In These Haunted United States – Part 2: Hawaii to Maryland

Now we’re off to a great start. You might notice how some of these places might be familiar to you such as famous battlefields and other areas. I know that Alcatraz is a familiar place for anyone since it housed some of the notorious criminals in early 20th century America. It’s also used in a lot of movies as a filming location. Still, a lot of places might have their own ghost stories for whatever the reason. Sometimes it was a place where there were a lot of deaths and mistreatment like prisons, insane asylums, and battlefields. Sometimes it had a checkered past such as some of these mansions and hotels. Sometimes there might be a chance that some structure was built on top of an Indian burial ground. But occasionally, you might have a place with an alleged haunting for almost no reason at all like UAA’s auditorium. I mean other than Wendy Williamson, you don’t know why other ghosts would hang out there. Nevertheless, in this section, I’ll bring you another set of haunted places in the US. These will include a royal palace that was home to the last rulers of Hawaii’s monarchy, a state prison in Idaho, hotels in Illinois and Indiana, a home that was sight to a notorious murder in Iowa, a small house haunted by a mysterious girl in Kansas, a mental institution in Kentucky, a plantation in Louisiana, a lighthouse in Maine, and a Civil War battlefield in Maryland. So for your reading pleasure, I give you another installment of some of the most haunted places in the United States.

11. Hawaii

From 1845 to 1893, the Iolani Palace was home to the last rulers of the Hawaiian monarchy (and it's said that some of the royal family members still reside there as ghosts). Under US rule it would be used as the Hawaiian seat of government until 1969. It's the only royal palace on US soil.

From 1845 to 1893, the Iolani Palace was home to the last rulers of the Hawaiian monarchy (and it’s said that some of the royal family members still reside there as ghosts). Under US rule it would be used as the Hawaiian seat of government until 1969. It’s the only royal palace on US soil.

Most Haunted Place: ‘Iolani Palace in Honolulu

History: Constructed in 1845, it was the residence of the Hawaiian Royal Family from Kamehameha III to Queen Lili’uokalani. After the royal family was overthrown in 1893, it was used as the territorial and later state capitol until 1969.

Present Use: It’s now a museum for the public.

Sightings: It’s said that various royal ghosts have been seen or heard there.

Anyone Famous?: It’s been reported that the most frequent sightings have revolved around Queen Lili’uokalani.

Open to Tourists?: Yes.

Other Haunts: Hamakuapoko, Pounder Beach, Barber’s Point, Dole Cannery Signature Theaters,  Hilton Hawaii Village, Kaka’ako Fire Station, Morgan’s Corner, Nu’uanu, Sacred Heart Academy, State Capitol Building, Kahala Mall, Waikiki Parc Hotel, Waialae Drive-In Theaters, King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, Waimano Building, Hickam Air Force Base

12. Idaho

During its operation, Boise's old Idaho State Penitentiary received over 13,000 prisoners. The most famous of these are a political assassin and a black widow serial killer. Closed over riots and poor living conditions.

During its operation, Boise’s old Idaho State Penitentiary received over 13,000 prisoners. The most famous of these are a political assassin and a black widow serial killer. Closed over riots and poor living conditions.

Most Haunted Place: Old Idaho State Penitentiary in Boise

History: Was a functional prison in the Western US from 1872-1973.  Received more than 13,000 inmates with maximum occupancy at about 600. 215 of the inmates were women. Saw 10 executions. Famous inmates were Harry Orchard who assassinated a former governor in 1905 and Lyda Southard, infamously known as Idaho’s Lady Bluebeard for killing several husbands for the life insurance. It was a place of violence and riots. Closed over riots due to horrible living conditions. It’s now owned by the Idaho Historical Society.

Present Use: It’s now a museum and contains an arboretum.

Sightings: There have been reports of footsteps, voices, shouts, and overwhelming emotional sensations. It’s been reported there was one death row inmate who jumped off the third floor is said to make his presence known by a greenish light and causing batteries to go dead.

Anyone Famous?: No.

Open to Tourists?: Yes.

