exact date is unknown due to contradictory paperwork. It’s distinctive Parisian- gothic style stands out in comparison to neighboring houses. The front balcony has carvings of each of Matthew’s children, a minor detail that will become increasingly more eerie as the story progresses. 

Matthews made sure to have his home built extremely close to his business for convenience. Unfortunately, his son, Peter, was killed when dynamite exploded in the quarry nearby the mansion. According to the official website of Monroe County, Indiana, “That blast killed at least three and possibly two others and injured several including his brother Frederick Matthews” (Stuckey 2013). John eventually passed, and his wife, Mary Ann, passed soon after while living in the mansion.

After their deaths, the house had several different owners until it was left abandoned in the early to mid 1900s. Many vandalized the home, and college students had parties in the vacant mansion. This is when the rumors of hauntings at the mansion started coming out, and many reported strange occurrences that gave the mansion a sinister reputation. Many are disturbed by the realistic carvings of the faces of the Matthews’ children and connect them to a symbolic trapping of their spirits in the mansion. Some even believe that several of the children may have been buried inside the mansion due to writings and the way some walls line up unevenly. 

Now, Nancy Jonas owns the home, and is completely skeptical of any reported paranormal activity. She is confident that there are no irregularities in the home, and dispels any rumors about children buried in the walls or lingering spirits.


Works Cited:
Stuckey, Clay. John Matthews and Sons Pioneer Stoneman. 2013

Caroll Krause. “Matthews mansion abound with tales.” The Herald Times, 2005.

Image taken by Caroll Krause.