By Caryl Clem:
Resurrection Mary has been seen floating near her corner grave in Resurrection Cemetery, dancing in a crowded ballroom, or walking down Archer Road. Two men recall a romantic evening shared dancing with Mary, a lovely damsel gowned in lace with strangely ice cold hands and fragile skin. After offering her a ride home, she ordered the car stopped at the cemetery entrance. Shock and surprise followed as Mary left the car, crossed the road to dissolve into thin air at the cemetery gate. The distraught suitors had her address and went to her home the next day to be informed by her mother she had died in a car accident after leaving the Ballroom years ago. The fascinating details of this occurrence for Gerald Palus on 1/31/1936 (Richard Crowe) and a south side man named Vince (Troy Taylor) 1935 are eerily similar. Both men were interviewed by the named paranormal investigator. Gerald’s story made in on the T. V. Show, “Unsolved Mysteries”.
Mary Bregovy was a 21 year old working at The Brach Candy factory during the Depression. Her girlfriend Vern during a 1985 interview said that on Saturday while shopping they met 2 men with a fancy car. During the ride, Vern commented on the guys’ rough behavior. Mary had been forbidden to go dancing that evening but couldn’t refuse the young men’s offer to go to Willow Springs Ballroom. Vern declined. Mary told Vern to tell her Mother she was going out with friends from work. Vern watched the car leave to never see her friend again. Mary was in the front seat and went through the windshield when the car crashed after leaving the dance. She died on March 10, 1934. She was buried in a plot that was moved to a corner of the cemetery where she has been seen hovering.
Physical evidence for Resurrection Mary was obtained by a policeman investigating a “trespassing” charge in the cemetery. He took pictures of bent bars with a black hand print. When the policeman allowed the paranormal T. V. show to film, “That’s Incredible”, documenting the evidence, he was fired.
Before Mary Bregovy, a young, beautiful, Catholic, Lithuanian, Anna Mirja ( Mary) Korkus made her father promise she could dress up like a young lady and go dancing on her 13th birthday. She was tall, bonde and blue eyed. As she was driven to the ballroom, the car went off the road and crashed killing her instantly in July 1927. On Halloween weekend, Mary Murkowski was killed crossing the street near Bridgeport. The Mary’s may have joined together to form their own ghostly sisterhood.
The personal stories of meeting Resurrection Mary are “spell binding”. I would suggest the following:
- Beth Scott and Michael Norman, Haunted Heartland: True Ghost Stories from the American Midwest (New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 1985, 1992).
- Ursula Bielski, Chicago Haunts: Ghostlore of the Windy City (Chicago: Lake Claremont Press, 1998).
- Jo-Anne Christensen, Ghost Stories of Illinois (Edmonton: Lone Pine, 2000).
- Troy Taylor, Haunted Illinois: Travel Guide to the History and Hauntings of the Prairie State (Alton: Whitechapel Productions Press, 2004).
- Rachel Brooks, Chicago Ghosts (Atglen: Schiffer Books, 2008).
- Kenan Heise, Resurrection Mary: a Ghost Story (Evanston: Chicago Historical Bookworks, 1990).