Some of us love to go about our jolly lives and pretend that everything is fine in the world. Others? They like to push their limits further and get a real adrenaline rush. Sure, you could go skydiving or bungee jumping, but there’s not enough nitty-gritty to keep us satisfied. No, we want something that will scare the pants off us while standing somewhere that’s filled with history.
It turns out that not all ghosts are as friendly as Casper. In fact, some appear to have unfinished business as they’re not ready to head over the other side just yet. Some places have so many beings that have stories to tell or unfinished business that they have gone down as some of the most haunted places in America.
Poinsett Bridge, South Carolina
Poinsett Bridge is built entirely out of stone. It was established back in 1820 and is the oldest bridge in South Carolina. Sadly, it’s also thought to be one of the most haunted. It turns out there are plenty of people who have apparently lost their lives at the hand of this bridge over the years.
There was a car accident at the bridge in the 1950s and caused the man to lose his life. He supposedly lives alongside another trapped soul. An ancient eerie tale talks about one of the masons working on the bridge and how he lost his life. The others decided to bury him in the walls, and his spirit has been trapped there ever since.
Ohio State Reformatory, Ohio
While the architecture might look beautiful, don’t be fooled; there was a lot of violence that took place within the prison walls in the 94 years that it was in use. In 1990, it was closed thanks to “inhumane” and “brutalizing” conditions. One of the most memorable incidents was when two parolees kidnapped an employee’s wife and daughter.
Two years later, a warden’s wife accidentally took her own life when a gun dropped to the floor. A few years after that, the warden lost his life to a heart attack in his office. This was all topped off by the inmate violence happening at the same time. People claim that you can still hear inmates screaming, and the warden and his wife talking to one another.
Franklin Castle, Ohio
This impressive house was built back in the 1800s, but things never got off to a great start. Hannes Tierderman, the man behind the house, was known for his cruel and dangerous behavior. It wasn’t long after he moved into Franklin Castle with his family that many of them started to lose their lives mysteriously.
His four children, mother, and even Hannes’ wife passed away within the home. It’s also rumored that Hannes could have ended the lives of other members of his family. The theories were cemented even further when people found human remains within the walls. No one has lived in the house for very long ever since, thanks to the disturbing feelings they get from the place.
The Lord Baltimore Hotel, Maryland
You might want to sleep with the light on if you check in to The Lord Baltimore Hotel. There have been plenty of reports of ghosts over the years, but there’s one that keeps coming up time and time again. It’s believed that a young girl once took her own life on the 19th floor of the hotel.
This is now thought to be the most haunted floor. People have seen the girl rocking herself back and forward while others have watched as she plays with the same red ball. The elevator has been spotted heading up to the 19th floor when no one has pressed the button. To top it off, guests in the lobby and elevator have felt invisible hands touch them.
The Stanley Hotel, Colorado
There are plenty of reasons that people have been drawn to The Stanley Hotel over the years. Now, many people check-in to see if they can see one of the many famous ghosts for themselves. Many paranormal experts say this is one of the most active ghost locations across America. It’s believed the former owners are two of the ghosts that never checked out.
Some guests claim they have heard a woman playing the piano at all hours of the night. Others have found their bags unpacked or heard laughter and had the lights turn on and off. Stephen King was so inspired by The Stanley Hotel that he used it as inspiration for his cult book ‘The Shining.’
Believe it or not, but Cahawba was the first capital of Alabama all those years ago. It was once a thriving town. That was until the Civil War. Everyone decided to abandon their homes shortly after the war came to an end, and it has been standing as a ghost town ever since.
That means everything from people’s houses to cemeteries and even a slave burial ground have remained mostly untouched all these years. One of the most famous tales to come from the town is that of a floating orb. This is believed to be the ghost of Colonel C.C. Pegues’ as it appeared shortly after he lost his life in battle, and many want to see it for themselves.
