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The historic cemetery in Stull, Kansas is infamous for alleged connections with the occult - so much, in fact, that it's alleged to be very difficult to visit legally nowadays. Wikipedia observes that (my emphasis),

In the years that followed the publication of the University Daily Kansan article, it was a popular activity for young folks (especially high school and college students from Lawrence or Topeka) to journey to the cemetery on Halloween or the equinox to "see the Devil". Many would jump fences or otherwise sneak their way onto the property. Over the decades, as the number of people making excursions to the cemetery grew, the graveyard started to deteriorate; this was exacerbated by vandals. To combat this, the county's sheriff office patrols the area around the cemetery, especially on Halloween, and will arrest people for trespassing. Those caught inside the cemetery after it is closed could face a maximum fine of $1,000 and up to six months in jail.

Source : Wikipedia article on Stull, KS

According to Dana Matthews,

During my visit, I counted at least half a dozen signs warning visitors that trespassers would be prosecuted, even though the front gate was wide open and fresh flowers were propped up against shiny new graves. The warnings were clearly for anyone who’d made a detour to the tiny town of Stull for an after-dark rendevous with the devil....

Despite the fact that Stull doesn’t quite live up to its internet reputation in real life, my own visit to America’s legendary portal to hell was so weird that I had to take pause. Within minutes of entering Stull Cemetery’s gates....

Source : Dana Matthews (June 5, 2016), The Enduring Legend of Kansas’ Haunted Stull Cemetery: Visiting America’s Most Off-Limits Gateway to Hell, Week in Weird

This seems to imply that it's possible to visit during the daytime, as long as one behaves respectfully (not vandalizing graves, not causing a commotion, not trying to summon eldritch abominations, etc.), and that the trespassing arrests are only for people entering during the night, when said occult phenomena are alleged to occur. This report also matches what I have found with regards to cemeteries on the US east coast - they are almost always fully open during the day for any and all visitors who care to drop by, but there will usually be a sign forbidding trespass at night without a sufficiently grave (no pun intended) reason. Usually, persons without close relatives interred in the cemetery are required to vacate by nightfall unless attending a bona-fide organized event such as a funeral.

On the other hand, Stephanie Craig reports,

As for my trip, it was on a sunny afternoon. It is strange to go to a town and not see a soul, but there aren’t a lot of places where you would run into someone. The cemetery was locked with a big, fat no trespassing sign up (not surprised they discourage visitors).

Source: Stephanie Craig (July 24, 2016), Stull Cemetery: How to Visit the Gates of Hell in Stull, Kansas, HistoryFangirl

This source implies that the cemetery may be closed even during the day.

What are the actual rules for visiting Stull Cemetery nowadays, assuming that one intends to behave respectfully and not cause damage?

  • May the cemetery be visited legally during the daytime?
  • Is the cemetery officially entirely off-limits to tourists, but occasional, brief, daylight visits are sometimes tolerated?
  • Is there a specific process for obtaining a permit or otherwise requesting permission from the cemetery owners that has a reasonable chance of success (e.g. "Sign here that you promise to leave at least an hour before sundown, won't damage anything, and will leave any and all alcoholic beverages, drugs, weapons, and occult paraphernalia in your vehicle")?

This question has nothing to do with how to sneak into Stull Cemetery against the rules or how to avoid being caught doing so. It is also not about whether or not any of the occult legends popularly attributed to the cemetery are actually true.

  • Those caught inside the cemetery after it is closed could face a maximum fine of $1,000 and up to six months in jail. That would suggest that it is available for visiting during opening hours. – cHiEf Immigration vIoLaTer Jan 23 at 16:34
  • @RobertColumbia What's the source of your statement that the Stull cemetery has been 'officially "closed" ' since 1990? While Google street view shows the cemetery behind a not-very-tall chain link fence, with "No Trespassing" and "Private Property" signs attached, there's a a standing-open gate in the fence, with a larger white sign to the left of the entry. The text on the sign, if any, is not readable. – David Jan 23 at 17:24
  • @David I meant to say that it is possible, not that it is so. – Robert Columbia Jan 23 at 17:26
  • @David I added a source indicating the possibility that it is closed during the day. That's really the heart of the question - is it closed at all times, or is it open as long as certain rules or hours are observed? – Robert Columbia Jan 23 at 17:30
  • @RobertColumbia We may have to wait for someone to drive by, read the sign, and report what it says. – David Jan 23 at 17:50
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I doubt you're going to find an "official" listing anywhere. Reading between the lines of the article, it sounds very much like this is still an active cemetery, meaning that there's points where it's open.

During my visit, I counted at least half a dozen signs warning visitors that trespassers would be prosecuted, even though the front gate was wide open and fresh flowers were propped up against shiny new graves.

So the gates were open on the day Matthews visited, but not 6 weeks later when Craig did. My bet is that the cemetery is open when it's open (i.e. someone comes to open it up, which doesn't happen on a regular basis). Most of the comments about it on Roadtrippers point to it being closed most of the time.

If the gates are open, you should be able go in. I would expect any passing law enforcement to stop you and at least find out what you're doing there (and neighbors apparently actively report people in the graveyard). They may also ask you to leave. It's unlikely you would be arrested for merely looking around if the gates are open.

Is there a specific process for obtaining a permit or otherwise requesting permission from the cemetery owners that has a reasonable chance of success

It doesn't seem so. The owners of the cemetery wish people would just forget about it. Hence why the TV show Supernatural made their own Stull Graveyard somewhere else.

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