I don’t really know what it was about the 70’s that made people so aware of the paranormal. Guys like Yuri Geller hit the workshop circuit, charging ridonculous quantities of cash money to teach people how to bend spoons with their mind. You had this post-hippie human potential movement out there convincing people that they could walk through walls, levitate or project their consciousness around the world with nothing more than some meditation and a high fiber diet. Prestigious universities had actual parapsychology programs. Students and professors were receiving grants to investigate the homes of maniacs for signs of reported paranormal activity. To top it all off, The United State government and The Soviet government engaged in a psychic arms race to develop the best psychic soldiers that money could buy. It was a really weird time. It’s this paranormal quality that made so-called true stories of the paranormal such pop cultural hits. Shit like The Exorcist and The Amityville Horror, both alleged to be true stories. The DiFeo Murder House of Amityville Horror fame and the Smurl Poltergeist actually received a lot of headline news until both were revealed to be hoaxes but for a while they Lutzes and the Smurls were fringe-culture rock stars. Eventually these things pass and we stop hearing about the big deal hauntings but they continue to happen. If this were the 70’s, then a particular house located in Union, Missouri would be up there with the best of them. This one is pretty fucking intense.
Steve LaChance is a single father of three and in 2001 needed to find a place for his family to live on the cheap and quickly. After a bit of searching, he was sold on an old house in Union, Missouri that was in pretty good condition and in short order, after a bit of competition, he was selected by the landlady to move into the place. As soon as they moved in, neighbors began to make veiled remarks about the house. It had a reputation, it seems. People walking by the house would go out of their way to cross the street before walking in front of the property.
Immediately, Steve started to notice strange things about the house. All of the doors to the rooms had a hook and eye latch to lock each one, but the unusual thing about that was that the locks were not on the inside of the rooms to insure privacy. They were on the outside, as if to keep something inside each room. Whatever occupied the house in Union didn’t give LaChance and his children much time to settle before it began raising hell. It seemed to delight in picking on the children. Their first encounter with the forces inside the house took place with Steve’s son who had gone to the basement to bring up a hose for yard work. LaChance heard his screams from inside the house and he found his son in the kitchen in shock, claiming that something had chased him up the stairs, some formless thing that he couldn’t identify.
LaChance and the kids would leave the house with the lights shut off and return to find every light in the place on. The temperature dropped in strange places around the house and then LaChance saw it for the first time, the presence in the house made itself known to him by appearing as the undetailed shape of a person, defined only by swirling smoke and mist but black through and through. As he calmly ushered his kids out of the house to get away, they heard it for the first time, a man screaming so loud from the inside of the house that it could be heard on the outside. As they left, LaChances son informed him that the thing that chased him up from the basement was watching them from the windows. The children spent the week with Steve’s parents while he was out on business. Upon returning he managed to convince everyone that what they had plainly seen happen did not actually happen and everything was cool. Their weekend passed without incident but that was about all the rest they were going to get. Apparently, the presence in the house felt as though it had to up its game.
A phone call to the landlady didn’t help matters when Steve sheepishly asked if she knew anything about ghosts in the place. She, of course, wouldn’t admit to jack squat but did tell him that the things in the shed out back belonged to previous tenants who hadn’t stayed long and refused to come pick their stuff up.
Shortly thereafter, after LaChance did his best to talk himself out of his paranoia that he had leased a haunted house, the presence came alive like never before. As he spoke on the phone with his mother, his daughter read in her room and his sons slept in theirs, the doors began rattling on their frames, building with intensity. Shortly thereafter, the screaming from before began again, starting quietly and building with intensity along with the rattling doors. Soon, a pounding on the stairs began as if something were making its way down. The whole place sounded like a warzone, according to LaChance. As he made his way around to get his kids up and out, LaChance described the sound as the man’s screaming, now joined by the screaming of children, a cacophony of suffering that accompanied the tremors that made it seem like the entire house was trying to tear iteself apart. LaChance could feel the presence close to him as he ran with his kids to get out and the entire place smelled awful, consistent with extreme haunting stories. LaChance and his family managed to get out and leave before anything really terrible happened.
In its wake, the children have relayed stories of how the being revealed itself to them. LaChance described a vague figure but it seemed to tap directly into whatever frightened the kids most. To one of his sons, it appeared as a clown that tormented him based on the kid’s paralyzing fear of clowns. Everyone complained of a shared dream wherein they saw a man in the basement feverishly washing blood off of his body in the butcher shower that was down there. LaChances story of the Union house is the most visible but paranormal research teams have all been back there with equipment to document their findings, other families have lived there complaining of the same sort of torment that LaChance reported It is a petrifying account of a mostly undocumented haunting. LaChance, traumatized by his stay in the screaming house in Union kept in touch with the people who would later move in. Things didn’t go well for them either. Family pets would die, showing evidence of being beaten savagely. Residents were hospitalized having been pushed down the stairs by some unseen force. Some were even admitted to psychiatric hospitals after suicide attempts or crippling depression brought on by living in a house that wouldn’t let them rest.
Simply put, The Union House is a seriously fucking scary place.