Other Haunts: Farragut State Park, Harms Memorial Hospital, Joyce Building, Owyhee Mountains, Egyptian Theater, Idaho State University at Pocatello, Pete’s Tavern, Pioneer Boot Hill Cemetery

13. Illinois

Since its opening in 1893, Chicago's Congress Plaza Hotel has had a long and colorful history from protests to presidential guests. It's also been the place for a lot of haunted ghost sightings, including that of a hobo and a guy in disco attire.

Since its opening in 1893, Chicago’s Congress Plaza Hotel has had a long and colorful history from protests to presidential guests. It’s also been the place for a lot of haunted ghost sightings, including that of a hobo and a guy in disco attire.

Most Haunted Place: Congress Plaza Hotel in Chicago

History: First opened in 1893 for the World’s Columbian Exposition and has underwent two major expansions and renovations. It’s 11 stories with 871 guest rooms. In 1912, it was the sight of Teddy Roosevelt’s “Bull Moose” speech. In October 1916, Woodrow Wilson passed this hotel as part of his visit to the city where he was greeted by over 100 suffragette protestors from the National Women’s Party. They were attacked by a mob as police looked on and/or laughed. In 1932, it was FDR’s transition team headquarters. Known for its artwork by Louis Grell and for providing lodgings for several US presidents from Grover Cleveland to FDR. In 2003, about 130 members of UNITE HERE went on strike to proposed a 7% wage cut that soon became one of the world’s longest, ending in 2013. No concessions were given by management though Barack Obama briefly stood in the picket line in 2007. It’s now owned by a Syrian national.

Present Use: It’s still used as a hotel as I’ve seen on the website.

Sightings: Guests and employees have reported everything from apparitions and voices to the presence of a room so horrible that it’s been boarded over. Ghosts reported include a boy whose mother threw him out a window, a workman said to be buried in the walls during construction, a pegleg hobo who was murdered, a Spanish American War vet who shot himself, and a guy in disco attire.

Anyone Famous?: Well, some people have reported sightings of Al Capone and Teddy Roosevelt. It’s also alleged Jake “Greasy Thumb” Guzik’s ghost resides there as well. Of course the guy was one of Al Capone’s henchmen and is said to live there for several years. For those who want to know more about Guzik, check out my series on Boardwalk Empire since he’s a character on the show.

Open to Tourists?: Yes, if you can afford it.

Other Haunts: Ashmore Estates, Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery, Crenshaw House, Former Chicago Historical Society Building, Stickney House, St. Turbius Church, Aux Sable Cemetery, Scutt Mansion, Graceland Cemetery, Lincoln Theater, Eldred House, Tinker Swiss Cottage, Anderson Cemetery, Dana-Thomas House, Ninth Street Pub, St. Rita of Cascia, Leland Tower, Sheraton Gateway Suites, Desoto House Hotel, Woodstock Opera House, Blood’s Point Cemetery, House of Blues, Robinson Woods, Harrison Street Inn, Original Springs Mineral Spa and Hotel, Ruebel Hotel, Hotel Baker, Willowbrook Ballroom, Greenwood Cemetery, Benedictine University, St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church, Lincoln Square Theater, Massock Mausoleum, Three Mile House, Krome Family Cemetery, Red Lion Pub, Mineral Springs Hotel, Peoria State Hospital, Morton College, McPike Mansion, Clark Street Bridge, American Flight 191 Crash Site, Mount Carmel Cemetery, Waldheim Cemetery, McKendree University

14. Indiana

French Lick Springs Hotel was originally built for those who came to experience the healing benefits of the area's sulfur springs. Today it's now part of a casino resort complex. Of course, before then, it tended to get in trouble with the state for illegal gambling operations.

French Lick Springs Hotel was originally built for those who came to experience the healing benefits of the area’s sulfur springs. Today it’s now part of a casino resort complex. Of course, before then, it tended to get in trouble with the state for illegal gambling operations.

Most Haunted Place: French Lick Springs Hotel in French Lick

History: The resort was originally built for those who came to partake the advertised healing properties of the town’s sulfur springs. After the original hotel burned down in 1897, the current structure was constructed by DNC chair and Indianapolis mayor Thomas Taggart. Had been seized by the state government for illegal gambling. Famous guests include FDR (who announced his presidential campaign there) and Ronald Reagan.

