As a huge fan of the show Supernatural, you’d think I’d be immune to scary stuff. I make an exception, however, when it comes to the places on this list. There are just some patches of Earth living humans aren’t meant to visit…lest you wish to face the consequences.
Read on below if you dare.
1. The Moundsville Penitentiary, Moundsville, West Virginia
There’s a reason why most ghost hunter shows spend multiple episodes perusing the terrifying hallways of decrepit penitentiaries: tons of people died in them. Not only that, but they’re usually eerie to look at and their interiors are poorly lit. Moundsville is a prime example of this, being both creepy on the outside and inside, and having had more than a handful of folks die excruciating deaths within its walls. Best steer clear unless you want to come face to face with one of the old inmates…
2. Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, Weston, West Virginia
Anything built in the 19th century is haunted (according to movie and television logic), and so it makes sense that this building, assembled in 1864, is rife with ghost activity. Apparently, there are so many poor souls wandering its deteriorating hallways that locals host overnight ghost-hunting sessions there for visitors and locals on a daily basis.
3. Clinton Road, West Milford, New Jersey
Unfortunately (or fortunately), the scares here don’t have anything to do with the former President. This stretch of road in New Jersey is apparently so haunted that drivers see everything from ghosts and phantom vehicles to the spirit of a boy who tries to lure you to your death. At the very least, don’t try to traverse this stretch of asphalt with a bicycle…
4. The Ohio State Reformatory, Mansfield, Ohio
Built in 1896 (no surprise there), this prison was finally closed in 1990 after years of outcry in regard to the horrific conditions within its crumbling walls. Though it’s now devoid of living inmates, it is said that those who died within still roam its rusted corridors. The hauntings become more terrifying the closer you get to the solitary confinement section, a region within the Reformatory where people report seeing the emaciated visages of former prisoners flickering in and out of their vision.
5. Waverly Hills Sanatorium, Louisville, Kentucky
Sanatoriums, asylums, reformatories, oh my! This facility was built to deal with tuberculosis, and many experimental procedures were tested here (unsuccessfully, I might add). This led to a host of untimely deaths among the sick, who reportedly still reside where they died, waiting to exact revenge on those whose ill-conceived treatments killed them.
6. The Lizzie Borden House, Fall River, Massachusetts
Another haunted building straight out of the 19th century. Lizzie Borden’s parents were killed by an axe murderer, who, after some investigating, seemed likely to be Lizzie herself. She was never convicted, living out her life alone, ostracized by the community. To this day, it is believed that the ghosts of her mangled parents remain in her childhood home, which was later converted to a bed-and-breakfast (you’d have to pay me to stay there). I went with using the slightly grainy era-authentic photo over a modern day one for added spookiness.
7. Mission San Miguel, San Luis Obispo, California
In the sleepy medium-sized town of San Luis Obispo lies Mission San Miguel. At one point in its history, the mission was secularized and sold to a civilian named Reed. Unfortunately for Reed, word got around that he carried a sack of gold with him at all times, which attracted robbers to his property. They looted his gold, killed him and his family, and left their remains scattered around the mission. These bodily remnants were later gathered and buried in the mission’s cemetery. Reed and his family continue to inhabit the ancient structure, seeking retribution.
8. The Stanley Hotel, Estes Park, Colorado
This is the place featured in The Shining, but that alone isn’t what makes it haunted. Many report strange incidents occurring throughout the structure, especially in the ballroom, where such inexplicable things take place that even the most experienced ghost hunters are left bamboozled. This is one hotel that might end up becoming a permanent residence.
9. The Grave of the Female Stranger, Alexandria, Virginia
19th century people were spooky, as I’ve pointed out several times now. This grave was given its name because the women buried there wanted to remain entirely anonymous, for an unknown reason. The story goes as follows: a man and his wife reached the United States by ship in 1816. They disembarked in Alexandria, Virginia (before their intended destination) because the wife was deathly ill. Here’s the unsettling part: from the moment she left the ship and stepped foot on Alexandrian soil, to the hour of her death, the wife donned a thick veil that obscured her face. Even local physicians (who were unable to help her) were sworn to secrecy in regard to the woman’s identity. When death inevitably came, the husband took it upon himself to bury his wife, ensuring her anonymity. A veiled figure is said to haunt the surrounding area to this day, her identity still unknown.
10. The Villisca Axe Murder House, Villisca, Iowa
About two months after the Titanic sunk in 1912, eight people (a family of six and two guests) were found chopped to pieces within their home. Several suspects were questioned, but none were convicted. Today, the tiny home offers guests tours as well as the option to stay overnight, presumably in one of the rooms where murder was committed.
11. Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
A battlefield that remains mostly untouched nearly 150 years after the climactic battle that resulted in more than 50,000 deaths. Of particular interest is Devil’s Den, a place where bodies and body parts were discovered even years after the war. In some places, you can even see where blood dried on the rocks (I was there, I’ve seen it with my own eyes). Let’s just hope these ghosts aren’t equipped with working rifles.
12. Stepp Cemetery, Benton, Indiana
A haunted cemetery in Indiana that’s said to be the site where several cults congregate. Not only that, but you can apparently spot a handful of ghosts among its crumbling headstones. One in particular is a mother who went to Stepp Cemetery to visit her dead infant. She was so distraught that she exhumed her child, gazed upon its corpse, and killed herself on the spot. It’s said she can still be seen weeping over the site where her child was originally buried. Best not to disturb her.
If you’re the sort of person who likes that cold feeling running down your spine as you glance over your shoulder at something half-seen, check these out for some eerie possibilities. Happy hauntings!