Buffalo Haunts

A few of the spookiest places around town

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Buffalo is known for our unfortunate sports teams and our love of chicken wings. But embedded deep into the cold tundra are a number of frigidly haunted places.

Here are just a few of the Queen City’s most spooky locations. Take a visit … if you dare.

Buffalo Central Terminal

Built in 1929, the Buffalo Central Terminal was an active train station until 1979. Despite recent renovations, the once-abandoned terminal is rumored to be haunted by ghosts of the past.

The terminal was featured on Syfy’s “Ghost Hunters Halloween Live” in 2010. In the show, the real life Ghostbusters spent roughly six hours in the then-abandoned terminal. They searched areas not typically open to the public.

The building “is massive, filled with dark, damp and untouched spaces that would make the toughest men wet their pants,” according to Buffalo radio station 92.9 Jack FM’s website.

“Many volunteers who have walked through the halls have felt the presence of those who inhabited the building in the early 20th century – many of whom may have died in the terminal or have found a resting place in its vast confines.”

The terminal is offering ghost hunts during the month of October and visitors can tour “above the concourse on the office floors as well as below the main concourse in the dark and ominous Trolley Lobby,” according to the terminal’s website.

Pigman’s Road

In nearby Angola, you will find Holland Road. The road, however, is better known to locals as “Pigman’s Road.”

A local butcher lived on the road and would mount pig heads on stakes at the edges of his property, according to the Travel Channel. He did this to ward off visitors when he was busy. One day, three local teenagers ignored the warning signs and the next day, their heads were found on stakes at the entrance of the butcher’s property.

Since, locals have allegedly spotted the ghost of the butcher on the property. Legend has it, if you stop under the property’s tunnel at night and honk your horn three times, the pigman will come out and chase you away from the property.

Theresa Gerard, a junior psychology major, has been to Pigman’s Road. She comes from a family that has always loved Halloween and to get in the spirit, she listened to siblings tell stories about the road. She wanted to investigate the rumors of the road for herself.

“The first time we went was the only time we actually got out of the car. It was sunset, so we weren’t so frightened as I would be another time, when it was pitch black,” Gerard said. 

“We explored the area and took pictures of each other on top of the bridge above the tunnel of the road. After looking at one of the pictures my friend noticed an orb floating in the background. Immediately we started to psych each other out and left.”

The next time Gerard and her friends went, it was 11 p.m.

They drove to the middle of the tunnel, and they then turned off the car.

“Probably five seconds later, we freaked out and hit the gas to leave,” Gerard said. “There is only room for one car on [Pigman’s] road. Immediately, when another car approached us, we assumed that they must have been an ax-murderer that had been waiting to kill us.”

Gerard feels in situations like hers that “your imagination gets the best of you” and you listen to “any type of noise to confirm [if] there is something eerie going on.” Still, she continues to travel to haunted places like Pigman’s Road for the “sheer adrenaline rush.”

Iron Island Museum

From 1883 to the late 1940’s, it was a church. 

From 1956 to 2000, it was a funeral home. 

Now, Iron Island is a museum and one of Buffalo’s most famous haunted places.

“The building is haunted by many spirits,” according to the Haunted History Trail of New York State website, “such as Edgar Zernicke, whose cremated remains went unclaimed in the basement” and two six-year-old boys who were both waked out of the funeral home in the 1960s.” 

In addition to spirit sightings, spirits can also be seen or heard in videos, recordings and pictures. Iron Island has been featured on Discovery Channel’s “Ghost Lab” and Syfy’s “Ghost Hunters.”

The museum’s website may provide proof of the spirits, but the museum offers ghost tours for anyone in for a real scare.

Goodleburg Cemetery

Located in nearby South Wales lies Goodleburg Cemetery and its dark past. 

Next to the cemetery sits an old, abandoned house, rumored to be owned by a doctor who performed abortions in the 1800s. He allegedly buried fetuses in the grounds of the graveyard.

Occasionally, there would be a botched procedure and the mother-to-be would be killed along with the babies. To avoid the authorities, the gruesome doctor would secretly take the mothers’ bodies and dump them in the cemetery pond. Legend has it the doctor died by suicide at the cemetery.

Those dark acts reportedly haunt the cemetery grounds to this day. 

Ghosts of would-be mothers are seen floating around the wooded edges of the cemetery, especially a ghastly “Lady in White.” Fetuses are rumored to crawl around on the tombstones at night, as well. A number of people have discovered bones, as well, on the grounds, according to Weird U.S.

University Heights

The last haunted area in the area is a little closer to campus. Right across from South Campus is the University Heights neighborhood, and some residents believe they live in haunted homes.

Phynix Davis, a junior English major, believed the attic he rented with his roommate on West Northrup Place was haunted by apparitions and sounds.

“We often heard children laughing coming from the crawlspace and things would get moved around without any of us moving them,” Davis said. “I would also feel people grab me or feel like I was being watched when I was the only one home.”

As for what it’s like to live in a real haunted house, Davis said it was “more irritating than it is actually scary to have a spirit in your house.” Davis compared the experience to “having a roommate who doesn’t pay rent, but moves all your things around and slams things at odd hours of the night.”

But the spirits that haunted the Heights home weren’t “malicious,” according to Davis. 

“At least not toward us because we left them alone,” Davis said. “Myself and my roommate were more tuned in to those kinds of things because both of us are pagan and spirits are often drawn to us.”

Davis said he believes that a lot of the houses in University Heights, specifically older ones, are haunted because of the fact that it was built over the grounds of the Erie County Poorhouse. Davis lived in the house for a little less than a year while the haunted happenings started slightly after he moved in.

Kirsten Dean is the assistant features editor and can be reached at kirsten.dean@ubspectrum.com and @KirstenUBSpec on Twitter.