HAUNTED WASHINGTON: ABE LINCOLN’S GHOST

President Abe Lincoln is by far the most seen and heard ghost to haunt the White House. The president’s ghost is most often seen, befittingly, in the Lincoln bedroom, but Lincoln never slept in that room. Rather, he used it as a Cabinet room and signed the Emancipation Proclamation there.

One of the first reports of “Sensing” Lincoln’s ghost roaming the White House halls came from the very practical Theodore Roosevelt, who lived in the White House from 1901 to 1909.

First Lady Grace Coolidge, (Above) wife of President Calvin Coolidge, was the first to claim to have seen Lincoln's ghost.  She insisted that she saw Lincoln looking towards the Potomac River from the Oval Office.  (During Lincoln’s administration the Potomac ran much closer to the White House than it does today)

The no-nonsense Queen Wilhelmina (Below) of the Netherlands visited the United States for about two week in June of 1942 as guest of the U.S. government.

While in Washington, she addressed the U.S. Congress (The first queen to do so) and spent a night at the White House, staying in the Lincoln bedroom.  After she had retired for the evening and was soundly asleep, the Queen awoke after hearing a persistent knocking on her door.  Thinking that there might be news of her war torn homeland, she stepped from the bed, opened the door, saw before her President Abe Lincoln, and promptly fainted.    
   
Around that same time, long time White House employee Lillian Rogers Parks said that while working in a small room near the Lincoln bedroom when she heard footsteps coming from the Lincoln room and that she kept turning expecting to see someone come near her, but no one ever did. Roosevelt’s secretary, Mary Eben, said she was saw Lincoln laying on his bed (another version says she saw the President pulling on  his boots in the bedroom)  and White House guest Carl Sandburg claimed to have "sensed" Lincoln do the same as well.

Eleanor Roosevelt said that she sensed Lincoln’s presence repeatedly throughout the White House and remarked that she always had the feeling of being watched when she worked in her very busy office.  FDR’s dog, Fala, would sometimes bark at an empty chair.

A naked Winston Churchill was waddling about in the Lincoln bedroom when he saw Lincoln’s ghost. There are two versions of the story. In the first version there was knock on the. The Prime Minster opened the door and purportedly saw the ghost of Abraham Lincoln standing there.

Churchill slammed the door shut, demanded to be moved to another room across the hall and vowed to never enter the Lincoln bedroom again.

In the second version of the same sighting, Churchill had just stepped out of a bath and was enjoying  a cigar and a glass of scotch when Lincoln appeared, standing by the fireplace. The pair are said to have started at each other for some time before the ghost faded away.

One night at 3 AM, President Harry Truman was awaken by a series of loud raps on his door.  He stepped out of bed, opened the door and found no one but publicly attributed the knock to Abe Lincoln.  The President’s daughter, Margaret said she heard also heard a loud knocking on her door in the White House and also believed it was Lincoln.

Gerald Ford's daughter Susan Ford refused to sleep in the Lincoln Bedroom and Ronald Reagan’s daughter, Maureen, insisted that she saw Lincoln in the Lincoln Bedroom while staying there during her father’s administration.

I'm not kidding” she said  "We've really seen it. When I told my parents what I saw they looked at me a little weirdly." Maureen said that the spirit appeared to her in the early morning hours as an red and sometimes orange aura.  Years later, First Lady Nancy Reagan said that the family dog, Rex, would often stand outside the Lincoln Bedroom door and bark loudly but refused to go in.

The last reported sighting of Lincoln’s ghost came in the early 1980s when the White House operations foreman, Tony Savoy, came into the White House and saw Lincoln sitting in a chair at the top of some stairs.