Located in Willoughby Hills, Ohio sits an empty shell of what was once a grand gatehouse. This empty gatehouse is now home to one or more ghosts, so legends say.
Squire’s Castle, which is now part of the Cleveland Metroparks area, was built by Fergus Squire, a British born Standard Oil Executive in 1890. The castle sits on 525 acres of land and served as an all purpose gatehouse to accompany a bigger British castle Squire wanted to build. Mr. Squire and his wife Rebecca used the gatehouse as a weekend getaway and often stayed there during the summer months. There was one problem though; Rebecca did not like or even enjoy the grand acre estate, as much as her husband did. Though Rebecca was a social woman and liked having people around her, she was known to be very uptight and nervous. Being far away from the city and living on such a large lonely plot of land, she would have nightmares as the quiet of the country and sounds of the wild were often too much for her to endure.
Legends claim that Mrs. Squire was so scared of the house that she would often roam around at night, checking rooms and doors, windows and locks with her trusty lantern. Unfortunately, the gatehouse was slowly starting to edge her to the point of insanity, and supposedly on one dreadful night, the house caused Rebecca her demise. On one of her nightly roams around the castle, she became frightened by a noise and in the dark, tripped over one of her husband’s animal trophies causing her to fall backwards, breaking her neck. Mr. Squire found her several hours later. After the death of his wife, he lost interest in the estate and never finished building his great British castle.
Eventually in 1922, Mr. Squire sold the gatehouse and the 525 acres. A few years later, it would again change ownership as the city of Cleveland would acquire the land transforming it into a Metropark. Although the house was in shambles, they were able to preserve what was left of the gatehouse shell. The castle had a face-lift for the celebration of its 100th aniversary, including the addition of bars on the window much to the displeasure of kids who would jump out from there. Since then, parts of the castle have been gutted by the parks authorities including the inside of the carriage house, removing the windows and interiors, and tearing out most of the upper floors and a staircase.
However, historians state that Mrs. Squire never died in the castle and rather, died of natural causes years before Mr. Squire sold the gatehouse.
It has been stated though that during the 1960’s and 1970’s devil worshippers, biker gangs, and other people practicing the occult often used the castle and the land surrounding it. There have been reports of several suicides that have taken place, either in the castle or on the castle grounds. Visitors of the castle claim to see apparitions walking the castle grounds, movements and hearing disembodied voices. Some claim to have seen a young woman looking out the second story window. Could it be Mrs. Squire? If you happen to go out at night and pass by the castle, you might catch a glimpse of the red glowing lantern!
There have been several investigations and visitors have reported that their photos show images of orbs, both inside and outside of the castle. Whether Rebecca, or some other entity haunts the castle, there is no doubt about it – the consensus is that the castle is definitely home to a ghost or two.
The Ghost Videos network has video investigating the grounds along with EVPs heard late at night from inside the castle. To check out that video, see here.
Another neat video that could give you chills is from a user on YouTube. He and his brother investigated the castle and picked up an EVP after asking outloud, “How many spirits are here?” The answer will surprise you! Listen closely between 0:08-0:09 seconds.
Squire’s Castle is located in the North Chagrin Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks in Willoughby Hills, Ohio visible from River Rd.