The Most Haunted Places in America

Looking for a real scare this Halloween? Forget the theme parks, haunted trails and kiddie costumes. These places are real and are places where all sorts of evil have occurred: war, torture and even murder. As a result of their dark past, ghosts and demons wander the buildings and grounds. Paranormal investigators have caught ghostly images, balls of  light and disembodied voices.  Take a trip and discover for yourself, if you dare. Be warned, these ghosts are real.


LaLaurie House; New Orleans, Louisiana

Built in the French Quarter in the year 1831, this house belonged to Dr. Louis LaLaurie and his wife Daphne. The couple were respectable people of high esteem. Daphne was the toast of the town and everyone wanted an invite to one of her fashionable balls. The LaLauries were a charitable couple and gave money to help the sick and the poor. The truth about their evil deeds came out when a fire broke out in 1834.  Fireman found secret rooms filled with slaves, chained and barely alive. Some had been tortured with limbs amputated.  Now, the ghosts of these poor souls who cannot rest roam the halls and balcony of the house. Photos taken show orbs and long strands of mist. See all the haunted places in New Orleans here:


Hollywood Cemetery; Richmond, Virginia

In 1847 William Haxall and Joshua Fry hired the much celebrated architect John Notman to design the layout. By year’s end they had 40 of Richmond’s elite wanting burial plots. Notman gave the cemetery the name Hollywood because of the numerous holly trees that grew there. Two presidents are buried there (James Monroe and John Tyler).  Mixed in with the monuments to the wealthy and elite are tiny tombstones for children—their names and birth/death dates washed away by 170 years worth of erosion. After the Battle at Gettysburg, the confederate dead were buried here in a mass grave. The bodies came in 6 shipments, brought down from Gettysburg in steamboats. Groundskeepers and those living close  to the cemetery say that the confederate fallen roam at night and that during a full moon, drums  and the sounds of battle can be heard. But it isn’t just soldiers who roam. The ghosts of children, their lives having ended much too soon, will gather and play. Singing and children’s laughter is often heard. Explore here:


Lizzie  Bordon Bed & Breakfast; Fall River, Massachusetts

We all know the rhyme, “Lizzie Borden gave her mother forty whacks. When she found out what she had done she gave her father forty one.”  She was tried and acquitted of the two murders, despite there being much evidence that it was her (or maybe her sister). The Borden girl’s mother had passed away and their father remarried.  It is well documented that their father was a  hard man, strict on his children and did not value women as much as men. Lizzie did not like her step mother. The murders remain unsolved.  The house where the murders took place is now a bed and breakfast. You can spend a night in Lizzie’s room, or the room in which her step mother was killed. Lounge downstairs in the very spot where her father received his 41 whacks.  In the evening you can participate in a paranormal investigation. Plan you night at Lizzie’s:


Villisca Axe Murder House; Villisca, Iowa

On July 10, 1912; eight people were blundered to death in a home in Villisca, Iowa. Six of the people were members of the Moore family (two adults and four children). The other two victims were children who were friends of the Moore children. Police put the time of death at between midnight and 5:00 am. The bodies were found shortly after 7 a.m.– when a neighbor noticed that the Moore’s were not up and doing their morning chores. The police found two cigarette butts in the attic, which led them to believe that the killer had been in the house for some time, waiting patiently for the family to fall asleep. There were many suspects and the most likely was a traveling minister named Reverend George Kelly. He was known to have mental illness issues and was accused of asking young girls to pose nude for him. After the murder he wrote regularly to the police and the victim’s family.  He was arrested and tried twice but was acquitted. He later spent time in St. Elizabeth’s Mental Hospital. The crimes remain unsolved. The house has been investigated by Travel Channel’s GHOST ADVENTURES.  Learn more here:


Weston State Hospital; Weston, West Virginia

Western State Hospital, also known as Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum’ is so haunted that it has been the subject of paranormal investigations on GHOST STORIES , Syfy’s GHOST HUNTERS, Travel Channel’s  GHOST ADVENTURES  and PARANORMAL LOCKDOWN  on TLC’s DESTINATION AMERICA. The hospital was opened in 1864 and was built to house 240 people. By the time in closed in the 1990’s, the hospital was overcrowded and had 2400 patients. There are 3 grave yards on the grounds and buried there are just not patients who died in the hospital; but also a few Civil War soldiers.  The asylum was used as a hospital during the Civil War. The asylum was listed as a National Heritage Landmark and is now being restored to its original glory. Ghost tours are available with proceeds going to reconstruction. Learn more about  its’ history and its haunting here:


