I've been writing a lot about my home state of California. The moment I left I've been homesick, but now that I'm learning about so much haunted history not thirty minutes from my old door, I'm heartbroken. The place I'm focusing on today is one I've passed many times not knowing the stories surrounding it and it's status as "One of the Scariest Haunted Sites in California": Acacia Memorial Park.
I'm sure you've seen the cemetery too, even if just in passing. Maybe you've been there. No matter the relation, I have a strong inkling we've all had a brush with this staple of Modesto life.
Why is Acacia Memorial Park considered to be so haunted?
Known as "the prettiest thirteen acres in Modesto" and once as the Masonic Cemetery, Acacia Memorial Park was established in 1872 by Stanislaus Lodge #206. The original purchase was for 5 acres of land at $30 an acre from a man named John Robinson. Wow. In 1917 Acacia turned into not-for-profit business which it still operates as today. For those interested in paying their respects at graveyards, notable memorials that can be seen here are U.S. Congressman James Carson Needham who died in 1942 and pro football player Don Shinnick, who held the NFL record for "career interceptions". If you are interested in visiting the cemetery, guests are welcome Mon-Sat from 8 AM-4 PM.
But I have to say, none of this is what interests me. I want to hear about why this graveyard is considered to be one of the most haunted places in California. With over thirteen acres and 15,000 plots, there are bound to be stories. And one Google search will show you there are quite a few reports.
Those visiting or driving by the cemetery have reported hearing the "mournful sounds of crying and screaming". What's really fascinating is that these people say they've heard it both and night and during the day. Now, of course, you would expect trying coming from a graveyard, but the "strong feeling of foreboding" they felt could've been something else.
This is a popular place to ghost hunt, but if you do decide to go, make sure to be mindful and respectful. I know where I'll be heading when I go back home. My only question is: Who's coming with me?