Achor Valley CemeteryMonday, October 17, 2016
Last Friday I woke up really late. I guess 9am by most people's standards isn't too late but that's a day killer for me. I'm not really an early bird but, without a doubt, I'm most productive first thing in the morning and late at night. I knew if I just tried to start my day as normal I'd end up doing nothing so I figured it was the perfect time to take a day trip. I always try to keep a running list of places I'd like to hit on days like this. Try being the key word there. Frequently when I dedicate any time to researching places for this list I end up feeling defeated and like I've seen everything interesting within a days drive - which simply cannot be true.
I searched "haunted cemetery ohio" hoping it'd lead me somewhere new. Most of the results were websites I've already pored over time and time again. I did end up finding some ghost hunting blog that I had never seen before. Their "orb" photos were less than convincing but the post I was reading mentioned something about how if you liked old headstones this particular cemetery was a great spot to check out. I knew if I kept searching for other places I'd never leave the house Kind of like when you browse Netflix, you search for the perfect thing, find a few decent looking movies, and then end up watching nothing. Without looking for any more information on the cemetery, I packed my camera bag and hit the road.
It was an easy, breezy two hour drive. After crossing a one way bridge, which somehow seems perfectly appropriate on the way to a creepy old cemetery, I pulled into the driveway to find there was also an abandoned church on the property. SCORE! I was over the moon. From my car I could see that the church looked pretty boarded up. I may crawl through windows on a fairly regular basis but I will never damage property to gain entry to a building. I figured I would walk around the entire cemetery first, getting all my shots, before even checking to see if the church was accessible. I didn't want any possible disappointment to ruin the high of this find, I was excited just to have it in the background of my shots.
Even if there hadn't been an abandoned church on the property, the cemetery was worth the drive! There was a mix of old and new headstones, 1800s through 2000s! I'm not crazy about new ones but the old ones were to die for. Hah! Whoops!
After I got all the photos I wanted of headstones I walked around the church to see if I could get a peek inside. I was so pumped to find that all of the pews were still there! I've been in a handful of abandoned churches and this is only the second with pews. Without them, and the stained glass windows it doesn't feel so much like a church. It's just another empty building, ya know? It was just a single open room with a large mural at the front but an awesome find nonetheless. As much as I'm pro-graffiti it's always a bit exciting to find something like this that isn't completely covered in spray paint.
How beautiful is Phebe's headstone?!
I couldn't find much information on this cemetery or why the church was abandoned. The grounds were fairly well maintained, and while I was leaving a car pulled in with a family inside who got out and laid flowers on a grave. I also found a handful of ghost blogs who regularly hunt here so it seems like a rather popular spot. Because of that I assumed it'd have some interesting backstory but I guess not. I did see that one ghost hunter said "the spirits there are gentle and have a great sense of humor" I still don't believe in ghosts, but I'd love to be proven wrong especially by funny ghosts! *
I still can't believe what an awesome find this was. Every time I think I've seen all the cool cemeteries in Ohio I find something new! Guess this is a sign I need take more spur of the moment trips.
*Speaking of ghost stuff! My freshly charged camera battery completely died in this cemetery. Super weird considering the fact my batteries never die. I rarely have to charge them despite how often I use my camera. People always say that ghosts drain batteries... You know, because they're battery powered or something. 😜