As the 2019 Halloween Season gets underway, ghost hunts are filling up across the country. The morbidly curious are lining up to get a glimpse of the afterlife in hopes of answering the age-old question of what lies beyond the veil. Alton, Illinois, known for its traumatic history, is a perfect place to go searching for things that go bump in the night.
Here are three ghost tours to check out in Alton, Illinois for the 2019 Halloween season.
The First Unitarian Church
Originally home to St. Matthews Catholic Church which burned in a fire, the land was purchased by the Unitarians in 1854 and used some of the stone from the original Catholic Church to build their new church. Tragedy struck when this church, too, burned in the early 1900s and was rebuilt in 1905.
Reverend Phillip Mercer presided over the church in 1928, but another tragedy was not far behind when his body was discovered in the church in 1934, his death being ruled a suicide. Suspicion surrounding his death as well as reports of a negative, shadowy figure in the building make this a must-see for local ghost hunters.
You can check out First Unitarian Church in Alton, Illinois, on the Haunted History Walking Tour.
The Mineral Springs Hotel
Opened in 1914, the Mineral Springs Hotel was originally intended to store ice for two meat packers, August and Herman Luer. When a natural spring was discovered during construction, the brothers instead decided to open a hotel that boasted the healing qualities of their spring water.
Multiple deaths and dozens of myths later, the old hotel is now home to several small shops and businesses, but according to some, the echoes of the afterlife are still present, manifesting as small children, scored lovers, and desperate souls.
Check out the tours and late-night ghost hunts at Mineral Springs in Alton, Illinois at Alton Hauntings.
The Enos Sanatorium
Located on Third Street, The Enos Sanatorium was built in 1857 by Nathanial Hanson, a local abolitionist. The building was constructed with tunnels underneath and a cupola on the roof, both as a means to help transport slaves to freedom.
In 1911, the building was sold and turned into a tuberculous sanatorium, the goal of which was to provide the afflicted with fresh air and good food. The amount of traumatic history on this spot seems to have left its mark, with witnesses ghost hunters and the current occupants reciting stories of unexplained noises, disappearing objects, and ghostly apparitions.
You can see The Enos Sanatorium in Alton, Illinois on many of the Alton Hauntings Walking Tours.