Real Haunted Houses

Real Haunted House

The Gray Lady

Evansville, Indiana

When this building was an abandoned train station, many drifters and hobos used it for shelter. During that time, a woman was murdered on the premises, and she haunts the building today. Her presence is most often felt in the children’s library, and the scent of her perfume is present on Halloween.

57 comments on this haunted house. Share your story »


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Hilaria says:

October 11, 2005, 12:28 pm

is this the whole store if not can you e-mail it to me

Hilaria Alonzo

Hilaria says:

October 11, 2005, 12:29 pm

I do think that this is true

Nick says:

October 20, 2005, 6:55 am

Hilaria, this is a true story. I live in Evansville probably less than 4 miles from where this murder happened at. I dont know the full story but the name of the place that is haunted is called Willard Library. They have a “Ghost Cam” on the internet and history about it I believe. Just do a search for Willard Library in Evansville, IN and you should get the full story.

Kayla says:

November 22, 2005, 9:27 am

This is partially true. The building was never an abandoned train station, it has always been Willard Library. The founder donated the land and his money for it to be built; his name was Willard Carpenter. Some believe that the ghost is his daughter Louise Carpenter. Louise was angry that nothing was given to her and all his money was put into the library. When Willard died, the Library was not left to Louise and this left her with bitter feelings. Some believe if Willard Library is turned over to the Carpenter family then the hauntings will finally end. Many don’t believe this because the Gray Lady is a very shy and gentle ghost. If it was Louise, she would be not so nice. Another theory is that it is someone haunting the field that the Library was built on, not the actual library.

If you look up the Gray Lady from Evansville you will not find anything about an abandoned train station, only Willard Library.

J. Strueh says:

February 19, 2006, 10:41 am

The last comment is the only true one. I live in Evansville also, and it has always been a library.The Story about Louise is also true. But I agree with the Hauntin of the Field theorists. If Louise was there,I beleive there would be more bad incidents.
It is important to do your research before posting something as fact.

Kirbie says:

April 10, 2006, 3:11 pm

I really don’t know what I think.

Christina Caskey says:

April 22, 2006, 11:49 pm

I have been to Willard Library several times and no matter where I venture in the library I always have this feeling of being watched. I also went on one of the Ghost Tours around Halloween last year with my nephew Alec. While we were there I felt a hand placed gently on my shoulder and when we were walking around we saw a book tilt down from where it was on the shelf. We simply told our tour guide what had happened and he said he wasn’t surprised because people had been reporting different activities The Gray Lady had been doing on each of the tours. So speaking from experience I know the lirary is haunted. There is no doubt in my mind.

Spencer says:

May 9, 2006, 8:00 am

the above comments are right i live in boonville IN and have been to the library many times if you want a more factual source read HAUNTED INDIANA u can find it at Barnes & Noble in evansville

me says:

July 18, 2006, 2:29 pm

do u guys not watch “Ghost hunters”? They proved that the library was not haunted that the “apporation” is actually just lights from cars going down the hill by the big window. And the lights are making shadowy figures….now thats not to scary is it….But Im not saying anyone is right or wrong because people have the right to believe what they want.

person says:

August 8, 2006, 12:14 pm

If you people went there on a halloween tour then the owners are going to set things up to just scare the hell out of you. I wish you guys would put real haunted places on here with all the facts instead of the made up ones.

