Conley House
Monday, October 25, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 4:30 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Stories say Conley House, at 1602 Stanley Place, is haunted by Aunt Sally, the disagreeable sister of the builder, Sanford F. Conley.

Although Aunt Sally said she wanted to be buried in the north wall of the house when she died, rumor has it she was buried in the fireplace. Aunt Sally is known to float through the house when the attic door is left open, according to MU’s building archives Web site.

Along with Aunt Sally, Conley House is home to the Program for Excellence in Teaching and the offices of the Faculty Council. The program provides services, such as workshops and library resources, to help instructors develop their teaching skills.

Noor Azizan-Gardner, who works for the chancellor’s office and serves as the coordinator of diversity initiatives, said she started believing in Aunt Sally after hearing footsteps coming from the second floor, while working late in January.

“It really spooked me,” Azizan-Gardner said. She didn’t hear anything else, but she acknowledged, “I don’t think I stayed to really find out.”

Although the rumor of Aunt Sally might be just that, there are plans to bring in a portable X-ray machine to see if anything really is buried in the north wall.

The Conley House was named one of the Columbia Historic Preservation Commission’s 10 notable historic properties in 2002.

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