The research for this article has proven that if you open unmarked doors at Kenyon, you will find one of three things:
- Totally innocuous closet
- Equally harmless basement/storage room/attic
- Cobweb drenched, nightmare inducing Room of Abject Horror.
To be fair, many of the spaces in category three are also basements or attics, which naturally may cause you to wonder how they could possibly be so different than those in category two. “C’mon, Explorer,” you might think, “All basements are weird. Besides, most of Kenyon’s buildings are lovely. You couldn’t have found anything that bad.”
How wrong you would be, dear, naive reader. How very wrong indeed.
Example one, Timberlake House, home of the IPHS and Comparative World Lit. departments. On the surface, the most horrifying part of this place appears to be the somewhat-ancient looking carpet. But if you open the door next to the bathroom nearest the front entrance…..
If you dare to continue down the stairs, you find yourself here:
Note that the stairs are gapped too widely for a quick escape. Uncomfortable, no?
Spookiness rating: 2 of 5, mostly because the atmosphere is creepier than the space itself.
After carefully climbing the stairs of doom, I made my way to the Crozier Center for Women, which boasts two terrifying rooms of unbridled horror.
My lovely Crozier-resident guides first took me into their basement, which aside from looking a lot like the one from the end of The Blair Witch Project, contains a secret passage under the house. The passage was too full of cobwebs to be explored further, meaning that nobody knows what lurks back there. It was also too dark to be properly photographed, but that didn’t stop me from trying.
The residents then took me upstairs to the attic, which was not that creepy [Ed note: Um. Excuse you.]. However, it did contain this trippy Mona Lisa that will haunt my dreams for the next few weeks:
On the way out, I was showed to this cabinet. That, dear readers, is a stained kid’s blanket that has allegedly been there since Crozier’s original owners moved out in the 1970s.
Spookiness rating: 3 of 5, for unreasonable number of creepy mini-mysteries in a singular location.
After leaving Crozier, I wandered over to Acland House. I’d honestly forgotten that this house belonged to the College, but after looking around I can assure you that I will never forget about Acland House again.
My tour began innocently enough, turning up nothing but calmingly predictable shelves of copy paper. Even the attic seemed normal, containing only insulation and vent ducts.
And then this happened.
Welcome to Acland House basement. Allow me to direct your attention to a few things.
- Those chairs in the first photo were found that way. Why were they placed like that? Why are they the only pieces of furniture that need to be stored here? Why? Why?
- What is all over the floors and walls? Dirt? Paint? Dust? I don’t know. I’m upset.
- See those orby specks? I thought those were dust. I took several photos down here, and they were in all of them. After I fled the basement, I took photos in various other buildings that didn’t make this list… but none of those photos had orbs in them.
Another Kenyon paranormal encounter? Maybe.
(Note: Ghostly orbs in photos are a documented, if somewhat dubious, occurrence. These most likely aren’t real…but it’s fun to imagine they are.)