Aberdeen Inn

Spirits of ‘angels’ and runaway slaves may remain in this former farmhouse turned hotel

Ghostly Reports at
Aberdeen Inn

  • The apparition of a little girl has been seen
  • Appliances in the building reportedly turn on and off by themselves
  • Potential EVPs have been recorded in certain rooms
  • A male entity reportedly resides in the basement
  • Guests report having their belongings moved around by invisible entities
The Aberdeen Inn, hosting to numerous reported spirits

Aberdeen Inn’s Farmhouse Beginning

The neighborhood of Aberdeen, Indiana is perhaps best described as a golf course-centered subdivision, with upscale homes alongside picturesque ponds and expansive golf fairways. But, hidden in the idyllic scenery stands one house that is starkly different from all the others.

Once a humble farmstead, the home that is now the Aberdeen Inn sits right at the mouth of the subdivision’s entrance. It makes for both an elegant gatehouse greeting Aberdeen residents, and an opulent hideaway for both guests…and ghosts.

Timeline of Aberdeen Inn's History

Swipe or use timeline points to see Aberdeen Inn through the years

1856

First reference of a farmhouse on the Aberdeen Inn’s current land appears in local records from 1856. The farm was owned by a man named Samuel Collins from when it was built until 1876. Back then, the property was known as Timberlake Farm. Timberlake Farm was purchased by its most well-known owners, John and Sarah Ritter, in 1878. While few Civil War-era records of the farm exist, it is said that the Ritters discovered a curious trapdoor to the basement, now believed to have once hid escaped slaves on the Underground Railroad.

1880

John Ritter ran Timberlake Farm successfully for many years. When the couple moved into the farmhouse, they already had five children to help with farm chores. But, within a few years, tragedy struck. One of their daughters, four year old Grace, died in the early 1880s. Not long after that, Sarah Ritter died in 1884 after an unknown illness. Not one to let tragedy derail his life, John Ritter remarried to Lottie Bradley in 1886. John and Lottie went on to have five additional children, making the home a lively, if busy, place.

1900

It’s not known for sure when the Ritter family left Timberlake Farm, but photographic evidence indicates the family remained at the farm into the early 1900s. Over the decades that followed, numerous families came and went from Timberlake Farm, including the Gluecks and the Butlers, though little is known about their time in the home. What is known is just how the old farmhouse evolved in this time. Expansions were added, indoor plumbing was installed, and a second floor was constructed on the northern side of the home.

1995

Timberlake Farm came under the ownership of the Lawson family in the 1970s, who notably built a large horse barn near the house. The Lawsons lived at Timberlake Farm up until the mid-1990s. At that point, the home was bought by John Johnson, who had a grand plan to turn the house into a B&B. After more renovations to create suites and common spaces, the farmhouse became the Aberdeen Inn in 1995. Since then, some guests have claimed that remnants of the inn’s old farm days still remain there, in the form of strange and playful hauntings.

Aberdeen Inn’s Ghostly Girl

Reports of paranormal encounters at the Aberdeen Inn began in the mid-1990s when the lodge came under new ownership. One of the earliest reports was of a little girl on the main staircase.

Some have seen her head up the stairs and then disappear into thin air, while children who have stayed at the inn have reportedly had entire conversations with this ghostly girl.

The Angel at Aberdeen Inn

So many people have reported encounters with the little girl’s spirit over the years that theories have developed about her life, as well as a name for her: Angel.

Some who have encountered Angel swear she looks like a young girl in a painting by E.C. Barnes that once hung near the staircase. Others have theorized that she was Grace Ritter, the child of former farmhouse owners John and Sarah Ritter.

Aberdeen Inn’s unseen trickster

Along with being seen frequently around the staircase, Angel is said to be quite the mischievous prankster. Televisions have reportedly been flipped on and off by unseen forces in certain rooms, with many figuring it to be the little girl’s trickery. Similarly, a fireplace at the inn is known to spontaneously light and stifle itself.

 

Guests have further claimed that their belongings will sometimes be moved around their rooms or hidden in strange places. Some have even reported this activity while they’re alone in the room with the door locked, while others say that some belongings will later be moved back to their original locations.

Aberdeen Inn’s Array of Phantoms

Paranormal investigators, psychic mediums, and skeptical inquirers alike have since come and gone from the Aberdeen Inn thanks to the reportedly active ghost of the little girl. In that time, these investigators have claimed to find evidence of other ghosts alongside the girl.

Another commonly reported spirit at the inn is said to be a reclusive adult man who spends his time in the basement. Though he reportedly avoids people, the man’s ghost has supposedly been directly encountered by psychics and investigators in the past. Along with that, some investigators who have booked stays at the Aberdeen have also come away with potential EVP recordings from their rooms and common spaces like the inn’s library.

Growing Ghost Lore at Aberdeen Inn

The Aberdeen Inn today is an elegantly modern lodge with plenty of intriguing amenities. And of course, the ghost stories still remain today, bringing in new rounds of interested ghost hunters and paranormal enthusiasts every year. Over time, the hauntings at the Aberdeen have attracted media attention.

The inn was prominently featured in the book Haunted Hoosier Trails: A Guide to Indiana’s Famous Folklore Spooky Sites by Wanda Lou Willis in 2002, and more recently was featured in an episode of Syfy’s Ghost Hunters, bringing the inn’s haunted history to a national audience. So, though it’s come a long way from its farmhouse days, that era’s phantoms may forever be a fixture of the Aberdeen Inn.