President Lincoln never really seemed to leave his beloved White House. Always the gentleman, Mr. Lincoln’s ghost was known to politely knock on the bedroom door. Presidents’ Roosevelt, Truman and Hoover all swore to this phenomenon and believed it to be Lincoln. Queen Wilhelmina of The Netherlands also awoke to a tapping on the door when she stayed at the White house, upon opening she saw the ghost of Lincoln staring at her from the hall, and the Queen then fainted. Calvin Coolidge’s wife spoke of seeing Lincoln’s ghost staring out of the window in the Oval Office, still appearing as though the weight of the world was on his shoulders. Winston Churchill also encountered the ghost of the former president while staying at the White House during World War II. He was returning to his room after a bath and saw Mr. Lincoln standing by the fireplace. He spoke to the ghost by saying “Good evening Mr. President, you seem to have me at a disadvantage” due to the fact Churchill was standing there completely nude.
A Haunted Man
Without a doubt politics is a passionate subject, and where there is passion there is always a chance for ghosts. One of the most famous political spirits is that of our 16th president Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was known for his great leadership during the Civil War though the anxiety from which he suffered at the time may have carried on even after his passing.
Mr. Lincoln was known to have an interest in the supernatural; he even had prophetic dreams and visions including one of his own assassination. His wife Mary Todd also supported his beliefs, especially after the death of their son Willie in 1862.
Willie Lincoln passed at only 12 years of age from Typhoid fever. This took a great toll on the president; he often spoke of the boy’s spirit still being with him. Mary could not enter the guest room where the boy died and she began to contact mediums to conduct séances in order to communicate with their son. It was rumored that Mr. Lincoln began to consult with these spiritualists in hopes of gaining insight to future events in the war.
On April 14th 1865 the President called a meeting of his cabinet. He told them before long they would have important news, though he did not give details of what the news could be. A few nights prior to this meeting he had another prophetic dream. He said there was “a death like” stillness about him, he could hear sobbing and grieving though he couldn’t find another person. Finally he arrived to the east room where he saw a corpse surrounded by soldiers. He asked one of the guards who had died. “The President,” He responded. “He was killed by an assassin.” Lincoln then heard more sobbing that woke him from this dream.
That night he spoke to one of his security guards about the dreams. The guard knew Mr. Lincoln was going out to the theatre that night and begged him not to go, but the president insisted saying he needed a night away. The guard recalls Mr. Lincoln would always bid him a good night when leaving the office for the evening, but on this night he said “Good Bye”.
Soon the news would spread. The President had been shot. While attending the play at Ford’s Theatre, John Wilkes Booth snuck through the unguarded door of the box Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln were seated in and put his gun to the back of the President’s head. He then fled the scene. Mr. Lincoln died shortly after. His body was displayed in the East room of the White house just as he had dreamed, then it was brought to its final resting place in Springfield Illinois.
Ford’s Theatre is now believed to hold the residual haunting of this tragic night. Footsteps can be heard rushing to the box where the couple sat, along with the sound of a gunshot and screams. Some even attest to seeing the figure of Mary Todd leaning over the railing and pointing to the stage where Booth attempted to escape.