Devil’s Tramping Ground, North Carolina
What would you do if you came across a huge patch of black ground in the middle of the woods where vegetation and plants refused to grow? If you’d turn and run the other way, then you’re not alone. Nothing has ever grown in the spot, and it doesn’t look as though it ever will. Even plants that have grown and planted there wither and pass.
Devil’s Tramping Ground earned the name thanks to the tale that the Devil turns up every night and paces around in a circle. He does this to think of all the ways he can bring humanity to damnation, and the heat from his cloven hooves is enough to render the soil completely destroyed for all eternity.
El Campo Santo Cemetery, California
Of course, if there is anywhere that’s likely to have a few spirits, it’s probably a cemetery. El Campo Santo Cemetery in San Diego is no exception. Now, thousands of people travel to the burial ground, thanks to the rumored hauntings. Over 450 people were initially buried in the cemetery, with one hanged in the grounds. However, issues came when people needed a way to get their horse-drawn carriages through, so they built a road over the top.
Apparently, at least 18 graves are now under the street and sidewalk, and their spirits are less than impressed. People claim to have seen all kinds of ghosts here of people who want their dignity while some say they have suddenly become very cold.
The Amityville House, New York
Many of us have seen the movies and ready the books, but did you know that the Amityville House is a real place? It’s found in Long Island where the walls were once home to a tragic scene. Back in 1973, 23-year-old Romanld J. DeFeo Jr. ended the lives of his parents and four siblings in one night.
Thirteen months later, a family moved in but only lasted 28 days before they fled. The father of the family would often wake at 3.15am in the morning, the time of the scene, while other family members heard strange noises and saw ghostly apparitions. To top it off, a priest said someone screamed, “Get out!” and he told the family to never sleep in that room.
Eastern State Penitentiary, Pennsylvania
Back at its peak, Eastern State Penitentiary was home to some of the most hardened criminals, such as Al Capone. It was finished back in 1829, and it wasn’t long before the prison took punishments to the extreme. Prisoners were typically kept in complete isolation. This meant they ate, slept, and exercised by themselves. They were also led around the prison with bags on their heads so they could see others and were only permitted to talk to specific guards.
Some of the other intense punishments for prisoners that just wouldn’t listen included chaining their tongue to their wrists, among other things. It’s believed that many tortured souls of the past still remain within the walls as there have been plenty of reports of hauntings.
Whaley House, California
Things started badly and went even worse for Thomas Whaley and his family when he built the estate back in 1857. The San Diego plot was formerly the home of the local gallows, meaning many people had lost their lives there. As soon as Thomas moved into the house, he started to hear footsteps. He believed it was the ghost of Yankee, a thief and drifter that was hanged there four years before and was yet to move on.
Members of the Whaley family lost their lives in tragic situations or took their own lives, mostly inside the house. It’s believed that many of the lost souls still remain in the house, especially as many report smelling strong perfume or smoke.
Calcasieu Courthouse, Louisiana
It’s not every day that we hear of a haunted courthouse, but Calcasieu Courthouse in Louisiana supposedly has a prisoner that never left. Toni Jo Henry worked as a lady of the night before she was brought in for her trial. She hit the headlines across the nation in 1940 as she ended a man’s life – seemingly for no reason.
She charmed her way through three trials before she was found guilty. Toni went on to become the only woman who lost her life to the electric chair in the state. Staff now say they often smell burning hair as well as having to deal with randomly locked doors or missing things as Toni’s spirit never left and continues to cause havoc.
East Martello Fort, Florida
It’s not East Martello Fort itself that is so scary, but what lies inside. It’s believed a doll is the source of all the stories. The toy was handed to a little boy known as Gene. His parents heard screaming and crashing from Gene’s room, but they couldn’t open the door. When they finally could, they saw Gene cowering from his doll, Robert, and the room was entirely destroyed.
All Gene could utter was, “Robert did it.” Gene did hold onto the doll, but his neighbors said they would often see Robert looking from the window. Now, people say their photos of Robert will mysteriously go missing while workers claim that he will move around in the box all by himself.
