Haunting & History of Caledonia Wine Cottage


The building of what is now the Caledonia Wine Cottage is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  It is said to have been built by Jacob Fisher in 1824 as a stage stop & inn & that originally the house had 12 rooms & a dirt floor basement with separate quarters in the back for slaves. It would have been standing when thousands of Indians with the Trail of Tears passed through Caledonia in 1837/1838.  According to local legend the house during the Civil War also served as a hospital for wounded soldiers from the Battle of Pilot Knob when Union troops retreated northward from Iron County as they were being pursued by rebel soldiers.  Both Union & Confederate soldiers were cared for there.  The "Quarantine Room" on the third floor of the Cottage still has the small window in the door where food was passed through to the sick & contagious soldiers.  Some of the men may have died in the building & would have been buried in the Bellevue Presbyterian Cemetery where there is a monument in their honor.

 

Washington County, Missouri

Pictures at right & below photographed: June, 2008


 

Old stone steps at front entrance.
Picture taken from 2nd story balcony.


 


 


 


 


 

The Caledonia Wine Cottage is situated on lot #18.  A partial list of past owners is given below.  I am still working on completing the list so check back occasionally for updates:

Miles Goforth, a Revolutionary War Soldier, obtained the property that the Caledonia Wine Cottage now sits on in 1803 in a large Spanish Grant.

William Buford,  purchased 440 acres of land on what would later be the village of Caledonia from Miles Goforth on 21 Sept. 1815 for $1,000. Bk. A Pg. 90

Alexander Craighead, a Scotsman, purchased the property from William Buford.  Craighead then platted the town of Caledonia & lots were sold at auction.  Lots were sold for $1.50 to $5.00.

William Buford - purchases Lot #18.  On an 1818 plat map of Caledonia  it shows William Buford, a wealthy slave owner, as the owner of Lot #18.  William owned the lot for four years then in 1822 sold it to Jacob Fisher for $60.

Jacob Fisher, a wealthy & brutal slave owner, purchased Lot #18 25 Apr. 1822 from Wm. Buford for $60 & owned the lot for five years during which time he (more likely his slaves) supposedly constructed the house that is now the Wine Cottage.  In November of 1827 Fisher sells lot #18 & it's adjoining lot #7 along with lots 45 & 54  ".......together with all houses, out houses & other improvements" for $1000 to Augustus Jones. (This would equal $250 per lot) - Bk. B Pg.60

Augustus Jones - Purchased Lot #18 20 November of 1827 along with adjoining (on the north) lot #7 & also lots 45 & 54 for $1000.  (This would equal $250 per lot) - Bk. B Pg. 378 


 

 

James R. Arnold by trustee - to Wm. Crommer - lot #18, 24 July 1876 - Bk. X Pg. 470

Wm. Crommer & wf. sold lot #18 to Mollie Eaton 19 March 1889 - Bk. 36 Pg. 61

Mollie Eaton & husband, Jesse L. Eaton  purchased lot #18 from Wm. Crommer & wf. 19 March 1889.  Jesse was a doctor & was the son of Ollie Ramsey & Dr. John A. Eaton.  Mollie & Jesse had no children.  In 1890, during the time that they owned lot #18, Jesse served as a Democrat representative with the Missouri Legislature.  Mollie & Jesse sold the place to J.C. Crenshaw in 1890 for $800.

Joseph Cosby Crenshaw - purchased the place 24 Dec. 1890 for $800.  Crenshaw was a former slave owner who had moved from Charleston, Missouri to Caledonia circa 1890 so his children could attend the Bellevue Collegiate Institute.  Joseph died in 1898 & was taken back to Charleston for burial.  His second wife Rachel kept roomers & boarders who attended the college.

R.A. Crenshaw to Jos. C. Crenshaw - 26 Aug. 1895 - R. A. Crenshaw wife of Jos. Crenshaw......in consideration of love & affection.........& further consideration of $400 to her paid........being the same lot purchased by Dr. Jesse L. Eaton........Bk. 39 Pg. 572

J.C. Crenshaw & R.A. Crenshaw his wife - William C. Crenshaw - 21 Jan. 1897.........in consideration of love & affection & the sum of $1.00 to him paid..........R.A. Crenshaw for & during her natural life time with remainder in fee to the said Wm. C. Crenshaw.......Bk. 41 Pg. 99  (William Cosby Crenshaw,  a dentist, married Bessie Pearl Ramsey in 1900.  They later moved to St. Louis. Their daughter Mildred Mary married Wm. Thomas Coghill in 1922 & they moved into the Crenshaw Caledonia home.)

