Legend of the Witch's Castle
The Witch’s Castle is located in Forest Park, Portland, Oregon. It’s at the junction of Wildwood Trail and Lower Macleay Park Trail. It is known to be haunted, a site rumored to host strange events. The rumor is further fueled by stories this Witch’s Castle has been there since the 16th Century, along with being used as a Stagecoach Junction during the 19th Century.
The crumbling structure seen today was actually built during the 1950s to house restrooms and serve as a ranger station, and was situated near the site of the old Balch family cabin. The structure was abandoned during the 1960′s, and left to vandals and natural deterioration. It is this crmbling building which became known as “The Witch’s Castle”.
Allegedly, this part of Forest Park in Northwest Portland, is home to nightly hauntings. According to Portland’s Parks and Recreation, a blood-soaked dispute between the Balch and Stump families, who both lived in the area in the 19th century, resulted in two deaths. A plaque placed in the park says it best: “Near this site stood the cabin of Danford Balch…In 1859, Balch was convicted and hanged for shooting his son-in-law.”
After an escape from jail, Balch was rearrested in July of 1859, tried and convicted, and taken to the gallows later that fall. It was the first legally held public hanging in Oregon. When this was a public restroom, the toilets would flush by themselves, causing some of the visitors to become scared and ran out fast. The small room on ground level was home to a little witches’ coven and the satanic drawing left by the group is still in that room. Since the Columbus Day Storm, this build was abandoned since it is haunted, with some reporting the sight of floating orbs and other strange events.
The door on right side of this image is the small room, rumored to have been used by a witches coven.