611 West 63rd Street, Chicago, IL

(800) 275-8777

Status: Former Famous Building; Murder Site?; Post Office; Urban Legend


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The U. S. Post Office of the Englewood neighborhood, 611 West 63rd Street, Chicago, IL 60621, partially overlapping the site of H. H. Holmes' Murder Castle demolished in 1938 (the plot of the left section of the current building and further to the left).

Marlin Keesler from Streamwood, IL


We all know the story of HH Holmes and his murder castle, right?

Once you dig a little you quickly realize; not so much.

Unfortunately, these stories are oft repeated on the internet – I know untruths on the internet, oh my – including from usually reputable sources which has led to a waterfall effect.

The actual building was never actually used as a hotel let alone filled with poisonous gas rooms, trap doors and acid vats. The first floor was commercial businesses including HH’s pharmacy, the second floor was used for long term rentals (so basically apartments) and the third floor – which was supposed to be a hotel - was never actually finished because Holmes didn’t pay the builders and they quit.

All the stories and legends we’ve always believed were, apparently, made up by the newspapers of the time to, well, sell papers. There’s always been a world of alt-facts.

What is never mentioned, in the actual historical “facts”, is anything about the basement. Which is curious to say the least and where the actual murders are said to have taken place. It’s also the area most related to the reports of a haunting today.

This is not to say HH Holmes was not a murderer as he most certainly most. However, Holmes didn’t kill for bloodlust or the joy of murder; he killed to protect his way of life. Holmes was, above all, a con-man and a grifter. He only killed people to protect his scams; those that could reveal him or reveal that he killed someone.

HH was an opportunistic killer not a psychopath.

Another to clear up is neither the police nor the court ever said Holmes probably killed more like 200 people; this is also another blatant lie from the newspapers of the day. Holmes confessed to killing 27 people some of which were easily verifiable as still living.

He did not kill anyone in order to sell their skeleton to a medical school. He did rob graves while he was in medical school and sold the skeletons.

The truth is, probably, that he killed between 7 and 9 people.


Paranormal Activity

The 3 story building burned shortly after Holmes left Chicago. He left because the economy of Chicago took a downturn after the World’s Fair and there was slim picking for running con jobs.

It was eventually completely torn down in 1938.

There is now a USPS office partially over where the Holmes’s building once stood.

The apparition of a young woman has been seen throughout the building as well as on the grassy area once occupied by the castle.

The phantom sound of woman singing or humming throughout the building is also reported.

In the basement of the post office one employee heard a voice and looked around a corner thinking it was a coworker. She saw a set of chairs lined up against the wall but nothing else and no one. A minute later she looked again to find all of the chairs stacked up on top of each other.

Other reported activity: light anomalies and feelings of not being alone.