Day Fifteen- Because John Said So

John Donald this is for you (if you speak Auto correct- rid is fit tijuana).  please visit him at doing my toes in reality…no, not quite reality but non fiction!  Well, reasonable explanation of history surrounding a ghost story!  The Non Fiction thing is like sacred ground, I don’t think my heels will catch fire if I step there with both feet…why take unnecessary chances?

Chapter Thirteen: What Really Happened at Gore Orphanage  (Presented at Paper Session: Legend I: Local Legend, October 27, 1983, American Folklore Society Annual Meeting.)
By Bill Ellis
There is this place. . . it’s kind of close to my town and it’s called “Gore Orphanage” and it was back in the 1800s I believe. It was an old building, all that’s left is the foundation now, but, uh, it was an old guy who ran it, Old Man Gore, they called him. He was a mean guy and all the kids in there they were really deprived I know that. . . the place caught on fire. The old man Gore he got away and he left all the kids in there to burn to death….

Photo credit: Wikipedia

This is all that remains of Swift Mansion.   A driveway marker.  This is the only solid past of the story left. Legend of the Gore Orphanage runs deep. The road is a long country road that is jagged starting and stopping at different places.  It possess few traditional crossroads. The lack of a physical building just makes its existence have more mysterious. There is tought the Swift Mansion story is to keep teenagers from needing attention from the Lorain County Sheriff’s Department.  Young thrill seekers end up in driveways of farms, farmers wish to make them ghosts!

So the legend is Ma and Pa Gore, losing all of their children start an Orphanage. They were always described as hard luck people.  This is 1903.  The horseless carriage is not around this area much.  The area is the middle of nowhere.   It’s an island of misfit toys long before a Rudolph story.  In these days, children who didn’t go to school worked.

There are branches in the time line about 1905.  At a time near this (maybe even 1902, or 1908..), the Orphanage was changed owners.  A Lutheran Reverend used the name Light of Hope Orphanage.   The road was so known as Gore Rd.  The name of Gore Orphanage never dies

In 1908, a school nearby creates a legend.  Lakeview School has a real piece of history.  A fire cost 108 children there lives.  There are stories of children crying unable to flee the building.   The cause was probably one exit and poor construction for the deaths.   But one quick fire changes everything.

Following the fire, ghosts came to the area.  The assigned Swift Mansion burnt down abdonded in 1923.  But teens were scouting out the grave yard a generation earlier. Swings moved empty near Swift Mansion and other buildings called the Orphanage.   Children screams cries out from beyond. 

Time changed the area.  Near Swift Mansion site runs an Interstate highway.  Trucks vibrate a bridge near a ravine.  The high pitched sounds like children screaming after they travel a mile and a half.  Maybe.

But before that highway, the sounds were from?  Can one Legend be splintered into different parts then explained away?  If you go near Vermillion, Ohio, maybe you can stop by and see.   The empty swings are waiting.



11 thoughts on “Day Fifteen- Because John Said So

    1. There are so many versions and disclaimers to the story. The only conclusion is it has to be partially true. There have been very crazy things that happen in the area of the “Orphanage “. Plenty of car accidents with single cars. The ghost noises. But every explanation works for the time of the explanation. Like the highway noise today, but not before 1962 when the highway was built. There were stories of noises in 1908! 👻👻👻👻. I’m not going near a moving swing there.


  1. Interesting pictures and pictures. Very sad tha 108 children died in a fire. I wanted to let you know I finished a poem for your guest post. The only thing I couldn’t do was get the last two lines in line with the rest of the poem or add a picture I had picked out. I think cause I was working on m iPad. It was a Pinterest image so I don’t even have a link but Im sure you’ll pick a good one too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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