W. C. Crenshaw & wife - J. M. Ramsey & wife - 24 May 1926 - W.C. Crenshaw & Pearl R. Crenshaw his wife of the County of St. Louis & J.M. Ramsey & Laura Ramsey his wife of the County of St. Louis............the sum of $1600.....Bk. 72 Pg. 24

J.M. Ramsey & wife - Isla McKeehn - 24 Apr. 1931 - J.M. Ramsey & Laura his wife & Isla McKeehn & Wm. E. McKeehn of the City of St. Louis ........in consideration of $100 & other valuable consideration........all of lot #18  in town of Caledonia together with the improvements thereon..........Bk. 75 Pg. 564

McKeehn & wf. to J. M. Ramsey & wf.18 Nov. 1931- Lot #18 Caledonia - Bk. 79 Pg. 122

Laura B. Ramsey to Wm. T. Ramsey & wf. Hallie - 16 April 1945 - Lot #18 Caledonia - Bk. 93 Pg. 323

Hallie Ramsey - 19 July 1978 - unremarried widow of Wm. T. Ramsey, deceased.........right of survivorship.........Bk. 165 Pg. 189

Charles & Lisa Medlock
got the property from Hallie Ramsey in 1993 & the Medlocks later sold the property to Dale & Sandra Brown.

Dale & Sandra Brown who operated it as Bellevue Antiques & Arts sold the property to Michael & Donna Bond in Jan. 2003 - Bk.2003   Pg. 287

Michael & Donna Bond sold the property to Dave & Pepper Buis in Oct. 2006.

Dave Buis & his wife Almeta (Pepper) Carpenter purchased the house 23 Oct. 2006 & after renovations it became The Caledonia Wine Cottage Bed & Breakfast - Bk.2006  Pg. 24160

 

The Haunting of Caledonia Wine Cottage

Since the renovation in 2006 occupants of The Wine Cottage have experienced numerous paranormal occurrences.  It all began with the opening of the door to the slave quarters with incidents happening periodically throughout the entire house.  People often hear the friendly voice of an elderly woman saying "Hello" on the first floor of The Cottage.  And one family who has brought their three year old son there numerous times says that he often waves at an unseen person in the corner of the dining room.  Another child who's family stayed in the Bed & Breakfast rooms on the third floor met a child female playmate named "Erica" while staying at The Cottage but there were no other children there at the time.  At a later date an  EVP was obtained by one paranormal groups that distinctly whispered the name, "Erica".  So the search is on to find an "Erica" connected to The Cottage.

Mysterious footsteps have also been heard by people at varying times along with voices when no one else was there. Objects have been thrown or dropped by unseen forces. A shadow figure of what is believed to be a Civil War soldier has been observed on several occasions.  Washington County residents & sisters Lisa Mitchell & Tammy Davis of Belgrade spent a night in the Garden Room on the third floor of the Cottage in 2007.  They distinctly heard footsteps coming up the stairway when no one was there.  The next morning when they went down to breakfast a cloth banner that had been securely fastened to the wall the evening before was lying in the floor.  Pepper, the owner/manage of the Cottage had not put it there & no one else was there during the night.  Subsequently several paranormal groups have conducted investigations at The Cottage:


 

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The Paranormal Task Force investigated 16 August 2008.  The Daily Journal newspaper covered the follow-up on 11 Oct. 2008.  Check out their interesting articles & video clips: 


 

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KOPS (Knights Of the Paranormal Society) did  an investigation on 29 Nov. 2008 at which an EVP of what sounded like a female voice whispering "Don't Go" was recorded, some orbs photographed, a cold spot was detected along with other phenomenon.  For pictures click here.

 

On 30 May 2009 St. Louis Ghost Hunters conducted an investigation at the Wine Cottage.   http://www.stlouisghosthunters.com/

 

2009 - Doris who works at The Cottage was telling us of a customer who was sitting out on the deck patio by the air conditioner.  When Connie came back out to bring the lady & her husband their order they had moved away from the air conditioner to the other side of the deck.  When Connie asked them why they had moved the lady hesitatingly told Connie that she was clairvoyant (sensitive) to spirits.  And while sitting close to the air conditioner she had a very strong feeling of a spooky voice saying, "Emily is here."  Connie then asked her are you sure you don't mean "Erica" as we know we have an Erica.  The woman said no that the voice definitely stated "Emily".  After the couple finished eating they came inside to look around & the woman went upstairs to the 3rd floor.  She said after she came back down that she would not go into the Quarantine Room as she sensed that it  was just plain evil.

 

If you would like your spooky experiences at The Cottage added
 to this page or a link to your investigation please send email to:
Wine Cottage Ghosts

 

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Sources of Historic Information:

Washington County Deeds

1818 Plat Map of Caledonia

History of Bellevue Valley


Caledonia Wine Cottage Web Site


Pat O'Hanlon Ramsey


History of Caledonia Missouri

 
Trial of Tears Report


Colorado Co., Texas Obits


Washington County GenWeb


http://genealogyinstlouis.accessgenealogy.com/bellevue2.htm

http://listsearches.rootsweb.com/th/read/QUEEN/2004-09/1094485368