Shoe Factory Road in Hoffman Estates, Illinois

Read about this location and more in Legends and Lore of Illinois: The Definitive Collection

Read about this location and more in Legends and Lore of Illinois: The Definitive Collection

Legends & Lore of Illinois CD-ROMThe most distinctive feature on Shoe Factory Road in Hoffman Estates is an old, derelict Spanish Colonial revival style building. Just down the street, in the direction of the Poplar Creek Forest preserve, sits an abandoned farm. Both are rumored to be haunted.

The unique stone house was at one time the Charles A. Lindbergh School, named after the famed aviator and American patriot. According to John Russell Ghrist, who has written on and researched the school extensively, the current structure was built in 1929 to replace the Helberg School, named after a neighboring farmer, after it burnt down.

The Lindbergh School’s first enrollment consisted of 29 students from the surrounding community. Their teacher was named Anne W. Fox, who would be employed there for most of the school’s existence.

The institution was closed in 1948 when rural schools began to be consolidated into the modern Illinois public school system. The stone structure spent the next 30 years as a residence, until it became abandoned sometime during the 1970s.

According to the Daily Herald, an archeological survey of the property in July 1998 yielded pottery shards that could have been used by Amerindians over one thousand years ago. The archeological firm that conducted the survey for Terrestris Development Company described the shards as “weathered and hard to classify.”

In 2001, the development company offered to donate the former school to the village of Hoffman Estates, but the village board was unable to find anyone who would shoulder the cost of bringing the building up to code.

By 2007, the effort to save the building had gained momentum and a small sum of money had been raised. In May, the village board debated a plan to turn the former school and residence into a museum. According to the Daily Herald, a final vote on the structure was put off until July, and then extended to August. As of today, the fate of the old Lindbergh School is undecided.

The only source of information on the alleged hauntings of Shoe Factory Road come from the Shadowlands Haunted Places Index. One entry claims that the stone house became abandoned after a child killed his parents. The ghost of the child, who plays with a knife, can be seen sitting on the steps.

The haunted farm, and its nefarious barn, are associated with several stories. One story has the farmer going insane and murdering his family, burying them at the middle of a circle of trees. The other has the family being murdered and hung in the barn by a mental patient.

None of these stories, to my knowledge, can be substantiated. For more information on the Charles A. Lindbergh School, visit Note: the building was demolished in September 2007.

Sorry guys, this page is copyright Black Oak Media, inc., 2014. You do not have permission to copy this for any reason. Please learn how to cite your work.


Legends and Lore of Illinois Vol. 1 Digital Edition

Order all 12 issues of the Legends and Lore of Illinois from 2007 in a special digital edition for your favorite e-readers. Places covered in Vol. 1: Bachelor’s Grove, Greenwood Cemetery, Devil’s Gate, Chesterville Cemetery, Dug Hill Road, Resurrection Cemetery, “Cemetery X,” Shoe Factory Road, Ridge Cemetery, Cuba Road, Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, and St. James-Sag! Plus, read bonus “personal experiences” and put your knowledge of these locations to the test with challenging trivia questions. Don’t miss these classic issues from the archives of the Legends and Lore of Illinois.

Order it today for Kindle.
Order it today for Nook.
Order it today for Kobo.


  1. John Russell Ghrist says:

    I’ve seen this article about this schoolhouse for a long time on your site. I wrote a 500 page book on the history of this place. It was an old school that farmer kids went to many years ago. There is nothing haunted about it. The mayor at that time and the developers went back on their word to save the building for historical purposes. They allowed vandals to destroy it. to make it look this way.
    The whole thing is a sad story about how stupid politicians could have saved something nice for the community.. No one was ever killed there either. We were working with a state historical group and just about had the money to save it. The building could not be moved. I attended all the meetings and the town used police guards to keep us away while they knocked it down.
    John Russell Ghrist



  1. […] as Mike, Aurelia, Greg, and he climbed the stone steps of the abandoned, chapel-like home on Shoe Factory Road in Hoffman Estates, […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: