The Haunting of Bowers Harbor Inn

Bowers Harbor Inn – Grand Traverse County, Traverse City, Michigan

Photograph ©Bowers Harbor Inn

13512 Peninsula Drive
Traverse City, Michigan
(231) 223-4222

This mansion was built in the mid eighteen hundreds by a successful Chicago millionaire and business man named J.W. Stickney and his wife Genevieve. In life, Genevieve was a jealous woman who became quite over weight and very unhappy with her appearance. She or her husband purchased a gilt-edged mirror that made her appear slimmer. J.W. also had an elevator put in so that Genevieve could make it up to their bedroom on the second floor and he also hired a nurse to take care of her.

When J.W. Stickney died, his wife Genevieve received the shock of her life; J.W. had left most of his money to the young nurse that cared for Mrs. Stickney and apparently he had carried on a long time affair with the woman. Genevieve was devastated and went into a deep depression; this depression ended when she hung herself from the rafters above the elevator.

All was quiet in the house up until 1959 when new owners, Jim and Fern Bryant, renovated the place and turned it into a restaurant. In 1964, the Bryants sold the place to Toni Scharling and Sally & Bruce Towner; warning them that strange things were happing in the house. The new owners moved into the second floor and soon found out that there were in fact strange happenings in the house.

Reports of the Paranormal:

Many here have claimed that objects were thrown through the air at them by unseen hands, doors have been reported to open and close on their own and lights turn themselves on and off.

Some have claimed to see the solid, full-bodied apparition of a woman standing behind them as they looked into the gilt-edged mirror but when they turned the woman was gone!

Those who have ridden in the elevator have been joined by the solid apparition of Mr. J.W. Stickney himself. The elevator has since then been closed but it is still said to go up and down without any help from the living.

Knocking sounds have been reported to come from inside of closets, on walls and on doors. When these sounds are investigated, no living person has been found to be responsible.

Personal items and other objects seem to disappear of their own accord and turn up in odd, unsuspecting places throughout the house. Other objects such as mirrors and wall hangings have been found on the floor but no living person had knocked them down!

Today the inn is still in business and the claims of paranormal still occur.