1. The Stanley Hotel, Estes Park, Colorado
The Stanley Hotel is f inspired Stephen King to write The Shining, and it has many ghosts. Those two reasaons are enough for any fan of the paranormal to want to visit. Add to that that it is beautiful and luxurious and it’s a great place to vacation!
The hotel was opened in 1909 by Freelan Stanley and his wife, Flora. Stanley was also the inventor of The Stanley Steamer. He and his wife are often seen on the staircase,dressed formally. Most of the other ghosts here are children. Guests have been known to complain of children running in the halls or playing noisily even when there are no children among the living guests.
2. The Queen Mary Hotel, Long Beach, CA
The Queen Mary made her maiden voyage in 1936. She served as a passenger liner until World War II, when she was used to transport troops from the US to England. After the war, she carried military wives and children from Europe to the US before being returned to passenger service. When luxury liners went out of popularity in the 1960’s, she ewas sold to the city of Long Beach, her boilers were removed, and she was turned into a hotel and museum.
A number of ghosts are frequently reported on the Queen Mary. A fireman who was crushed by Door 13 in the “Shaft Alley” section is one. Other areas where apparitions are often reported are the First Class Swimming Pool and the former Boiler Room.
3. Sloss Furnace, Birmingham, AL
Sloss Furnace is a forbidding place all year round, even in the daytime. From 1882 to 1972, it was a working steel mill, where workers endured hellish conditions, few safety measures, and long hours converting coal and ore into steel. It is no wonder that many men lost their lives there and many are allegedly seen in the buildings and on the grounds now.
The most often reported ghost is that of James “Slag” Wormwood, the night supervisor in the early 1900’s, who fell to his death from the top of the highest furnace into a pool of molten ore in 1906.
Today Sloss Furnace becomes Sloss Fright Furnaces, a huanted house attraction, from late September until November
4. Waverly Hills Sanitorium, Louisville, KY
Waverly Hills Sanitorium opened in 1910 as a hospital for tuberculosis patients Because there was no known cure for the disease, many people died there. Also, while administered with the best of intentions, many of the attempted treatments for the disease were very harsh and unpleasant.
After a cure for tuberculosis was found in 1961, the sanitorium was closed and re-opened in 1962 as an old-age home. It was closed by the government in 1980.
Many, many spirits have been reported at Waverly. Many consider it one of the most spiritually active places in the world. The website has a page which displays some of the paranormal evidence caught there.
During October, much of Waverly Hills Sanitorium is converted into a haunted house attraction on weekends.
5. Belcourt Castle,Newport, RI
Belcourt Castle is a beautiful French Renaissance-style chateau which was built by the famous architect Richard Morris Hunt for Oliver Belmont, who later married the former wife of his friend and business partner, Alva Smith Vanderbilt.
The ghosts of the Castle do not seem to be related to Oliver and Alva or any other former tenants of the house, but to some of the mostly medieval antiques in the house. There is, for instance, a suit of armor which allegedly screams, several haunted chairs in the ballroom, and a mysterious mirror in which you cannot see your reflection but can see dim floating images.
Belmont Castle was sold last year but it seems it will still be open to the public. Whether the ghosts will remain probably depends on whether the antiques remain.
6. The Lemp Mansion, St. Louis, Missouri
The Lemp Mansion was the home of John Adam Lemp and his descendents who owned America’s first large lager beer brewery. Despite the family’s enormous financial success,they were stalked by tragedy. John Adam’s grandson died in mysterious circumstances in 1901, and his father William committed suicide a few years later. After Prohibition closed the plant in 1919, first William’s sister Elsa committed suicide and then William Lemp Jr. shot himself. His son William III died of a heart attack at age 42 in 1943 and his brother Charles continued to live in the house as a recluse until he too committed suicide. His brother Edwin beat the curse to die of natural causes at age 90. But with four suicides, a mysterious death, and an early heart attack, it is no wonder the house is notoriously haunted.
Today the mansion offers overnight accommodations as well as a restaurant. For $30, visitprs can join “The Lemp Experienve” ghost tour and for $100 more, stay overnight with check-in after 11:30 PM.
7. The Battery Carriaige House Inn, Charleston, SC
Charleston is a wonderfully romantic, historic city just chock full of ghosts. A delightful example is The Battery Carriage House Inn. Its website offers a number of stories from guests who have had strange experiences. There is a “gentleman ghost,’ a young man whose family once owned the house. He committed suicide by jumping from the roof, for unknown reasons, Then there is the dramatic and gruesome “headless torso.”
The “headless torso” probably stems from the Civil War era, when every house along the Battery was damaged and abandoned in the fierce fighting. The website states, “There is no evidence that the torso intends harm, although guests have naturally felt threatened.” But when you think about it, what real harm can a headless torso do?
The house is a charming bed and breakfast. You may specify “haunted” or “unhaunted” rooms. Rooms 8 and 10 have the most reported activity.
8. Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, Weston, WV
Nothing is spookier than a former asylum. Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, better known as Weston State, provides not only the opportunity to tour a fascinating piece of history but to hear about and possibly encounter a number of ghosts as well. In fact, during October the facility is hosting 6-hour paranormal investigations of of the Medical Center, the Forensics and the Geriatrics Buildings which are not generally open to the public.
The establishment was built to hold 250 patients, but nost of the activity may stem from the 1050’s when 2400 patients were crowded into the building in very poor conditions. The asylum was closed by the government in 1994.
The ghost tours are very expensive. If you are willing to learn the ghost stories on your own, you can explore the buildings and look out for activity on one of the less-expensive heritage tours.
9. Fort Mifflin, Philadelphia, PA
Fort Mifflin is a Revolutionary War era fort where 400 soldiers managed to hold off the mighty British Navy long enough for Washington to reach Valley Forge in 1777, and then continued to block the naval officers from entering Philadelphia to get fresh supplies for six more weeks before being forced to evacuate, setting the fort ablaze behind them.
The ghostly activity here includes a woman screaming in the Officers’ Quarters. She is allaged to be Elizabeth Pratt, the wife of an officer who hung herself after her estranged daughter died of typhoid fever. A soldier sometimes guards the entrance to the Powder Magazine and a blacksmith named Jacob haunts the blacksmith shop nearby. Other areas experience a lot of paranormal activity as well.
The fort is open to visitors from March to December. Candlelight Ghost Tours are offered in October and Paranormal Fridays occur throughout the year.
10. Moon River Brewing Company Savannah, GA
Savannah rivals Charleston as the most charming historical haunted city in the South. One of its fascinating haunted locations is Moon River Brewing Company.
The Brewery building was the site of the city’s first hotel, appropriately named City Hotel. it was in operation from 1821 until 1864. After that the building was used for industrial and retail purposes until it was damaged by Hurricane David in 1971. After the building sat empty for 16 years, a different brewing company bought it and tried to renovate but were unable to finish, allegedly because of the paranormal activity during reconstruction.
Moon River opened in 1999, and the building has been very active ever since. Women in 19th Century dress are often seen on the staircase and a ghost named Toby hangs around the billiards room. Bottles sometimes fly off shelves.
The brewery embraces its ghosts and you are welcome to join the locals and tourists hoping to share a pint with the spirits at the bar.