Maybe it’s all those movies set in rural communities surrounded by cornfields, but some of the Great Plains states have a natural advantage in the “spooky” department. Nebraska – the Cornhusker state – is one such state where the late-season stalks blowing in the wind is enough to give anyone the willies – and that’s just the natural atmosphere!
There are also some incredible haunted places in Nebraska – or reportedly haunted, anyway. From the bluffs of eastern Nebraska to the wild vistas of the west, Nebraska is a dynamic place… so maybe it’s no surprise that some souls might want to stay here after departing life.
Whether you believe, disbelieve, or are up for challenging your conception of the “Beyond,” check out these haunted places across Nebraska as the spooky season approaches each year.
In this post, I promote travel to destinations that are the traditional lands of the Tséstho’e (Cheyenne), Očhéthi Šakówiŋ, Sicangu, Jiwere, Umoⁿhoⁿ (Omaha), Očhéthi Šakówiŋ, Pâri (Pawnee), Ndé Kónitsąąíí Gokíyaa (Lipan Apache), hinono’eino’ biito’owu’ (Arapaho), Páⁿka tóⁿde ukʰéthiⁿ (Ponca), and Oohenumpa peoples. With respect, I make a formal land acknowledgment, extending my appreciation and respect to the past and present people of these lands. To learn more about the peoples who call these lands home, I invite you to explore Native Land.
The Alliance Theater, Alliance
The Alliance Theater, an iconic building, stands out as one of the most haunted places in Nebraska. There’s no certainty as to when the paranormal phenomena started.
Employees and the theater’s owner, Gerald Bullard, state it’s not uncommon to hear footsteps running down the halls or hands clapping and see shadowy figures. Some argue the wandering spirit is Mary’s, an actress who died after a piece of lighting equipment fell on her during a performance. The good news is that Mr. Bullard, the theater’s owner, is certain that the ghost is a friendly one and there’s nothing to fear.
Bailey House Museum, Brownsville
Inexplicable and unnerving events take place behind the charming brick façade of the Bailey House Museum. Built after the Civil War, the Bailey House Museum was Captain Benson M. Bailey’s home, a Union officer who served with the 3rd Tennessee Mounted Infantry.
Allegedly, the Captain never left the house and still haunts anyone who steps inside. There’s a good reason why he still clings to the physical world, though. Captain Bailey had the misfortune of living next to a dangerous neighbor that ended up murdering him and his wife. Today, people can hear him swinging the house’s doors, switching lights on and off, or even playing the piano!
Barnard Park, Fremont
At a glance, Barnard Park is a lovely place families visit on weekends with their children. However, few people know that the park is also one of the scariest haunted spots in Nebraska. Back in the 19th Century, Barnard Park’s grounds were at one time a graveyard.
During that same time, Fremont’s population experienced a growth that rapidly outgrew the cemetery’s capacity, which led to the city closing it down and relocating it. Reports say that, while the city carefully relocated the bodies, it accidentally left some behind. Their spirits still roam the area, and people have reportedly seen a woman crying at night.
Hastings College, Hastings
For some unknown reason, ghosts love haunting campus buildings, just like Hastings College. It seems there’s not one but numerous spooks roaming the buildings of this college. The most famous is the ghost of a music professor who haunts the music hall. Students say that the ghost appears as an orb or human-like apparition. Other times, the ghost simply likes to have fun switching lights off and on.
There’s also a second ghost, Clara Altman, one of the first women educators to receive a doctorate degree. She is said to live in Altman Hall and is there to protect students and professors. Although she does like to play tricks like knocking on doors and turning lights and radios off and on.
Antelope Park, Lincoln
Within the 143 acres that make Antelope Park, you can find one of the spookiest Nebraska haunted places. It looks anything but scary, but the field sitting behind the caretaker’s house at Antelope Park is a popular location among ghosts.
Visitors claim to witness numerous apparitions walking across the field that suddenly disappear into the woods on the other side. They also insist on the eerie atmosphere one can perceive in certain areas inside the park. Some even say they’ve felt like someone is watching them while walking down the woods.
Devil’s Canyon, McCook
Devil’s Canyon is a dirt road located seven miles north of McCook. The site was the scene of a sad tragedy that may explain the paranormal events today. Over 100 years ago, a man brought his wife and children to Devil’s Canyon to murder them before killing himself.
Locals believe the man’s spirit haunts the area to this day. He likes to play jokes on visitors who drive along the road at night. Sometimes he even causes mechanical objects or cars to malfunction.
