Bronwyn Isaac
October 31, 2016 12:12 pm
Tim Graham / Getty Images

As Halloween is finally here, we’re collectively enabled to channel our existential fears into the clean-cut forms of ghosts and zombies, and the desire to feed our fears by exploring haunted houses and cornfields full of looming specters only increases. Sure, we all know a friend or two planning to host a darkly lit wine-drunk gathering of friends with fake cobwebs and a blood-stained mannequin in the corner, but what about the places that are actually haunted?

Whether or not you believe there are truly spaces where disgruntled spirits are waiting to whisper horrible nothings into your ears, there are many people that do, and many instances of documented hauntings.

So, for the brave and willing, we have gathered six of the most allegedly haunted places in the US!

Do you have a flashlight, knife, and emergency phone on hand? Because you’ll likely need all these, and the spiritual prowess of Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost in order to survive a visit to any of the following locations.

1. Cabin #12 from (aka the Well) from The Ring in Stanwood, Washington

DreamWorks / giphy.com

Anyone who’s beheld the creepy wonders of The Ring girl, or even caught wind of her through pop-culture knows there are few visions less terrifying than the well from The Ring, also known as Cabin #12. The site itself is located in Stanwood, Washington where the combination of lush green trees and haunted spirits from the psychological thriller render it one of the creepiest places in the country.

2. The Waverly Hills Sanatorium in Louisville, Kentucky

The Waverly Hills Sanatorium originally opened in 1910 to serve as an enclosed hospital and community for roughly 50 patients with tuberculosis and was closed down in the 1960s after a cure for TB was released, however, the ghosts of former patients remain long after its closure. The Waverly Hills Sanatorium has been called one of the most haunted places in the world and was featured on an episode of Ghost Hunters, where the paranormal investigators agreed that it was thoroughly haunted. For those feeling particularly brave, they host regular tours where you can sense the tortured spirits of overworked nurses.

3. The Moundsville Penitentiary, West Virginia

The Moundsville Penitentiary (also known as the West Virginia penitentiary) opened in the 1850s and quickly became one of the most violent and troubled criminal correction facilities in the US, with over 1,000 criminals passing away during their time there. Common occurrences included riots, in-house murders, hangings and electric chair executions. While the prison itself closed in the 1950s, the rumblings of ghost prisoners can still be heard today during their regular tours.

4. Freetown-Fall River State Forest, Massachusetts

Mail Man Puu / giphy.com

While casual day visitors may consider Freetown State Forest to be a nice hiking area they can explore, the forest itself intercepts with an area known as the “Bridgewater Triangle,” where bizarre events occur ranging from UFO sightings, ghost hauntings, big-foot sightings, and strange disappearances. Much of the haunted history of the forest is documented in the book Mysterious America: The Ultimate Guide to the Nation’s Weirdest Wonders, Strangest Spots, and Creepiest CreaturesOf course, you can also just visit for yourself.

5. The Red Onion Saloon, Skagway Alaska

Originally an active brothel during the Gold Rush in the late 1890s, The Red Onion Saloon is still haunted by the ghosts of its ladies of the night, most specifically the former madame Diamond Lil who apparently caresses and whispers sweet-nothings to guests of their brothel museum tours. Are you ready to meet Diamond?!

6. The Birdcage Theatre, Tombstone Arizona

A former gambling hall, saloon, and brothel opened by a prospector in the 1870s, the Birdcage Theatre boasts over 140 bulletholes in its walls and has been the place of death for at least 26 customers who died in shootings or knife fights. One of the most famous murders that took place at Birdcage was the murder of a prostitute named Margarita, who was stabbed repeatedly with a stiletto by another prostitute named Gold Dollar. Many visitors of the theater swear they can sense the spirits of the murder victims, lurking and waiting for justice.

While there are obviously many, many other haunted place in the beautiful and terrifying US, these are the main spooky spots we plucked up for your visiting (or deep Googling) pleasures!

The real question now is — are you brave enough to face these ghosts?!

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