CityBeat’s Living Out Loud – Cincinnati Blog

{October 31, 2006}   Busted by Ghosts?

halloween-_2.jpgSometimes I see ghosts.

I work at the main library downtown, sorting and retrieving books in the stacks, those windowed galleries in between the 2nd and 3rd floors. If you look up from the atrium on the ground floor, sometimes you’ll see me walking by up there.

And every once in awhile, when I’m back deep in the long rows of shelves, I’ll see a dark shape flit past out of the corner of my eye. Other times, I’ll suddenly feel a presence, like there’s someone approaching or already behind me and I’ll turn around to find . . . no one. My rational mind kicks in and tells me that it’s just my imagination, feeding off of the ghost stories I’ve heard about the library and the ground it’s been built on. And because the human mind is a funny thing and sometimes it sees what it wants to see.

But a few of my colleagues there tell me they’ve had the same experience, that presence of an eerie otherness. Others insist they’ve seen these ghosts up close for a short moment, one of whom is a woman in a long, dark-patterned dress; two more are a man in a top hat and a small boy at his side.

I’d truly like to believe that these ghosts are real, that they are in fact some sort of ethereal echoes of dead people. And I’d like to be as convinced as Hamlet was after seeing the ghost of his father, that there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamed of in my so-called philosophy. But until I get my hands on one of those Negative Ion Capacitors that Bill Murray had in “Ghostbusters,” I’m going to remain skeptical.

Now who else has some ghost stories?


Brian Ciesko


Polly says:

I don’t have any stories but I’ve always heard strange things about the library. Here’s another strange tale.

Jack says:

I lived in a house once that I swear was haunted……doors slamming shut on their own, the doorbell ringing and nobody there. I never felt like I was alone in the house. It was good to move.

Will says:

Not exactly a ghost story but when I was little maybe nine or ten, I had a dream that my grandfather was dead, I was looking at him in the casket. A few days later he died of a heart attack. I still get kind of freaked out by this.

numb says:

i do……….i do believe in spooks.

Stella says:

I have no stories,but I like yours.

Sally says:

I lived in a house once that just had presense to it. I can’t explain it but I felt like I was never completely alone. I always felt like I was being watched by somebody. Nothing scary or anything, just a presense.

C.A. MacConnell says:

Hello. My Senior year in college, I scored a huge dorm room that was more like an apartment. It was gorgeous, set on the corner of an ancient building with big Southern windows. Several times, I woke up and thought someone was in there, moving around. Later, I found out that I was living in the old school medical center, that my bed was actually placed where they had patients’ beds. Some of the patients had passed away, almost literally in my bed. Spooky.

Or, maybe the spooks were caused by consumption of a triple decker sandwich made of ephedrine, beer and hash. Huh.

Happy Halloween!

Paul says:


You’re too funny!!

Dana says:

I’m 24 years old but I still go trick or treating. I no longer ask for candy but grocery items – bread, milk, eggs ………….even cigarettes 🙂

ED says:

Kind of a shitty night to take my kids out. You never see ghosts in the rain.

Marilyn says:

Brian, cool story, and yes indeedy I once lived in a haunted house.

I was 18 when my parents bought a old farm house. The woman they bought it from had some issues — my parents had to have her evicted because she wouldn’t leave. Let’s call her Mrs. Edington. We later found out the neighbors called her Crazy Mrs. Edington.

Before my parents took possession of the house, Mrs. Edington told them not to take the nails out the door in one of the upstairs bedrooms. She warned them not to let the spirit out.

Very soon after we moved in, my sister received a phone call one day. The caller asked if sister had seen the daughter of Mrs. Edington. Sister stated, “no”. The caller said, “Well you’d better look in the lake.” and hung up.

My mother and sisters kept telling me of rapping that was going on in the house. I totally pooh-poohed them. Said they were crazy.

Mom said, “No, the knocks are so loud that they wake me up, and I go answer the door and no body’s there.”

At this time, I was working the third shift. I’d get home at 9:00am when everyone else was gone to school and work.

I got into bed and was just about to drift off when I heard LOUD rapping on my bedroom door. I’m telling you, this rapping was so hard that it would hurt your knuckles to recreate it.

As I heard this and registered it, the rapping slowly and methodically proceeded around the perimeter of the wall and only stopped when it reached the head of my bed. Loud, hard rapping!

Bear in mind, this bedroom was on the second floor, and there was no way that anyone was doing this from this astral plane!

After the rapping reached the head of my bed, I jumped up, grabbed a pillow and slept on the couch downstairs for the rest of the evening.

I DO believe in spooks!

Karen@the hood says:

Man, I don’t have any stories – kind of feel left out!!

Judy says:


I keep hearing – maybe they are just rumors – that alot of people who work at the library kill themselves. Is it because they see spooks?

Ted says:

I once worked for a pharmaceutical company in Pleasant Ridge and that place was haunted. When working along sometimes on Saturday, doors would slam shut, the outside door bell would ring with nobody there.

I once looked up from my desk and an older man in a business suite was in front me and then – flash – he was gone.

I’m not making this up and I’m not crazy.

Jeff- or-ly says:

I think the LOL girl is a ghost – almost nothing to her! HA!

Jane says:


What was the name of that drug company you worked for?

Brian says:

I’ve never heard of “alot” of library people killing themselves OR that it was because they saw spooks/ghosts.
BUT . . . I know for a fact that, about 5 years ago, a young woman who worked here went to the third floor, climbed over the unshielded wall and threw herself over. She plunged about 60 feet to the ground floor atrium and she died but not right away. This was while the library was open, right in front of the check out area. The public relations department did their job and kept this out of the mainstream news but I think Greg over at CityBeat had an item in the Porkopolis column about it.
I knew Sandra and heard later why she’d done this to herself but I’ve never seen her troubled spirit wandering through here since that day.

hard as nails says:

i don’t like to go to the library downtown because i always get depressed when i see all the homeless people there. i can’t give them all money.

Jane says:

Maybe you don’t remember me but I worked at Duramed the same time you did. I never remember any talk about ghosts at all.

Larry Gross says:


I don’t know if I believe in any of ths stuff or not, but I have a “small” tale to tell.

I live in the old Roanoke apartment building in Clifton. I was doing a story on it a couple years ago and was taking pictures of the inside of the building.

I went up to the fourth floor which is basically now sealed off, but at one time they were attic apartments. As of now, all the doors are padlocked shut.

I was just walking around taking pictures when I came to one of those doors. I don’t know if it was the wind coming through a window or what, but I swear at the time, I thought someone was trying to open that door from the INSIDE of a locked apartment. A strange feeling came over me and I got down those stairs in record time.

That’s my one and only ghost story.

Karen says:

I like Marilyn’s story the best, then Brian’s 🙂

numb says:

I like Marilyn’s story the best, then Brian’s

they all suck.

Julie says:

Where the hell has Heather been? Has she deserted us?

amina says:

I also work downtown at the main branch with Brian and everything he wrote is true. I’ve been an employee for 10yrs and I also work in the stacks on the third floor. There are no windows up here in the area I work in and the place can get pretty creepy. There are ghost here, I have seen them and I have felt their present. They don’t bother nobody. I have only one instance where one of them exactly pushed the truck I was shelving books on away from me. They are old souls who have been present from the time the main library was built. The main branch is made up of three sections. The first section was built back in the fifties, the second part which consist of the atrium was built in the seventies and the last part which houses the childrens library was built in 1995. The only part that is haunted is the first section part of the library.

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