Murder, beheadings, mad monks, and communion with the deceased. While this may sound like a Satanist's calendar appointments, it's actually just some of what lurks on the most haunted road in America. Originally an old Native American trail, Chicago's Archer Avenue is considered one of the most powerful spirit lines on the planet.
A stretch of Archer Avenue is saturated in paranormal occurrences that have terrified many and spawned tales passed among Chicago residents for decades. Tales that include vanishing hitchhikers, black magic rituals, and blood-drenched ghouls. Some attribute the intense energy connected to the street with surrounding bodies of water, some with magnetic lines in the earth, some with Native American remains found along the route.
Regardless of what lures such darkness to the area, time has proven the creepiest stories from Archer Avenue endure. The real question is whether this haunted trail will continue to produce further horrors.
A Demon Carriage Tears Up Archer Woods As It Flees Hell
One of Archer Avenue's most infamous stories is that of a phantom, driverless, horse-drawn, hearse that tears up and down the road and through the cemetery. Built of black oak and glass, horrified witnesses have seen the coffin of a child inside the hearse.
The origins of the crazed courier are hotly contested. Some believe it is either the hearse that Resurrection Mary's parents used to transport her coffin or a carriage described in an 1897 sighting reported to have occurred at St. James of the Sag. Wherever it hails from or why it haunts Archer Avenue, the hearse is the most energetic of spirits seen on the road, pulled with fervor by it's devil-spooked horses.
The Archer Avenue Triangle's Excessive Energy Boasts An Eerie Red Ghost Light
Maple Lake is located in what is considered the “Archer Avenue Triangle,” a section around the main thoroughfare that bursts with excess paranormal energy. The area has been frequented by cults, been the site of black magic rituals, and a teenage girl's body was once discovered there. However, the lake's main claim to fame is the bright red ghost light that moves slowly along the edge of the northern shore.
The source of this orb has no definitive explanation, but stories abound as to its possible origin. Some claim it is the lantern of an early settler slain by Native Americans who now searches the shoreline for his lost head. Others claim the opposite: It's the ghost of a beheaded Native American also looking for his head. Due to the prevalent crime in the area in the 1920's, some believe it's the specter of one of Al Capone's victims.
Cultists Frequent Chicago Woods In Attempts To Lure In Victims
Red Gate Woods is a forest preserve along Archer Avenue that served as home to the world's first nuclear reactor burial site back in the years of the Manhattan Project. About a half a mile away from the project site is an area known for equally dark reasons. For years many have claimed that these woods play host to a Satanic cult that performs dark rites and chases off anyone who dares approach their ritual clearing.
Hikers tell tales of finding strange red symbols painted on trees and an altar of logs and stone. Chicago forest preserves that are close to cemeteries have often been thought to be a lure for demonic cults and local radio shows have sent willing participants into the woods on Halloween night to antagonize Satan worshipers. Common advice passed on to those who may stumble across a demonic ceremony in the Red Gate Woods was, if pursued, to run in a zigzag pattern to avoid the pits cultists dug near trails in order to trap trespassers.
A Blood-Drenched Ghoul Terrorizes Unsuspecting Motorists
Bethania Cemetery, a predominantly German burial ground in the Chicago suburbs, is plagued by two distinct specters. During the autumn months, late at night, motorists have spotted an elderly man in a red flannel shirt walking the grounds. He appears with rake in hand burning a large pile of leaves near a maintenance entrance. Although he wears a friendly smile, passersby can't help but slow down to gawk at anyone doing yard work between 2 and 4 a.m. Upon closer inspection, the man always disappears.
Another of Archer Avenue's most ghoulish phantoms frequents this cemetery. A man completely covered in blood has been witnessed leaping onto the roadway while frantically waving a flashlight as though flagging down help. Cars that stop to assist report the man returns back down the embankment towards the cemetery fence before vanishing. One driver said he was driven off the road by the blood-soaked ghost when blinded by his flashlight.