New Albany, Indiana is reportedly a nice place to raise a family. It is a city in Floyd County, Indiana and is situated along the Ohio River. It is a very picturesque city because there are a lot of beautiful bridges, architecture, and even an outdoor amphitheater.
A picturesque view of New Albany, Indiana during dusk. (Link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/edcorfman/4294756965/)
New Albany is also the home of the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. This is said to be one of the haunted houses in New Albany and if you want to know more, you should continue reading below.
Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site as seen from the outside. (Link: https://www.pinterest.ph/pin/481744491360549746/)
The History Of Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site
The Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site was the residence of William Culbertson. He was once the richest man in the area and he constructed the mansion as a gift to his second wife.
William Culbertson in an undated photo. (Link: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/75891357/william-stuart-culbertson)
They started to build the mansion in 1867 and the cost of the construction was $120,000. The mansion had 25 rooms and was completed in 1869. The mansion was patterned from Second Empire style and it was designed by architect James T. Banes. The mansion had amazing features like the hand-painted and frescoed ceilings, the likewise hand-painted walls, the carved rosewood-grained staircase, the crystal chandeliers, and the marble fireplaces. The original roof was even imported from Scotland but because of the deterioration of the roof, it was already replaced.
A sign describing the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (Link: http://wikimapia.org/3131804/Culbertson-Mansion-State-Historic-Site)
Inside the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (Link: https://visitindiana.com/things-to-do/50083-culbertson-mansion-state-historic-site)
When Culbertson died, he gave the mansion to his third wife. The third wife, however, had the mansion auctioned as well as its contents. The highest bidder was John McDonald and he became the owner in 1899. He bought the mansion for only $7,100. When McDonald died, he gave it to his daughter. The mansion was then taken from the daughter by the American Legion. The Legion then made extensive changes to the mansion so that it could be a place for meetings.
Sometime in the 1960s, they wanted to tear down the mansion so that a gas station will be put up in the area where it stands. A local historic group then called Historic New Albany to purchase the mansion for $24,000. In 1974, the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site was listed under the National Register of Historic Places and became a part of the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites two years later.
By 1985, the mansion became known as a haunted house. Today, the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site is open to visitors. The rooms that can be visited are the parlors, dining rooms, bedrooms, the laundry room, and the kitchen. The daily tours are from 10 A.M. through 5 P.M. The money coming from the visitors and the tours are used to restore the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site to preserve its history.
One of the bedrooms at the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (Link: https://www.inspirock.com/united-states/new-albany/culbertson-mansion-state-historic-site-a2180843635)
The dining room at the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/32236444?source_impression_id=p3_1584584606_F6NBFRGyvBjSPG89)
It is especially popular during the Halloween season but it is open all year round. Many students in and near the area as well as visitors from all over the world visit the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site and they only have one question, “Is it really haunted?”
The Ghosts At The Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site
Jessica Stavros, Southeast Regional Director for Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites, said in an interview in 2018 that their staff have been keeping a file since 1977 of the different things that have been happening in the mansion, which they believe are paranormal activities.
Some of these paranormal activities include, among others, visitors and staff smelling strong puffs and strong scent of cigar smoke even if no one is smoking in the area. It is believed that a deceased family member who lived at the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site in the past used to smoke cigars.
Staff also reported seeing figures walking around and lights turning on and off. Stavros shared that they believe the mansion is inhabited by spirits because they make the electricity go crazy, make unexplained sounds, and the like. Speaking of electricity going crazy, one policeman reportedly answered an alarm at the mansion one evening. The incident took place 15 or 20 years ago and that the alarm went off in the middle of the night. The curator met with the policeman due to the incident so they combed through the mansion to see if there was someone inside. When they were already leaving, the policeman said to the curator, “Well are you going to get her? Are we going to leave her in there?” The curator then replied, “Well, I don’t know who you’re talking about. It’s just me and you in here.” The policeman reportedly never responded to calls in the mansion anymore after that.
A photo of the stairs leading up to the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (Link: https://visitindiana.com/blog/index.php/2020/02/11/2020-historic-sites/)
Couples, Individual Visit The Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site
Two sets of couples and an individual went to the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site for a date one evening and they wrote about their experiences. They spent four hours looking for paranormal activities during their visit at the haunted mansion.
The most haunted experience that they had during their visit was at the dank servant’s bedroom on the third floor. Accordingly, one of them had a cold spot in the area and that they could not find its source. Also, one of them felt repeated touches on his head and back a number of times throughout the evening. They also had a dowsing rod with them, which paranormal researchers believe to indicate haunted areas and the presence of ghosts. In some parts of the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site, one of the individuals who was there that evening said that the dowsing rods “were going so fast that they almost hit me. It was wild. I was getting such strong responses.” The same person said she felt a hand pressing in her back. Using the dowsing rod, they also determined that there was a presence in the clout or mist that moved under one of the visitor’s chair.
Some chairs inside the Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. (Link: https://www.yelp.com/biz/culbertson-mansion-louisville)
They also had an EVP with them which captured spirits communicating with the visitors. At one point, when one of the visitors left a room to let a guest in the front door and the EVP recorded the words “Where’re you going?” One of them later asked how many of the ghosts or spirits were there with the visitors and the recorded response was “Too many.”