Chicago Hotel Is The Stuff of Your Most Terrifying Nightmares
The Congress Plaza Hotel in Chicago might be the most haunted hotel in America. Dozens of murders, suicides and other strange deaths are to blame.
It is not out of the ordinary for guests staying at this hotel to run out into the streets screaming because of some strange occurrence in their room or in the hallways. Celebrity chef Pete Evans ran out in the middle of the night in 2014, jumped into a cab and begged the driver to take him to a different hotel. Two Marines once fled the hotel in their underwear at 3:00 a.m. claiming a towering black figure came out of the closet and headed straight for their beds. And it's not just guest who've been terrified by the things they've seen, hotel staff have encountered plenty.
The frightening occurrences at the Congress Plaza Hotel have ranged from; 'shadow people', to hands reaching out of walls, dead bodies in bathtubs, screaming, gunshots, appliances being turned on and off, carpet being ripped up, furniture moving around the room, pictures spinning on the walls and full-bodied apparitions, including Al Capone and Teddy Roosevelt.
Since the hotel opened in 1893, there have been countless deaths and some have been so shocking it was tough to read. A Spanish-American War vet was one of the earliest deaths to occur at the hotel, according to thepostmortempost.com. In 1900, Captain Lou Ostheim took his own life after waking from a horrible nightmare, with a pistol he'd just bought the day before which also happened to be his wedding day.
This story, to me, was the most horrible thing to happen at the Congress Plaza Hotel:
During World War I & II, The Congress Plaza Hotel was used to house immigrants and refugees from war-torn countries. In 1939, a 43-year-old Czech-Jewish woman named Adele Langer was staying at the hotel with her two sons, Jan Misha (4) and Karel Tommy (6). They were in the country on a six-month visa which was about to expire. Her husband was supposed to join them but was delayed and unreachable. Adele was anxious for her husband to arrive and becoming increasingly nervous that they would soon be deported. She fell into a deep depression and eventually suffered a nervous breakdown. On August 4, 1939, she and the children spent the day at the zoo. When they returned to their room on the 12th floor of The Congress Plaza Hotel, Adele threw her two sons out the window before jumping herself. She died completely unaware that on that very day, they had received a letter informing the Langer family they had been offered permanent refuge in Canada. When Mr.Langer received the news that his family was dead, he reportedly threatened to commit suicide himself.
As I said earlier, the amount of strange deaths in and around this hotel are too numerous to count. It's those spirits that won't leave that are terrifying many a guest. The hauntings are so bad that many rooms are completely close off to guests. The doors have been chained and no one is allowed to enter. Room 441 has received the most calls from guests reporting strange occurrences and yet no deaths have ever taken place in that room. The 12th floor is known as the 'spookiest' of all the hotels floors. Many have reported being chased on that floor by a ghost believed to be Karel Langer, one of the boys thrown to his death by his mother. This floor is also home to one of the sealed off rooms and staff seem unwilling to talk about why, only saying that it's "too horrible."
It should probably come as no surprise that the Congress Plaza Hotel was inspiration for Stephen King's short story and subsequent movie 1408 about a creepy hotel room where several suicides took place. That movie was no match for the real life horrors lurking on South Michigan Avenue in Chicago.
There's plenty more to read, if you have the stomach for it. Click here to read and see more of the terror that lurks in this landmark Chicago hotel.