The Haunting of Mainstreet Cafe

Main Street Cafe… unbenounced to most of those who walk the hallowed ground, the restaurant has been haunted by lost and murdered souls, and with a haunting comes a history. In the 1830s, President Andrew Jackson led the United States through Expansion and Native American removal and population growth. However, the 1830s also brought a deadly new disease, Cholera, a virus that caused severe dehydration and spread through human waste. Cholera wrought havoc among farming communities that were booming much in part due to the the construction of the Erie Canal in the 1820s. Work on the canal required foreign European immigrants throughout the Cleveland area. Medina farmers used the human waste from Cleveland to fertilize their crops. Cholera had an easy entry into Medina.
The land directly on public square of Medina consisted of a courthouse, small shops, and possibly a furniture shop. The land just blocks from the square were farms in which human feces was used. Medina’s undertaker, who worked out of the furniture store that now houses Main Street Cafe, presumingly passed away due to the fatal disease. This begins Daniel’s haunting of Main Street begins.
No odd events occurred until the renovation of the old wine shop directly next to the Main Street Cafe. The owner of the adjacent shop had found human remains and instead of calling the police, he simply threw the bones away to avoid conflict with the police. This caused a stir in a certain vengeful spirit that took up residence in the fancy cafe. The ghost, dubbed “Daniel” by a local psychic, only caused small, insignificant, events at first like hot water suddenly gushing from faucets, unexplainable cold drafts, and exploding lightbulbs, but the occurrences slowly turned violent. For some unknown reason, the malevolent apparition latched onto the dishwasher, Frank. The spirit had broken the faithful employee’s Marine compass, blew up a lightbulb nearby that led to some nasty cuts, and then pushed the poor man down the basement stairs which caused an injured shoulder and neck. But why did “Daniel” attach himself to a restaurant dishwasher? Was there a possible rivalry between their ancestors? Did the Marine Compass spur on a rage within the ghost? And why did the owner throw away human bones? More importantly, how did “Daniel’s” bones come to be buried in a wall? What is “Daniel’s” story? So sit down, get comfortable, and listen up, as we tell you the true origin of one of the lone souls that resides in the Main Street Cafe.

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Ghost Daniel's New Home

Ghost Daniel's New Home

The birth of Daniel took place sometime in the 1810s in Cleveland, Ohio. The State remained on the frontlines at the time in the War of 1812. In his teenage years, Daniel took a trip to the small farming town of Medina to see the land. Life went on normally for Daniel; he most likely had a job and some money, but he prepared himself to return home to Cleveland. However, disaster struck in the 1830s while Daniel waited for his parents to pick him up. A country-wide epidemic of a new disease began. Daniel never saw his parents again, along with the many others who lost their lives to cholera. Image courtesy of Medina Community Design Committee View File Details Page

Cholera Epidemic

Cholera Epidemic

In 1832, European immigrants brought cholera which spread throughout northeast Ohio. This deadly disease spread through feces contaminating drinking water and food. Those who have cholera experience severe diarrhea, cramps, vomiting, and eventually death. When the epidemic first came to the 1800s, no cure existed and thousands of people died. The disease then spread through polluted Lake Erie, and being a port, many European immigrants and businessmen came through Cleveland. With poor sanitation, cholera spread quickly. At this time, Medina farmers used Cleveland body waste as manure. This resulted in the entire crop becoming infected. The disease expanded through Medina at a fast pace and killed many people living in the city. The worst infections were caught by the young and elderly, including Daniel. Image Courtesy of: Ohio History Central View File Details Page

Poor Daniel

Poor Daniel

The invention of the telegraph came about in the 1830s or 1840s, but Medina didn't have access to that technology until many years later. Daniel's loved ones were never informed and Daniel had been unable to return home. Instead, when nobody claimed his deceased body, the undertaker had no choice but to cremate him and store his urn in the wall of his shop with other unclaimed bodies. Poor Daniel, disaster only struck again and again. Photo courtesy of: Teaching and Learning Cleveland View File Details Page

The fires of Medina

The fires of Medina

In 1848, the cabinet shop and most of the public square burned down in the fire. Most businesses and records of land, taxes, and deaths burned in the inferno. The only place that remained standing; the old courthouse, however, since Daniel's body consisted of ashes, they were simply moved to a new shop, next to the cafe. Medina didn't learn its lesson and in 1870, the square had been struck by lightning once again. The volunteer firefighting program spread all throughout the area only had buckets of water. All of the square burned down once again except the original courthouse. There's some speculation that suggests that the reports given after the fires are incomplete, and that some people did perish in the grand fires, although there's no solid proof. Photo courtesy of: Medina Country Historical Society View File Details Page

Psychic Sonya

Psychic Sonya

Over the course of many years, Main Street Cafe has changed hands and turned into many stores while Daniel's bones rested in their place. In 2005, the neighboring store ran an illegal operation of gun and drug selling. During the store's renovation for more space, the owner found bones but, he just disposed of them because if the police became informed he would be busted. Since then, mysterious things having occurred at Main Street. At one point a local psychic came onto Main Street, named Sonya, who discovered the name of the Ghost was in fact, Daniel. He walked right up to the psychic claiming he just wanted to go home. Daniel, then, soon set free from the land of Main Street, but the hauntings didn't stop. It's impossible for Sonya to clear all the spirits since they're spread out over a large area. Photo courtesy of The Gazette View File Details Page

A Deep Dark Past

A Deep Dark Past

In fact, the old and mysterious town of Medina has deep, dark past. Not surprising considering all the lost records that burnt in the fire, but just how far does it goz On the corner of the square, where Cool Beans remains, lies the black heart of Medina. In the 1800s, the original court house on the square, not only a jail, but the building on the land of Cool Beans, in its time, was a cabin that also held criminals. It's possible that several murders took place in both the jail spaces, and the spirits of the murdered souls now haunt the land. In Cool Beans, a shadow has been seen wandering the building as well as a strange orange orb, and knives are known to go missing. However, the disturbing events don't stop there. Photo Courtesy of Community Design Committee View File Details Page

The Hauntings Today

The Hauntings Today

Next to Cool Beans, the area where an old bank once stood, lies the sight of several murders. During the 1800s, the spot served as a hotel for travelers. Sometime after the epidemic, the hotel's reputation plummeted with the killings. Even more interesting, the old buildings on Court Street are connected with old passages that were once used as places to deliver goods, and also connected to the dirt roads according to Sonya. With the tunnels, the spirits can freely travel from building to building which explains why the hauntings continued after Daniel was granted freedom, and why the strange events are happening in other establishments. Whether the apparitions are victims of an unstoppable disease, or unpreventable murders, or whether they haunt the cafe, or the other shops, the land will remain haunted until the final secrets are solved and the souls of the past can finally be set free. Photo Courtesy of Clevelandmemory.org View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Becca Liebler, Olivia Storey, Nic Brodersen, “The Haunting of Mainstreet Cafe,” Discover Medina, accessed March 26, 2017, http://discovermedina.org/items/show/242.

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