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The Haunting of Aurora Courthouse
Aurora, Nebraska

Posted by Hauntings Admin on 07/04/2009

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About Aurora Courthouse

History:

Aurora, Nebraska was unofficially established by David Millspaw in 1861 when he became the first permanent settler in the area. The community has a population of about 4,200 citizens. Aurora has been the Hamilton County Seat since 1875. The town was started and failed and started again under two "stately cottonwoods" as the story goes. These cottonwoods are no longer apparently, having gotten diseased and passed on to the other side some time ago.

Some say that Aurora marks the area where the Great Plains begin when traveling from East to West across the United States. This is where Interstate 80 changes from a slightly rolling, mildly meandering path into a flat, straight road which continues until one reaches the edge of Denver, Colorado. There are many cows, a lot of tall grass, abandoned homes and windmills to break up the great vastness between the here and there which starts just outside of Aurora and continues west for many many miles.

The Aurora courthouse was burnt to the ground in January of 1894. This is Hamilton County's third courthouse. William Grey was hired in 1894 to complete the design for the current Hamilton County Courthouse building. Apparently, there was some reason to believe that the courthouse burning was the result of arseny.

We interviewed a number of people in Aurora on the night of our visit. The various sites and hauntings that we had knowledge of for Aurora were known by some locals and not by others. A woman at a Shell station, near the cemetery where Witch's Grave is located knew of the paranormal reports for the upper level of the Aurora Courthouse.

Paranormal Reports:

Reports of feelings of uneasiness in the upper level of the Aurora courthouse.

Other Related Haunts:

Aurora is home to a number of haunted locations including Witch's Grave, Spaff's Grave, and the Hamilton Motor Inn. If you have a chance to visit the city, don't forget to take a look at the other haunted places in town.

Resources:

No Author (n.d.) Hamilton County Courthouse Centennial.

No Author (n.d.). The Settlement of Aurora: From the City of Aurora Official Website. Retrieved December 9, 2009 from http://www.usacitiesonline.com/necountyaurorahistory.htm

Wikipedia (2009). Aurora, Nebraska. Retrieved December 9, 2009 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurora,_Nebraska


Comments

Nebraska Boy Posted: 10/15/2012
I grew up about 10 miles from Aurora, and my father lived most of his life near Aurora. I've never heard of the courthouse being haunted, never heard of the "Witches Grave", and never heard that the Hamilton Motor Inn was haunted by an Indian. Actually the Motor Inn was built while I was in high school, and I have stayed there once many years ago. It is located not IN Aurora, but actually about 3 miles away at the interection of I-80 and Hiway 14. And it has been closed now for several years. In regard to "Spaff's Grave" it does indeed exist and I visted it one cold night when in high school. Although at that time, it was referred to as "Spafford's Grave". So I think the story of who is buried there is correct about Spafford, not the other name mentioned as a possibility. The only "ghostly" thing we encountered that night(which was moon lit but misty) was what appeared to be a ghostly white figure near the railroad tracks. It turned out to be some sort of white railroad sign which was reflecting the moon's light. However, this is the first time I've heard anything regarding an actually story for the site. Back then it was just a mystery to us.

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