top of page

Lebold Mansion - Abilene, Kansas

Location Information

Date: 30 July 2022     Type: Residential Museum

Location Title: Lebold Mansion

City/State: Abilene, Kansas

Investigation Times: 7:00 PM - 12:00 AM

Status: Analysis


Weather Information

Sunrise: 06:28 AM   Sunset: 08:42 PM

High Temperature: 83 °F   Low Temperature: 65 °F

Sky Condition: Partly Cloudy  Wind: ESE at 5-10 mph

Humidity: 64%   Precipitation: 0.0 in

Lunar Phase: Waxing Crescent  % disk visible: 3%

Solar X-Rays: Normal   Geomagnetic Field: Quiet

Pressure: 30.15 mmHg  

Investigators Present

Becky Ray
Jennifer Sprague

Sarah Crowe

Julie Klos Burch
Lindsey Kadri

Greg Payne


Jennifer and Sarah were investigating the attic. At 9:29 pm, Sarah saw a wispy line of light between them to her left. They were only a few feet apart at the time. At 9:30 pm, Sarah recorded a possible EVP. It sounds like someone responds in a gruff voice after Jennifer asks, "can you see us?" 

submitted by Sarah

9:29PM Lebold Mansion Attic

9:29 PM Audio from Jennifer's recorder during the same time as Sarah's video. 

submitted by Jennifer

10:18 PM - The motion-activated camera left in the dugout was activated with nothing visible that may have set the camera off, but there is a possible EVP/voice. 

submitted by Sarah


Constructed of native Kansas limestone, the mansion was built in 1880 by banker Conrad Lebold.

In 1857 Tim and Eliza Hersey, the founders and first inhabitants of Abilene, built a stone dugout where the Lebold Mansion stands today. The Hersey dugout was incorporated into the construction of the mansion's tower and has been preserved as part of the foundation located at the tower's base. Visitors can still view the dugout when touring the home.

The Mansion has served many purposes over the years. In the 1920s, it was redecorated by C. L. Brown as a boarding house for the young female operators of his United Telephone Company. In 1930 it became an orphanage and served as an apartment building from 1940 to 1970.

The house was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

It has survived the years intact and was maintained as a historic house museum from 1973 until 2010. It was considered by many to be one of the finest Victorian decorative art museums in the midwest. It has been featured in Victorian Homes Magazine and Victorian Decorating and Lifestyles Magazine.

In 2000, The Lebold Mansion was sold to Victorian Interiors Restoration Service from San Francisco. They redecorated Its 23 rooms with period furniture, wallpaper, drapes, and other furnishings from their private collection. They used the Mansion as a showroom and tour house for the next ten years.

Victorian Interiors sold the Mansion in 2010. It changed hands twice, and then in June 2021, the mansion was sold as a foreclosure. Thankfully approximately $750,000 worth of vintage period wallpaper remained, as well as an 8' x 8' commissioned painting on canvas of Venus and her servants that is mounted on the ceiling of one of the first-floor rooms.

The current owner, Joseph Tatner, is a published author, professional business and technical writer, computer analyst, business and technical consultant, plus a professional actor, singer, dancer, director, choreographer, and producer with numerous credits, awards, and wide public recognition. Having worked in four different Ritz-Carlton Hotels, his goal for the mansion is to always provide a fun experience with something new to enjoy. He is attempting to renovate the property himself and started a Lebold Mansion GoFundMe page.

Investigators Notes

Jennifer, Lead Investigator: 

For this investigation, we started with a wonderful tour by Mr. Tatner. We then split up into groups with Sarah and me in the attic and Becky, Sarah, and Lindsey in the basement. 

Personal experiences by investigators in the attic:

The feeling of hair being touched, witnessing an odd series of lights which we could not find a probable cause, the feeling of being touched which might have been spiderwebs - however, we did not find any in the area. 

The other area of interest was the original "dugout" under the tower. Not much of note was experienced by our team members here. Some camera fluctuations were odd; however, nothing was caught on the camera. At one point, Sarah smelled tobacco, but this may be due to the room being an older apartment where somebody smoked in the past.

During this investigation, we also experimented with Automatic Writing—one group in the dugout area and one upstairs. Nothing was noted during the time. We will post document pictures soon. 

In spiritualism, automatic writing is produced involuntarily when the subject's attention is ostensibly directed elsewhere. The phenomenon may occur when the subject is alert, awake, or in a trance.

None of our equipment recorded anything out of the ordinary. We had a camera set up downstairs and various motion-related objects. One fluctuation in the upstairs room with a motion-related object was unexplained, but nothing definite. We have one possible EVP caught in the attic by Sarah. 

Many investigators did experience battery drainage during this investigation.

Lebold Mansion is a very beautiful place to investigate and worth checking out more than once. Mr. Tatner is a great host, and we hope to return soon!

bottom of page