La Crosse Haunted History

Halloween is my favorite time of the year. The chill in the air, the horror movie marathons on TV, and the endless aisles of candy make this the perfect time. Like all Halloween fanatics, I love a good ghost story. I am fascinated by the mystery of it all. I say it’s genetic because as long as I can remember my family has believed in the paranormal.  I have even converted my boyfriend, a firm non-believer in the ghostly phenomenon, to consider the possibility. That is why I am lucky to have grown up in a great old town with such rich history. La Crosse, once being a major hub along the Mississippi River, has years of antiquity in its 100-year-old buildings.  Naturally, these buildings are wonderful spots for ghost stories to arise.  In honor of Halloween, here are 5 haunted places in La Crosse, WI:


  1. Del’s Bar

Patron’s love to stop into Del’s Bar downtown not only for awesome Bloody Mary’s, but also for the occasional spook. It is rumored that employees not only hear giggling but also tell the tale of a maintenance worker who was once shooed out of the women’s restroom by the unaccompanied voice of a woman telling him to get out.

     2.   Bodega Brew Pub

The Bodega is a hometown classic with an impressive repertoire of beer sure to appeal to all beer enthusiasts. The beer isn’t the only thing packing a punch though. The Bodega was once a pool hall, Malin Pool and Sample Room, owned by Paul Malin. In 1901, Malin hung himself in the basement of the establishment and has been haunting the building ever since. Past owners and employees have testified to strange noises, objects moving, and even seeing the ghost of Paul Malin strolling around the premises.

     3.  Old Holmbo Residence

Nicolai Holmbo haunts the Old Holmbo Residence where he hung himself in the front room of the house in 1904. This home on the north side of La Crosse, WI is home to an apparition who, according to neighbors, is seen peering down the dark street at night. Other incidents include loud noises and screams coming from the house although it had not been inhabited for a long time.

     4.  Coate Hall University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Sorry to the freshmen in Coate. If you didn’t previously know Coate was haunted, you do now. Past residents have personally experienced many a frightening night in Coate. From writing on the walls/bathroom mirrors to unusual figures appearing in the bathroom stalls; this dorm is no joke.

     5.  The Warehouse

Rumor has it that the spirit of a little girl lurks around The Warehouse, a non-alcoholic concert venue here in La Crosse, WI. The girl is normally seen when construction and renovation are being done to the building, so she can have a good look at what changes are being made.  Security has also reported doors opening and shutting without reason. It is an old building, built in 1888, so there is undoubtedly some form of energy occupying the space.