Suppose you’re someone who loves the concept of ghost tours, haunted places, or anything paranormal. In that case, you should consider checking out the Tiedemann house in Ohio City, Cleveland.
The Tiedemann house is popularly known as ‘Franklin Castle,’ and it’s regarded as one of the most haunted places in the city. People who have been around the castle have reported sighting ghosts, hearing strange noises, and cold rooms.
The History Of Franklin Castle
Most haunted places have a dark history to them. The same can be said for Franklin Castle, whose history is surrounded by death and suspicious activities.
Franklin Castle finished building in 1881, and it’s an architectural beauty. This American Queen Anne-style Victorian house’s first residents were the Tiedemann family.
The Infamous Tiedemann House
Hannes Tiedemann (1833-1908) was the builder and the first resident of Franklin Castle. He lived here with his wife Louise, their children, and his mother. Hannes Tiedemann’s mother died right as the house was constructed.
Although a German immigrant, Hannes Tiedemann, built this Franklin Castle at 4308 Franklin Boulevard. He was pretty well-off in the community. He was considered to be a generous man who was not only a successful banker but also helped out various charities.
What Went Wrong At The Franklin Castle?
The real tragedy occurred after four of the six children were reported dead at a young age. Their deaths were due to common diseases of that period that couldn’t be appropriately treated back then. Their 15-year-old daughter Emma died first, and after that, three more children died at a relatively younger age.
Death quickly engulfed the beautiful castle, which became the talk of the town with a bunch of suspicions aimed at Hannes Tiedemann himself. Back in the day, nobody suspected anything. After the house started gaining popularity, many believe that foul play could’ve been involved in the deaths of the Tiedemann children.
Hannes’ wife Louise Tiedemann ended up dying soon from liver disease complications after the death of their children, and Hannes Tiedemann ended up moving away from Franklin boulevard.
Many rumors floated around discussing whether it had anything to do with the Tiedemann family’s tragic history. It has been said that after the couple’s children died in unfortunate circumstances, Tiedemann put the Franklin castle through significant renovations. Various secret rooms were said to be installed during this process.
Reported Sightings Of Ghosts And Strange Occurences
All these stories regarding the paranormal activity around the castle began years after the departure of the Tiedemann family. The castle became less known for its beautiful architecture and more for its haunting aura.
Many years after Hannes Tiedemann left the Franklin castle, this private residence was passed from different owners. At some point, it worked as the home for the German American League for Culture (Eintracht Hall). It was given the title of a ‘haunted house’ after this league sold it in 1968 to the Romano family.
Though the Romano family didn’t stay at the Franklin castle for a long time, they fed into the curiosities of the public about the mysterious privately owned castle. They claimed to have witnessed horrifying things happen in the middle of the night.
There were claims that they could hear strange footsteps in places where nobody was supposed to be, and they listened to the sounds of a crying girl around the house. It quickly gained traction to be deemed as a paranormal site.
Franklin Castle: Actually Haunted Or Just A Conspiracy?
After the departure of Hannes Tiedemann, many people have had the opportunity to call Franklin castle their home at some point. The moment that rumors came flooding Cleveland about the haunted house, this raised many questions about its authenticity.
One of the first residents of the castle after the Tiedemann family left was the Mullhauser family. They were one of the few people to deny any paranormal activity around the house. They found no hidden rooms during various investigations around the castle. Many of the rumors got debunked as the years went by.
After the family left, Sam Muscatello, the new owner, often let the public inside the residence for paid ‘ghost tours’ and profited from the ghost stories passing around the town. At one point, there were human bones found in the castle, indicating some foul play. Later, it was revealed that the new owner had put them there himself to get more people interested in the house.
After hearing about the tragic history of the Tiedemann family, they got inclined to believe that the strange occurrences around the house had to be related to them.
Eerie Sightings And Mass Paranoia
Franklin Castle is known as one of the most haunted places in the USA, but what is it about this castle that makes it terrifying?
Over the years, even after many renovations until the late nineteenth century, the whole castle emitted formidable energy even if you didn’t know anything about its dark past. It was a vast, dark castle in the middle of one of the best areas of Cleveland, and it was bound to catch your eye.
There’s just no truth to whether there is any paranormal activity going on there. Even if there is no clear physical evidence, most of the people who went there claimed that they felt petrified even if they didn’t see anything.
In the past, the most popular claim made by people who said they witnessed the ghosts was that Hannes’ daughter Emma and her mother were primarily haunting the residence. People claimed to have seen a girl in white on the third floor, often guessing it could be Tiedemann’s daughter crying for help.
This topic brings us to the point: Is it because something is going on there or because of the stories people passed down for ages? Either way, it became a famed paranormal site in Cleveland, Ohio, whether haunted or not.
Franklin Castle In Popular Culture
Now a Cleveland historical sight, Franklin castle gained attention again in 1985 when Judy Garland’s last husband, Michael Devinko (Mickey Deans), moved into the infamous abode.
Many rumors were floating around, suspecting Hannes Tiedemann of murdering his children. All of this started when a woman living there before Mickey claimed to have been in contact with the spirit of the deceased Tiedemann. She painted him to be a sociopathic murderer.
For years Michael Devinko spent his time renovating the estate and spent more than 2 million dollars on it before moving away in 1999. He was known to throw extravagant parties on the property for years before leaving.
Ghost Adventures And Haunted Franklin Castle
One of the most famous paranormal reality shows on air today, ‘Ghost Adventures,’ went to the castle to conduct a full-blown investigation of whether the stories behind the eery Tiedemann House were true or not.
In their season twenty one’s second episode, the crew visits a bunch of people that lived in the castle at some point and discusses their experiences regarding the paranormal activity rumored to be occasionally occurring on site.
They even meet up with William Krejci, who often lived in the house and even wrote the book ‘Haunted Franklin Castle’ encapsulating his experience and views on the mystery.
False Demonstrations Of Terror For Reality Television
Many paranormal actions were captured during the episode, such as unexplainable banging noises, established communications with the spirits in the house, radio turning on and off, and much more.
It is clear that they exaggerated most things in the episode for viewing pleasure. Being a reality show, it would be disappointing if nothing paranormal occurred during their visit there.
Overall, it seems an unauthentic and poorly acted demonstration of horror, often painting Hannes Tiedemann as the psychopath spirit still lingering to kill more people who would dare disturb his peace.
Also, while talking to the residents who lived in the house for longer than him, paranormal investigator Zak Bagans often tries to manipulate the situation. He insists that the residents are downplaying what’s happening inside the house.
When the previous residents claim that although they felt scared, they didn’t feel like their life was in danger, Zak tells the audience that they got manipulated by ghosts.
William Krejci often denied the accusations against Hannes Tiedemann. He insisted that it was just a tale made up to build a gruesome picture of the actual tragic history that the family went through. He believed that Hannes was merely a simple, unlucky man who loved his family and was the successful founder of Union Banking & Savings Co.
What’s Going On With Franklin Castle Now?
Today, this beautiful gothic structure is owned by Norton Records. The current owners haven’t revealed what they plan to do with the property, but they plan on opening a store sometime later, dealing with rare types of vinyl. Right now, it’s a private residence that isn’t open to anybody.
The owners spent years renovating it, with the future still undecided in the light of the pandemic that halted further planning. Perhaps one day, it will be open to the public again, and the manor will end up being known for its exquisite architecture than the dark history and tragedies that haunted it for years.
If you’re interested in knowing more about the different haunted houses across the USA, you should check this out.