Batchelor`s Grove Cemetery
Special thanks to Dale Kaczmarek and the Ghost Research Society (GRS) for permission to share their story and photos.
The GRS is one of the top research teams and have been investigating the paranormal since 1977.
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Batchelor`s Grove is patrolled by the Forest Preserve Rangers & the Cook County Sheriff`s Department because of theft & vandalism. The forest preserve closes at dusk & it is recommended that you stay away at night & around Halloween. You will be arrested for criminal trespassing.
Original sign that no longer exists. Photo taken in 1979 by Dale Kaczmarek using infrared film.
Just outside of Chicago near the community of Midlothian, Illinois, sits what is left of Batchelor`s Grove Cemetery. Near Central Avenue & Midlothian Turnpike where it joins 143rd Street, the cemetery is on the Rubio Woods Forest Preserve on the north side of the Midlothian Turnpike & the parking lot is the only legal place to park in the area. Across from the Rubio Woods entrance on the south side of the street is a radio tower & just a few feet west of that is the posts that mark the entrance to the Batchelor`s Grove Cemetery. The road was closed in 1977 & the posts prevent automobiles from entering.
Beyond the posts is a path where the old Midlothian Turnpike used to be, before it was removed in 1994. Following the path for about a quarter mile, the Cemetery is visible on the right side.
Path to Batchelor`s Grove
The cemetery was established in 1864 & was locked behind a chain link fence. Sometime after 1994 the lock was either broken or removed.
Entrance before lock was broken or removed
The cemetery was abandoned after the last burial in 1965 & the only burial since was the ashes of Robert Shields in 1989. Bathelor`s Grove Cemetery is now under the jurisdiction of the Forest Preserve District of Cook County & little if any maintenance is performed there. The weeds & grass were cut annually, but sometime in the 1990`s even that seems to no longer be the case. The cemetery has had over 100 documented paranormal occurences over the years & many believe that it is haunted by the spirits because of the vandalism over the decades. There have been numerous teenage parties, most of the headstones have been stolen, & even an attempted grave robbing has occured.
Batchelor`s Grove has been refered to as one of the most haunted cemeteries in the country. There have been numerous reports of mysterious lights, orbs, phantom cars on the nearby roads, & a man with yellow glowing eyes. Although there isn`t much evidence of a house ever being nearby, many people have spotted an old two story farmhouse a few hundred yards away. When they walk that direction, the house disappears. Others reported seeing the farm house there on their first visit, only to return a second time to find it gone.
Moss covered pond
On the opposite side is a murky algae covered pond that in it`s heyday was reported to be very clean & a popular swimming hole where families would picnic at. This pond is reported to be a popular dumping ground for bodies back in the 1920`s by mobsters, & it is suspected that many of the headstones stolen from the cemetery are also at the bottom. A popular legend is that many years ago a farmer was plowing with a horse drawn plow, when the horse became frightened & ran straight into the water. According to legend, the farmer & the horse drowned & the farmer`s ghost has been seen haunting the vicinity.
This is the famous "Madonna Of Batchelor`s Grove" photo, also known as "Girl On The Gravestone".
It was taken with infrared film on August 10, 1991, by Jude Huff-Felz of the Ghost Research Society (GRS). They were conducting an investigation of Batchelor`s grove & began getting activity in this area with their ghost hunting equipment. This woman was not visible to the naked eye, nor was there any living person in this area when the photo was taken. The woman has a very flat face with only the nose potruding out. She is wearing what appears to be an outdated dress & her feet are transparent.
The photo below was taken by Jason Sullivan of www.MidwestHaunts.com and bares a striking resemblence to the apparition in the above photo.
She looks much like the original `Madonna of Batchelor`s Grove
This photo was taken on Saturday, November 25, 2006, by the Central Illinois Ghost Investigators. It appears to be the image of a girl, but was not visible to the naked eye. After developing this photo, only then did this image appear.
This photo was taken after Larry & his friends Alicia, Hans, & Mark, sneaked in at night on Saturday, September 28, 2006. The four spent some time walking around the cemetery, when Alicia got bad vibes & began crying, begging them to leave. Before leaving, Larry tried to take some photos with his digital camera. Even though the camera had fresh batteries, it died on them twice. Larry finally managed to get this shot of his friends. Larry viewed the photo in the camera screen & was astonished by the ectoplasmic fog. He showed it to his friends & Alicia demanded that they leave immediately. Although I personally can`t see it, Larry says he can see an outline of a woman.
Demon At Batchelor`s Grove
Henry Pena visited this cemetery in July of 2001 shortly after 2 a.m. It was a clear & peaceful summer night & there was no one else in the cemetery. After being there for about an hour, Henry suddenly heard noises moving through the cemetery that sounded like someone saying "SHHHHHH". Then it stopped.
About ten minutes later the sound re-appeared right behind him. Henry immediately turned around & began snapping pictures even though his thermal scanner & EMF detector were not picking anything up. Henry says the ectoplasmic mist appears to be of a woman`s profile (even though I personally cant see it). But in the lower left hand corner is what appears to be the face of a demon, or devil. It has yellow eyes & what appears to be a horn.
This is just one of the many occurrences at the famous Bachelor`s Grove Cemetery.
We`ve provided a close up of the face below.