The Spooky Story Behind Witches Tower in Ohio

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View of Witches Tower in Hills and Dales MetroPark

If you want a chill-inducing spot to visit in the Buckeye State, Witches Tower will do the trick.

This tower has become a local legend and attracted several myths and legends. Everything from witchcraft to supernatural experiences is said to have occurred here. So what’s the truth?

Today, we’ll take you on a haunted trip to explore the spooky story behind Ohio’s infamous Witches Tower.

Turn on all the lights, grab your comfort item, and let’s get started!

What Is Witches Tower?

Witches Tower is a large stone tower built in 1940. It goes by the name of Witches Tower or Frankenstein’s Tower.

However, its actual name is Patterson Tower, after John H. Patterson, founder of the National Cash Register Company (NCR).

Patterson was a prominent figure in the area and had a significant influence on the development of Dayton, Ohio. He would go on to donate the land to create Hills & Dales Park, and the tower was erected in his honor.

Unfortunately, many know it for its creepy appearance more than as a way of honoring Patterson’s life.

Where Is Witches Tower in Ohio?

To visit Witches Tower (Patterson Tower), you must head to Hills & Dales Park.

The park is in the town of Kettering, a suburb of Dayton. Additionally, Kettering is approximately an hour northeast of Cincinnati. It’s a quick trip on Interstate-75 between the two cities.

The address for the park is 2655 S Patterson Blvd. Kettering, OH 45409. You’ll need to take a short walk along the park’s trail system to access the tower. 

Who Constructed Witches Tower?

The Works Progress Administration (WPA) completed the construction of Witches Tower. The program began in 1935 under President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal. 

The goal was to create jobs and stimulate the struggling economy during the Great Depression. While the WPA built the tower, Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. and John Charles Olmsted were responsible for its design.

However, Witches Tower wasn’t the only creation credited to the Olmsted Brothers. They were also responsible for designing many parks and public spaces around the country, including New York City’s Central Park, the National Park Service’s parkway system, and the landscaping on numerous college campuses.

Is the Witches Tower in Ohio Haunted?

Over the past 80+ years, the tower has become attached to a series of urban legends and stories.

Unfortunately, the tower’s aging Gothic-style architecture and neglected landscaping don’t do it any favors. However, while there is no evidence of séances, supernatural events, or witches at the tower, there is one rather chilling story.

In 1967, 16-year-old Peggy Harmeson and her boyfriend, Ronald Kevin Stevens, climbed into the tower to seek shelter during a storm. Unfortunately, the next morning their lifeless bodies were found in the tower.

The only clues to their deaths were the burns covering most of their bodies. Many presume the duo got struck by lightning while inside the tower.

With an already seedy reputation, the deaths of Peggy and Ronald added to the creepiness of the site. Officials eventually sealed off the entrances, including all of the windows. The tower remains closed to this day. 

However, drone operators have confirmed damage to the structure’s roof, which many believe is the result of lightning strikes, which could confirm the cause of death for the couple.

Keep in Mind: If you were planning to visit the Warren Occult Museum, it is no longer open to the public. So Why Did The Warren Occult Museum Close?

Things to Do in Hills & Dales MetroPark

You’ll have to visit Hills & Dales MetroPark to experience Witches Tower. While the tower may draw tourists, it’s not the only thing to see and do at the park. Here are a handful of other activities to keep you entertained.

A person hiking near Witches Tower in Hills and Dales MetroPark

Enjoy the Hiking and Nature Trails

Hills & Dales MetroPark is home to more than 2 miles of walking and hiking trails.

Lace up your hiking boots and set out on a fun adventure. The Adirondack Trail is a 1.4-mile loop where guests can experience the beauty of Dogwood Pond. 

Additionally, the trail features a boardwalk to maneuver through a forested wetland. It’s a must-see for nature lovers visiting the park.

Pack a Picnic

With more than 63 acres covered by creeks, rolling hills, dense woods, wildflowers, and wetlands, you’ll have plenty of spots to enjoy a picnic.

You’ll have no trouble finding the perfect picnic spot, whether you want a cozy spot next to Dogwood Pond, under the protection of a shelter, or in the soft grass.

A picnic set up near Witches Tower

Let the Kids Play

The park features a couple of natural and traditional play settings. The two play areas are close together, so it’s easy to run back and forth between the two.

Kids can run, jump, and climb until they’re tired. Additionally, the park has plenty of space for playing catch or frisbee.

Families may love the comfortable Adirondack chairs around the play areas. They can find a comfy place to relax while the children run off some energy.

Bring Your Furry Friends

Hills & Dales MetroPark doesn’t overlook furry friends. While it doesn’t have a dog park, pets are welcome.

However, they must remain leashed and under control at all times. And you can enjoy many walking trails and areas with your pet.

Keep in Mind: Looking for a haunted Rv park to stay at on your next getaway? These are the 7 Most Haunted RV Parks in America

Is Witches Tower Worth Visiting?

Witches Tower is a unique structure with an equally interesting story. The surrounding park can be an exciting place to spend an hour or two.

Would we go out of our way to visit Witches Tower? Likely not. 

However, it checks all the boxes if traveling through the area and looking for a unique and interesting place to go. Just stay away from the tower after dark; things can get creepy really fast!

1 comment
  1. I use to go to witches tower when I was younger with my sister and our friends we would climb the stairs to the top. We heard all the ghost stories and just had to see for ourselves. We were young and would go while we were all partying. We were real lucky know one got hurt back then. We did know of the true story about the couple dying there that’s what made it so fascinating to us. I love seeing this story behind it and of how wonderful the park is because back in the day we lived going there and that was in the 1970s.

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