Want to find ghosts? Check out Archer Avenue.

Want to find ghosts? Check out Archer Avenue.

We’re continuing our Halloween-themed ‘Did You Know, Chicago?’ features with stories of Chicago’s most famous ghost stories. You may have already heard about Archer’s Avenue’s Resurrection Mary, she’s pretty famous, but did you know there are even more spooks along the way?

Not only does Archer Avenue boast Chicago’s most famous ghost; it’s home to the haunted Archer Woods and St. James of the Sag Church cemeteries.

Archer Woods

Known today as Mount Glenwood Memory Gardens West, Archer Woods is just south of Archer Avenue in Justice, Illinois. It was used for many year’s as the town’s potter’s field, a burial place for people who were unknown or too poor to pay for a burial.

The cemetery’s most famous resident is the Weeping Woman, an apparition all in white who roams the grounds sobbing with her hands over her face. Much like the woman roaming Bachelor’s Grove cemetery, she might be crying over a lost child or lover.

If you’re ever visiting Archer Woods, look for a monument called Garden of Hymns, It’s a sandstone slab with pipes coming out of it to make it look like an organ. There have been reports of organ music coming out of the monument.

One of the most terrifying visions from Archer Woods is that of a black hearse pulled by a team of crazy horses. The hearse is riderless, and often seen caring a child’s casket. Some of even said that the body of Resurrection Mary is inside.

St. James of the Sag Church Cemetery

The endcap to the haunted Archer Avenue corridor, St. James of the Sag was consecrated in 1837. The cemetery sits on a bluff, located in Red Gate Woods near the Calumet Sag Canal.

The cemetery’s most famous ghosts are the phantom monks that wander around the headstones and nearby forest, sometimes chanting in Latin. In 1977, a police officer spotted the monks and demanded that they stop. As he pursued them, they disappeared.

Another haunting story is of a young couple who had planned to get married at the church but were crushed beneath the wheels of their carriage and buried in unmarked graves. The couple has been spotted in the cemetery.

The rider-less hearse from Archer Woods has also been spotted at St. James of the Sag Church. Maybe it transports the spirits….

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