(From Bluffton Historian/Author Fred Steiner)
Does Bluffton ooze ghosts? You’ll soon find out.
Just in time for Halloween, “Where Bluffton’s Ghosts Sleep,” the latest book by Bluffton author Fred Steiner, will be available for the first time in a book signing from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 23, at the Bluffton Senior Citizens Center, 132 N. Main St.
With a subtitle “Unexpected stories from a small Ohio town,” the 196-page book includes what Steiner says is “every unexpected and cryptic Bluffton epic ever imagined.” This is Steiner’s fifth Bluffton-based history book.
“You will meet ghosts from Bluffton’s Maple Grove Cemetery, Harmon Field, Bluffton University, Riley Creek, the Swiss Settlement, from Ada and area ghost towns,” said the author.
“You’ll also discover some very interesting characters including Hezekiah Bloomfield Hubbell whose Shifferly Road tombstone was once the spookiest place in Allen, Hancock and Hardin counties.”
The book contains nine chapters retelling Bluffton stories across the time frame. The earliest involve native Americans who were exiled from Allen County in the 1840s. Stories follow that era covering many decades all the way to the present, involving the Bluffton Middle School ghost.
Among stores in the unexpected category include:
- An 1860s woman’s fear of being buried alive – it almost happened
- Five bodies buried in the same grave during a typhoid epidemic
- A UFO spotted 24 years before Roswell
- A Sunday Bluffton church service attended by members of the KKK
- Description of a Bluffton location where hoofed animals regularly went to die
- 300-plus bodies uncovered in a native American burial mound, not far from Bluffton
The book will soon be available in several Bluffton businesses including the Senior Center and from the author.
The following PowerPoint presentations, open to the public, featuring stories from the book take place in October:
- Thursday, Oct. 5, noon – Hancock County Historical Museum, Findlay
- Tuesday, Oct. 17, 6 p.m. – Bluffton Public Library
- Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2:30 p.m. – Bluffton Senior Citizens Center
- Thursday, Oct. 19, 7 p.m. – Ada Public Library
The book is available at $24.95.