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The old Hobart library building
The old Hobart Library. It's not haunted... as far as we know.

The Hobart Branch Haunting

Strange sounds... mysteriously moved books... and a woman who appears when you're alone. We have a lot of scary stories on our shelves, but this is one some library staff have experienced for themselves.

Staff have reported a number of strange happenings at the Hobart Branch of LCPL, all occurring when the patrons have gone home:

  • Once, back in the '90s after re-painting the workroom, staff came in to find a strange green slime covering the walls.

  •  There have also been strange sounds in the building in the evenings before closing time, when it's quiet and there's no one but staff around.

  •  One night, a janitor was staying late cleaning the building with two buckets out – one for dirty paper towels, another for soap and water. She turned away and when she looked again, the water bucket had been stacked in the paper towel bucket. The janitor would not work at Hobart Branch after that, and another janitor quit entirely after hearing a voice tell her to 'get out!'

  •  Staff closing the building at night would make sure everything was tidy and ready for opening the next morning... and then return the following day to find books on the floor or placed where they shouldn't be.

And of course, a few staff members have reported not just hearing things, but seeing something decidedly strange: the Hobart ghost.

The Hobart Ghost

One staff member was packing video cassettes before opening and saw a white-haired woman wearing a black dress and clunky old-fashioned shoes walking up one of the ramps in the library. Since the branch wasn't open yet, no one should be inside. The staff member went after her to find out how she'd got in, but when she searched for her the woman was gone.

And one night the Hobart branch head at the time was closing up the library. He went downstairs to make sure the meeting room and exterior doors were locked. When he came back upstairs, he headed to the Main Street door to leave when a strange feeling made him look back. As he turned his head, he spotted a woman in a floor-length white dress.

He turned back around and walked, very quickly, to the door and went home, reporting that he'd much rather earn his gray hair the traditional way than by investigating ghosts at the library.

(Note: LCPL now has a policy against staff working alone in our buildings, simply for safety's sake – but since the implementation of this policy many years ago, there have been no further sightings.)

So, who is the Hobart ghost? That much remains a mystery. Here's what we know:

The current Hobart branch is built on the site of a former blacksmith shop and town dump (which may have been a part of the blacksmith shop). At another point, it was a stagecoach stop, and then a hotel. The hotel burned down and was replaced with a beach house, but one that businesses operated out of rather than a residence.

The rumor is that a woman was murdered in the house, which was then sold directly to the library, but there are no official reports of a murder in the newspapers of the time.

If there is a ghostly woman haunting Hobart's stacks, she only shows herself when people are alone in the library it would seem.

Is she a former resident with unfinished business? Could there have been a murder at some point in the site's history that no one knows about? We don't know, but we invite you to share your theories and stories – in daylight, if you please!

Upcoming Events
Sat, Aug 20, 1:00pm - 3:00pm
Lake Station-New Chicago - Large Meeting Room
Bring your craft projects from home and join us to chat with fellow crafters and work on your project without the interruptions of home.... more
Bring your craft projects from home and join us to chat with fellow crafters and work on your project without the interruptions of home. All are welcome.

Sat, Aug 20, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Hobart - Programming Room
A selection of board games will be provided for you and fellow teens to play. Registration is required. Ages 12 - 18

Mon, Aug 22, 12:30pm - 2:30pm
Dyer-Schererville - Meeting Room Whole (A & B)
De-stress and relax with pencils and coloring sheets provided by the library -- or bring your own!

Mon, Aug 22, 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Cedar Lake - Meeting Room A
Play Scrabble or other games with friends and meet new ones. Games will be provided but feel free to bring your own. Join the fun!

Mon, Aug 22, 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Lake Station-New Chicago - Large Meeting Room
Join us at the library to create your own scarecrow decoration. Registration is required. Supplies will be provided. Ages 15 and up.

Mon, Aug 22, 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Hobart - Large Meeting Room
Discover how the interview process has changed. Also, learn what you can do to prepare for face-to-face, virtual, or phone interviews.

Tue, Aug 23, 10:00am - 1:00pm
Hobart - Large Meeting Room
Bring your current painting projects/materials for an opportunity to chat and create!

Tue, Aug 23, 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Highland - Meeting Room A
Join the Fact or Fiction Book Club in discussing "My Last Continent" by Midge Raymond. Copies are available at the Highland Branch.

Tue, Aug 23, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Dyer-Schererville - Dyer-Schererville Zoom Room
The Between the Lines Book Club reads "The Girl with the Louding Voice" by Abe Daré. Books for this Zoom discussion can be picked up at... more
The Between the Lines Book Club reads "The Girl with the Louding Voice" by Abe Daré. Books for this Zoom discussion can be picked up at the Dyer-Schererville branch a month prior to the event.

Tue, Aug 23, 4:00pm - 5:45pm
Cedar Lake - Cedar Lake - Public Tables
Bring yarn and a size H crochet hook or size 7 knitting needles and cotton yarn ... or bring along a project you're already working on!

Tue, Aug 23, 7:00pm - 8:15pm
Munster - Large Meeting Room
Using the latest research findings, Dr. Luke Leisman of the University of Illinois Chicago Circle will discuss if there are galaxies we... more
Using the latest research findings, Dr. Luke Leisman of the University of Illinois Chicago Circle will discuss if there are galaxies we can't see and how galaxies form.

Wed, Aug 24, 1:00pm - 3:00pm
St. John - Large Meeting Room
Bring your favorite yarn or thread project and enjoy some great company while you create! All crafters and crafts are welcome!

Wed, Aug 24, 5:00pm - 6:30pm
Cedar Lake - Meeting Room A
Learn the basic concepts to start your family tree research. This includes where do I start, what records do I need and how do I put... more
Learn the basic concepts to start your family tree research. This includes where do I start, what records do I need and how do I put everything together.

Thu, Aug 25, 11:15am - 1:15pm
Griffith-Calumet Twp - Meeting Room
Like to cross-stitch, knit, crochet, or do any other craft? Every Thursday, bring and work on your own project while enjoying the... more
Like to cross-stitch, knit, crochet, or do any other craft? Every Thursday, bring and work on your own project while enjoying the company of others.

Thu, Aug 25, 11:15am - 12:30pm
Dyer-Schererville - Meeting Room Whole (A & B)
The Between the Lines Book Club reads "The Girl with the Louding Voice" by Abi Daré. Books for this discussion can be picked up at the... more
The Between the Lines Book Club reads "The Girl with the Louding Voice" by Abi Daré. Books for this discussion can be picked up at the Dyer-Schererville branch a month prior to the event.

Thu, Aug 25, 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Munster - Large Meeting Room
Join us for an informal and relaxed discussion of Jennifer Haigh's "Faith." Copies are available at the Munster branch.

Thu, Aug 25, 3:30pm - 5:30pm
Lake Station-New Chicago - Large Meeting Room
Celebrate the 83rd anniversary of the Wizard of Oz's premiere with a family viewing in the large meeting room. Rated G. 1 hr 52 min

Thu, Aug 25, 4:30pm - 6:00pm
Merrillville - Staff Meeting Room
Meeting of the Lake County Public Library Board of Trustees

Sat, Aug 27, 10:00am - 12:00pm
Merrillville - Meeting Room B
Interested in any of the needle arts including knit, crochet, cross-stitch, and more? Join us for an opportunity to chat and create. ... more
Interested in any of the needle arts including knit, crochet, cross-stitch, and more? Join us for an opportunity to chat and create. Bring your own projects.
This event is full