Franklin Castle was built by Hannes Tiedemann in 1881 as a dream home for an immigrant family, however, fate had other plans as the castle quickly deteriorated itself as the house of horrors.
The grand castle boasts beauty due to its beautiful towers and brick-red window frames. However, this mansion in Cleveland, Ohio, has an extremely horrifying past and is now considered as one of America’s most haunted places. The castle which was constructed by a German immigrant in the 1880’s quickly became the scene of countless tragedies. While some are of the opinion that the fatalities were due to bad luck, however, others thought that something ominous was at work.
Even today, people have reported hearing crying babies or spotting a woman standing by the window. A weird cold sensation has also been felt in a particular room so far. Paranormal investigators have even paid a visit to the residence in the hopes of catching a glimpse of a ghost.
So, what is the cause of Franklin castle being a haunted place?
The Misfortune of Hannes Tiedemann
The journey of Franklin castle commenced on a positive note. Hannes Tiedemann, a German immigrant initially appeared to have accomplished his dream to build a home. Tiedemann had gained his money as a wholesale grocer and subsequently as the co-founder of Union Banking & Savings Co., and he planned to build a home on Cleveland’s posh Franklin Boulevard with his newfound wealth.
The banker had a dream to build a home that was large enough to accommodate his family as well as other German immigrants temporarily. Tiedemann enlisted the help of renowned architects Cudell and Richardson, who created a stunning four-story, 20 rooms home. Tiedemann dubbed his new residence “Franklin Castle” with pride.
Sadly, a tragedy occurred as the Tiedemann’s 15- year- old daughter Emma died of diabetes shortly after the family moved into their new home. Soon after, his mother named Wiebeka also died. From 1886 to 1888, three more of his children passed away. Eventually, even his wife died due to some chronic liver disease in 1895. After the death of his wife, Hannes remarried and sold his mansions to a German family named Mulhauser. Hannes himself died of a stroke somewhat after 13 years while taking a stroll in the park. However, it was just the beginning.
Hauntings of the Franklin Castle
In the 1920s, Franklin Castle began to have a reputation for being out of the ordinary. The castle was purportedly used for illegal booze manufacturing during prohibition and as a hideaway for Nazi Spies during World War II when Mulhauser sold the castle to the German Socialist society.
The reports of hauntings did not arise till the 1960s. The Romanos, a family of six, had moved into the house by that time and were planning to turn it into a restaurant. Instead, they found themselves confronted with ghosts. The hauntings are believed to start right at that moment. Two of the Romanos’ Children stated that they saw a crying girl in a white dress on the third floor. However, when Mrs. Romano began to investigate, no one was there.
The household soon began to hear ominous organ music and heavy footsteps. Two of the elder Romano kids woke up one night to discover that their blankets yanked from their beds. Mrs. Romano once woke up screaming on her bedroom floor, accompanied by an unseen shadow screaming with her. The Romanos were encouraged by a priest to leave the place, which the family did in 1974. The mansion was “getting best of her”, Mrs. Romano said. She suspected Louise Tiedemann was haunting her, and the weeping girl in white was the 15-year-old daughter named Emma.
The hauntings still continued even when the Romanos’ left the house. The new owner, Sam Muscatello attempted to profit on the house’s renown by inviting local reporters to see Franklin Castle. While exploring the grounds, many of them had unusual encounters.
A Cleveland radio host named John Webster described how something snatched his tape recorder and threw it down the stairs.
“I just stood there holding the microphone as I watched the tape recorder go flying down to the bottom of the stairs, where it broke into pieces.”
Then the house was once again sold, which continued quite a number of times. Each new occupant of the house reported strange happenings such as passing through odd vapors, hearing a child crying, or seeing a woman in black standing in the window. The reports of hauntings at the Franklin Castle increased and many believed that behind it was the original owner of the house.
While living in that house, Hannes lost his mother, children, and wife. But could it be possible that he was involved in their deaths?
Suddenly, Emma and Louise’s deaths looked more suspicious. Stories began to spread that Tiedemann had even murdered his niece by hanging her from the rafters and he also killed his mistress due to jealousy.
Grim History of the Ominous Tiedemann House
The legends of the Franklin Castle have gained so much popularity that now it is considered as one of the most haunted houses in the United States. However, was Hannes Tiedemann truly a murderer who slaughtered his entire family in a systematic manner?
Willian Krejci, a Cleveland author, and a historian wrote a book titled “Haunted Franklin Castle”. He believes that the stories concerned with Hannes Tiedemann’s cruelty have been embellished over time. He stated that Hannes was a compassionate man and he was not the monster that has been made out in all these stories about the castle.
“They were very kind people. Mr. Tiedemann was a benefactor of the community.”
“All this makes for a fantastic ghost story and who doesn’t love a good ghost story,” he wrote. “There’s just one problem. Hardly any of this is true.”
Krejci does believe that the house could be haunted, as when he himself visited the house, he had a number of strange experiences.
“Small stuff.” “Footsteps, voices and/or the radio turning on, on my phone. Things like that. It’s kind of cool, actually.”
As for now, Franklin Castle is private property so it’s only viewable from the outside, and no recent hauntings have been reported so far. Haunting aficionados claim that the ghost of Lousie Tiedemann can be seen standing in the window.
Quite a spooky property! Do share your views in the comment section.
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