Ghosts of the Prairie

Amana, Iowa

The historic Amana Colonies, located not far from Iowa City, were formed in 1854 by a group of mystical Lutherans who came west from New York. The settlers, calling themselves, the "Community of True Inspiration", came west to live a simple existence on the Iowa prairie.
What they hadn't counted on were the many ghosts!

Geist Ecke, or "Ghost Corner", was believed to be haunted by a variety of strange and frightening spirits who have been witnessed many times over the years. They are said to be white, filmy apparitions.

It is said that the area known as Indian Dam, which was built by members of the Sauk nation over three hundred years ago, is haunted by their restless spirits. On nights of the full moon, reports claim that the sound of drums and Indian chants can be heard there. One of the traditions of the area was for the local children to place pine boughs on the graves of the children who perished in years past. It was said that the spirits of the children in the Main Amana Cemetery would rise up on Christmas and claim the pine boughs that had been left in their honor.

It is also said that a pale blue light can be seen over the grave of Mary Wright in the Sprague Cemetery. It is said to appear during the final minute of every year. Mary died in 1854, at the age of six, and the light has reportedly been seen ever since.

The seven Amana Colonies are located just west of Iowa City in east central Iowa. Ghost Comer (Geist Ecke) is a sharp bend in the road between Middle and High Amana. Indian Dam is north of Homestead on the Iowa River. Mary's grave is the only marker left in the old Sprague Cemetery, which is just west of Homestead.

Copyright 1998 by Troy Taylor. All Rights Reserved.

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