Present Use: It’s now part of a larger casino resort complex.

Sightings: Many report hearing footsteps and voices. Some say there’s a ghost of an elevator attendant who helps out as well as one of a bride who committed suicide and a black bellhop. Not only that, but it’s said there are ghosts calling the front desk from empty rooms.

Anyone Famous?: It’s said to be haunted by original owner Thomas Taggart who’s been reported to operate the elevator when the place gets busy, appear riding a horse in the ballroom or down the halls, and hold ghostly parties.

Open to Tourists?: Yes, if you can afford it.

Other Haunts: Central State Hospital, Dunes State Park, Story Inn, Willard Library, Whispers Estate, Cry Baby Bridge, Fort Rouge Plant, Barber Hotel, Battle Field Memorial, Hoosier National Forest, Indiana University, Scales Lake, Old Sycamore Haunted Bridge, Chesterfield Christian Church, Cloverdale Cemetery, Adams County Cheese Factory, Eastland Mall, Lakeside Park, Franklin College, Bishop Noll Institute, St. Joseph’s Old Abandoned Catholic Church, Hanna House, House of Blue Lights, James Dean’s Grave, New Haven Historical City Hall

15. Iowa

Villisca's  Moore House was the site of an infamous unsolved murder that killed 8 people. Until 1994, previous owners would claim they saw a guy wielding an ax at the foot of their beds.

Villisca’s Moore House was the site of an infamous unsolved murder that killed 8 people. Until 1994, previous owners would claim they saw a guy wielding an ax at the foot of their beds.

Most Haunted Place: Josiah B. and Sara Moore House in Villisca

History: Built in 1868 and served as a private residence. Josiah and Sara Moore bought the house in 1903 and lived there until 1912. On June 9 of that year, all 6 members of the Moore household and 2 houseguests (both children) were bludgeoned to death by an axe at the residence. The murder remains unsolved. After the murders, went through possession 8 times until 1994 when the last owners decided to restore the house to its 1912 condition.

Present Use: Has been a local museum since the 1990s.

Sightings: Prior to the 1994 renovations, there were reports from former tenants claiming they saw a figure of an axe wielding man at the foot of their beds. Others report their kids waking up to the sounds of children crying. One dad reported that a knife forcefully stabbed him in the thumb. Other incidences included finding shoes filled with blood and a closet door opening and closing by itself.

Anyone Famous?: Well, other than the victims, no.

Open to Tourists?: Yes.

Other Haunts: Drake University, Independence State Hospital, Iowa State Penitentiary, Jordan House, Stony Hollow Road, Hotel Blackhawk, Cresco Theatre, KD Station, Tara Bridge, Mathias Ham House, Oakland Cemetery

16. Kansas

While it has changed hands as a private residence, the Sallie House is said to be haunted by a little girl named "Sallie" and an older woman said to be violent toward a male owner. Though vacant, it's still privately owned so I wouldn't recommend anyone to visit it.

While it has changed hands as a private residence, the Sallie House is said to be haunted by a little girl named “Sallie” and an older woman said to be violent toward a male owner. Though vacant, it’s still privately owned so I wouldn’t recommend anyone to visit it.

Most Haunted Place: The Sallie House in Atchison

History: Built in 1857 as a private residence. Has changed in various hands.

Present Use: As of 2015, it’s currently been vacant since 2004. Has been currently owned by a landlord since the 1990s so I guess it’s still being used as a residence.

Sightings: It’s reportedly been haunted by a little girl named “Sallie” who liked play little pranks and an older, unidentified woman who was violent toward a male owner.

Anyone Famous?: No.

Open to Tourists?: No.

Other Haunts: Atchison itself, Brown Grand Theater, Kansas Aviation Museum, Kansas State University, McConnell Air Force Base, Topeka High School, Wichita State University, Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery, Molly’s Hollow, St. Jacob’s Well, Theorosa’s Bridge, Hutchinson Public Library, Hamburger Hill, Potwin Place

17. Kentucky

Like Seaside, the Waverly Hills Sanatorium initially operated as a treatment center for TB patients before becoming a mental institution. And it was closed for similar reasons. However, unlike Seaside, the current owners are paranormal enthusiasts and want to convert this place into a hotel as far as I know.

