URBAN LEGENDS

MISSOURI - Epperson House

by: blueowl

I'm a collector. I believe I have retained every real-life ghost story I've ever heard. There are varied and apocryphal stories regarding the background of the house, and I have only my own and personally related stories to go by, but it holds a place in my heart.

Once the house of a prominent family and now part of the UMKC campus, Epperson House hearkens back to an age of propriety, with a ballroom, an organ loft, and a formal arrival entry.

There are many stories of hearing late-night organ music coming from the house, strange lights and forms in the windows. To my knowledge, no formal investigation has been done. Anyone with any different info?

A campus security officer I knew from my days at UMKC related an experience there, which he claimed came "right from the horse's mouth." One night, an officer was patrolling and noticed a strange light in a window and pulled around to the back of the house, where the driveway/entry is. He had just stepped into the building when he heard another car coming quickly up the driveway. The driveway makes a relatively sharp turn, which he heard the car make, then a slamming on of brakes. When the officer rushed outside, there was no second car, but his own car was several feet forward of where he had parked -- and there was a set of skid marks from his own car being shoved forward with great velocity. Based on this and others' experiences, several security people would not go to Epperson House alone.

I attended a wedding there in the mid-80s, and the house was open. We went up to the turret from where I was told the original Epperson spied on his rival, William Rockhurst Nelson (whose house was visible from the turret -- now the Nelson-Atkins museum). As we came back into the house, I felt an intense sensation of being stared at and turned in that direction, only to be facing the organ I had heard so much about. There was also a palpable shove to indicate we should move along and get out of there. Although separated by several feet, both of us felt the shove at the same time.