Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery
Bachelor’s Grove is a cemetery located in Bremen Township, Cook County, Illinois. The cemetery is a one-acre burial that has been forgotten but is popular for being one of the most haunted cemeteries in the US. There are some people who refer to it as the most haunted cemetery in the world. All this is because of alleged ghost sightings over the years.
The cemetery is hidden in the southwestern Cook County suburban Forest Preserve District. It was once a desecrated cemetery that was a party spot often vandalized. Behind the curtain of paranormal activities, there is a rich history that runs deep. Some of the people that were laid to rest in Bachelor’s Grove were pioneers and founding fathers of some of the surrounding Suburbs and Township.
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Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery History
The history of this area has been shadowy. Historians have agreed that the settlement started in the early part of the 1800s. Most people believe that the cemetery derived its name from the fact that only men were buried there. The truth is that the name came from a family that settled in the area. The family’s name was Batchelder. This name was used for the settlement until it was changed to Bremen in 1850 by a postmaster named Samuel Everden. This was to recognize the new township name. Postmaster Robert Patrick changed it to Bachelder’s Grove. The settlement later ceased to exist and was slowly swallowed by the forest.
The cemetery has its own strange history. The land on which the cemetery sits was originally set aside as burial ground in 1844. The first recorded burial was that of Eliza Scott. This land was donated by Samuel Everden and in his honor, it was named Everden. The last burials are believed to be that of Laura M. McGhee, 1965 and Robert E. Shield, 1989. For many years, Bachelor’s Grove was like a park. People visited the cemetery to take care of the graves of their departed loved ones. Some came for the swimming and the fishing. Things have greatly changed over time.
In 1960’s, problems started. The cemetery became a place of choice for parties and the road was closed. As it became isolated, it started showing vandalism signs and decay. Soon rumors started going around that the cemetery was haunted.
The vandalism made things worse and graveyards were stolen, knocked over, broken, and sprayed with paint. Some graves had caskets removed and bones strewn about the burial grounds. It is believed that these disturbances caused the haunting. There is a small pond that borders the cemetery. Near this pond, forest rangers have reported finding chickens and small animals mutilated in a ritualistic manner. Officers that patrol the area at night have also reported seeing evidence of occult and black magic rituals. This has added to the scary elements of the cemetery since the evidence points to occult activities.
Though vandalism has been part of the dilapidation of the cemetery, time has also not been on the side of the burial ground. The roads to the cemetery have been closed and most people forgot about the cemetery together with the souls buried there. Though the cemetery is surrounded by a high chain-link fence, people still access it through the holes cut by trespassers.
Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery Ghost Sightings
The pond outside the grave is connected to the horror of the cemetery. In the late 1970s, two Forest Preserve officers were on patrol at night claimed to see a horse apparition emerging from that pond. The horse appeared to have been pulling a plow that was steered by man’s ghost. This happened in front of their car and then it disappeared into the forest. The two men were shocked and remained quiet for a moment then looked at each other to see if the other had seen the apparition. They reported this incident and since that night, it was not the last time the horse and the old man were seen.
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The Rangers were not aware that the apparition was part of an existing old legend. As the legend goes, in the 1870’s, an old farmer was plowing near this pond. Something startled the horse and as it ran away, the farmer was tangled in the reins. The horse dragged him into the small pond and he drowned in the murky water.
The road to Bachelor’s Grove is not left out of the haunted nature of the cemetery. The road is said to have phantom automobile accidents and vanishing cars. Though there is no historical event to explain this, these cars have been reported a number of times in the past few years. People have reported seeing cars in front of them then see then slow down and turn. When they get to where the cars turned, there is nothing. Others have said that they encountered the phantom cars only to see them vanish in the rearview mirror.
It remains an enduring mystery where the phantom cars come from and why they haunt this road.
The deserted gravel road to the cemetery has also been a focus of sightings. An odd occurrence is the sighting of a phantom farmhouse. People have reported that the farmhouse appears and disappears along the trail. The surprising thing is that the reports came from people who never knew that the house should not have been there. The sightings are in all weather conditions and both day and night. Though there are no records of such a house ever existing, the descriptions rarely differ. As people approach it, it gets smaller until it fades away.
People have also reported ghost lights along the trail. There have been different reports of different lights some that move too fast for people to describe how they look like.
The most frequent sighting of a ghost is one referred to as “Madonna of Bachelor’s Grove”, “Mrs. Rogers” or “White Lady”. It is believed that she was buried in the graveyard next to her child. It is reported that she wanders the cemetery on full moon nights with her infant in her arms. Though no one really knows who she is, she has become a popular ghost of Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery.
Whether the cemetery is haunted or not the burial ground needs to be treated with utmost respect. It is a resting place for souls and should not be vandalized. It is a part of the haunted history we do not want to lose.
Is Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery haunted? Well, you will have to figure that out. If we consider the stories, then this might be one of the most haunted places in the region and a great place to have that scary experience.
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