The Ice House Restaurant, Burlington, Vermont (Haunted Place)


The Ice House Restaurant

171 Battery Street Burlington, Vermont 05401

Burlington, Vermont, is located in the northwestern tip of the state along the famed Lake Champlain—home of “Champy,” the lake’s infamous, and many say mythical, sea creature. It is also home to many land-bound oddities and eerie places. One such place is the Ice House Restaurant.

The history of the structure is born of tragedy. John Winan, a Burlington shipbuilder, erected his home on the site in 1808. That year he began construction of Lake Champlain’s first steamboat. In 1868, fire claimed the home and was soon rebuilt from the foundation to serve as an icehouse.

The massive three-story building supplied ice year-round to the residents of Burlington for many generations with the chunks cut from Lake Champlain. It remained in operation well into the 20th century before being converted into retail property.

The massive square beams used to support the heavy ice still adorn the building as well as some entities from the past.

My wife’s daughter and her fiance had relocated to Burlington due to her job. Her fiance, a chef, sought employment at restaurants in the area and was given a job at the Ice House. It wasn’t very long before he had many a tale to relay to me.

One day as he was in the kitchen cleaning up, he spied someone out of the corner of his eye. To his amazement, he gazed upon a semitransparent apparition of an old lady swinging a bell. As he approached the figure, it vanished as silently as it had come. The wraith has been seen numerous times by other employees as well. A cook who has been there for many years is so accustomed to the haunted place that it seems lonely to him without something happening regularly.

The staff on duty has often heard the distinct sound of ice blocks being dragged across the floor. Objects that are put down in obvious places tend to disappear, only to be later discovered hidden in strange nooks of the kitchen and basement.

So, if you are in the area of Battery and King Streets in Burlington, Vermont, be sure to have a bite at the Ice House Restaurant. If you should feel a sudden cold chill while there, you’ll know that it is not on account of any ice!

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