Halloween isn’t the only time many state locations see their fair share of ghosts and other spooky activities… Who’s ready for a haunted road trip?
1. Lake Shawnee Amusement Park
Lake Shawnee Amusement Park has been abandoned since 1966, but the Mercer County landmark’s problems began much earlier – back in the late 1700s when local Shawnee Indians killed three of a settler’s children. Later several people died at the park which was reportedly built on an indian burial ground too. Since then, folks have claimed the land is cursed.
2. Flinderation Tunnel
Also known as North Bend Rail Trail Tunnel No. 19, Flinderation Tunnel is known for a foggy evening back in the early 1900s. An engineer supposedly spotted a young woman in a flowing white dress on the tracks, a vision that has been shared by others over the decades. Other folklore claims that a railroad worker died in a derailment accident. Located near Salem, it is a favorite destination among ghost hunters seeking lights from a phantom train and scraping sounds.
3. The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum
Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum once housed hundreds of the mentally ill from across West Virginia. Life in the massive stone structure wasn’t much fun–often be miserable, if not right deadly. Ghost hunters now spend time looking for evidence of twisted souls in the dark, aged Weston facility which was closed as a mental hospital in 1994. It is now part of the National Historic Landmark program.
4. The West Virginia Penitentiary
The West Virginia State Penitentiary no longer houses inmates, but paranormal investigators and others come to the looming Moundsville structure to find dead inmates are said to still be walking the grounds. One particular spirit is known as the Shadow Man, who seems to be a ghostly apparition. Some ghost hunters maintain it is one of the most haunted prisons in the nation.
5. Camden Park
Huntington’s Camden Park, which opened in 1903, contains an Adena Indian burial mound which has never been excavated. Rumors persist that the park is haunted by Native American spirits. Witnesses have reported seeing the apparition of one Native American chasing another with a knife, others have reported seeing a ghostly woman in the last car of the park’s wooden roller coaster.
There’s more to this little town than what meets the eye. Visitors to the Barbour County Historical Museum can see two mummies, in glass-topped wooden coffins, which date back to the late 1800s. That’s when a local farmer and amateur scientist bought and experimented with two female cadavers at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum. The Philippi mummies are the fruit of his mummification experiments, and have even survived raging flood waters from the nearby Tygart River.
7. Darkish Knob
The Ghost of Darkish Knob, near Parsons in Tucker County, dates back prior to the Civil War when the Underground Railroad went through the mountains there. Ghost hunters today still claim to see the vision of a young slave girl who died trying to locate a house there during her escape north. Her horse lost its footing, and she fell to her death while letting out a bloodcurdling scream that echoed for miles among the hills. Believers say her moans, cries and screams are still audible today.
8. Harper’s Ferry
This Eastern Panhandle town is prime paranormal activity spot: Haunted Harpers Ferry is said to be home to many restless spirits who walk the streets – as well as wander in the historic town’s businesses and home. The most haunted spot is reportedly the National Park Service’s guest house where visitors have reported seeing ghostly apparitions – including a man, woman and child – who vanish after being spotted.
9. The Blennerhassett Hotel
The man in the grey suit lives on at Blennerhassett Hotel: After more than a century, the Blennerhassett Hotel in Parkersburg has picked up its fair share of ghosts, according to employees, who have repeatedly seen an older man – with slicked back hair, and dressed in a three-piece suit – who disappears in the blink of an eye.
10. The Old Stone Presbyterian Church
Visitors to the Old Stone Presbyterian Church cemetery in Lewisburg can see the Angel of Death statue – a grave marker which belongs to an 11-year-old girl who died from the flu. Each girl who kissed the statue at a ceremony commemorating it reportedly died, and legend states anyone brave (or foolish) enough now to do the same thing will die within a year.
11. 22 Mine Road
Be careful on 22 Mine Road: Don’t end up like Mamie Thurman, whose slain body was found and recovered on 22 Mine Road near Holden, on June 22, 1932. But her death remains a mystery, and some say her spirit wanders the hills near Logan looking for the person who took her life. Local legend is that a car put in neutral – on the spot where her body was found – will appear to roll backwards up the hill.