; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Mary Todd Lincoln's Ghost

During her time as First Lady, Mary Todd Lincoln employed a variety of Spiritualists mediums to conduct seances in the White House. According to Michelle L. Hamilton, author of "I Would Still Be Drowned in Tears": Spiritualism in Abraham Lincoln's White House the Lincolns hosted a séance in the Red Room conducted by Charles E. Schockle in April 1863. For this séance Abraham and Mary Lincoln invited Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles and Secretary of War Edwin Stanton. Charles Schockle was accompanied by his friend Prior Melton, a reporter for the Boston Saturday Evening Gazette, who preserved the evening’s events in an article for his newspaper. “A few evenings since, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, was induced to give a spiritual soirée in the Crimson Room [Red Room] at the White House, to test the wonderful alleged supernatural powers of Mr. Charles E. Schockle,” Melton reported in his official account.

Now with the 150th anniversary of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln approaching, some believe the ghost of Mary Todd Lincoln is haunting a location in Lexington, Kentucky:

April 2015 marks the 150th anniversary of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. His wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, was a Lexington native who knew her share of heartache.

Perhaps she's seeking revenge. Perhaps she doesn't want to leave the place where she spent happier times. Whatever the reason, there are those who believe she is still lurking in the corners of an old house on Second Street.

The house belonged to John Ward, one Mary Todd Lincoln's favorite teachers who started The Ward Academy on Market Street. She attended the Academy.

The First Lady has been described as "quite a colorful character," yet "complicated."

Much of her life was filled with tragedy. She lost three of her four children and, of course, her husband.

Some say the house on Second Street is where she likes to spend her time in her after-life.

Catholic Minister and Lexington walking tour guide, Kevin Steele said the home's previous owner and other neighbors told him stories of Mary Todd Lincoln sightings.

"She appears periodically looking out of the upstairs windows out on the driveway giving a friendly wave," Steele said. "So I ask the owner, what does she look like? She has her hair pulled back in a Victorian dress with lots of lace."

Whether fact or fiction, it has been well documented that while Abe Lincoln was President, his wife held seances in the White House and claimed to see ghosts.

Perhaps, if you are driving down Second Street, Mary Todd Lincoln might just give you a wave. - LEX18

Ripley's Believe It or Not!: Creepy Stuff

Mary Todd Lincoln and the Illuminati: Second Edition

Who's Haunting the White House?: The President's Mansion and the Ghosts Who Live There

Ghosts of the White House

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