Saskatoon

Fright night: Diefenbaker Canada Centre hosts ghost tour at U of Sask.

The Diefenbaker Canada Centre is hosting tours at the university, touching on history and offering up a few ghost tales.

Some report a strong presence amid the gothic-inspired architecture of the campus

The most famous ghost tale at the University of Saskatchewan involves a historian who vanished under mysterious circumstances, says the Diefenbaker Canada Centre's administrative co-ordinator. Legend says this historian's body may be encased in the large block in front of the Thorvaldson Building. (CBC)

The University of Saskatchewan has much to boast about. The Saskatoon campus is home to the Canadian Light Source synchrotron, attracting scientists from around the world, and is a leader in agriculture, food security and veterinary medicine.

Did you know it's also haunted?

The Diefenbaker Canada Centre thinks so, and it's hosting tours this week of the university's gothic-inspired architecture, touching on history and offering up a few ghost tales.

"Probably the most famous story is one about Arthur Silver Morton," said Aaron Ducker, administrative co-ordinator at the Diefenbaker Canada Centre — the campus centre which preserves and displays the collection donated to the university by Canada's 13th prime minister.

Morton was a well-known historian the U of S who, Ducker says, disappeared in 1945 under mysterious circumstances.

"Years later, people started noticing strange things in the Peter MacKinnon Building and Convocation Hall, and it's been attributed to his ghost," he said.

"There have been sightings of him by students, and probably the most famous was at the Amati Quartet [the university's resident string quartet], which was doing a performance at Convocation Hall one evening and felt a very strong presence."

Halloween night tour 

The campus ghost tours have been happening all week, and will continue Halloween night, and through to Nov. 2. Public tours begin at 7 p.m. CST.

If you're worried that a university ghost tour might get bogged down in academic history, consider the warning on the  Diefenbaker Canada Centre's website that "guides take guests to various sites around campus that are believed — according to urban legend — to be haunted by spirits."

The centre cautions that "the guides also tell ghost stories that may not be suitable for children under the age of 12," and warns that anyone under that age requires a signed parental waiver prior to the tour.

With files from Saskatoon Morning

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