The King’s Tavern, Mississippi
This was one of the first buildings in Mississippi, as the King’s Tavern was built back in the 1700s. It was bought by Richard King a few years after it was completed, but things soon took a turn. Richard was supposedly unfaithful to his wife with a young waitress named Madeline. When Richard’s wife discovered their secret, she made sure that Madeline lost her life.
She is one of the many that now haints the building. In the 1930s, the mummified remains of three people were discovered in the chimney. It’s believed that they were some of the victims of the Harpe Brothers many years ago. Visitors now say they feel warmth emerging from the fireplace as well doors slamming shut for no reason.
Winchester Mystery House, California
Every aspect of the Winchester Mystery House has left people feeling on edge over the years. The number 13 is apparent in many aspects of the home. There are also doors that lead nowhere and staircases that go into the ceiling. The house has a staggering 160 rooms and is enough to leave most people’s heads spinning.
There are many theories that Sarah Winchester never stopped building. Some believe that she was haunted by spirits who had their lives ended by the rifles sold by her family. Builders worked every hour of the day to try and confuse the lost souls until Sarah passed away. The result? 2,000 doors, 40 staircases, and fake bathrooms. Sarah would even sleep in a different bedroom each night.
Myrtles Plantation, Louisiana
Myrtles Plantation is supposed to be one of the most haunted sites across America. It all started in 1796 when it was built on an ancient Native American burial ground. However, that was just the beginning. Chloe was once a worker at Myrtles Plantation. Sadly, legends say that she had her ear cut off when her master caught her eavesdropping.
Chloe had a plan. To get revenge, she apparently slipped poison into a birthday cake and ended the lives of two of her master’s daughters. Chloe was then hanged by other workers in the house. Her spirit is said to be one of twelve that has never left the home. If you spot Chloe, she’s always wearing a turban to cover her missing ear.
Queen Anne Hotel, California
Not all ghosts are there to try and scare us. However, some of them want to make themselves known more than others. Queen Anne Hotel was built back in 1890 and was first opened as an etiquette school for girls. Although it’s been transformed into a 48-room hotel, some of the former residents never left the building. Miss Mary Lake, the former headmistress of the school, is one of the few that seem to have stuck around.
Apparently, she loves to hang out in room 410 as it was her former office. Thankfully, Miss Mary Lake likes to keep things neat and tidy as Mary often unpacks people’s suitcases, folds their clothes, and even tucks guests into bed when they’re sleeping.
Captain Tony’s Saloon, Florida
If you head down to Key West, then you might want to stop off at Captain Tony’s Saloon. That is if you want somewhere that’s filled with plenty of tales. It has been a host of different things over the years, including a speakeasy, a wireless telegraph station, and the city’s morgue. During a terrible hurricane, the bodies of people in the morgue were washed out onto the street.
That’s not the only strange thing that’s happened here. No one has any idea why so many spirits appear to have stuck around. However, the bones that were discovered in some of the walls might help to explain some of their tales. The tree that grows through the roof was also once used to town hangings.
The Sallie House, Kansas
If you’ve seen ghost-hunting shows, then you might have heard of Sallie’s house. It’s thought to be one of the most haunted locations in the US thanks to Sallie that resides in the home. This is no harmless ghost. Sallie is supposedly a demon who disguises themselves as a young girl. There is evidence that Satanic rituals have taken place in the home over the years and think that Sallie was summoned through one.
People who have entered the house and tried to make contact with the girl have experienced flickering lights, seen apparitions and heard voices, had things move across the room, and even left with burns, scratches, and marks on their bodies. One young girl claimed she could also see Sallie.
Hotel Monte Vista, Arizona
It appears as though many guests who checked into Hotel Monte Vista over the years have never left. One of the most haunted rooms in the hotel is said to be room 305. It once belonged to an elderly lady who rented the room long-term and spent all day sat by the window in her rocking chair. Although she passed away many years ago, staff and guests claim that she hasn’t left her rocking chair and still enjoys the view.
Another room is occupied by a meat man. He used to hang raw meat from his chandelier, but his body wasn’t discovered until three days after someone took his life. Also, be prepared for phantom bell boys and babies crying in the basement.
Crescent Hotel, Arkansas
The Crescent Hotel has been home to all kinds of things over the years, including a luxury resort and junior college. However, the strangest thing was back in 1937 when Norman G. Baker took over the building. He was a millionaire inventor with a new idea up his sleeve. Although he had no medical training, Norman claimed to be a doctor who knew how to cure cancer.
People eventually found out about his con plan and ran him out of town. That was until he passed away. People believe that his spirit found its way back and joined many other ghosts that all live in the hotel. In 2019, people also found more than 100 bottles filled with medical samples from his work.
Masonic Temple, Michigan
This temple stands at 16 floors high and dominates Detroit’s skyline. The Masonic Temple also has more than 1,000 rooms that are filled with all kinds of gothic architecture. However, there is more to this building than meets the eye. That is if the rumors are true. Apparently, the building is also filled with hidden staircases and passageways, but no one knows why.
George D. Mason was the architect working on the building, but legend says that he ran out of money trying to fund the construction. George supposedly climbed to the roof and took his own life. People claim they have seen a ghost making their way to the roof all these years later and think it’s George reliving his final moments.
King’s Chapel Burial Ground, Massachusetts
King’s Chapel Burial Ground has been standing for 400 years. In that time, plenty of people claim to have seen all kinds of strange happenings. Many have run from the grounds after hearing whispered voices or seeing people that weren’t supposed to be there. Some even claim to have heard the former pirate Captain Kidd talking to them. Apparently, not everyone had respectful burials.
One woman was supposedly too tall for her coffin, so the carpenter allegedly cut off her head and placed it between her legs. Others were supposedly buried alive or moved from their coffins. The strange bit? Many people claim that their photos and videos have disappeared from their cameras as soon as they walk out of the burial ground.
Bell Witch Cave, Tennessee
Reports of strange happenings around Bell Witch Cave started back in the 1800s. The Bell family moved into the farm and noticed weird creatures in the land, such as a dog with a rabbit’s head. They were soon under attack from a supernatural force that mainly targeted John Bell, the father of the family, and his daughter, Betsy. The pair claim the force spoke to them on a handful of occasions and taunted them with attacks and noises.
The entity later claimed that it poisoned John Bell, who passed away in the night. People now claim that they can hear children playing and dancing in the woods around the cave, and some say they have seen candles flickering at night.
St. Augustine Lighthouse, Florida
Believe it or not, but almost a quarter of a million people visit St. Augustine Lighthouse every year. They aren’t alone. It turns out that some people never left. St. Augustine Lighthouse has been surrounded by tragedy over the years. One of the many who is said to have lost their lives is the former lighthouse keeper.
Apparently, he was painting the lighthouse when he slipped and fell, causing him to lose his life. Another story talks about three girls who were playing by the water in their cart. That was until it tragically fell into the water and caused all three to lose their lives. People who visit this lighthouse claim they have seen ghostly apparitions and heard children laughing around the lighthouse.
Mizpah Hotel, Nevada
In 1907, Nevada was in for a treat as the Mizpah Hotel opened its doors. It wasn’t long before people fell so in love with the establishment that they checked in and never moved out. It was the first luxury hotel in the area but is now thought to be the most haunted hotel in the state. One of the many guests that never left is known as the Lady in Red.
It’s believed that someone took her life on the fifth floor. Now, she spends her says whispering to men in the hotel as well as leaving pearls from her broken necklaces on people’s pillows. She’s not alone as many have heard children running through the halls and two miners who haunt the basement.
Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast, Massachusetts
Back in 1892, Abby and Andrew Borden were found in their home. Things weren’t good. They had been hurt so severely that people barely recognized their faces. The pair had tragically lost their lives, and the world believed it was all thanks to their daughter, Lizzie. However, she was later released, and no one was charged.
