Is the island normal or is Put-in-Bay Paranormal? According to some paranormal researchers, there is convincing evidence that yes is the answer. The following will discuss claims of other worldly visitors at three Put-in-Bay establishments: The Park Hotel, the Doller House and the Crews Nest.
Put-in-Bay Paranormal: 3 Suspected Haunts
The Park Hotel has been a fixture on the downtown Put-in-Bay scene for over 150 years. Originally, the hotel opened as the Deutches Hotel in the 1870s. A striking feature of the new lodging choice was beds with springs, instead of beds stuffed with hay. The first owner is believed to be George Schmidt. A newspaper article from this era mentions him as owner. Also, the Roundhouse Bar construction was in Toledo and shipped to Put-in-Bay.
Now, where does the haunts came in to the picture? A woman, known as the “governess,” purportedly perished at the Park Hotel. Allegedly, the woman fell from the second floor down the steps to the lobby. Islander children who have played frequently in the lobby, have noted a feeling of being “watched over” by this woman. Also, she’s known to frequent Room 14 at the Hotel. Another incident of paranormal activity relates to a suspected suicide. Some speculate that an early owner of the bar may have committed suicide within. The legend includes a death by hanging in the third floor stairwell. Reports suggest the man remained, looking down on guests in their bed and peering from the window in Room 17. Also, this entity visits in the “Winter Bar,” located next to the Lobby. This is one of the most popular Put-in-Bay Paranormal places.
This magnificent home’s construction was by Valentine Doller during the mid to late 1800s. Doller was an immigrant from Germany who came to Sandusky, Ohio in 1851. Then, in 1859 he moved to Put-in-Bay. He was responsible for the construction of many buildings, as he was a prominent and prosperous member of the community. Additionally, he held several positions including first postmaster, council member and eventually mayor of the island. He and his wife had six daughters.
One evening, one of Doller’s daughters left quietly to enjoy some of the nightlife. Olga Doller frequented the Put-in-Bay Colonial, a massive entertainment hall on the island at this time. During her trek home, she fell into the water. So, she yelped for help from her predicament. Fortunately, she avoided the peril. However, her actions enraged Valentine Doller. From that moment on, he forbade his daughters to marry. This new ruling was very difficult for the sisters to bear.
One daughter, Daisy, eventually moved to a home next to the mansion. For the rest of their lives, the family remained on the island. Today, they rest at the Crown Hill Cemetery in the family mausoleum. It’s believed the spirits of the anguished daughters still run amuck in the Doller Mansion. Reports indicate that they still peer from the windows, longingly looking for love. Today, the Doller Mansion is home to the Put-in-Bay Winery.
The Crew’s Nest is the premier social club on Put-in-Bay. Here, members can enjoy a fine meal, a swim in the large pool and much more. Originally, the property opened as The Eagle Cottage. Moreover, the property finished construction in 1875. The first owner, Captain F.J. Magle, ran a steamboat that provided service to the island. Then, in 1946 the property was sold and renamed The Friendly Inn. Here, guests found lodging and a home cooked meal. Today, the club boasts improved facilities thanks to many improvements over the last 50 years. Workers at the Crews Nest have noted strange noises coming from the attic. Also, they claim that things thrown up the attic stairwell come back down by an unknown force. The entity has a name, “Spencer.”
So, it appears there is some evidence to suggest that Put-in-Bay Paranormal activity is present. With such a storied past with colorful characters, this comes as no surprise. If walls could talk, they would shed interesting insights on the former residents of the island. Also, they would give us a better understanding as to why these spirits are still present today. This is yet another layer of the interesting island of Put-in-Bay!