Haskell Indian Nations University

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Many locations at Haskell Indian Nations University, an 1800s institution built to help Native Americans assimilate with the mainstream population, are rumored to be haunted. At the Bell Tower, students report a mysterious sealed-off wall in the basement and a feeling of being watched from above as they pass by. At Hiawatha Hall, the oldest building on the campus, a ghost opens and closes doors, even those propped open with a doorstop. At Haskell Auditorium, an apparition sits in the auditorium seats during shows, and a little girl has been heard crying backstage. In Pocahontas Hall’s basement, the ghost of a girl who once hanged herself here may appear hanging from the ceiling. And just south of Taminend Hall, ghostly crying is heard at a small cemetery containing the remains of around 70 children who died in a smallpox epidemic.

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Geographic Information

155 Indian Ave P
Lawrence, KS 66046
United States

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38.936882524813484, -95.23334540321048
Douglas County, Kansas
Nearest Towns:
Lawrence, KS (2.4 mi.)
Eudora, KS (7.3 mi.)
Linwood, KS (11.3 mi.)
Lecompton, KS (11.4 mi.)
Baldwin City, KS (11.5 mi.)
Perry, KS (12.9 mi.)
Tonganoxie, KS (14.3 mi.)
De Soto, KS (14.5 mi.)
Cedar, KS (16.3 mi.)
Edgerton, KS (17.0 mi.)


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  1. Haskell is indeed haunted, but it would be appreciated if you would revise the language on this site. The original school was not meant to “help” Native Americans. It was meant to force them to abandon their traditions and language and assimilate to Western culture. The methods were extremely cruel – not all of the kids in that cemetery died from smallpox. Children would be beaten for speaking in their own languages instead of English. You might be interested to read the history of Indian boarding schools in the United States. Many children were taken to them by force.

    Haskell was built on the edge of large wetland area that the children were supposed to learn to farm. The stories say that the children’s’ families, who weren’t allowed to see them, would come to the wetlands and the children would sneak out at night to meet them. There they were able to speak their languages and keep some traditions alive. They also say that when a child died in the school, the other children would try to carry their body to the wetlands to give them a traditional burial, before the school administration could find out and give them a Christian burial. The wetlands are an important part of the Haskell story, but the Tribes just lost a decades-long fight to prevent a major highway from being built through them. Most of us believe there are still bodies there.

    You might also mention on your site, that Haskell today is a 4-year University, and is the only University in the US that accepts students from all Tribes (most Tribal colleges are restricted to one or two Tribes). Most students report having experiences with ghosts there, like hearing children laughing and running through the halls. Please also put a note for people to be respectful if they visit the campus. The children’s cemetery is not for visitors (I’ve personally never set foot over there). If someone was interested in doing an investigation, they should definitely contact school administrators and make sure it is done in a culturally-appropriate way. Native American cultures are different in the way we think about spirits and in the way we show respect. It would be very important to honor that.

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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.