Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Ghost of Barret Hall

The old Presbyterian Theological Seminary in downtown Louisville, Kentucky sits today on the campus of Jefferson Community and Technical College.

Presbyterian Theological Seminary
When this Victorian Gothic structure was built along East Broadway in the late 1800s, it was one of many buildings, including churches and mansions that proudly sat along this elegant busy thoroughfare.

Today this area is doted with used car lots and other eyesores but William Dodd would be happy to know that the stone masterpiece he designed over a century ago still stands.

The students that attend Jefferson today call the old seminary  Barret Hall. Most of the students have heard about the ghost that resides in this building.

In reports in Louisville Magazine and local newspapers it has been noted this hall is so haunted the chief of security keeps a file on hand that lists all the strange activity that occurs.

Witness reports include unseen hands turning doorknobs, footsteps when no is about, elevators that go up and down on their own and lights flickering on and off.

Several witnesses have reported seeing shadowy figures in the hall that disappear when approached.

The ghost of Barret Hall is believed to be the wife of James Rankin Barret the, an who had the seminary built. It is said that Lucy Stites Barret is fond of leaving ghostly notes around the building.

These notes effectively announce her presence. The latest one was discovered by a freshman on her way to chemistry. She found the note in the chapel bearing the initials “LBS.” It read:

“I am with you, always.”

Both students and staff feel Lucy lingers because her husband had an inscription in her memory placed over one fireplace in the library. This inscription is a testament to James’ devotion to his wife.

Even though Lucy’s ghost appears to be friendly, two former employees at Barrett were so unsettled by her presence, they quit their jobs.

One staff member who taught in Barret Hall was told one compelling story by a security guard, Wendell Coates who at one time worked in the building.

Late one night around 3:00 a.m. as I was doing my rounds--checking that the doors and windows had all been locked--I entered what used to be the library.

I stopped to sit and rest for a minute. As I sat, I noticed a cold chill take hold of the room. My hair stood on end, and I realized I was not alone.

I had just changed the batteries in my flashlight the day before, but now it slowly dimmed and then went out. As I sat in the dark, I noticed a white mist which turned into a figure, directly in front of me.

It appeared to be a female. It walked slowly toward the fireplace and then vanished. I didn’t get the feeling she wanted to hurt anyone.

Barret Hall

Barret Hall is located at 109 East Broadway at the corner of Second and Broadway. The visitor cannot miss it for it has an impressive collection of gothic arches, spires, and turrets that all reach gracefully toward the sky.

No comments: