My Little House on the Prairie was built around 1880. I have been told it was originally a log cabin – possibly moved from Forest City when the railway passed through Litchfield . Nobody knows.

Here’s the thing: I wonder if it’s haunted. For a moment it seemed certain, but then I learned that the banging on the doors and walls was due to the moving logs. In fact, a former city inspector demonstrated how it could happen. Use of toothpicks. Incredible. And then, later, when I had to fix the collapsing basement walls, the beating completely stopped. In fact, I kinda miss it.

For a while during hitting time, my more mystical friends said, “Ask the hitter what he wants.”

I said, “No way, I don’t want to KNOW what he wants. Besides, I’d pass out if I got an answer.

I had friends over one night and there it was on the front door: the familiar boom, boom, boom, boom. That’s what it sounded like.

Marie, my guest, said, “There is someone at your door.

I said, “No, Mary, that’s the shot I told you about.”

She was surprised and just a little scared. Before this event, maybe everyone thought I was going crazy. Well, I had a witness. But of course all that mystery disappeared when I found out what was doing it.

Now here’s an update. My lamp in the kitchen occasionally tilts to the east. I do not know why. I straighten him up and finally there he is, nodding east.

And now my closet door insists on opening slowly. He has never done this before. I close it and it obeys for a fraction of a second, then it starts to open again. It only opens about two inches and then stops. I examined the hinges and the shelves inside; no idea what makes this happen. Is my log cabin tilting for some reason?

There is a window in my basement that I was able to open easily. Then I couldn’t. Shit.

I called my trusty handyman. He knows everything. He opened it with a huge lever. I couldn’t do it myself. He said the overhang above the window had “shifted”.

The house settles and crushes the window, so it will not open easily. Or for me, not at all. Hmm…much later I asked my plumber to take a look. Now he found it wouldn’t open at all no matter what he did. He told me what my handyman had told me: set up the house, smash the window. He thought that with excessive help (jacks and two-by-fours, etc.), perhaps this could be corrected.

But here’s the thing: if the COVID threat ends, I want to travel a lot. I certainly don’t want to spend tons of money on this project. I will ventilate the basement with a good fan on the stairs.

Yet we are left with the mystery of the tilting lamp and the flailing cabinet door. Do I still have ghosts?

— Carole Wendt is originally from Litchfield, now retired from a long career in media and living in her hometown again. She was inducted into the Litchfield High School Hall of Fame in 2019.