Scary Paranormal Stories & Short Horror Microfiction

Creepypasta

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Our encounter with the Steubenville Ghost was very surprising because we didn’t believe in such phenomena. If I had imbibed, or been by myself, I would probably have turned to some professional for help after the experience. I say we, because I was not the only participant.

The late Clarence R. Coulter, who’s family still reside in Akron, Oh. and I owned Halbert and Coulter Construction Co., Inc. in Wheeling W.Va. Early morning of December 30, 1948 he drove his new Hudson as we went into a small factory at 1817 E. High Ave. in Youngstown, Oh. It was an unusual day for that time of year in northeast Ohio. It was an overcast day with temperatures in the forties. I give you this because records can verify the accuracy of my memory.

About 11:00 am. in the office of Storm Sash, Inc. a radio announced an extreme cold front was approaching carrying extremely hazardous icing conditions. It warned everyone to get off the roads and streets shortly.

We went to a little greasy spoon nearby and prepared to leave earlier than planned to try to beat the severe weather. We concluded our business and left about 2:00 pm. As we proceeded south on Market St. we came to the south edge of town and Schotts Restaurant on the east side of the street. It was a well-known establishment that was only closed and torn down a few years ago.

Neither of us was smart enough to be too afraid, and we were both great optimists. We couldn’t resist a feast. We ate with no drinks. We had parked about 20 feet from the front door. As we stepped out of the door, we almost fell on the predicted glare ice, so we held onto the car fenders and anything else for support to keep from falling. We were agile and very active young men.

We saw no traffic moving. We entered his car and sat there debating if we should try to find some place to stay. Since New Years Eve was the following day, we preferred to be home in Wheeling for it. We decided since we were experienced drivers in inclement weather, and no traffic was moving, if we proceeded at 20 or 25 miles per hour and slid into something, we might bend a fender, but unlikely to be injured, so we decided to go home.

We proceeded south on Route 7 and already to the point where it turned east to East Liverpool, Ohio. There we encountered two emergency vehicles crawling along. There were no others moving until we next traveled through the small town of Steubenville and came to our place of encounter. The temperature had plummeted and was now biting cold.

About some twenty miles south of Steubenville on the old highway, we came to a place flat and even as a floor. At the north end of it the Ohio River turned east maybe a 1/4 to 1/2 mile, then south a ways, then turned back west to the highway. There had been a town there on that low plain but it was washed away in the Great Flood of 1936.

As we entered this plain from the north, we saw a string of maybe six cars entering it and approaching us from the south end. After passing only 2 moving vehicles in about 3 hours, this struck us as very strange. Suddenly, the lead car moved over and back again on this very straight road. Those behind did the same in a serpentine line. We remarked that maybe an animal was down or something had fallen onto the road that they were trying to avoid hitting. When they came to us, they passed us making a sloshing, drumming sound as if they were in heavy water on the pavement. This eerie sound seemed weird to us since the road was smooth glare ice.

We proceeded and came to that place where the strange maneuvering had occurred, and a woman in a white gossamer gown with a veil over her head put up her hand to stop us. We thought she was dressed in a wedding gown. There was a lot of crime activity in the Wheeling, Steubenville, Pittsburgh triangle we were in. We thought she might be there to stop us for robbery, as we looked prosperous. But no one would be out there with others lying in a ditch for that kind of activity in the bitter weather conditions we were in.

Clarence steered gently into the left lane. Man or beast could not have stood to move quickly on that uncleared, untreated glare ice. When she saw we were trying to pass her by, she floated smoothly and quickly over into the left lane. Fearing we might hit her, we steered back into our right lane as she quickly glided or floated back to it and stood in front of our approaching car. It was either hit her or stop. As we stopped before striking her, she moved back on the berm of the road and we came to a complete stop with her standing by the right hand door where I sat. We were confused and scared, but completely lucid and in control. I rolled the window down about 4 or 5 inches. She sounded like someone in a complete alcohol or drugged stupor as if her tongue was very thick. She leaned down and her face was may be 18 inches from mine. She asked if we were going to Steubenville. She kept repeating it and I said “any fool could see that we just came from there”. Clarence leaned forward to see her past me, and tried to get some sense out of her. I was sure I was going to see here in a police lineup for identification, so I stared intently at her face looking for any marks or features whereby I could positively identify her.

