Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
By Abigail Ormiston, Staff Writer
Legend says a young woman has haunted Butz since the 1950s, when she faced an untimely death by her own hands.
In 1956, a young college student named Wanda supposedly resided in Butz Hall. Wanda was worried about her school work and activities and discovered that she had become pregnant. This news was unbearable to her, because it was not acceptable for an unmarried young woman.
Wanda thought of only one solution; she created a noose around her neck and plunged from a staircase to her death.
Many people believe in this haunting tale, including students and staff of the college.
Aiyana Allanson, a freshman, claims to have seen Wanda. While exploring her new dorm, Allanson said, “I got to the very top of the [middle] staircase and I got really cold, like I was shivering when just before I was sweating.” Then, a ghostly figure appeared and ran over the railing repeatedly. “I got kind of freaked and ran back to my room,” Allanson admitted.
According to Arielle “A. J.” Brent, the Graduate Hall Director of Butz Hall, only one person has told her that she has witnessed something supernatural. An international student working for Dorney Park stated that she had seen Wanda around the building.
“I haven’t experienced anything myself while in Butz, but I just don’t think I have the ability to…I lived in a haunted building when I went to Moravian and I really didn’t experience anything there either.” Brent said. This is Brent’s second school year living on the new side of Butz, which was built after Wanda’s supposed suicide.
Why people believe in ghost stories isn’t much of a mystery.
Dr. LuAnn Fletcher, Ph.D., Professor of English, Chair of the Department of History, Literature and Languages, said, “People get pleasure out of being scared. That’s why the horror genre is popular.”
“People don’t want death to be the end of things, which is why people use séances and other methods to communicate with those who have passed,” Fletcher explained.
No information could be found on a student who committed suicide or met an unfortunate death, from the yearbooks of 1956 and 1957.
If the tale is true or not, no one may really know, but those who have experienced something supernatural stand by their word.