Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery

The Many Mysteries of Bachelor’s Grove

Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery has been an enigma of southwestern suburban Chicago for over four decades. Like most such locations, it started out with a mundane existence. Over a century ago, picnickers dressed in their Sunday best lounged under oak trees in the park-like atmosphere of the cemetery. Two of the grove’s neighbors heated their small homes with coal burning stoves and drew water out of their brick wells, while horse drawn buggies trotted down the dirt road. It was a much different scene from today.

Much of the origins of Bachelor’s Grove have been obscured by the passage of time. Even its name is a mystery. Some say it was named after a group of single men who settled in the area around the 1830s, but a family named Batchelder already owned the land. According to Ursula Bielski, author of Chicago Haunts, the cemetery itself was originally named Everdon’s. Its first burial was in 1844, and the cemetery eventually contained 82 plots.

In the early half of the 20th Century, the Midlothian Turnpike ran past the cemetery, over the stream, and beyond. Today, the broken road appears to end at the cemetery gates, but closer inspection of a long ridge across from the stream reveals a roadbed that has been nearly reclaimed by the forest. The road was closed in the 1960s. Locals say that was when the trouble began.

According to the Chicago Tribune’s Jason George, the body of a teenage girl was found in the woods in 1966, and in 1988 a man, who had been murdered by a former girlfriend, was found in the cemetery. Aside from those gruesome incidents, grave desecration regularly occurred. Bodies were dug up, animals were sacrificed, and headstones were moved or stolen.

Then the ghosts came.

(more…)

Interview with WGN News at 9pm

At the beginning of October, John Stephenson and I were interviewed for a segment about Bachelor’s Grove that was to be aired on the WGN 9pm news on Friday October 28th. We were asked to keep it secret for several weeks, but tonight it will be shown to the public. I have not seen the report, although I do know that the reporter and her cameraman filmed every angle of the cemetery and it should be a very interesting and well-done segment. Although John Stephenson was the star of the show, I was included to provide background and historical information. John has moderated Bachelors-Grove.com for the past several years, and has taken a few anomalous photographs in the notoriously haunted cemetery. Whatever you believe about the validity of the stories told about Bachelor’s Grove, you are in for a special treat. Make sure to tune in!