|Payne-Gentry House - Bridgeton, Missouri|
The home, built in 1870, is maybe a couple miles from Lambert Airport, and it sits in the middle of a really nice park. What makes this historic home is that it's the only site listed on the National Register of Historic Places with a doctor's office inside.
This beautiful home was built by Elbridge Payne, and was handed down to his son, William. William was a physician, and he practiced in his basement for 17 years. It's documented that many patients under Dr. Payne's care actually died in the house. In fact, there's a small cemetery in the back underneath a big tree where several children are buried.
The Payne-Gentry house is supposedly haunted by 23 separate entities, and most investigators suspect that most of them are the spirits of patients who died there. The most famous patient-haunting is that of a young woman who died during childbirth. Some have heard a baby crying in the house, and there are reports of people seeing the ghost of a woman holding a baby in her arms.
Interestingly, the most widely reported haunting is from a dog. Residents have seen a dog laying under a tree, only to disappear. During tours, people swear they felt a dog brush up against them and nuzzle against their legs.
|The ghost dog has been seen by the cart|
In fact, it was during one of my field trips that a parent-volunteer screamed right in the middle of the guided tour. She jumped up and ran out of the house. The entire fourth grade class exited the home along with her, and I remember the parent swearing up and down that she felt a dog rub up against her leg and lick her knee.
It was both funny and terrifying.
As a teenager, I played tennis quite a bit on the tennis courts at the park near the house. I remember one day, in broad daylight, me and a buddy of mine both saw a dog running around a tree. Fee Fee Rd. runs right next to the park, so we ran over there to make sure the lost dog wouldn't get hit by the many cars that drove by.
|Lots of amputations during the Civil War|
Countless paranormal groups have investigated the Payne-Gentry house. Some have found nothing, but more often than not, they've seen moving shadows, heard strange voices, and they've felt the ghost-dog brush up against their legs. The doctor's office, which still has Dr. Payne's amputation tools on the desk, seems to be the most active.
If you ever visit St. Louis, maybe you should take a tour.
Unless you're allergic to ghost-dogs.
Have a great Halloween!