Salem is best known as the Steel City. However, it is also famous for the Witch trials that were held there from 1962 to 1963.
A photo of downtown Salem. (Link: https://www.pinterest.ph/pin/4433299617720372/?nic_v1=1aEUapJi0IEOHk0qhFSBPF1O1Nc77%2BPdfSVqOD417E93wCEhNWTY4QeEerGLP5vkrD)
Also, Salem has a lot of historical buildings. One of which is the Lyceum Hall. Accordingly, this now-restaurant is haunted by a frequent ghost.
A photo showing the outside of Lyceum Hall. (Link: https://salemghosts.com/lyceum-hall/)
History Of The Lyceum Hall
The Lyceum Hall was built in 1831 and it was built by the Salem Lyceum Society. The purpose for building this hall was to serve as an amphitheater and it was supposed to accommodate up to 700 people. The money used to build the Lyceum Hall amounted to $4,000 back in the day. When it was already erected, many lectures, readings, and forms of entertainment took place there.
An old photo of the Lyceum Hall. (Link: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:1852_Lyceum_Lynn_Massachusetts_map_detail_by_McIntyre_BPL_1285.png)
Many famous speakers spoke at the Lyceum Hall like Frederick Douglass, an American social reformer, abolitionist, orator, writer, and statesman, James Russell Lowell, an American Romantic poet, critic, editor, and diplomat, Oliver Wendell Holmes, an American jurist who served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Richard Henry Dana Jr., an American lawyer and politician, and former President John Quincy Adams. The lectures at the Lyceum Hall were done every Tuesday and men were charged $1 while women paid 75 cents. However, women, back then, had to be first introduced first by a male before being allowed to participate in the lectures.
Lyceum Hall is also famous because it is the location for the first telephone call made by Alexander Graham Bell in February 12, 1877.
An illustration of how the first phone call was made by Alexander Graham Bell at the Lyceum Hall. (Link: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/cp/obituaries/archives/alexander-graham-bell)
Later, the Lyceum Hall was burned due to a fire. It was then rebuilt and this time they used bricks. After some time, the Lyceum Hall because the Lyceum Bar & Grill, which opened in 1989. It closed down as such in 2011.
Today, the Lyceum Hall is already known as Turner’s Seafood. It is one of the popular restaurants in Salem not just because of its food but because of the reported ghostly encounters.
A sign that bears the words Turner’s Seafood. (Link: https://www.tripadvisor.com.ph/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g60954-d6413259-i133619836-Turners_Seafood-Salem_Massachusetts.html)
The History Before Lyceum Hall Was Built
Accordingly, the area where Lyceum Hall was built was where a woman named Bridget Bishop had an apple orchard. She was accused of practicing witchcraft back in the day. Bishop was actually the first woman tried and executed during the Salem Witch Trials. It is believed that Bishop is haunting the Lyceum Hall because of the accusations thrown against her and for her reputation being tainted badly. Bishop reportedly used dark magic to summon demonic pigs and flying monkeys. These animals were said to have menaced and tormented Bishop’s neighbor.
Bridget Bishop in an undated illustration. (Link: https://www.tripadvisor.com.ph/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g60954-d6413259-i133619836-Turners_Seafood-Salem_Massachusetts.html)
Per the account of witnesses, there were no hauntings when the Lyceum Hall was just used as a hall and later as a bar and grills. The hauntings reportedly started when it was already turned into the restaurant Turner’s Seafood.
Many claim that the paranormal activities that take place at the Lyceum Hall now are mean-spirited that is why a lot of people believe that the spirit behind these activities belong to Bishop and not to other women who were also tried and executed under the Salem Witch Trials.
Some have reported seeing her apparition especially by the employees. She is said to wear a long, white gown. She is said to be usually seen floating up the staircase the through the second floor of the building. A former employee shared, “It was a busy night. When I came up the stairs and looked up, I saw another woman standing on the other staircase leading up to the loft. I was petrified. My initial thought was that it was a person breaking into the restaurant. When I realized she wasn’t a regular person, I ran back downstairs and almost fainted.”
A photo of the stairs inside Turner’s Seafood. (Link: https://www.cmbteam.com/work/hospitality/turners-seafood/)
Employees added that they saw products being flung from the shelves. According to experts, when items are being thrown around, it is a demonic work and not just a simple paranormal activity. Experts added that because this spirit can move physical activities, she might also manifest other entities to help her cause harm.
Also, employees said they smell the scent of apples throughout the establishment and they believe it is Bishop’s way of telling them she is indeed there.
Others claim that they saw her staring right at them in the reflections like mirrors, windows, and light fixtures.
The dining area at Turner’s Seafood. (Link: https://www.turners-seafood.com/functions/)
Other Paranormal Activities At Lyceum Hall
Doors reportedly close and open on their own and the lights flicker on and off without anyone touching the switch.
One time, The Atlantic Paranormal Society went to investigate the ghostly Lyceum Hall. They tried to speak with the spirits but they got a response through another form. The cash register reportedly printed a receipt and the words “Good Morning” were time-stamped. Accordingly, these words were not programmed into the register and to this day no one can explain why this took place.