William T. Miller says:

August 11, 2006, 7:18 pm

My group will host an overnight investigation at Willard Library this year on October 21 I have done five overnight investigations at the Library and I have had a few experiences there, but I have to say that TAPS did not prove nothing they said they could not say it was haunted or not. and as for the lights it was one of the members that had a flashlight that he would trun off and on. And for people who have not been on a tour there should not comment on how it is done they do not set things up to scare the hell out of you and they do not give tours on halloween. And this is a real haunted place in Indiana.
William T. Miller
President/Founder Southern Indiana Paranormal Investigators

kiersten says:

October 15, 2006, 5:04 pm

i live right down the block from willard library and it wasnt always a library, it used to be the willard’s house and then after the murder they turned it into a library in remembrance of the “grey lady” if you take a tour of it around halloween they will give you the real true story

vanessa says:

October 15, 2006, 7:42 pm

i have heard for many years that the library is haunted!!also taps were there and they said they could not say yes or no if is haunted!!!i think it is to many stories are the same!!!!!!!
vanessa boonville,indiana

Jessica says:

October 30, 2006, 1:37 am

When I was a kid, my mother took me along on one of genealogy hunts and deposited me in the children’s room in the basement. I was no more than 8 or 9 years old, (so it’s been 20 yrs) but I distinctly remember sitting in a corner, reading a book and minding my own business when it suddenly got extremely cold & someone lightly tapped me on my shoulder. The ONLY other person in the room was the librarian and she was 5 feet away from me. The tap came from behind, so no way was it her. I ran off screaming and crying to mom, and haven’t been back since. But on another note, I wanted to throw in my thoughts on the “car lights” theory. Complete bull ****. With the library being located in the spot that it is in, there’s no way headlights from either direction on the Lloyd Expressway could shine in. Now, if it were coming from Illinois or Indiana Streets, maybe.

Amanda says:

October 31, 2006, 2:33 pm

I lived in Evansville for 5 years and went on the ghost tours at Willard Library. I did not have any experiences myself, but during one of the tours, the elevator door opened by itself and no one could explain it.

I also used to work at the Carpenter home which is now the home for Public Radio(and t.v.) 88.3 WNIN. Mr. Carpenter was responsible for building the Willard Library. The Carpenter home has some activity as well. I used to close the house at night after my shift and I would walk past one of the front offices and smell lilacs. This would happen in the dead of winter. One day another member of the staff was talking about hauntings in the house and mentioned other staff members smelled lilacs before I had even mentioned my experiences. Scary!

Evansville has a rich history of ghosts. I hope more people will explore this area for further haunts.

Nina says:

November 10, 2006, 2:09 pm

I am coming to visit Evansville in the next week and I am going to visit the Library. I also watched the Taps do thier investigation at the Library. I agree that Taps did not say that the location was not haunted! Also they are at the location for one night for the show and it’s not like they did a long term look into the activity. I would like to see a week long investigation at a property like this.. I think that would be interesting! I am going to post if I have any personal experiences at the Willard Library after my visit. Thanks for all the information eveyone has posted. Nina

Nance says:

December 5, 2006, 3:27 pm

You people like “kiersten” and a few others are completely wrong.It was built as a library, and has always been a library,specifically built for research originally.Even on the TAPS episode, the curator was there and explained the story for them.There was NEVER a murder or anything like that.Just more stories that came from some over-zealous Grey Lady fans out there.I have lived in Evansville for a VERY long time and am currently, as I have been for years, studying its ACTUAL history.The donated library and jealous daughter story is the only one based on ANY type of facts.

Jared says:

January 13, 2007, 11:34 pm

I heard this one befor but i got a scrier tue one.

Jared says:

January 13, 2007, 11:35 pm

I heard this one befor. It is real scary, but I got a better one.

wyrd says:

January 31, 2007, 10:46 pm

I helped with the 21-22 Oct 2006 overnight investigation, and I documented anomalous, rapidly moving, brilliant objects with my video recorder under infrared illumination in complete darkness. I also recorded rapping noises, smelled a musty perfume for a few seconds, and possibly recorded a voice stating “‘Cause we seek you”. Visit YouTube and seach for Willard Library; my videos are posted under userID wyrdbewaechterin. I also sampled with some sensors and a datalogger, and recorded unusual spikes of visible light and movement. This was all in the Children’s Library. It is my conclusion that the library is indeed haunted. One caveat: YouTube’s video quality is somewhat low, so you need to look closely and even watch the videos several times to see the anomalous objects. Many are pretty obvious, but some are not due to the lower pixelation/quality degradation brought about by YouTube’s upload and display parameters.

