Hell House and the Haunted Tree
Fort Collins, CO
This is an interesting house. It has MANY stories to tell, but no facts to back up it’s claims. Lets start with that.
There are a lot of different claims here. Some center around the house, some around the tree in the front. The locals call it Hell Tree and of course, Hell house.
One claim is of a white or grey blob figure seen floating around the property. I find it quit interesting that the descriptions aren’t “mists” or “apparition” but BLOB. Hmmm
Another claim is that when you walk around the property you will hear laughter. Some say its a little girl, others say it sounds like a woman, but always it’s female. This is accompanied by the sound of bells jingling.
Next is the claim that one second the tree is just a normal tree. But when you look back you see a noose swinging from the branch. I couldn’t even count how many stories I found with that claim. A few also said that it was not ONLY a noose, but a body as well. It seems to vanish just as silently and quickly as it appears.
Screams of men and women are heard in the house and on the grounds. Sometimes conversations and arguments accompany these screams.
Feelings seem to be a BIG factor in the legend of Hell house AND the tree. Every story I found state somewhere or another that as soon as they past the fence they became sick, scared, sad, angry, or all of the above. One woman reported that she was shoved back threw the fence by something that she said, “seemed like a mass of hatred”. People who get past the fence report that standing in front of Hell Tree they inexplicably started crying. They had no idea why, but they cried none the less. This also happens in the bathroom of the house.
The house was built by a man named George Strauss. The home is actually called Strauss Cabin. In 1907 he died when he got pinned under a fence during a flood and drowned.
The Undocumented History/Rumors
The house was owned by a VERY unstable man and his family. He had a wife and two daughters. I haven’t been able to find anything about their ages. He had caught a farm hand stealing from him and hanged him from the tree in front of the house. (Hell Tree). This was just the next step in his failing mental health.
The bank was about to foreclose on the farm and this pushed him over the edge. He hanged his remaining two farm hands from the Hell Tree. He then took a shot gun and shot and killed his wife. (She was taking a bath at the time.) He then found his two daughters and killed them. Some stories say he shot them, some say he suffocated them. Some stories have him killing his horses next, some stories don’t mention anything bout it.
When he was done with his murderous rampage, he killed himself by hanging from the same tree as his farm hands.