The Old Union Trust Building (now the home of the Wells Fargo Bank) is the haunted skyscraper in the world with over one hundred documented stories of various hauntings and unusual events taking place at the corner of 205 Church and Elm Streets across from New Haven County Courthouse
On November 19, 2004 the biggest police search for a ghost that ever took place in the history of ghost hunting within and outside the building during the night and the wee hours of the morning. A combined force of over twenty people from the Connecticut State Police, the New Haven Police Force, and the New Haven Fire Department along two police dogs and private security guards of the building were involved. They searched the entire building from stem to stern including all thirteen floors, the mezzanine, and the basement. Now and then the dogs yelped and howled to indicate something was present but their human companions had no luck at all. The security cameras caught nothing on tape.
This was probably the most thorough effort and determined effort to find a ghost in the building since the thirteen-story building opened up in1927 as the Union and New Haven Trust Building. There is no explanation to find why building has the greatest number of reports of ghostly activities in the world – more than one hundred supernatural incidents! It is one of the few skyscrapers in the world to be haunted. Some have speculated that being thirteen stories provide an explanations but others dispute this since it also has a mezzanine and a basement. The building is not constructed over any known burial ground or sacred Indian spot. There is no record of a curse being uttered against the building or violent or criminal activity of any kind.
Virtually every floor has recorded some supernatural incident auditory, visual, and olfactory at all times of day and night. Auditory phenomena have included disembodied voices, sorrowful moans, hands or palms slapping against the wall, footfalls, toilets flushing, lights turning on and off, and loud banging noise have been heard although no one has been present. Some of this has been detected through EVP (electronic voice recording). Others have heard their names called and turned around to see that there no one within shouting distance that could have done so. Visual phenomena within and without the building have included shadowery images and full and partial phantoms of people, usually male, dressed in business suits and casual clothing. On more than one occasion dwarfs have been reported. Olfactory phenomena has not been left out. People report smelling the familiar perfume or tobacco of a departed friend or colleague in the offices where they used to work.
The basement is considered the most scary part of the building with its maze of unused spaces where the most ghostly activity has been reported. One of my guides, Jessie Simpson, had an aunt who told her the following story in connection with the basement. A bank clerk named Eli Wilson worked for the New Haven Trust in the 1920s. He concocted a scheme in which he stole a few pennies from the accounts of people. One day he went down secretly to the bank vault to collect his ill-gotten gains. The doors of the vault slammed shut. Since he had gone down in secret after everybody had supposedly left for the weekend, nobody could hear his shouts. He soon died from asphyxiation. Jessie Simpson’s aunt in the 1970s went to work for the bank as a clerk. On her first day on the job, she was asked to bring some money down the vault. She heard some shouts and pounding. She fled and never went down again until the day she retired.