Ghostly Haunts of Toronto Canada

Toronto, Canada, is thought of as a young city, a city most people would not associate with ghostly activity. When one thinks of places and cities with ghosts then places like London or Paris, Dublin or the old battlefields come to mind. However, Toronto, though not near as old as many cities in the world, is a city with a long history in North America and is indeed the home of a number of strange hauntings.

Established in 1750 as a French trading post, the post would grow into the town of York and eventually be renamed Toronto in 1834. Beneath Toronto’s very modern exterior lie a number mysterious ghost stories. Stories involving untimely or unexplained deaths, suicide, murder, execution and just plain mysterious happenings. Most of these ghost stories involve Toronto’s oldest buildings. And, some of the reported uneasy ghosts have been roaming these locations for a century or longer.

The Gooderham and Worts Distillery

James Worts arrived in Toronto from England in 1831 and built a grist mill, quickly establishing himself as a successful business man. Despite his financial success, James Worts suffered a great personal tragedy when his beloved wife died in childbirth in 1834. In his grief, he either jumped or fell to his death in a well on his property. No one knows whether his drowning was a senseless accident or a tragic suicide.

The distillery went through a number of owners, yet the reports from workers of heavy footsteps, banging doors and other loud thumps ringing through the distillery continued to be reported. Eventually the distillery was closed and became part of a large waterfront renovation which featured cafes and shops in 1990 and was called the Distillery District. Still the ghostly reports have continued with lights flash on and off and visitors describing sudden sensations of cold and sadness. Some claim to have seen the apparition of a man wandering the buildings, sliding through walls, who seemed to be searching for something.

Glendon College

Although no deaths or other tragedies have been reported at Glendon College, the area where the college was built appears to be rich with ghostly energy. Students and visitors have reported hearing disembodied voices. Many witnesses also claim to have seen a sorrowful woman in a white dress, floating in the rose garden next to the library. Feelings of intense sadness, cold and disquiet overcome those who catch a glimpse of her.

One of the college’s residence rooms is also rumored to be a source of unrest. Some form of negative energy seems to effect whomever occupies the room. Roommates who start out as good friends start to argue and dislike each other for no reason. Students who get the room suddenly feel a need to just not leave the room, but the college itself. The feelings come on suddenly and without explanation.

Then there is the Lady in the Library. This is a ghostly woman who appears in at the windows of the library on winter nights long after the library is close. Some say the Lady in the Library is attracted to male students since a number of male students noticed odd temperature changes when they are in the library. Rumor has it that the woman who haunts the library may have committed suicide in that building.

Paranormal investigators have speculated that the hauntings trace back to the Wood Family who maintained a mansion on a 84 acre estate where Glendon College is located. Speaking of haunted mansions …

The Keg Mansion

This steak house was once home to the Masseys, a wealthy Toronto family. In 1915, a maid was so distressed by the death of her mistress, Lillian Massey, that she hanged herself over a staircase. Her ghostly body has been seen hanging in that very same spot. Staff members and guests both report feeling cold when they walk by that staircase. The maid is not the only apparition in the Keg Mansion. People have also heard a child’s footsteps and voice from upstairs. On several occasions, people claim to have seen a little boy running up and down the stairs, sometimes stopping to watch the diners below.

One of the most haunted parts of the Keg Mansion is the women’s washroom. Many women have reported feeling distressed, cold and frightened when they are alone in the room. Doors open and close on their own, locks slide shut and people’s personal items are moved – all when there is no one else there. There are some parts of the Keg Mansion where staff members refuse to go alone, because the feelings of dread are just too overwhelming.

The Gibraltar Point Lighthouse

The Gibraltar Point Lighthouse was built in the early 1800s. John Paul Rademuller was the first light keeper. As a side business Rademuller was also a bootlegger who smuggled and sold alcohol from the United States. The story goes that he refused to sell alcohol to two drunken soldiers who then became angry and killed Rademuller, then dismembered and buried his body around the lighthouse grounds to hide their crime.

After Rademuller’s death the reports began of ghostly apparitions, strange lights appearing on the grounds and eerie noises in the lighthouse. Visitors to the lighthouse have reported seeing Rademuller’s ghost walking up and down the lighthouse stairs. Others have seen him wandering the grounds outside the lighthouse.

Human remains were discovered on the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse grounds in 1893, which lent credence to the story of Rademuller disappearance and rumored murder.

The Ontario Legislative Assembly at Queen’s Park

The University Hospital for the Insane, first built in 1843, housed troubled women and men in abusive conditions for years. It is the perfect tale which ends in mysterious haunting. The Hospital was eventually abandoned and then demolished in 1886. The Ontario Legislative Assembly was built over the remains of the University Hospital for the Insane in 1893. Some of the limestone from the demolished building was used to build the Legislative Assembly’s foundation.

Since the completion of the Legislative Assembly building, people have heard moans and strange noises ringing through the halls. Over the years, visitors have reported seeing the same three distressed women, time and time again. The first ghost is described as a sorrowful woman, dressed all in white, who wanders the building, sobbing and moaning. A second ghost that is frequently spotted is a younger girl who wears a checkered dress and hides her face behind her apron. A third commonly-seen apparition is seen hanging from the place where she killed herself.

The Old Don Jail

This prison housed men and women from 1864 until 1977. Prison life in the mid-19th century was horrifyingly inhumane. There was overcrowding, squalid conditions and frequent reports of abuse. The jail was the site of 34 executions by hanging. In 2007, archaeologists conducting an assessment found hidden human remains on the property and in the building itself.

More than a few visitors to the Old Don Jail have reported sudden and overpowering feelings sadness and/or of being trapped and frightened. A woman with long blonde hair who hanged herself in her tiny cell in the late 1800s is said to still roam the site.

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An occasional visitor will reluctantly report seeing the figure of a woman floating near the place where this suicide is said to have occurred. People have also reported seeing the ghosts of two men, who may be Robert Turpin and Arthur Lucas. Turpin and Lucan died in Canada’s last execution in 1962 and were buried in unmarked graves on the property.

Yes, the city of Toronto often appears as gleaming new city leaning towards the future, but the oldest buildings and the locations of the early French and English colonists crackles with energy from the past. It just seems that all places which witness tragedies of murder, untimely death and suicide become haunted places. And the ghosts just will not be washed away by a fresh coat of paint and a new name.

The Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto

Ghosts and paranormal activity has been reported in and around the Canadian National Exhibition for over 200 years. They actually offer walking ghost tour of the Exhibition. Above is a video of that walking tour which you’ll likely appreciate.

Have you seen a ghost or think you may have experienced a haunting? A great person to talk to is Psychic Medium Elijah. Give her a call at 1-800-340-8374. If you would like to chat online visit