Main Street business owners tell of supposed hauntings


File photo: A scarecrow created by Drury Plaza Hotel employees in St. Charles on display at the “Legends & Lanterns” event on Main Street.
Photo by Michelle Sproat.

Main Street in St. Charles is said to be one of the most haunted places in the city.

Locals tell legends of paranormal activity that occurs on Main.

Larry Muench, the owner of the Farmer’s House, an allegedly haunted place, has heard of the stories rich in history, but has never experienced anything unusual himself. Muench said the building has been open since 1805 when it was owned by first Missouri governor Alexander McNair. 

 “There’s been about 10 owners who’ve lived here. It was a saloon for almost 100 years, then became a boarding house for about 60 years,” Muench said. “We bought it in 1972, repaired it and made it our tobacco shop.  It’s been in our family for 102 years.”  

As far as paranormal activity, the building has had some interesting stories passed down about the supposed ghosts. While Muench hasn’t had any direct experiences, his family can’t say the same.  

“When we were remodeling this place, my mother in law, who smoked cigarettes all the time, heard this man’s French voice all the time, and he would always steal her cigarettes,” he said. “She could never find them.  She would put them down, and they would be gone. She would literally go through packs of them.”

Muench said a firefighter who lived in the house committed suicide in the 1950s.  There are stories that a woman who lived in the house would make dummies, which would turn to face the other way when she was away.

These are not the only paranormal happenings that are said to occur on Main Street. Tompkins by the Rack House, formerly known as the Mother-In-Law-House, is also known for being haunted by ghosts. The house was originally built by Francis Kremer in 1860 and was the first duplex in Saint Charles. Part of the house was a residence for his mother-in-law and the other part was for him and his wife. 

Josh French, an owner of Tompkins by the Rack House, said “There are four ghosts that live in the walls here. We have the captain, a ship captain, he’s about six feet tall […]There’s a little boy who unfortunately met his demise falling down the stairs.  He usually hangs around the staircase. There’s a little girl as well who comes around and goes.  The mother-in-law usually hangs around the main dining area. At the end of her life, she wasn’t well taken-care-of and was left to finish off her life alone.”

French said the previous owner had employees say goodnight to the mother-in-law before locking up at night.

A few of the restaurant’s employees have had direct experiences with the lost souls, he said. 

“One of my servers went downstairs and was getting something from behind the bar, and glanced up and saw something out of her peripheral and turned.  She did see the figure of the captain,” French said. “When we were renovating, we were doing a big rummage sale, and had things laying out everywhere, one of the girls said one of the old chains from a light we brought up from downstairs just started swaying back and forth.”