Crown Hill Cemetery
Let me state upfront that the source for this tale never actually names the cemetery where this encounter occurred. But, seeing as how this small Lake Erie island only has two cemeteries and Crown Hill is the oldest of the two, I’m going to jump to a conclusion and assume Crown Hill is the location of this tale. If I uncover additional information, I’ll update it here.
In 2000, island visitor, Sherry Schramm, related to Toledo Blade reporter, Rebekah Scott, her mysterious encounter with a ghostly girl in a lonely South Bass Island cemetery.
As her story goes, Sherry and her friend were out for a walk one late afternoon, around 4:00pm. As they passed by one of the island’s quiet cemeteries, they decided to wander inside and have a look around at all the old tombstones.
Almost immediately they saw a little blonde girl who looked to be four or five years old. She was in a brown dress and standing by one of the tombstones, looking down at the ground.
As the two ladies approached her, they asked if she was okay. The girl told them she was there to take care of her mother’s grave. Not seeing any other adults around, they asked her where her father was, to which she replied with a nod of her head in the direction behind them, “Home, up at the house.”
When Sherry and her friend turned back to speak to her again, the little girl was gone. And the grave she was standing next to? It was for a woman who died when she was only 23 years-old.
The two women surveyed a nearby neighborhood for a bit, hoping to see where the young child could’ve wandered off to by herself, but there was no sign of her.
Later that evening, conversation turned to the subject of their strange encounter. After a few minutes of remarking to each other how surreal the whole event seemed to be, the two women began to wonder if what they experienced was actually paranormal in nature.
They approached a few friends who live on the island and asked if anyone had ever heard any strange stories about the cemetery, but no one knew anything.
Out of curiosity, Sherry Schramm returns to the same cemetery whenever she’s on the island to see if the ghostly little girl will make another appearance. So far, though, she’s had no luck at repeating that first odd encounter. Furthermore, Sherry can’t seem to find the mother’s grave, either. It seems to have disappeared as well.
As I stated at the beginning of this entry, the source of this tale failed to provide the name of the cemetery where this happened. I’m going out on a limb assuming that it occurred in Crown Hill Cemetery.
I have not previously heard about any “ghost girls” on South Bass Island, nor of any legends associated with this cemetery prior to reading about this encounter. Likewise, I can find no other paranormal stories on the Net about either a South Bass Island “ghost girl” or Crown Hill Cemetery. I chose Crown Hill Cemetery as the probable location for this tale based simply on the fact that it is the oldest cemetery on the island. So, I could be wrong. If any new facts come to light, I will be sure to post them here.
Crown Hill Cemetery is located on the corner of Niagara Avenue and Catawba Avenue, just down the road from the Heineman Winery and Perry’s Cave Family Fun Center on South Bass Island.
“Ghost In Suspenders, Disappearing Grave Part Of Local Lore,” by Rebekah Scott, The Toledo Blade, 29 October 2000, pg E-3