Situated on the outskirts of the Manhattan city skyline, are the surprisingly Gothic-styled school buildings of Fordham University. Considered one of the “Hidden Ivies” (a cousin to the Ivy League), Fordham has turned out such a wide and famous array of alumni to include Denzel Washington, Andrew Cuomo, William J. Clark, Lana Del Ray, Alan Alda, Cardinal Francis Spellman, and even former student transfer President Donald Trump. With such a wildly successful academic program that boasts a graduation rate of above 80%, just what exactly is the real story behind the paranormal activity on the third-oldest campus in the entire state of New York?
Is Fordham University Haunted?
Fordham University was founded in 1841 under the name of St. John’s College. Jesuits ran the college at first with a heavy emphasis in turning out would-be priests, however, in 1904 both a law school and medical school were opened on campus and the school was renamed Fordham University in honor of the diminutive nearby Bronx village. Boasting an attendance around 15,000 students across nine different academic disciplines, Fordham is everything a prospective student wants….even when it comes to ghosts.
Haunted Keating Hall
Examining the paranormal activity at Fordham, it appears that the activity itself is not confined to a single area. Keating Hall (as seen in 1973’s legendary horror film The Exorcist) had a campus security officer doing a routine safety check for the building late one evening. A strange banging sound emanated from the basement area and upon inspection, to his great horror, chairs were mysteriously sliding across the room and crashing into the wall. The security guard was in fact so scared, that he tripped out of his shoes running in terror and never bothered to get them and quit the job!
The Little Girl of Martyr’s Court
Martyr’s Court is a cross section area of campus that holds two antiquated residence halls. Students in the dormitory there have for decades seen the spirit of a little girl with blonde hair who peeps from around corners in the bathrooms only to disappear when approached. At other times, preceding her presence, doors in the room will mysteriously open or close shut causing more than one student to put in a transfer to a non-haunted room across campus.
The Ghosts of Finlay Hall
Finlay Hall is exclusive to Fordham’s upperclassmen as well as ghostly spirits. Serving as the former medical school location where cadavers were routinely opened up and examined, it has its share of spiritual encounters. Cold spots, mysterious whispers are among some of the gentler haunts here. Other times, students have awoken to the feeling of having a spirit tug at their feet or at other times even shaking them awake!
Queen’s Court Exorcism
Across campus at Queen’s Court, things were so active one night that a resident Jesuit priest who stayed on campus actually had to perform a ritual blessing to ward off the spirits that caused him and the students in the hall not to get any sleep!
Today, Fordham University continues to enjoy tremendous academic success and is one of the few universities that has acknowledged its paranormal activity.