I suddenly realized she was featureless. There were dark spots where there should have been eyes, nostrils and mouth, but she was like smoke. In back of her to the west against the foot of the hill, a house had been recently built. As we were both staring into her face, someone turned on a light in the front of that house, and we saw it – through her.

We were suddenly very scared. He was a semi-pro fighter, and I was not a coward either. I was afraid she might enter the car. I’ll never forget my exact words as I cranked the window closed, “let’s get the hell out of here”. We went spinning our tires out of there to a night club/bar down the road at maybe Tiltonsville or Yorkville. We slid into the lot, stopped by the front door, as there was only one customer there. We clung to the car to the steps, entered where I called the Ohio State Patrol and told them someone should investigate. If that was a human being we left there, it would be a terrible thing to have done. Hearing no news, I called the patrol office two days later. The dispatcher laughed me off the phone saying they received no such report. I replied they had, since I gave it.

In 1961, I moved to Topeka, Kansas. During the course of business, I met an Air Force Staff Sergeant based here at Forbes Field. I don’t remember his name. In a conversation I began to tell him about the forgoing experience. Before I mentioned the name of the town as I related the event, he pulled on his pipe and said “that was the Steubenville Ghost”. Somewhat surprised, I asked how he knew about it. Since I hadn’t yet mentioned that she wanted to go to Steubenville. He said, “matter of fact, I was reading about her just last week“. She is one of the phenomena many people still discuss. I asked if he know anything about her. I don’t believe I ever referred to her as the Steubenville Ghost before that time. He said the most general or plausible explanation was this. In downtown Steubenville on the west side of the main street sits an old small frame church. I believe it was a Congregational or Episcopalian Church. He asked if I remembered that church. Of course I did. He said the prevailing wisdom was that she was a young lady near Rayland, Ohio, dressed up and in a buggy at that point on her way to that little mid-town church for her wedding. Maybe a riverboat whistle, something spooked her horse which bolted and threw her from the carriage where she struck her head on a rock and was killed.

I told him I often thought of returning to see if I could meet her again. Maybe we should have given her a ride. He said I had better be glad we hadn’t. He said he didn’t know if it was true in this case, but that there were reports of similar incidences where the apparitions were given a ride and those who gave the ride disappeared to never be seen again.

This is all I know of this phenomenon. After all these years and the former roadway having been made into a divided 4 lane, maybe she doesn’t appear now. But I would really like to know the whole story. Maybe what I’ve given here will fit into other known pieces.


This was submitted with no request for credit or even a name, but as it seems like a personal account, if anyone knows who wrote it, let me know so I can credit them. I’d heard of the “Steubenville Hitchhiker” before from here, so this is either a true account of someone’s experience with an established local legend, or fiction inspired by this classic “vanishing hitchhiker” ghost story.


Heh, that didn’t take long. I KNEW this sounded familiar, and upon further investigation, it’s posted here as well. I assume whoever submitted got it from here, and no credit is given there either, so… perhaps we will never know.

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The Steubenville Ghost, 7.4 out of 10 based on 62 ratings
  • LMLYUT

    Creepy. Also, I live in WV, so this hits a little close to home. Sadly, my area doesn’t have too many ghost stories attached that aren’t about people committing suicide from our bridge.

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  • Wheat

    Cool story. Either a very interesting personal account or a very well written story.

    My first thought was ‘another short story posted as pasta?’ but this was way worth it.

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  • Xantherian

    It’s a very creepy idea, expecially considering the story might be based off a true experience.

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  • WHO WAS GHOST

    BUT WHO WAS GHOST

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  • http://misterwelldone.wordpress.com Mr. Welldone

    Hello.

    Humanity is so foolish.

    Great power resides within you, yet you are too complacent, too concerned with fleeting matters to grasp it.