Seven Sisters Road, Nebraska City
Few people know that behind the name Seven Sisters Road lies one of the spookiest urban legends of America that will send shivers down your spine.
The story goes that a young man lived with his parents and seven sisters right near the road in the 19th century. One night, a heated argument started between the man and his sisters. After the quarrel, he was so angry that he decided to hide in the woods, wait until midnight, and force his sisters outside with him. Then, he carried each sister to one of the hills that lined the road and hung them from a tree on top.
Neville Center for the Performing Arts, North Platte
The Neville Center for the Performing Arts is home to numerous ghosts and spirits whose disturbing actions have called the attention of paranormal investigators that have come to investigate the building.
According to general manager Scott Carlson, people can witness “someone” gently touching their hands, but he’s confident this is a welcome from the ghost. He also claims to often feel someone entering the lightning booth with him. However, no one has ever been around to verify his claim. Other staff members have experienced sudden temperature drops and shadowy figures walking on the balcony.
Hummel Park, Omaha
One of the most haunted places in Nebraska, Hummel Park, is the scenario of countless urban legends. Including people performing satanic rituals and sacrifices in the pavilion, a colony of albinos living in a wooded area, lynchings taking place in the park, and it sits on the site of an ancient Native American burial ground.
The legends have become so popular that even The Daily Nebraskan sent four reporters to check out the area. To this day, no one knows whether these statements are true. However, you’re more than welcome to go and draw your conclusions.
Museum of Shadows, Omaha
Any individual that loves paranormal phenomena must visit the Museum Of Shadows. Housed in one of the most haunted buildings in the Midwest, the Museum of Shadows has the largest collection of verified haunted artifacts!
The owners are Kaylee, a medium, and Nate, a demonologist, who want to share their passion for all things paranormal. The couple states that they’ve experienced dolls flying off the shelves, random apparitions, and some items, and spirits love interacting with visitors.
Definitely not a place for the faint of heart.
Concordia University’s David Hall, Seward
Native American spirits seem to haunt Concordia University’s, David Hall. Allegedly, the site used to be a Native American burial ground in the 1700s. In the 1970s, construction workers exhumed bones in the college building during construction. Students report that ghosts like to scare people away by turning things on and off, like the dorm’s showers and electrical appliances. Other students claim they have seen a Native American woman wandering around David Hall.
Fort Sidney Museum, Sidney
The building that houses the Fort Sidney Museum used to be the residence of post commanders that worked at Fort Sydney. Rumor has it that the wife of one of the commanders’ died here.
Unfortunately, the woman fell down the stairs, breaking her neck in 1885. Devastated by his wife’s death, the commander boarded up the stairs. Since then, the female ghost haunts the house, and witnesses often hear someone walking up or down the stairs and then falling.
Ball Cemetery, Springfield
It doesn’t come as a surprise that Ball Cemetery in Springfield is one of the top haunted places in Nebraska. To be honest, cemeteries, haunted or not, never evoke pleasant feelings. Paranormal activity at this place escalates to a new level of creepiness.
People have reported a tall man attacking visitors who come to the cemetery after dark –although I’m curious about the bold individuals who dare to enter a graveyard at night! Other visitors claim there’s a female spirit who laughs uncontrollably and who likes to tug on people’s clothing. Now that would be scary!
Centennial Hall, Valentine
Built in 1897, Centennial Hall Museum was once the building that housed Valentine Public School. There are rumors stating that the ghost of a former student haunts the museum. The girl died in 1944 at the school after someone poisoned the reed from her clarinet. Soon after her death, teachers claimed to see her ghost appear in the hallways and experience the room become filled with dense and uneasy energy.
When the school became a museum, staff members said they could hear music coming out of the music room even though there had been no musical instruments in the building for years.
Wayne State College, Wayne
Numerous legends surround Wayne State College, a public college in Wayne. Tales of a girl named Cora are popular among students. Rumor has it, that the young student committed suicide by hanging herself in the basement of Neihardt Hall. Since then, her soul has been wandering the earth, and she flickers lights or closes doors to call the students’ attention in the middle of the night. Another legend says that a girl was accidentally electrocuted while playing near a bare electrical wire. Students claim her ghost roams the tunnels between the dorm buildings.
Which of these haunted places in Nebraska will you be planning a visit to when the spooky season arrives? Let me know any questions in the comments!