Friday, April 20, 2012

Alexander Campbell Mansion

The former home of the father of the Restoration Movement and Bethany College founder, Alexander Campbell, is located just outside of Bethany.  It was built in stages between 1795 and 1840, and at one time, housed up to 20 people.  It was a social hub of both the college and of the Restoration Movement.

Included in the complex is a detached brick building.  This hexagonal-shaped building was home to Alexander Campbell's personal study.  Within its walls lectures were prepared, sermons were written, and perhaps...a ghost still walks.  Visitors to the unique structure have reported seeing the apparition of Alexander Campbell himself, pacing the study's floors.

Mr. Campbell's ghost isn't the only one said to still inhibit the grounds, however.  Other witnesses claim that the ghost of Mr. Campbell's young son, Wickliffe, is also still around, making his presence known....

Wickliffe Campbell was born in 1837, and was a loving, adventurous young boy.  In 1847, his father was away on business in England when tragedy struck.  It was a fairly hot September, so Wickliffe, along with two of his father's grandsons who were attending Bethany College at the time, went swimming in nearby Buffalo Creek.  It was a Saturday afternoon, and the child got away from the older boys.  After many attempts to resuscitate him, he passed away on September 4th.  He was just ten years old.

A soccer ball that mysteriously rolled across the field toward Buffalo Creek was believed to be a sign of Wickliffe's presence by those who witnessed the incident.  I'm not sure of the layout of the area, but we'll just assume for now that gravity had nothing to do with it *wink*

Note:  This location came to my attention from a message board post several years ago at  That post was lost with the board upgrade, but as I was clearing out my files, I was quite relieved to see that I had written down the details of the alleged haunting for further research.  I have yet been able to find anyone who can verify these legends, so if you have information on the ghosts of the Alexander Campbell family, please let me know!  Also, be sure to check out my entry for the God's Acre Cemetery, where the Campbell family is buried!

National Register Listing

1 comment:

  1. Bethany has more haunted places than just Mr.Campbell's study. One of the professors at the college will tell ghost stories about the whole campus close to Halloween.