The Sallie House

The Myth

"Excerpt taken from Haunted Kansas by Lisa Hefner Heitz" The Ghost of Sallie the Man-Hater

A turn of the century house near the bluffs of the Missouri River on the northeast edge of the city is home to Atchison's most famous (or infamous) ghost. Sallie has been featured on the television series Sightings several times.

The house Sallie haunts was originally the residence of an Atchison physician. The doctor lived with his family in the upstairs of the house and used the first floor as his office, surgery room, and examination rooms. As the story goes, Sallie was a young girl about six years old who was brought into the doctor's office one day suffering from a grave illness. At this point, the story line splits into two conflicting versions of what type of illness afflicted the child.

One version indicates that Sallie's distraught mother rushed into the doctor's office one morning with her child, moaning in pain, in her arms. The little girl had been up all night with a stomachache that toward morning had suddenly become severe. Ascertaining that the child suffered from acute appendicitis, the doctor quickly moved her into his surgical room and began preparing to operate on her to remove the inflammed appendix. The pale child was crying and clutching her abdomen. Her already frightened eyes became panic-stricken as she saw the doctor laying out a shining line of scalpels and other surgical instruments. With her tormented mother standing helpless beside her, Sallie struggled as the doctor held her down on the surgical table while applying an anesthetic mask soaked in ether to her face. Sallie's struggles slowed, but she was not yet fully under the effects of the ether when the doctor picked up a scalpel and began to cut. Sallie screamed weakly and opened her eyes as the doctor made the incision, but the doctor would not stop his surgery for fear her appendix would burst. Before she closed her eyes for the last time, little Sallie gazed at her tormentor, the doctor, with fear and loathing, and then she went limp. The surgery was to no avail. The child's appendix had burst, and she died a short time later on the doctor's table.

An alternate version has little Sallie, around 1905 or 1906, brought to see the doctor for a lung disorder. A mild respiratory problem had worsened, and she was having trouble breathing. When she was brought to see the doctor, he was negligent and overlooked the seriousness of her condition. Shortly after, the child died from pneumonia. The doctor moved from the house not long after her death.








Is the Sallie House truly haunted? What spirits or entities are there? Is it demonic in nature?

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