The Indiana Insider Blog

Hawkins Isn’t Real, But You’ll Find These 5 “Stranger Things” in Indiana

No… Hawkins, Indiana isn’t a real town. But that doesn’t mean the Hoosier State is devoid of the paranormal. Fans of the Netflix series Stranger Things might look to visit these five creepy Indiana spots!

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The Grave in the Middle of the Road

This Johnson County landmark definitely fits the description of one of the Stranger Things in the Hoosier state. For 185+ years, Nancy Kerlin  Barnett’s remains have been buried near Franklin and a country road goes right around her on both sides! Road work in 2016 led to the discovery of a total of seven bodies buried at the spot! 

City Market Catacombs

The City Market Catacombs

Have you ever visited the Indianapolis City Market? The market is home to over 25 locally-owned and operated small businesses and is your choice of ethnic eateries, from-scratch snacks, boutique goods and more … BUT what you might not know about is what’s underneath the market!

Just under the outdoor plaza exists Roman-looking expanses of brick arches, called Catacombs. Back in 1886 Tomlinson Hall, designed by Dietrich Bohlen, stood here. It consisted of a hall that seated 3,500 people and then sadly burned in 1958. Of course the remains of the building were removed, but the vast basement of brick arches were left in tact. You can get a tour of the catacombs between May and October!

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Benjamin Schenck Mansion Bed & Breakfast

In a beautiful old river town in southern Indiana, there is a haunted mansion with a great deal of history. And because it is a beautiful bed and breakfast, it makes for a spooky (and awesome) place to stay!

“There are things that just…happen.” – Michele Thompson, Schenck Mansion Bed and Breakfast Innkeeper

The palatial mansion in Vevay, Indiana is said to be haunted, and you can spend the night! Read more here.

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The Avon Haunted Bridge

This historical landmark was built in 1906 off County Road 625 East in Hendricks County, about a half mile south of U.S. 36 for the Big Four Railroad and is still used today by CSX. The bridge was designed using spandrel arches, by engineer W.M. Dunne. It is reported that the bridge was double tracked in 1908. While there are several legends about why the bridge is haunted, a few well known ones exist today. One story that has circulated for years is that of a drunken rail worker who slipped during construction and was buried alive in the wet cement. The tale is that when a train goes over the bridge, people claim to still hear his moaning. A similar story to what my father told me is popular among locals. The story explains that a young mother was walking the tracks to take her sick baby to the doctor. She slipped and fell from the bridge killing both her and her baby. At night, sounds of the mother screaming for her infant can be heard. The last common legend is of four workers falling to their death into White Lick Creek. People claim to still hear thuds and splashes in the creek. Read more.

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Elkhart Civic Theatre (Bristol Opera House)

This 1897 building started as grounds for Bristol’s arts and entertainment. In the early 1960s, it was declining and was to be demolished until the Elkhart Civic Theatre company stepped in, bringing it back to its former glory.

On top of offering arts and entertainment to the community, it is said to be haunted by several apparitions. Staff and theater guests have reported things flying off shelves, small objects levitating, and other incidences. It’s believed that the ghost of Percy, aka Percival Hilbert, resides here. He lived in the basement with his family after being evicted in the Depression era. Some also believe apparitions of his little girls exist here.

Finch Cemetery (Portland, Indiana)

The late-1800s Finch Cemetery at the Jay County Conservation Club is said to hold the grave of a boy named Cinderella. Rumor has it that the gravestones here shift, or disappear. If you count the gravestones on the way to Cinderella’s grave, you will count 13. But on the way back, there are only 11.

 

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