Like Seaside, the Waverly Hills Sanatorium initially operated as a treatment center for TB patients before becoming a mental institution. And it was closed for similar reasons. However, unlike Seaside, the current owners are paranormal enthusiasts and want to convert this place into a hotel as far as I know.

Most Haunted Place: Waverly Hills Sanatorium in Louisville

History: Opened in 1910 as a tuberculosis sanatorium after the area was ravaged by an epidemic that prompted its construction.  After the sanatorium was closed in 1962, it was converted to a geriatric center, a nursing home for the elderly and mentally handicapped. The place was closed by the state due to patient neglect as is common in these environments of understaffed and overcrowded institutions. It’s said that thousands have died there, though it’s more likely 8,212.

Present Use: It has basically been abandoned until its current owners have decided to restore it and just happen to be paranormal enthusiasts. There are currently plans to convert the place into a 4 star hotel for the haunted hotel enthusiasts as well as regular patrons. However, it once hosted an extreme metal and metalcore festival in 2007. But it’s not likely to happen again due to complaints made by local residents.

Sightings: Many ghosts are said to haunt the place including children chanting “Ring Around the Rosey” on the roof, a nurse who committed suicide via jumping off the roof, a little girl playing hide and seek, a little boy playing ball, an old woman in chains, a man in a white coat and other ghosts treading down the halls. Others consist of various voices, a floating head, lights coming on without electricity, and a flicker of a TV screen.

Anyone Famous?: No.

Open to Tourists?: Not sure.

Other Haunts: Perryville Battlefield, Bob Mackey’s Music World, X Cave at Carter Caves, Raven Hill Cemetery, Old Louisville, House on Coon Branch, White Hall, Phillips’ Folly, Rocky Point Manor, Ditto House, Cave Hill Cemetery, Lick Creek Cemetery, Maple Hill Manor, Loudon House, Sherman’s Tavern, Old Greensburg Courthouse, Seelbach Hilton, Louisville Palace Theater, Mammoth Cave, Camp Zachary Taylor

18. Louisiana

The Myrtles Plantation in Louisiana has had its share of owners and incidences. Today it's operated as a bed and breakfast by paranormal enthusiasts.

The Myrtles Plantation in Louisiana has had its share of owners and incidences. Today it’s operated as a bed and breakfast by paranormal enthusiasts.

Most Haunted Place: The Myrtles Plantation in St. Francisville

History: Built in 1796 by General David Bradford who lived there until President John Adams pardoned him for his involvement in the Whiskey Rebellion (by the way, I actually went to Bradford’s house in Washington, PA). In 1817, his daughter and son-in-law Sarah and Clark Woodruff managed the plantation but she and two of their kids died in yellow fever epidemic during the early 1820s. When his mother-in-law died Clark and his surviving daughter moved out. In 1834, it was sold to Ruffin Gray Stirling who took an extensive remodeling project and doubled the size of the building. They had 9 children but 5 died young. Stirling died in 1854 and left the place to his wife Mary Cobb. In 1865, she hired son-in-law William Winter and he resided there with his wife Sarah and their 6 children, one of whom died of typhoid at 3. In 1871, Winter was shot at his porch by E.S. Webber and died within minutes on the 17th step of the stairs. Sarah died in 1878 while her mother Mary died in 1880 and the plantation passed to her Stephen. However, the place was heavily in debt and it changed hands several times until it was bought by current owners James and Frances Kermeen Myers.

Present Use: Currently a bed and breakfast offering historical and mystery tours.

Sightings: It is supposedly the home of at least 12 ghosts usually consisting of previous residents and slaves. It’s said that visitors and employees still hear William Winter’s dying footsteps to this day. It’s also reputed to be built over an Indian burial ground. Another reported seeing Sara Woodruff and her two dead children through a mirror. Other ghosts include a slave woman in a green turban, a young Native American woman, a young girl who died in 1868, and of two slaves asking to do any chores.

