The Ghost Car

a tale told by Anna B. Hoffman

*(Addition information by Chris Woodyard from Haunted Ohio II[affiliate link])

In the years 1926 through 1930 a strange thing happened several times. On each occasion between 10 and 11 o’clock at night we saw a car coming down the road. It turned off into the lane then crossed the bridge. A man opened the gate, drove through, closed the gate, went up to the barn, turned around and came down, got out of the car, opened the gate and walked up to the house. It had been snowing, there was at least two feet of snow on the ground. A knock came at the door. A lady opened the door and wanted to know who was there. No one was there.

We looked and saw no car or anything. So we got the lantern and went out and followed the tracks. We could see where the car had turned around and gone away. We didn’t know what to make of this.

The next year the same thing happened again. It happened each year up until 1930. That year, one member of the family passed away. Before the member passed away, on the post there were three owls. The first night the one owl hooted and then he left. The second night an owl hooted and it left. The third night the last owl hooted and left. That night one member of the family passed away.

Almost a month later another member of the family became ill. Then a few days later I saw seven owls on seven different posts. The first owl hooted and they all left. It continued that way until the last owl hooted and left. That night a member of the family passed away. (The two family members she is referring to are the family’s two boys.)

It all seemed to be kind of odd and we thought maybe the car wouldn’t come back. But sure enough, between 10 and 11 o’clock at night the same car came back. Only this time we heard a voice and the voice said that there wouldn’t be anyone to occupy this place because there would be a disaster. Sure enough, the prediction came true. There were two accidents. After that, the car never came back again. (The two accidents that she is referring to in the above narrative are, the father getting caught under the teeth of a harrow blade in a field. He bleed to death from his wounds. After the fathers burial, the mother took her remaining daughter to an adjacent farm, and then went home to commit suicide by drinking some carbolic acid!)

This all happened between the time I was six and almost ten. This happened east of Lancaster on a large farm. There used to be a bridge, a covered bridge there, but it no longer stands. And I think maybe sometime or another if you would be there at that time of night and there’s a lot of snow on the ground, you might see that ghost car. The years were between 1926 and 1930.


I have left the original text from Anna Hoffman unchanged. I don’t know if she is retelling a story from her childhood, or is actually the surviving daughter. According to the Eagle Gazette the farm is located on what is now the south side of Lancaster somewhere off of State Route 793. It is possible that in 1930 that this would have been the southeast side of town. My narrative comes from a manuscript that a family member owns. This is possibly a copy of an oral history project. I believe the Fairfield County Library has a copy of this in their reference room as well.


This post, including commentary and photos, originally appeared on James A. Sheets’ site.