When architect Levi T. Scott designed Mansfield Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio, he had visions of creating a place where the boys sent for reform would receive spiritual guidance. He used old German castles as his inspiration when the building was constructed in 1896. By the mid-1900s, the reformatory did not meet the changing standards and Mansfield was closed. In this article, you will encounter some of the ghost rumors associated with the reformatory.
After the reformatory was shut down, people started to speak of rumors that the souls of tortured inmates that died on the premises still roam about the grounds. Some say the ghosts of former guards that participated in cruelly punishing prisoners also haunt the reformatory. Some of the ghost tales that have been associated with the reformatory include:
The Wing of Administration
Strong paranormal activity has been reported to take place at the administration wing of the reformatory , according to some visitors and employees. This is where Warden Glattke and his wife Helen called their home. Helen was accidentally shot in the chest when a bullet discharged from a gun that was knocked off of a shelf as she reached for a box in the closet. Although she was rushed to the hospital, she did not make it. Rumor was it that the warden had killed his wife, but there was never enough evidence that pointed to this theory. Ten years later, the warden experienced a heart attack and died.
Some feel that Helen and Warden Glattke are some of the spirits that haunt the administration rooms. The strong scent of Helen’s rose perfume is reported to float in and out of her old bathroom. A cold air may pass by when touring the wind. It’s also rumored that it is difficult to take a picture in this area, as many visitors complained of their camera shutter jamming and then working again once they left the wing. Not everyone is convinced the Glattkes are haunting the administration wing. Ted Glattke (their youngest son) blames the media for sensationalizing the account of his parents.
The Haunted Chapel
The majority of the haunted stories of the reformatory centers on the Chapel, which some believe was an execution room before it was a religious destination. Rumors say that inmates were tortured and died a slow death while hanging from the rafters. Some say orbs have appeared n photographs of the Chapel. This part of the prison has also produced odd recordings. Some visitors claim to have spotted spirits close to the doorways that disappear when it seems they have been detected.
Of course the cellblocks that housed the inmates of the Reformatory will breed tales of ghosts. Prisoners spoke of feeling as if they were being tucked in at night. Some felt that this was the handiwork of the ghost of Helen or a murdered nurse would travel in and out of the cells.