shrews says:

February 4, 2007, 8:20 pm

I don’t think this story is true because the show Ghost Hunters on Sci-Fi went to the library and found no evidence of it being haunted.And Ghost Hunters usually shows you everything that happens when they are there.

jonathan says:

February 14, 2007, 11:18 am

Hello i am very instrasted in this willared library.i believe that there is a grey lady wondering around the librry secretly.i really want to go to the willard library and see the grey lady.evreyone is saying its not real from watching that taps show.they saidits just shadows that form when the sun hits the bookshelfs and make a grey lady.if u dont know the story just search willard library in google.


vicky says:

February 14, 2007, 12:20 pm

i know this story is not true. i live in Evansville and this is not how the story goes. the library was built by a man named Willaird and his daughter has always loved it. when he died , Evansville took over it and his daughter wanted it so badly,but she couldn’t have it. so she sued Evansville. since she was put through so much grief, she haunts it in return.they have ghost cams there and everything now. a website on the ghost too.””there are many stories of things that happened to employees.i went ther around a recent halloween and they had a ghost tour. they tell all about stuff there.its very interesting and fun. if you line in Evansville and know the news channel “channel 14″, they’ve been there and they film things all the time.they call her the gray lady because she is to be a gray color when you see her. there is a strong scent of perfume when you go there sometimes. I’ve smelled it myself.I’ve also seen her. she’s very friendly they say but she gets angry if you touch or borrow her treasured books. that place was never a train station.i don’t have time to give all the stories but you can go to the library for information and they will happily tell you about it.or go to the website.she is the daughter of the owner. there is one story when she followed a librarian home when the library was being renivated. its on the website.

meg tracy says:

March 2, 2007, 10:15 pm

this is parents lived in evansville.

Laura says:

March 8, 2007, 1:46 pm

I’ve lived in Evansville most of my life.I’ve never seen the gray lady .But once my sister and I,in the summer went there with our kids just to see if they had a water foutain and I got as far as the frount doors .It was so cold we had to leave I have’nt been in there since.There is a feeling there.And I for one do’nt care to feel that uneasy feeling again.

Scruddud says:

March 12, 2007, 11:22 am

Has anyone ever heard of “shoe tree”? It is supposedly across the river from Louiseville and down a lane with a circular end.

veronica says:

March 27, 2007, 9:26 pm

Y was she murdered in tha 1st place. Was it at tha wrong place and at tha wrong time.

Sal says:

June 18, 2007, 12:45 pm

I have a personal experience from the Willard Library which has kept me from going back. When I was about 10 years old, I was very interested in ghosts and haunted things, so my father wanted to take me to Willard Library to see if we could find out the story behind the Grey Lady. Even though this story is ten years old, it still remains VERY prevalent in my memory. When we first arrived, we walked around the building and tried to notice any unusual activity ourselves. Then, I got bored and wanted to go look at the children’s books downstairs. After looking through the books, my father decides to start asking the children’s librarian about any ghost sightings down in that area. So, the librarian is tellings my father and I these Grey Lady sightings and all of a sudden, a book from a shelf in the very back fell off the shelf and made a loud noise. It startled all of us when it happened because the only people in the children’s area were me, my dad, and the librarian who were all standing near the doorway 10 feet away from the shelf where it had fallen. The librarian started to laugh a little and said that the Grey Lady was making her prescence known to us, and as a 10 year old I was frightened. When we went over to pick up the book that had fallen, we noticed that the book was dated in the 1920’s, which I found to be very spooky for some reason. After that incident, we decided to get going but I had to go to the restroom. I REALLY didn’t want to go to the restroom alone, but I knew I couldn’t wait until I got home. So, I walk into the restroom and notice that I am the only one in the 3 person stall room. While in the stall, all of the automatic sinks turn on at the same time! There was no way to explain how all of the sinks could have been started at the same time with no movement going on in front of them! I then quickly exited the restroom and made sure that I got out of there fast. Ever since then, I’ve been leary going back.

