Starved Rock State Park is a natural, scenic woodland park surrounding a large butte overlooking the Illinois River. It contains 18 canyons and 13 miles of trails. American Indians inhabited the site for several thousand years before the French arrived and built a fort at the location. According to legend, Potawatomi Indians trapped a group of Illiniwek on the butte and starved them into submission, giving the rock formation its name. In March 1960, three women were murdered in the park, and their bodies were found in one of the canyons. Eventually, a man named Chester Weger was convicted of the crime. Some visitors to the park have claimed to hear groans and other disembodied voices amidst the rock formations.
Between 1685 and 1702, Henri de Tonti was the most powerful man in central Illinois. He accompanied René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle in his exploration of the Illinois country, and La Salle left him to hold Fort Saint Louis when he returned to France. During his time in the Illinois River Valley, he is rumoured to have accumulated over $100,000 in gold, which he buried around Starved Rock. He told a priest about the gold just before he died, but it has never been found despite search attempts in the 1750s by the French and the Potawatomie.
Legends and Lore of Illinois: Investigation Reports
This collection consists of 47 haunted locations from the archives of the Legends and Lore of Illinois, arranged alphabetically and by category, with over 60 accompanying photos. Many of these photos have never been seen before. Inside, you will find the history, ghost stories, and folklore of popular locations such as Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery, Resurrection Cemetery and Archer Avenue, Manteno State Hospital, Lakey’s Creek, and the Peoria State Hospital, plus local haunts such as Ashmore Estates, Chanute Air Force Base, Vishnu Springs, and Peck Cemetery. Learn the real stories behind the legends: misconceptions and misinformation about these places and more are tackled head on.