The 5 Most Haunted Places in Marquette County

With the days shortening and Halloween fast approaching, every unexplained sound and sighting takes on a spooky meaning that leaves us looking for supernatural answers. Though Marquette County is mostly known for its breathtaking natural beauty and vibrant culture, it has its fair share of creepy places too. Here’s a look at five of the most famous.

The Holy Family Orphanage

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Opened in 1915, the Holy Family Orphanage housed dozens of orphaned children from across the Upper Peninsula and beyond. Although it closed more than half a century ago, it remains boarded up on a hill to the south of downtown Marquette. In fact, it’s still one of the most visible buildings on the city’s skyline.

Inside, a maze of decaying, deserted rooms may hide something more sinister: the spirits of children who were abandoned, and possibly abused, over the orphanage’s 40 years of active operation. While there’s no proof that any children died at the hands of the facility’s staff, stories of mistreatment do surface from time to time.

And those brave enough to enter the property report hearing strange wails, sighs and cries emanating from deep within it. Skeptics say these sounds are caused by the wind blowing through cracks in the orphanage’s boarded-up windows — but others aren’t so sure. The buidling is privately owned, however, so please admire from the outside only.

Big Bay Lighthouse

haunted places in marquette michigan5Up Highway 550, the Big Bay Lighthouse once stood as a landmark for ships on a treacherous segment of Lake Superior. These days, it’s a popular inn. But it’s also — so they say — haunted by the ghost of Willie Prior, its first lightkeeper.

Mr. Prior’s apparition now roams the cozy halls of the lighthouse and inn, mostly staying silent but occasionally causing unexplained commotion on the upper floors. With a mop of red hair, he’s easy to spot!

The Landmark Inn

haunted places in marquette michigan2Back in Marquette, the Landmark Inn has welcomed dozens of celebrities and political figures to Marquette over the past century.

The one who gets the most attention, though, is one who suffered a tragic death more than a thousand miles from the Upper Peninsula: Amelia Earhart.

It’s said that she’s not a constant presence at the hotel, but her favorite room — Room 502 — is known for the occasional spooky happening. If you’re staying there, be on the lookout for flickering lights, appliances that turn themselves on and off at will, and unexplained noises coming from the bathroom or under the bed.

The 7th Street Cemetery

haunted places in marquette michigan4The 7th Street Cemetery, located northwest of downtown Marquette, is a beautiful place in any season. But as the days get shorter, don’t be surprised to hear ominous stories about unexplained happenings on its grounds.

Early-morning joggers, who love the cemetery’s winding pathways, occasionally report strange shadows or figures lurking — and then melting away — in the distance.

In the evening, visitors report plaintive wails that may or may not be caused by wind blowing through the cemetery’s stately pine trees. And some particularly disturbing stories mention ducks, geese and other common birds with faintly glowing red eyes.

With so many important figures from Marquette’s early history buried here, is it so hard to believe that one or two might be a bit restless?

Northern Michigan University

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Room 304 of Halvorson Hall – possibly the most haunted room on campus

You might think the only folks “haunting” the halls of Northern Michigan University would be bleary-eyed students who indulged a bit too much the night before. According to multiple sources, though, this bastion of higher education also harbors some creepy spirits:

  • A young woman, possibly a deceased former student, is said to haunt the John X. Jamrich Building’s control room, her face appearing silhouetted in its window panes
  • A janitor from the mid-20th century, who died on the job, may roam the chambers of the Forrest Roberts Theater
  • Room 304 of Halvorson Hall may be the most disturbing of all, with the ghost of a student who committed suicide moving restlessly about after classes

Have you had a spooky experience in Marquette County? We want to hear all about it!