Morgan says:

September 29, 2007, 9:32 am

This is true, but it’s always been a library. A few years ago “ghost hunters” came, and gave all the details on what happened. Things like the sweet smell of her perfum, sounds in the children’s section, and a real ghost hunter said that she came to him and waved. Freaky huh? Some people have enough guts to spend the night in the haunted willard library.

evansvillian says:

October 18, 2007, 12:53 am

The Willard was never a train station. I was there the night TAPS came to investigate. I was actually blocked in by their vans. I made a comment to myself that they probably wouldnt find anything that night because the spirits followed me home. Regardless of what people think because of a television show and it wasnt confirmed or non confirmed whether or not it was haunted. I know from a personal experience a few years back from that time that something paranormal is going on there. I was in the section on antiquities and picked up a book on Rookwood pottery as i opened the book and started reading it i smelled flowers. I of course inspected the book and sniffed it. I also walked outside of the area of the smell about 3 feet in both directions. There was no one around me and barely anyone there on that floor. The smell disipated and it wasnt attached to the book or a person.

evansvillian says:

October 18, 2007, 12:57 am

Oh and to the person who made the comment about the sinks. Someone i know had the same thing happen when they were in the bathroom. They also experienced the doors in the basement jiggling as they walked past each door. I wasnt there to confirm that. Im just going off of what they said.

niksof says:

January 1, 2008, 10:34 am

the perfume can be smelled on halloween…so what she’s been killed on halloween or sth? if you ask me, this story is FAKE!

random says:

February 23, 2008, 11:50 pm

This story is mostly true. The part about perfume is a prank, though.

Darrell says:

March 21, 2008, 10:05 pm

Where is this building at?

janella says:

May 24, 2008, 3:44 pm

I have heard of the graylady, but I have to say i no longer believe in this story. I am a faithful watcher of ghost hunters and there was an episode where the TAPS team went to Willard Library. After their investation they found no evidence on video, EVP, or personal expeciences to say it is actually haunted.

Christy says:

June 7, 2008, 9:04 am

Yes, Willard Library IS haunted by the Grey Lady. NO, it was not a train station, nor is she a foul spirit. I don’t care what a TV show says (besides, who REALLY believes everything on TV?), I know it is haunted.

Sabrina says:

June 12, 2008, 2:21 pm

I use to live in Evansville until the summer of 2005, and the whole six years I lived there, there was only once when I thought I saw something suspicious. I was over in this one corner outside of the children’s library that had history of Evansville. I looked up suddenly ,with this intense feeling of being watched. Suddenly, I had the urge to go over where the rest of my friends were. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw something of a light kinda darkish color lean over a little as if it was looking at a book on one of the lower shelfs, before disappearing.
And evansville has more haunts then Willard! There are some schools and streets, along with a couple of houses.

krra says:

June 26, 2008, 5:36 pm

kayla (wAY up there) the ghost is NOT kind and gentle. she throws books at people and other violent things. and when you look at the library, you are not supposed to blink. if you do she is supposed to kill you in your sleep that night. i have not found this effective.

Serenity says:

June 29, 2008, 3:28 pm

dude if the ghost kills you in your sleep when you look and blink at the library, more tehn half the population of Evansville would have already been killed…

anon says:

August 7, 2008, 6:55 pm

I just wanted to say that the episode of Ghost Hunters about this library very much disappointed me. I use to visit family in Evansville and frequently visited the library and had a few experiences. Someone would nudge my arm, once I had a few books set out in front of me and one of the pages flipped, things like that.

As I recall, they did not experience anything in the children’s library. I believe this is in large part due to their little bit of drama going on down there.

That had been bothering me for a while and needed an appropriate place to get that off my chest.

