Davenport, Iowa is next to the Mississippi River and many people visit this area because it is known as a green city. They have more than 50 local parks so everyone can enjoy walking or biking around the area. They also have a lot of museums one can check out whenever in Davenport.
A shot overlooking Davenport, Iowa. (Link: https://localrehabreviews.org/iowa/davenport/the-center-for-alcohol-drug-services-davenport-ia/)
Another reason why people visit Davenport is because of the Ambrose Hall. Being the first building ever constructed on the campus of St. Ambrose University, many claim that it is haunted.
The facade of Ambrose Hall. (Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambrose_Hall_(Davenport,_Iowa)
The History Of Ambrose Hall
St. Ambrose University was founded back in 1882 by the first bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Davenport named John McMullen. The university held classes in just two classrooms at St. Margaret’s Cathedral but they wanted their own campus so they built the Ambrose Hall. Many went to the university not just to be trained as future priests but also to have advanced studies because the university taught humanities, sciences, and business aside from theology.
John McCullen in an undated photo. (Link: https://davenportdiocese.org/past-bishops)
The property where the Ambrose Hall was built was purchased for $20,000. The architect who designed Ambrose Hall was identified as Victor Huot and he was sought after because he designed St. Joseph’s and St. Mary’s churches and the Mercy Hospital in the area. The Ambrose Hall and the academy building of St. Ambrose University had the Second Empire Style and it was designed as such so that the building will be built in stages during different times. The first part of the building was finished on July 5, 1885 and it housed 75 students as well as an office space and other classrooms. The structure was then again expanded between the years of 1887 and 1912.
The building was one of a kind because it used yellow stone, red brick, marble, and stone trim. By 1927, Davis Hall was built so Ambrose Hall wasn’t the only building that housed the students. Overtime, Ambrose Hall was renovated in order to accommodate the needs of the university. For example, a chapel occupied the third and fourth floors of Ambrose Hall until 1952. It also housed the Seminary Department until 1967 when Hayes Hall was completed.
A statue in front of Ambrose Hall. (Link: https://qctimes.com/ambrose-hall-st-ambrose-university/article_1a212de8-b4ca-11e7-b1a1-97dda895a913.html)
The Ghosts Of Ambrose Hall
Many claim that the ghosts of Ambrose Hall are the priests and nuns who have lived in the area in the past. Allegedly, they are so dedicated with their service that they decided to stay in the Ambrose Hall even after death.
Most of the priests lived in the fourth floor of Ambrose Hall. Accordingly, professors who have stayed at Ambrose Hall late at night in their offices have heard footsteps along the hallways and even heard odd noises. They have also seen flickering lights and they could not explain why they were flickering.
Back in 2007, the Iowa Paranormal Research Team did an investigation of the Ambrose Hall and two people from the team were stationed at the lounge area of a room of Ambrose Hall while another two were stationed near the main staircase. They had devices that recorded any sound from the area and they gathered a lot of friendly “Hi!” from the ghosts. However, other EVPs picked up a woman’s voice disapproving that Jesus was alive. Another EVP picked up was a whisper of the words, “There is something wrong with me.”
During their investigation, they heard two knocks while they were at a hallway. Two more knock-like noises were heard on the main staircase and a knocking noise was also heard outside an office. When they left the above-mentioned room, there was a cold chill and they could not find the source since the window in that room was locked. They also reported the small of incense that are usually used in Catholic masses.
A Bookkeeper Shares What People Have Told Her
A bookkeeper named Kari Turco claimed that many have told her that in the upper dormitory windows of Ambrose Hall late at night whenever there is a full moon, they have claimed to have seen faces. It remains unclear whose faces supposedly belong to. They have also heard footsteps in the area.
A photo of the St. Ambrose University and a full moon. (Link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/stambrose/10948658404/)
Employee Talks Of The Deaths At Ambrose Hall
In one site that talked about the haunted Ambrose Hall, one employee shared in the comments, “There have been three deaths. One a priest who died. Another a former student who hung himself on the fourth floor. A more recent death happening this year from a girl who had a heart attack in the building. I work in the building on the fourth floor at night you can hear crying and voices.” The comment was made in 2015.
A sign to let everyone know this is the Ambrose Hall building. (Link: https://ghost.hauntedhouses.com/iowa_davenport_ambrose_hall)