It's been called the "most popular urban legend in Indiana" but the truth is, the House of Blue Lights legend made one man's life very difficult.

Urban Legends

Every place has its own version of an urban legend.  In Indiana, there are several urban legends that many folks all across the state know.  From the hitchhiking ghost to the notoriously haunted Avon Bridge, Indiana is full of urban legends spawned from decades of local lore.

Photo by Frank Okay on Unsplash
Photo by Frank Okay on Unsplash
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Britannica describes urban legends as nothing more than local folklore.

Urban legend, in folklore, a story about an unusual or humorous event that many people believe to be true but that is not true.

While most urban legends are harmless, the most popular urban legend in Indiana actually made one man's real life very difficult.

Indiana's Most Popular Urban Legend

Recently Explore combed through hundreds of urban legends to find the most popular one in each state.  According to Explore the most popular urban legend in the Hoosier state is the legend of the House of Blue Lights

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The Legend of the House of Blue Lights

The legend of the House of Blue Lights was inspired by simple Christmas lights in the 1940s, Explore explains: 

 

Our story begins with millionaire Skiles Test, who built a luxurious — and eccentric — remote farmhouse. The property was uniquely notable for the blue Christmas lights that Test hung up. Test also gained a bit of unwanted fame for his parties, leading to a rumor sometime in the 1940s that he displayed his deceased wife's body in a transparent glass coffin wrapped in blue lights

Of course, this led to many people wanting to see the elusive coffin wrapped in blue lights and teenagers often flocked to Skiles' house.  The problem?  All of Skiles ex-wives outlived him, therefore there's no way this legend could even be real.

Photo by m wrona on Unsplash
Photo by m wrona on Unsplash
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Explore goes on to explain that this false urban legend, caused very real problems for a real person.

Unfortunately, this obsession led to a very real problem for Test: curious teens trespassing on his property en masse through the 1960s, according to Historic Indianapolis. He was forced to surround the property with a fence when the problem got out of hand, and it only got more out of hand. These disrespectful invaders started breaking into his house, swimming in his pool, and even setting some of his outbuildings on fire. This even continued after his death and while the property was vacant. The city destroyed the place in the 1970s.

While most of the time urban legends are harmless, some can get out of control, and in the case of The House with Blue Lights, I think we can all agree it got out of hand.  If you'd like to see more urban legends from other states, check out this fantastic article from Explore. 

LOOK: Books set in Indiana

Stacker compiled a list of books set in Indiana from Goodreads.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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