Eastern State Penitentiary; Philadelphia, PA

Eastern State Penitentiary was in operation between 1829 – 1971.  At the time it was the biggest and most expensive US government building ever built. It has a wagon wheel design that inspired the architecture of 300 future prisons.  It was considered a modern marvel due to it  having heating in the cells, running water in each cell, and toilets that were flushed twice a week. Strict religious  beliefs and policies were enforced because it was thought that in this way the criminals might find redemption. The halls were made to feel like cathedrals. Prison cells had small doors and the inmates had to stoop to get in and out. It is believed that this was to imitate kneeling before God. Each cell had one  window—a skylight—that was to represent “the eye of God” ever watching them. Each cell held only one prisoner so that inmates had time to reflect on their sins and God.  The practice of putting hoods on inmates when they were moved throughout the prison was met with controversy. Some say that these bleak conditions—especially the hooding of inmates—is the reason why so many specters are trapped within the penitentiary walls. Visitors can tour by day or by night.

boyscout lane

Boy Scout Lane; Stevens Point, Wisconsin

Boy Scout Lane is an unpaved road that runs between Cemetery Road and Little Chicago Road. It got it’s name because  the surrounding land was once owned by The Boy Scouts of America.  According to urban legend in the 1950’s an entire Boy Scout troop disappeared in the surrounding woods. Some say the boys got lost and starved to death. Others say they were killed in a terrible fire caused by an overturned lantern. The most frightening of all, the story that all the boys were killed by their Scout Master.  Urban legend or not, no one disputes that the road and surrounding woods are haunted. Drivers and passengers report seeing floating red lights and the sounds of boys running  .


The Biltmore Estate; Asheville, North Carolina

George Washington Vanderbilt II was a wealthy man who loved French chateaus. He decided to build his own on 10.86 square miles of land located in the mountains of North Carolina. He had bricks brought over from Europe. Construction started in 1889 and took almost 6 years to complete.  The house itself has over 4 acres of living space with 250 rooms including 35 bed rooms, 43 bathrooms, 65 fireplaces and 3 kitchens. There is a bowling alley in the basement.  A lover of literature, George Washington Vanderbilt was friends with the literary greats Edith Wharton, Henry James, Joseph Hodges Choate and Larz Anderson. George is still there, a shadowy ghost figure often seen in the library. The Biltmore Estate is still family owned. Visit their website to find out more:


The Amityville Horror House; Long Island, New York

In 1974, Robert DeFeo Jr. brutally murdered his parents and four siblings. He told police he did it because the voices in the house told him so. He was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment. Several years later the book, AMITYVILLE HORROR,  became a best seller. It was written by George and Kathy Lutz, who brought the house after the murders. They told horrific tales of disembodied voices, pigs with glowing eyes and fly infestations. Much of their book was later determined to be false. However, the DeFeo murders are real. In 1976 photographer Gene Campbell caught a ghostly image on film. It is a ghostly image of a young boy with glowing eyes. To find out more:


Waverly Hills Sanatorium; Louisville, Kentucky

Waverly Hills Sanatorium opened in 1910 to treat patients of tuberculosis. At the time there was no cure and the only know treatment was fresh air and nutrition. The hospital was run by a staff of nurses and doctors who did care for the patients they treated. Occupational therapy consisted of weaving baskets and the patients won numerous blue ribbons at the Kentucky state fair. There was also a chidren’s wing, complete with an outside playground. It was not just for sick children but also the children of patients who had no one to care for them. However, Waverly Hills had a dark side.  Experimental treatments and procedures usually failed—causing death and maiming. Tuberculosis also affects the brain and many patients went slowly insane. There was also the notorious body chute (known as the death tunnel) that was used to dispose of bodies quickly. The combination of suffering, madness and death left a stain on Waverly Hills.  Disembodied voices and footsteps can be heard throughout the building but especially near the body chute. An evil entity, known as The Creeper,  has spider like limbs which it uses to climb walls and chase visitors at lightning fast speed.


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