Right here in Indianapolis, Indiana, sits one of the Hoosier state’s most ominous attractions, known as the Historic Hannah House. Built in 1858 by prominent public figure Alexander Hannah, this dark building is rich with tradition and shrouded in mystery, making it one of the most-visited haunted houses in Indiana.
Hannah wore many hats in the community, including those of farmer, gold rush prospector, sheriff, postmaster, Circuit Court clerk, and civic leader. Perhaps his most important mission that few in the community knew about was his commitment to helping slaves escape into Canada; his basement served as a safe haven along the Underground Railroad.
Video slideshow tour of the Hannah House in Indianapolis, Indiana
In 1895, the well-liked and well-known Hannah died without an heir. His property was sold to a German immigrant and listed in 1978 as a recognized historical landmark by the US Department of the Interior. The cavernous house can now be booked for weddings, birthday and anniversary parties, and class reunions. But it harbors a dark secret that only adds to the enthusiasm of those who book the property for their special day.
One rainy evening when Alexander Hannah was still in possession of Hannah House, a group of the slaves he helped to attain freedom sat confined on the dirt floor, waiting for exactly the right time to make their getaway. In the blanket 0f darkness, one of the slaves tripped over an oil lamp, knocking it to the ground. The room was instantly enveloped in smoke and flames and many of the occupants died in minutes. They were buried in the very cellar that took their lives in an attempt to cover up the incident so the stop on the Underground Railroad could not be discovered.
Ever since the tragic night the fire at Hannah House claimed so many lives, the Circle City has been humming with whispers of paranormal activity in and around the house. The ghosts of the doomed slaves can be seen hiding in the shadows cast by the looming walls, and their moans can be heard if one listens closely. Some even believe the ghost of Alexander Hannah himself remains with those he sheltered, appearing from time to time on the balcony and the stairs.
In addition to the curious souls who book their special events at Hannah House, many Indianapolis and other Indiana residents flock to this staple of Indianapolis history for “Simply Murder,” the stage plays hosted every Friday and Saturday night. These interactive murder mystery dinners are one of the prime attractions of the haunted Hannah House and draw large crowds each weekend. Indianapolis residents can also check out Hannah House as part of the Historic Indiana Ghost Walk Tours.
Next time you feel up for an eerie adventure, head to the Historic Hannah House. You never know what–or who–you’ll find.
Be sure to check out these other haunted places in Indiana for a spooky good time.
3801 Madison Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46227