    And yet, in such cases of extreme desire, humanity can suddenly call upon that great reserve of cosmic potential, but in the same manner a barely coherent babe grasps at shining trinket.

    Usually such desperation results in the pitiful creature exampled above.

    And that is marvelously amusing.

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  • ShortGirl

    Hmm, that’s a very interesting pasta.

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  • LMLYUT

    Welldone, you never cease to give me something to ponder on. For this I thank you.

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  • LOWLUT

    Long but nice read.

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  • DJLoONa

    i heard a story like this once
    but certainly not with such a detailed setting.

    it was all in all alrite, but it takes a bit long to get into because the beginning is more about the setting than anything else. it could have been cut down a tad =\

    but ye, i enjoyed it

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  • akatsuki

    too long =| didnt bother

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  • AXN

    Fuck. I went to college in Steubenville.

    :(

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  • Russell Crowe

    I’m starting to get tired of Mr. Welldone’s pseudo philosophical rants. I’d give him a good kick in the testicles.

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    Rating: +7 (from 7 votes)
  • yoyoma

    i live in goddamned hannibal ohio, which is like,
    not far from stuebenville, yo.

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  • Alexandar

    Ever hear of that P-something Princess?
    Some old woman with a shopping cart that goes around some region of highway in Australia or somewhere.
    I cant recall the name other than that it was a non-US place with a P. Princess as the ghost.
    I’m sorry if I’m talking about your daughter or something like that, Mr. Welldone.

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  • Lord McBain

    hey I live near cincinnati. I don’t know much about the geography of ohio so I have no idea how close steubenville is to cincinnati. But cool story.

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  • N

    Maybe I’ve stayed up too late, (probably not the case, as I’m reading all the others fine,) but for some reason, all of these sentences seem far too disjointed to form a story. I can’t get my eyes to read them properly.

    Gonna try to read it, again. Can’t tell if it’s a good story from slaving through the first three paragraphs.

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  • N

    Just realized why- Author says “We” like three times a sentence, and uses too many abbreviations. Ack.

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  • Anonymous

    Too many numbers and names, like dates, addresses, etc. Didn’t bother >.>

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  • PaperPasta

    Very well written. If it was a true encounter then it was well written. However, if it was fiction based on the urban legend then it was extremely well written to the point that it sounded true.

    The abbreviation for Ohio annoyed me though (or I’m just picky at the moment). It should’ve been written as OH. The author here writes it as oh making it seem like every place mentioned, “oh” (as in the one one pronounces when shocked or surprised) would been used instead.

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  • Anonymous

    I live in North Canton, Ohio, pretty close to this event. This is some crazy shit.

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  • Terr

    How would they know that ghosts got in the car of the people who were never seen again?

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  • Anonymous

    Overcast and forty degrees isn’t unusual for Northeast Ohio, I’m from Cleveland

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  • Rather Scared

    The details of this story add to its credibility. I really believe the biographical facts here make it seem as if it’s a true account. Getting too entrenched in the minutia of detail is not necessarily a bad thing. Even the great horror master Stephen King uses detail like a painter’s pallet, creating very disturbing horror scenarios. The detail is an intinsic part of the whole package of his ficition. Scarier still is that this seems to be an actual event occurring in the reality of a bad winter day, vintage WW-II. From what I’ve read about these two businessmen, this account leads me to believe this is not the weaving of a yarn or the re-enacted version of a well-rehearsed urban legend, but rather, an actual experience.

    I’m very familiar with the East Liverpool-Steuvenville area and having worked around there for a number of years, I’ve heard many folktales and legends concerning this very unique, but rather stark and existential corridor of sister cities. I don’t plan on driving from East Liverpool to Steubenville on State Route 7 anytime soon. After reading this, I doubt if I’ll ever make the trip. I’ll go to Steubenville by way of Canada, if need be.

    Suffice it to say, all I know is that Steubenville High School usually puts out a great football team every year. Go Big Red!

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  • Anonymous

    I’ve taken that road a couple times, I never saw her

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  • G

    I found this to be pretty interesting, because my Grandpa grew up near Steubenville in the 1940s. I wonder if he ever had encounters with this. 9/10

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