It’s time to scope out the spookiest places you can find. Outside of the more traditional haunted houses, there are plenty of other buildings and well-known landmarks that hold a certain degree of creepiness all around the country. Here are the top seven spookiest places across America.
Number Seven: Bodie, California. While California may not seem like an unsettling place, it is home to one true ghost town. Bodie, California was originally a mining town in the late 1800s. Most of what has been left standing looks to be in “arrested decay,” making it one of the spookiest places to gander. This area is currently maintained by the California State Parks System, and they began to hold a watchful eye over the town back in 1962, turning it into a State Historic Park.
Number Six: The Exorcist Steps – Washington, D.C. 1973’s The Exorcist certainly goes on many lists as the scariest film ever made. One of its most famous scenes involves a priest falling down a flight of stairs to his death; well, say hello to those famous steps. Located near 3600 Prospect Street NW, this is a perfect place to take a stroll in the middle of the night after having watched the film. But that’s only if you don’t scare easily.
Number Five: Hart Island – New York, New York. This 101-acre island may be an undiscovered mystery to some New Yorkers. Hart Island at one time served as a Nike missile base, while also welcoming criminals, psychiatric inmates and other disturbing, law-breaking ruffians. This is also where you will find the country’s largest cemetery, currently a large burial site for dead bodies that are unclaimed and unidentified in New York City. All of the burials there are handled by inmates volunteering from Rikers Island.
Number Four: Westminster Hall And Burial Ground – Baltimore, Maryland. Edgar Allen Poe, one of the first American poets of a macabre nature, can certainly be viewed as a creepy person. Well, his grave site is for sure one of the spookiest places you can encounter in America. If you plan to visit this gothic revival church, you can even check out the subterranean passageways below the building.
Number Three: West Virginia State Penitentiary – Moundsville, West Virginia. Creepiness can often be attributed to anything that looks gothic in its aesthetic, and the West Virginia State Penitentiary is no exception to this rule. The prison was operated from 1876 to 1995 and is now currently open to the public. Apparently, the ghost of the maintenence man can be seen wandering around, along with the ghosts of Arvil Paul Adkins and Inmate Roberts.
Number Two: Winchester Mystery House – San Jose, California. This seemingly gorgeous famous California estate certainly has a twisted, creepy tale that comes with the property. According to the legend, Sarah Winchester, a widow, built the estate after the tragic deaths of both her husband and child. She was told that her family was killed by those who were victims of her family’s business – Sarah was heiress to a rifle company. A psychic told her to build a massive home, just to ensure that her life would be safe. The home currently holds 160 rooms with 2,000 doors, along with 47 stairways.
Number One: Eastern State Penitentiary – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Yet another spooky prison, Eastern State Penitentiary in Pennsylvania is no longer a prison but a National Historic Landmark and a museum. This is actually considered the world’s first true penitentiary, first constructed on October 25, 1829 by John Haviland.