Today (Wednesday, Oct. 31) is Halloween and it's only appropriate to warn the local populace that Jackson County is home to one of the nation's most haunted places in the United States, according to the website — Salem Cemetery, which is located off State Route 124 in Milton Township, several miles east of Berlin X Roads.

The website stories were compiled by Christy Gordon, a woman from Greenville, South Carolina, who describes herself as "a lifelong ghost nerd fascinated by all things paranormal." Here is what the website had to say about Salem Cemetery:

"Though Ohio has a plethora of notoriously haunted places, some of the most spiritually active are known only to locals. Salem Church Cemetery in Jackson County, Ohio is one of these places.

"Established in the early 1800s, the old Salem Church and surrounding cemetery is the final resting place for many Civil War soldiers who died in the infamous Morgan's Raid that happened nearby. It was the greatest Confederate invasion in Ohio and resulted in many casualties. Although the church building is in decent shape and the grounds are well-maintained, locals shy away from Salem and warn out-of-town thrill seekers to stay away, too.

"Since the 1870s, visitors have reported seeing a ghostly sentinel in Civil War uniform. He is often spotted close to the veterans' area, keeping an eternal guard over his fallen comrades. The soldier's spirit has never shown aggression and usually disappears before anyone can speak to him. Other visitors have seen orbs floating around the trees on the grounds and have seen shadowy figures lurking behind the silent church.

"Some sightings in the Salem Church Cemetery are more menacing. According to local legend, a high priestess from an evil coven was secretly executed and buried on the land years before it became a church cemetery. Over the years, hundreds of visitors have experienced uneasiness and the cold touch of icy hands. Unexplained scratches have also appeared on visitors' arms and legs, and spectral shadows loomed threateningly around them. Has the Dark Witch returned to get her revenge?

"Locals say that if visitors knock three times on the church's vaulted doors, they will hear three eerie knocks coming from within. Area paranormal investigators and psychics have studied Salem Cemetery with mixed results. EVP recordings and infrared cameras have captured disturbing sounds, shadows, and orbs that cannot be explained.

"The township has lost scores of caretakers over the years because of eerie experiences. Many people tending the lawn have been scared out of their wits by phantom hands grabbing their feet and disembodied voices whispering in their ears. Ancient tombstones have changed positions and statues have disappeared, only to show up again days later.

"Those who dare may explore Salem Church Cemetery on State Route 124 and Salem Road, during daylight hours. They may see the sentinel guarding the graves or feel the icy nails of the begrudged Dark Witch. Perhaps they'll hear an ominous knocking in the lonely church. Since it is a cemetery, please be respectful of the dead and their living family members. Night visits require special permission from the township trustee board."

Meanwhile, the regional website also touts Salem Cemetery as a haunted location. The writer recounts: "A ghostly soldier guards the cemetery and if you knock three times on the church door, you just might hear something in return. We actually did!"

And that's not all, the Pinterest website actually has the photo of a ghostly figure which was reportedly taken at Salem Cemetery.


As a person who grew up in Jackson and attended Jackson High School in the early 1970s, I do recall that Salem Cemetery had a reputation with the high school set for being haunted. Carloads of teens would take a dare and drive into the cemetery at night to check out its reputation for being haunted.

I can't verify if any ghosts, witches or Civil war soldiers were seen on any of those trips; I was too afraid to go.