Anyone Famous?: No.

Open to Tourists?: Yes.

Other Haunts: Central Louisiana State Hospital, Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre, Louisiana State Penitentiary, Magnolia Plantation, Le Beau Mansion, Tomb of Marie Laveau, Caddo Parish Penal Farm, Bonnie and Clyde Ambush Site, Marian Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, Elise Reus Memorial School, Manchac Swamp

19. Maine

Maine's Wood Island Lighthouse might seem to have an uneventful history. However, in 1896 it was the scene of a drifter killing a deputy sheriff and committing suicide. It's said his moans and footsteps are often heard. Why Stephen King doesn't write something about this I'll never know. Seriously, Maine is the guy's home state for God's sake.

Maine’s Wood Island Lighthouse might seem to have an uneventful history. However, in 1896 it was the scene of a drifter killing a deputy sheriff and committing suicide. It’s said his moans and footsteps are often heard. Why Stephen King doesn’t write something about this I’ll never know. Seriously, Maine is the guy’s home state for God’s sake.

Most Haunted Place: Wood Island Lighthouse in Wood Island

History: A 47ft tall conical white tower of granite rubble lighthouse. It’s the second oldest in Maine and 11th oldest in the nation. Established in 1808 but its current structure was erected in 1858. In March 1865, Lightkeeper Eben Emerson saved the crew of the British brig Edyth Anne from drowning in a heavy storm and was commended by the Canadian government with a reward of binoculars. Another lightkeeper had a dog named Sailor who became famous for ringing the station’s fog bell to greet passing ships by taking the belt cord in its mouth and pulling it with his teeth. Currently maintained by the United States Coast Guard and The Friends of Wood Island Light.

Present Use: It’s still used as a lighthouse to this day as well as a historical site.

Sightings: In 1896, a drifter shot and killed a local deputy sheriff and then went to the lighthouse to kill himself. It’s said his moans and footsteps are often heard, as well as shadows with a human form. Locked doors are also known to somehow open by themselves.

Anyone Famous?: No.

Open to Tourists?: Yes, but they only offer seasonal tours though.

Other Haunts: Camden Hills, Captain Fairfield’s Inn, Fort Knox, Southern Maine Community College, University of Southern Maine, West Side Lake, York Village Historical Museum, Strand Cinema, Boothbay Opera House, Captain Lord Mansion, Ellis Pond, Fort William Henry, Beckett’s Castle, Maine State Prison

20. Maryland

Antietam was the first battle in the American Civil War to take place on Union soil and one that experience the most losses in a single day. Though it was a strategic Union victory, it was tactically inconclusive. And it was a rather lucky break for McClellan. Today it's a national battlefield in Maryland. But sometimes I tend to call it, "Maryland's Gettysburg."

Antietam was the first battle in the American Civil War to take place on Union soil and one that experience the most losses in a single day. Though it was a strategic Union victory, it was tactically inconclusive. And it was a rather lucky break for McClellan. Today it’s a national battlefield in Maryland. But sometimes I tend to call it, “Maryland’s Gettysburg.”

Most Haunted Place: Antietam Battlefield in Sharpsburg

History: Site of the Battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862, which marked Robert E. Lee’s first northern invasion and George B. McClellan’s lucky break. Still, neither side really gained anything from it. It was the bloodiest single day battle in the American Civil War with a combined tally of dead, wounded, or missing at 22,717.

Present Use: It’s now a national park with 330,000 visiting the place each year.

Sightings: Many visitors have reported seeing apparitions in uniforms as well as hearing cannon and gunfire. Blue balls of light, disembodied voices, orbs, phantom drumming, and strange mists have also been reported.

Anyone Famous?: Not that I can name off hand.

Open to Tourists?: Yes.

Other Haunts: Auburn House, Chestnut Lodge, University of Maryland Morrill Hall, Point Lookout Lighthouse, Westminster Hall and Burying Ground, Dr. Mudd’s House, Jonathan Hager House, Maryland State House, Bachelor’s Point, Decoursey Bridge, St. Paul’s Cemetery, Kitty Knight House, Fort McHenry, Baltimore County Almshouse

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