Citation: "College Song," n.d.
Du Stadt der Weisheitslehren,
Du Ort der Jugendzier
Um deinen Ruhm zu mehren,
Sind wir versammelt hier.
In drei Sprachen steig' empor
Uns'res Liedes Jubelchor!
Stimmet heute insgemein
In den Jubel freurlig ein!
Wallace College, Wah, Hoo, Wah!
With a Tiger, Sis! Boom! Ah!
Rah, Rah, Wallace! Wah, Hoo, Wah!
With a Tiger, Sis! Boom! Ah!
Oh, German Wallace College,
To all a place so dear,
Who come in quest of knowledge
From parts remote and near,
Many a man hast thou sent forth
Who has proved his sterling worth
Of our dear G. W. C.
So may it ever be!
Erg(o) omnes gaudeamus
Dum sumus juvenes,
Jucunda sit inventus
Vivat membra quaelibet
Semper sint in flore!
See: student web exhibit, curated by Yasmine White at https://germanwallacecollegesong.weebly.com/
Citation: Kovach, Tim, and Adam A Bowers. “The Haunted History of Baldwin-Wallace.” The Exponent, October 28, 2008, p. 1, 4.
Baldwin-Wallace College has a long history in Berea and has played an important role in the development and shaping of the city. The College has seen an entire community develop around it, as it continued to expand, change, consolidate and grown over the decades.
Founder John Baldwin settled in Berea and founded the Lyceum Community, a Utopian commune that promoted the Methodist ideals of Baldwin and his associates. Though the community failed in 1842, Baldwin had established a definitive place in Berea and developed a large following. He established the Baldwin Institute, later known as Baldwin University, in 1845 as an institution where students of could study regardless of race, creed or gender.
Since this time, B-W has continued to undergo a number of changes, not the least of which occurred in 1913, when Baldwin University merged with its neighboring institution, German Wallace College, which had been founded in 1864 as a Methodist theological seminary.
Together, the two schools bring a combined history that has stretched more than a century and a half. They have played roles in the Underground Railroad, the Civil War and the industrialization and religious development of the region.
It is therefore no wonder that B-W has developed its own folklore, its own mythology.
Just as B-W has left its mark on the area throughout its history, so has the passage of time left its mark on the school. Many students have walked the halls of B-W; many more individuals have been a part of the school's community. The only problem is that not all of these people have left.
In the spirit of Halloween, The Exponent has decided to study the myths and legends surrounding B-W and its haunted reputation. We will study the stories that surround the buildings on campus, as well as the history of the Berea community.
Perhaps it will make us all a little more aware of our surroundings and our history. Perhaps some of our readers may wish to explore the nature of some of these myths. Don't say we didn't warn you.
West Campus - West Campus, or Lyceum Square as it was originally called, is the oldest portion of B-W's campus. It was the original home of much of John Baldwin's early community. It was at the center of the quarrying industry that allowed Berea to thrive, and it is also at the heart of much of the haunted history of B-W.
Dietsch Hall - Currently the foreign language building, Dietsch Hall was once an all-female dormitory known by many as "Dietsch Castle" or the "Doll House." Students and faculty members have noted that they have often heard several loud hissing noises throughout the building. While some claim they are merely the old Victorian style pipes making noise or the building settling, other professors call these noises "the Dietsch Ghost."
Marting Hall - Perhaps the most recognizable building on campus, Marting Hall is home to the humanities disciplines, including the Art History, English, History, Philosophy and Religion departments. One of the most infamous ghosts on campus is rumored to haunt the second floor lounge. People have reported a ghostly figure among the ominous light emitted from the vending machines after hours, looking down out of the large windows. Other students have spotted faces jeering out of second and third floors late at night and have reported hearing footsteps on the third floor during night classes, when there was allegedly nobody on the third floor.
There is an additional story associated with Marting, which involves a senior prank gone horribly wrong. Several humanities majors reportedly blindfolded a cow and took her up to the copula on top of Marting (continued on page 4). However, they soon discovered that cows cannot go down stairs backwards. The decided to slaughter the cow in the copula, and it now haunts Malting. Sometimes late at night, you can even hear some sad mooing.
