Willow Creek Farm is located in Cherry Grove-Shannon Township in Carroll County, Northwestern Illinois, USA. The county borders the Mississippi River and is a favorite for outdoors and nature enthusiasts.

Native Americans named the place “mani-tumi“ or Land of God. The Illinois (also called Illiniwek or Illini) and Dakota Sioux tribes were the original inhabitants of northern Illinois. During the Beaver Wars (fought intermittently during the 17th and 18th centuries), the Iroquois warriors pushed several tribes out of Ohio, Indiana and Southern Michigan towards the Illinois territories.  In addition, the Dakota Sioux were pushed out towards the plains. In 1769, an Illini tribesman working for the British assassinated the Ottawa leader Chief Pontiac. For this, the Ottawas and their allies attacked the Illinis and completely defeated them.

In 1673, the year Edmund Halley entered Queen’s College at Oxford as an undergraduate, French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet explored the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers, claiming the territory for the French empire. The British gained control of the territory in 1763, following the French and Indian War (1754-1763). The region was assigned to the United States following the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783), becoming part of the Northwest Territory, although British military presence persisted in the Mississippi and Great Lakes regions until the end of the War of 1812. In 1818, the year the United States Congress adopted the current flag of the United States, Illinois was admitted as the 21st US state.

Willow Creek Farm was originally established by William and Mary Boardman, English settlers who arrived by ship in New Yok city in 1835. Their overseas journey took them to the city of Rockford (just a frontier trading post at the time) in the newly established state of Illinois, and, in 1837, William converted from blacksmith to farmer as he worked his new land as part of the governmental conditions for him to file a claim on the property. In 1839 he brought his wife and two children Margaret (born 1836 in La Salle Co., Illinois) and Mary (born 1838 in Winnebago Co., Illinois) to the farm. Soon after he filed his claim, only to find that another person had already claimed part of his land.

David and Thomas Holmes, two brothers who also emigrated from England, settled near the Broadman Farm. Thomas married Margaret Broadman in 1853 and David married Mary Broadman in 1855. Both couples lived in their own homes near the location of the original log cabin built by William Broadman. The house of Thomas and Margaret is the current structure of the Willow Creek Farm and is thought to date from 1878 but may have been in existence as early as 1869, or even already built for the couple in 1853.

David and Mary Holmes’ eldest daughter was named Margaret Etta Holmes (October 14, 1872 to October 04, 1961). She married Frank Zier Sr. (July 15, 1865 to January 9, 1944) on December 31, 1889. The farm name changed from the Broadman Farm to the Zier Farm, and remained in the family until the late 1980s. The property then went through several owners until Mr. Kelchner bought it in 2006.

Mr. Kelchner, current owner of Willow Creek Farm, lived in NYC for 25 years until he moved to the Midwest in 2002. His father’s side of the family has continuously operated a Dairy farm in Michigan for over 150 years and It was always his dream to have a small farm of his own. He immediately felt in love with the farm that was on sale.  For the last 12 years, he has been investigating the farm with the help of several psychics and mediums. They claimed that there are several entities in the house and all have their supposed ties to it and have some sort unfinished business.


  • People have reported hearing loud bangs, footsteps, knocking, Indian drumming, children crying or singing, people talking, and dogs barking
  • It has been claimed the smell of floral and tobacco scents.
  • Some people have experienced feeling extreme hot and cold spots.
  • Many have reported being touched, punched, hugged, choked, and shoved.
  • Few reports seeing objects moving.
  • Some people have claimed seeing full-bodied apparitions and shadow figures.
  • Several psychics and mediums have claimed that there are 7-9 regular spirits in the house with up to 30 passing through at any given time, also multiple spirits in the barn, machine shed, field and pasture.
  • Several psychics and mediums has stated that in the northwest bedroom, there is a spirit known as the “Creep or Creeper” (who was maybe a reverend or doctor in life). It has been said the he exhibits a negative energy towards women.
  • Another claimed is the spirit of a boy named Robbie, 10-12 years old, who supposedly died from a long illness. Many believe that the “Creeper” has him imprison.
  • Several psychics and mediums have also claimed that an African American man named “Joe” lives in the basement. It is believed that he hides under the stairs area.
  • In addition, it is believed that a female spirit named “Sarah” roams the farm house. She has been seeing wearing a blue floral print dress with an apron, plus wearing the lady’s black boots that were fashionable in the 1800s.
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