The home has since been turned into a bed and breakfast where you can enjoy some gruesome additions. As well as the skulls of Abby and Andrew, the house looks as though it’s mostly untouched since the day of the crimes. Abby and Andrew are said to be regular guests at the bed and breakfast as people claim they still haunt the rooms where their lives were ended.
Gettysburg Battlefield, Pennsylvania
The Battle of Gettysburg was a huge tragedy that swept across the state. It’s estimated that up to 51,000 people were injured while over 7,500 soldiers lost their lives in the three-day battle. The battle took place during the Civil War, and the former farmhouse served as a makeshift hospital for injured soldiers. Sadly, many couldn’t be saved.
As if that wasn’t enough, many fallen soldiers were never given proper burials. Their spirits have supposedly been walking the land ever since. It’s common for people to see wounded soldiers. Others also claim to have heard horses hooves and the cries to soldiers calling out for help. If you listen carefully, you might just here Civil War music, too.
Villisca House, Iowa
There isn’t much in the small town of Villisca thanks to the fact that around 1,200 people live there, but there is one draw that keeps people rolling in: Viscilla House. Sadly, that isn’t for great reasons. In 1912, the home was the scene of a grizzly attack. The white wood-framed house was supposed to be the perfect family house.
So how did an entire family, their four children, and two friends end up losing their lives in an ax attack? That’s not all. No one was ever charged for the crimes, even though plenty of people were suspects. Now, their ghosts are said to haunt the house. It’s believed they are looking for justice from all those years ago.
Pine Barrens, New Jersey
The Pines Barrens covers more than one million acres, so it might be no surprise that so many souls are said to be trapped within the trees. The forest is filled with abandoned villages. It’s believed a woman gave birth to her 13th child in one town, but she wished it to be a demon with bat wings and a goat’s head that now haunts the trees.
There is also a legend about Emilio Carranza. The pilot used his flashlight to search for a place to land in a storm but crashed and lost his life. Apparently, if you flash your car headlights at his monument at night, then you can hear a plane and see his light looking for somewhere safe to land.
San Fernando Cathedral, Texas
San Fernando Cathedral is the oldest church in Texas. Many people travel from far and wide to attend mass every Sunday thanks to its rich history. You might just want to make sure that you’re out of the cathedral before the sun sets. That’s when the spirits begin to come out to play. A team of workers was tasked with renovating the church back in 1936.
However, they uncovered tattered military clothes, nails, and bones that had all been buried at the altar. It’s believed they could have belonged to three soldiers of the Alamo. Ever since they have been uncovered, people have reported seeing spirits sat at the pews and orbs in their photographs. One ghost is even said to be a former monk.
Sheffield Island Lighthouse, Connecticut
This lighthouse was built back in 1868 for ships that needed to get to Sheffield Island. Thankfully, they were greeted to a 10-bedroom Victorian lighthouse to keep them safe and dry from the sea. It wasn’t long before strange things started to happen at the building. The lighthouse keeper suddenly in 1972. He was watching passing ships at the time, but no one has any idea why he lost his life.
Other people who have visited the island report hearing music, a foghorn, and people crying for help. There has never been a foghorn at the lighthouse. However, the first owner, Captain Robert Sheffield, apparently loved strange musical instruments. His ghost now appears to continue his passion in the afterlife.
Pittock Mansion, Oregon
Georgiana and Henry Pittock were desperate to build their perfect home before it was too late. They set to work designing and funding the Pittock Mansion to be a place where they could live out their final years. Sadly, the couples only got to spend a few years in their new home before they passed away.
Georgiana lost her life in 1918 and was followed by Henry the following year. Although the mansion is now a public landmark, people say they often feel that Georgiana and Henry never really left. Georgiana loved roses, and rooms regularly smell as though they’re filled with the bloom. There is also a childhood photo of Henry that appears to move around the home as it pleases.