Kohler Hall - As one of the only two buildings at B-W which were originally part of the old campus on the shores of Baldwin Lake, Kohler Hall brings quite a bit of history. Prior to becoming a residence hall, Kohler was used as an asylum for orphans, a stop on the Underground Railroad and an infirmary and morgue for soldiers during the Civil War. Because of this long and complex history, Kohler is reportedly the most haunted building at B-W and perhaps one of the most haunted buildings in Ohio.
As a building that has seen so much suffering and even death, it is not surprising that people have reported so much supernatural activity in Kohler. The basement of the building houses an infamous tunnel containing a number of drawers. The deceased were stored in these drawers after their deaths, and they would be carted through the tunnel to the Lindsay Crossman Chapel for their funerals.
The spiritual presence in this tunnel is rumored to be so strong that residents requested the school seal it off. According to legend, the school hired a contractor to close off the tunnel; while working, however, the men became so disturbed by the spirits in the tunnel that they fled the building and left the wall unfinished.
In addition to the tunnel, residents have reported seeing a number of ghosts throughout Kohler. Some have seen a ghostly man in a military uniform that can be only seen from the knee up, because he walks on the original floors, which were several feet lower. Others have described a friendly female ghost named "Mabel," who has laid out clothing on residents' beds and run her finger through necklaces that a previous resident had placed on the wall.
But perhaps the most notorious and ominous spirit in Kohler is the blue mist, which has pressed on sleeping residents' chests, making it hard for them to breathe. It has also ripped the covers off of the sleeping residents. One female resident was so tortured by this mist that she would scream uncontrollably, The College was eventually forced to move her to another room elsewhere on campus.
Coe Lake/Adams Street Cemetery - A lesser known haunting has supposedly occurred just off of West Campus in the area of the original Berea quarries and Coe Lake.
Dr. India Gesink, the chair of the History Department and organizer of the Adams Street Cemetery project, recently described this legend.
According to Dr. Gesink, the Adams Street Cemetery was the first official graveyard in Berea, It was the home to many local residents, including several whose families had relocated them from small, unmarked graves.
The cemetery was surrounded on three sides by Berea's stone quarries, and the local owners of the quarries respected the cemetery and its boundaries. When the quarry owners were forced to sell to the Cleveland Stone Company in 1886, however, this changed.
"They began quarrying so close to the edges of the cemetery that heavy rains would sometimes bring down an edge of the quarry wall," Dr. Gesink said. "We know of at least two, and possibly more, disinterments that happened that way."
According to Dr. Gesink, legend says that quarry workers "arrived at work one day to find to find the bottom of the quarry littered with broken coffins and bones." Records confirm that these bones were then collected and moved, en masse, to Woodvale Cemetary.
Dr. Gesink stated that many of the quarry workers were Irish immigrants, who subscribed to the ancient pagan Celtic day of Samhain, the precursor to Halloween, in which the portal between the mortal world and the afterlife became so narrow that spirits could step back into the mortal world. The Celts believed that those spirits could remain on earth by possessing the bodies of people on this day.
Because of this belief, the quarry workers refused to work on Halloween. They were convinced that the souls of the dead whom they had disintered had become trapped at the bottom of Coe Lake, which bordered the quarries.
Dr. Gesink reported that someone once told her "if you go to Coe Lake just before midnight on Halloween, you can see in the shadows of the water the faces of the disinterred dead looking back, waiting for you to touch the water."
South Campus - This area of campus is the home to the Bonds Administration Building, Kamm and Ernsthausen Hall. Before these buildings were erected, however, this area was the home of the Berea German Orphanage.
Ernsthausen Hall - Prior to its full-scale renovation in 2003, Ernsthausen was the home to several of the Greek organizations on campus, Phi Mu.
The legend goes that prior to the building's renovation, a girl who was about to be appointed as the sorority's president was killed in a car accident. After this happened, residents of E-Hause and sorority members reported suspicious activity, including a breeze blowing down a hallway without any windows that was so strong it would blow flyers and papers taped to the walls. At one point, there was a shocking tale of three-floating heads in Phi Mu's chapter room.
Carmel Hall and the Math & Computer Sciences Building - nee an elementary school, and the area where Carmel stands now was the school's playground. Some paranormal activity has been reported in Carmel, such as certain electronics turning on exactly at midnight, faces appearing for brief moments in the dark (a boy and girl with blond hair around 18-years-old,) and cell phones losing reception, with screams occurring for a few seconds before regaining reception.