Haunted or not, I do love that library. I have a bit of an attraction to historical places. Thank you for your time.


September 8, 2008, 12:34 am

Hey now … if u know anything about haunted places … ghost will only appear when they want too .. ghost hunters ( any ) only can say locations is haunted if they have evidence to prove it .. at least they was honest about it @ that … anyway maybe next time they find some who knows ..

Rina says:

September 11, 2008, 3:08 pm

Ok Ghost Hunters Guy,

Did you ever think that maybe the ghosts didnt want to come out. I mean come on they are ghosts not performers. If they dont know they are dead would they really want a camera in they’re face? Some ghosts dont want to make contact i for one dont blame them. Some people go in there and call and call and call…they are not dogs…So I do Believe it is haunted you believe what you want the choice is yours.

Lyndsie says:

February 3, 2009, 9:33 pm

Ummm I thought that it used to be a house not a library or whatever…. search gore orphanage that is kinda scary and click on ohio they have some scary ****

Beth. says:

February 5, 2009, 8:35 pm

Although this story is clearly disputable, people have the right to believe what they wish. I live in a town about fifteen minutes from Evansville, and the story is well-known around the city, and surrounding areas. In fact, a weather cam on our local news station is placed above the Willard Library, and weathermen typically bring up The Gray Lady. Whether is is fact or fiction, legend or hard evidence, the people in this area will continue to believe the stories. As for TAPS and Ghost Hunters, their primary goal is to discover whatever disturbance is made in these places, and to prove them coincidental. Sure, it’s possible that these “sightings” and “feelings” can be explained, but these days, scientists and researchers have come up with inconsiquential evidence of there being no God, and have tried to scientifically explain the plagues of Egypt. I personally believe this story, and find it to be fact instead of myth. You decide.

Beth says:

February 5, 2009, 8:37 pm

Although this story is clearly disputable, people have the right to believe what they wish. I live in a town about fifteen minutes from Evansville, and the story is well-known around the city, and surrounding areas. In fact, a weather cam on our local news station is placed above the Willard Library, and weathermen typically bring up The Gray Lady. Whether is is fact or fiction, legend or hard evidence, the people in this area will continue to believe the stories. As for TAPS and Ghost Hunters, their primary goal is to discover whatever disturbance is made in these places, and to prove them coincidental. Sure, it’s possible that these “sightings” and “feelings” can be explained, but these days, scientists and researchers have come up with inconsiquential evidence of there being no God, and have tried to scientifically explain the plagues of Egypt. I personally believe this story, and find it to be fact instead of myth. You decide.

Diana says:

July 5, 2009, 7:48 pm

I own a website and have been looking for accounts of hauntings in the Evansville area, that I can publish on my site. So far, I’ve only found the one about the Grey Lady.

I’ve been to the library and haven’t seen or felt anything. I’ve spent hours,watching the cams but still, haven’t seen anything. It’s odd that if there really is someone haunting that place, that I wouldn’t feel it because I’m usually pretty sensitive around things like this. Still, I’ve felt nothing.

I would love to hear about a true haunting around here, from someone who’s had an experience. But so far, nothing spectacular has surfaced and I don’t see Evansville as being a town with a rich, ghostly history.

I may have to go back to stories from old Massachusetts, and St Augustine, Florida. In those two places, ghosts hover over practically every building and vacant lot! This I know for a fact because I lived in St. Augustine for a long, long time. Now THAT was an experience!

michelle says:

August 6, 2009, 2:45 pm

I live in evansville also. My daughter and I were in the childrens section of the library and she had to use the bathroom. We went into the bathroom and my daughter and I were the only people in there. The toilets and sinks are all manual and the toilet next to the stall we were in flushed by itself.