RMS Queen Mary, California
We’ve heard about pirate ships coming with extra members of crew, but what about one of the most luxurious ships that once took the most prominent names in Hollywood across the world? It came with a large ballroom, hospital, and even two swimming pools. Although the ship was turned into a WWII boat, it was later transformed back into a hotel.
Amazingly, many people have lost their lives while aboard the ship. Many children are said to have lost their lives in the pools while someone had their life taken in one of the cabins, and one sailor was crushed by a door in the engine room. These are just some of the many spirits that have never left the decks.
Waverly Hills Sanatorium, Kentucky
This building was supposed to be a schoolhouse when it first opened its doors back in the 1800s. That was until 1920 when The Board of Tuberculosis Hospital bought the land to make a small quarantine zone for people with the illness. The sanatorium was finally completed in 1926, and people soon found themselves in a new community. The hospital had its own zip code, water treatment, a post office, and enough room for 400 patients.
Many people lost their lives here over the years. It’s believed that some never left. A photo of Mary Lee, a former nurse, was captured in 2006. It’s said that she took her own life when she discovered that she was pregnant with a doctor’s baby.
Indiana Medical History Museum, Indiana
Central State Hospital opened its doors back in 1848 and was tasked with helping patients with all kinds of disorders. Some of these included hysteria, dementia, schizophrenia, and depression. It was referred to as a hospital “for the insane,” but that didn’t mean that patients were in for a nice time. The staff were accused of all kinds of things while they were there.
The hospital later opened a pathological department in 1896 as it wanted to educate people about the physical causes of mental illnesses. The rooms are still filled with remains, including brains and tumors, that are preserved in jars. The best bit? Many of the patients never seemed to move on from their stay and spend their time haunting the rooms instead.
The LaLaurie Mansion, Louisiana
Madame Marie LaLaurie was known throughout New Orleans for her lavish parties and having plenty of money. If you’ve seen ‘American Horror Story: Coven,’ then the name might ring a bell as she was brought back to life by Kathy Bates. The story wasn’t far from the truth. When police arrived at the scene of a kitchen fire in 1834, they discovered people who had been trapped and tortured in the attic.
A mob later ran LaLaurie out of town, and she fled to France. Tragically, the tortured souls of people who had been trapped in the house are still said to call into the night, searching for freedom. The mansion is privately owned and considered to be the most haunted building in the state.
Shanghai Tunnels, Portland
The Shanghai Tunnels earned their name for one reason – and it’s not good. They soon became a way for people to practice ‘Shanghaiing.’ This was when men were kidnapped and sold as workers for ships that were heading to East Asia. The tunnels meant that gangs could go about their work below the city without anyone ever realizing a thing.
Apparently, many local saloons had secret entrances to the tunnels. It’s believed that they would usher men into the tunnels before they even noticed anything was happening. By the time they did, it was too late as they were deep underground. Many souls have reportedly been trapped in these tunnels ever since as they long to be free from their captors at last.
Moon River Brewing Company, Georgia
Like many buildings all across the nation, the Moon River Brewing Company has been used as many things over the years before it was turned into a bar and restaurant. It all started as a hotel back in 1821. However, it was later transformed into a hospital during the Civil War to try and treat people for the Civil War.
The illness meant that plenty of people lost their lives in that time. People claim to have seen a woman standing at the top of the staircase on more than one occasion. There is another spirit known as Mrs. Johnson that apparently haunts the upstairs while Toby keeps himself to the basement. No one is sure why so many souls have chosen to stick around.
Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, West Virginia
Patients started checking in to the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum back in 1864. It is the largest hand-cut stone masonry building across the nation. It was supposed to be home to just 250 people, but things soon got out of control. When the asylum was at its peak, it held 2,400 patients. The overcrowding meant that things quickly took a turn, and conditions started to slip.
Patients would fight with one another, attack members of staff, and start fires on a daily basis. Plus, there were some pretty questionable treatments used on various people. Thankfully, it was finally shut down in 1994. Sadly, many patients’ spirits have been trapped within the asylum. Ghost hunters claim to have seen plenty of activity over the years.