Old Whitley Jail

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Old Whitley Jail, constructed in 1875, is said to be haunted by Charles Butler, a bully and alcoholic who shot his wife in the back in 1883. He was jailed here but escaped with four other prisoners when Sheriff Frank Allwein was out. But Butler was caught shortly thereafter when the sheriff found him passed out in a bar. He was tried and sentenced to hang, but the hanging didn’t go as planned. Due to difficulties with the gallows, he strangled for about 10 minutes before his death. Charles Butler’s electrically charged ghost is said to cause cameras not to work and batteries to drain. Witnesses have seen display costumes move on their own, and heard footsteps, laughter and voices from the corner of a room. Some believe Sheriff Allwein haunts the jail too, as well as an unknown female.

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Geographic Information

Address:
611 East Market Street
Columbia City, Indiana
United States

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GPS:
41.15562304338908, -85.48728203770224
County:
Whitley County, Indiana
Nearest Towns:
Columbia City, IN (0.1 mi.)
Tri-Lakes, IN (6.7 mi.)
Larwill, IN (7.4 mi.)
South Whitley, IN (8.8 mi.)
Churubusco, IN (10.1 mi.)
Pierceton, IN (11.8 mi.)
Sidney, IN (13.8 mi.)
Roanoke, IN (14.6 mi.)
North Webster, IN (16.0 mi.)
Kimmell, IN (16.9 mi.)

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  1. During Halloween, this place is known as the “haunted jail”. I went there at 12 years old with a group of friends. The main entrance is old and reeks of oldness. My friends al screamed and ran out right when they reached the top. I was the only one who continued. The building itself didn’t give me a “feeling” until the cellar. It smelled like blood, and was extremely cold. The air was thick and made me want to vomit. All in all it was really fun, and definitely has SOMETHING haunting it…

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Disclaimer: The stories posted here are user-submitted and are, in the nature of "ghost stories," largely unverifiable. HauntedPlaces.org makes no claims that any of the statements posted here are factually accurate. The vast majority of information provided on this web site is anecdotal, and as such, should be viewed in the same light as local folklore and urban legends.