Bree says:

September 19, 2009, 3:20 pm

In replies to “me”, i did see the episode of ghost hunters where they investigated Willard Library. Also, just because they do not find anything doesn’t mean that it is not haunted. Every place that’s hunated doesn’t have to be all the time. Yes, the lights can cause shadowy figures, but the experiences that people have and report can be very real. If anyone has any doubts, they can always visit the library themselves. My friend has been there and experienced something very different, something that WASN’T the Grey Lady. She says that she was in the childrens section, going in between the rooms and she heard this loud, deep, maniacal laughter coming from all around her.

Diana says:

September 19, 2009, 4:32 pm

To Michelle: That IS weird, that the toilet flushed by itself. If the Library actually is haunted, apparently the ghost doesn’t haunt continuously. Sometimes something happens,and other times,nothing.

Like Bree said, just because you don’t feel anything, doesn’t mean that there’s nothing there. It just could mean that it isn’t active, at the moment. Afterall, we don’t actually know what ghosts do or where they go, when they’re NOT haunting…

Liz says:

May 11, 2010, 11:06 pm

willard library has always been a library, nothing else. and they don’t know who the grey lady is for sure. there are some who believe that it’s willard’s daughter, but what the grey lady has been see wearing doesn’t fit the time line. not to forget that his daughter hated the library since it got the money she was suppose to get and she really didn’t like children. there has also been a rummer of a young girl who had got herself “in trouble” that had died on the land not in the building itself

Stacy says:

May 23, 2010, 7:43 pm

Really, with the whole TAPS investigation of Willard Library. It was at a time that they didn’t have all of the equiptment that they have today. If they were to re-investigate Willard Library here in Evansville, IN and looked up the history of Evansville they would notice that the Lloyd Expressway right next to the library hasn’t been there that long. It’s only been in thoughts since the 60’s and at the time it was called the Division Expressway, only re-named after the late Mayor Russell Lloyd in the 80’s. The first known claim of the Grey Lady was by a night janitor in 1937, almost 30 years before talks of building the Expressway. The person in charge of historical findings at the time didn’t dig too deep for any evidents and I have been writing to TAPS about the history of our beloved library. It also doesn’t help that the current director of the library doesn’t care much about history or research. All of this can be found on Look up key words and go to the library’s website and read up on the buildings history before putting in your two cents people.

pablo says:

October 15, 2010, 6:34 pm

I have no idea what to belive i live in mexico city but i speak english…. soo idk tootels… GO GHOSTS!!!!!!!!!

Mary says:

March 22, 2011, 6:41 am

I have been trying to look up any haunted houses here in Evansville. I too seen the Ghost Hunters episode where they investigated Willard Library. I was almost sure I would find something about the Old Jailhouse and the Catacombs in downtown Evansville. That seems to be the perfect place for ghosts.

Evansvillian of 40 yrs. says:

October 7, 2012, 10:58 pm

I believe in the possibility of the Gray Lady, even though I have not experienced anything the few times I have been there. My comment is to Stacy from May 23, 2010. The Lloyd Expressway was not built until the 1980’s. Before this it was known as Division Street. All this I remember from growing up in Evansville and was learning how to drive when it was still being built.

bobby says:

June 21, 2013, 12:10 am

where is this located? i would like to go down there tonight…

Rita says:

May 8, 2014, 4:02 pm

OMG I can not believe this. When I was younger I went to this library on several occassions. Well, once it was just me and my brother in the building and we were leaving. The librian had told us to leave and was outside. Well, we heard footsteps. I thought he was playing a mind game. This is plain creepy.

Hailey Cummins says:

July 16, 2014, 7:38 pm

It isn’t a train station, it’s a library. She is said to have been seen walking through the aisles between book cases. And it doesn’t have to be on Halloween. Her perfume can be smelt all throughout the library all of the time. I live in Evansville and I actually go to the library quite often as I enjoy to read the books and study there because it is very quiet. Once, I got very curious and I asked one of the librarians about it. She said that the lady used to be a librarian and she died of old age. She also said that the janitors have seen her multiple times and that she is very friendly and can be found mostly in the children’s section.

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