None of my stories are really scary, though they will be lengthy; that's why I'm breaking the additions down into separate chapters.
The first one was in 1988. It was loosely referred to as the Culver House (you can Google it under culver house Decatur il.) I'd graduated college, returned to my home town and moved into my then girlfriend's apartment; it was a gorgeous 1888 Queen Ann brick Victorian that had been cut up into apartments back in the forties. Well... My girlfriend was a bit emotional, and in no time began freaking out about an angry old man ghost being there, "he's pissed that we're living here in HIS HOUSE in sin." She described many perceived incidents that I waved off as a combination of an old house settling... And her nerves, whatever (and any of you women out there reading this will know how popular THAT crap is, coming from a guy!).
There was a closet door that refused to stay closed. It seemed as if it was a contest of wills; I'd close it, it would be back open. Just a few inches. Enough to annoy me. One night before we went to bed, I dragged a pile of her college books and plunked them right in front of that door... Bright and early next morning, what do you think I saw? That door was as WIDE OPEN as that book pile, now against the wall, would allow it. THAT shook me up! Another night, we were on the side walk out front getting ready to walk down town for a local event. I heard my girlfriend scream out--I was like "What? WHAT!" I seriously thought she was being attacked. She pointed up at our second story window, which was a rounded and part of the tower on that building. She swore she saw, CLEARLY, the old man looking down... Right at us. She said he was little and bald.
We moved out of that place about a month later---but not because of ghosts. It had been owned by a slum lord with no regard to its upkeep or the scuminess of her other tenants... As long as they had rent money. The place was foul with roaches, and that was enough for us.
About a month after we left, a woman living in an adjacent apartment was murdered by her boyfriend; not long thereafter, the place was shut down and condemned. For many years it was a haven for drug users, prostitutes and other miscreants. Over time, looters removed virtually all the original wood work, fire places and adornments and, until 2002 it was slated for demolition. But: life is funny. In 2008 a fund was generated to save the place, and it is currently enjoying a wonderful restoration that is expected to be complete by 2012.
On a final note: A few years ago I was telling this same story of 1988 to a female friend. She gasped when I got to that part about the old man in the window: in 2001, she had seen that EXACT SAME THING one night, while walking past the place!
Again, that place is enjoying a resurgence of life, including the actual history behind it. It was built and owned by a man named John Culver who, with his brother Jim, designed and built the Abraham Lincoln tomb in Springfield, Il. There are many pictures available of Mr. John Culver... His last ones particularly fascinate me.
He was a little old balding man.