North Campus - North Campus is home to a number of the older Victorian buildings at B-W. Lang Hall, the Malicky Center, and the Burrell Observatory all have long histories of their own, as well myths to go along.
Burrell Observatory - Many students rarely, if ever, venture all the way south to Burrell, home of B-W's telescope and astronomy department. They may have good reason for this. Legend has it that an astronomy professor was attempting to turn the telescope, but it was not working. He climbed up to the track to see if ho could repair it, and while sticking his head into the track, the telescope kick-started and began to turn. The professor was slowly beheaded, and sometimes you can still hear his screaming.
Malicky Center - Malicky joins two of B-W's old Victorian buildings, Carnegie Hall and the Philura Gould Memorial Library. Philura Gould was the daughter of John Baldwin and BW's first librarian. She tragically died on March 3, 1892, and every year, there is a rose ceremony for her. However, it is said that she still haunts the Gould Memorial Library, which was erected to honor her.
Life and Earth Sciences Complex - The Science Complex was created in 1960, taking place of the older science laboratories in Carnegie Hall. While the cadaver lab is pretty creepy, the main haunted part of the complex is the Greenhouse to the west. The legend is that a botany professor brought his young child one day to the greenhouse while he was conducting extensive research. Out of the blue, a large piece of glass fell onto the child, crushing him or her to death. It's said that tiny footprints have been found in the greenhouse, and often when it's cold at night, a misty fog is seen in the building as well.
Lang Hall - No building on B-W is more closely identified with its namesake than Lang. When she donated money to the school to build the hall, Emma Lang stipulated that she wanted the building to serve exclusively as a female-only residence hall.
Lang's ghost is said to haunt this hall to this day, and residents and staff members have noted that she seems to have a bit of a temper. After her death, her spirit remained on the fourth floor of the hall, where she spends her time in her rocking chair. She also helps the Resident Assistants out by rattling heaters in rooms where a male is hanging out after visitation hours and reportedly presses on men's chests.
Members of the Lang dining hall staff have reported that the unexplained activities have made their way down from the fourth floor to the basement. Dishes, utensils and other items have been rattled around or thrown to the floor by the unseen specter.
Linda Short, a staff member in Residence Life and North Campus Area Coordinator, attended B-W during the mid-1960s. She was an RA during her time at the College, and has said that she experienced another spirit in Lang.
During the summer, Mrs. Short and her fellow RAs were prepping Lang for the upcoming school year. After opening all the windows and pulling back the curtains, the group decided to sit outside Lang and relax.
The RAs "noticed a young woman walking slowly down the second floor hallway," Short said.
The group watched her walk through each of the rooms. Assuming it was a just another member of the group, Mrs. Short and her colleagues wondered aloud were their friend Julie was. When Julie answered their question, however, the group was puzzled.
When the group looked back up, the girl they had all seen had disappeared.
''The building...was locked from the outside, and no one was ever found in the building that night," Mrs. Short said.
"This spirit was strangely like Philura Gould Baldwin," she said.
Though many of these stories may just be myths or urban legends, the fact remains that there are certain unexplainable phenomena at B-W, and the school has a supernatural connection.
Citation: "Go! Varsity! Go!," in Songs and Yells, n.d.
Go! Varsity! Go!
Go! Varsity! Go!
Hit 'em high! Hit 'em low!
Go! Varsity! Go!
Varsity! Varsity! Varsity!
Citation: "Hail Baldwin," in Baldwin University Alumni Songs, n.d.
Tune - "Come with Singing"
Come with singing, praise our .ichool to-day,
Happy tribute pay, with our joyous lay,
Let the watchword now and ever be
As before us other students sang,
As their voices on the campus rang,
We to day in accents loud and long,
Blend each voice in song.
Then let our voices ring for old B. U.
And tho' time may changes bring yet we'll stand true,
Jo the Brown and th'Golden may it ever be,
Our bright colors wave above for you and me.
Let us all have p'easures, yet not far
From our studies turn, but improve each hour;
Time flies swiftly, let us gain each day
Lasting knowledge while we may ;
Happy college days will soon be past,
I 'aps and gowns and our degrees at last,
And of these bright memories will give
Pleasure while we live.
Thus our training in this noble school
For the way of life, there to serve or rule,
As an armor shining in the sun,
Shows the battle well begun;
Helmet bright and girdle made of truth,
Head and heart and hand for God in youth,
When the battle in his name is won,
He will say "Well done."