Ottawa Municipal Auditorium


Ottawa Memorial (as it was then known) Auditorium, 1925. Photo by Greg Smith

    Auditorium Ghost Identified

 FCHS Head Light
Fall 1996

 At Halloween, the Ottawa Herald ran a story telling of the Municipal Auditorium’s ghost—a story about a mystery man who either killed himself or was killed [there were two stories] in the Auditorium early on, and tends to stomp around and make unexplained noises there. The twist in the story involved a visit to the Auditorium of the Amazing Kreskin, a mentalist who, among his other skills, routinely locates his paycheck when hidden by audience members

Kreskin visited the auditorium in 1992, and director Deborah Barker was among the small group assigned to hide his paycheck. Deborah suggested the site of the supposed suicide/murder, a room leading off the mezzanine upstairs.

Kreskin was angry with the group’s choice of sites, and scolded them for selecting a hiding place out of view of the assembled audience. However, he expressed astonishment that the community operated a funeral home in the auditorium, with piles of coffins crowding the mezzanine. Deborah thought that very strange, since the mezzanine was completely empty at the time.

After the Herald article appeared in October, Eloise Andrews contacted Deborah with some information she had learned from her mother regarding a man named (Eugene) Whittaker who had taken his own life in the Auditorium, Deborah was able to locate the man in city directories and the story of the discovery of the body in an April, 1924 newspaper

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