Columns / Discourse / October 29, 2009

The most haunted buildings at Knox: A Spooky Squirrel guide

In order to provide students with an easy-to-use guide should they wish to undertake their own ghost hunt, TKS has gathered information on various Knox buildings. We have rated them on a scale of one through five Spooky Squirrels. Five Spooky Squirrels mean the place is potentially crawling with phantoms and ghouls. One Spooky Squirrel means don’t even bother.

The Old Jail

From the rows of tiny jail cells behind the classrooms to the solitary confinement chamber in the basement, the Old Jail is certainly the perfect setting for a good haunt. It also has the history to go with it. The jail was declared “unfit for human habitation” in 1973, due to the fact that its supply of light and air was not adequate for the number of prisoners it held. Three years later, prisoner Dallas Lawes hung himself from a second-floor cell. Students have heard loud clanking in the cells that seem to respond to stimuli.

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 5

Alumni Hall

In 1978, Alumni Hall closed its doors, and almost instantly became a symbol for every frustrating aspect of our college. The building has fallen into a state of disrepair. While Campus Safety attempts to prevent it, students have been breaking into the building and leaving their marks inside for the past thirty years. Most invaders report feelings of eeriness beyond the fear of being caught. In the moonlight, the place is an ancient ruin, and it could attract anything from spirits to dashed hopes and broken dreams.

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 4

Old Main

Despite Old Main’s rich history, it has managed to avoid the spectral haunts that typically accompany buildings of a certain age. Anybody who has turned in an English paper during the night, however, can attest that navigating the dark halls and indented stairwells can engender a particularly spine-chilling feeling. Shh… can you hear the faint whispers of Lincoln giving Douglas what for?

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 2

Seymour Library

At first glance, the Seymour Library seems to be haunted merely by the ghosts of the once-ubiquitous Dewey decimal system. Warm, welcoming, and full of friendly staff, the library is mostly a cozy place to get some homework done. Despite this, there are some legends housed in the stacks. Librarians report that the figure of a woman appears in the frost of the third-floor window and the fluorescent basement is often too quiet for comfort.

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 3

George Davis Hall

It used to house the Knox science department before the construction of SMC in 1971, so you would think there would be some remnants of horrible experiments gone awry. No dice. The building has a fairly un-sordid history, despite unfounded rumors of deaths in the basement.

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 1

Auxiliary Gymnasium

While there are some creepy-looking art installations in the basement, the building, which is old and subject to extremely loud noises caused by heating pipes and Terpsichore dancers, has no significant reports of unseemly activities or ghostly encounters.

Spooky Squirrel Rating: 1

Rachel Perez


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