We don’t know about you, but most of our readers here at Juniata Valley express their love for Halloween for many reasons! Some like decorating while others simply love the candy options at the grocery store. Either way, October is a time when the weather changes and the leaves start to fall. For us, it’s a time to get spooked! Here are a few of our favorite spooky destinations to get you in the swing of Halloween.
Hessian Powder Magazine, Carlisle
Hessians were Germans that were contracted to fight alongside the British during the Revolutionary War. This stone building, erected by the Hessians, still stands today and is full of paranormal activity. Expect to hear moans, groans, and clattering noises during all hours of the day and night. A worker told a story of doors that would randomly come unlocked, though he remembers locking them, and is the only one with keys. Who else could it be other than the Hessians?
King George Inn ll
This hotel had famous guests, such as George Washington, John Adams, and James Madison. Though the ghosts of these figures aren’t reportedly seen here, one spiffy-dressed man in a top hat is seen to be walking about. Some visitors even report paintings falling off the walls and doors and windows swinging open on their own.
Hotel Bethlehem, Bethlehem
This list just wouldn’t be complete without a haunted hotel, and Hotel Bethlehem fits the ticket. Four identified ghosts are spotted regularly here at this hotel that was actually the town’s first house:
- May Yohe, an actor and singer born in the hotel that can allegedly still be heard singing in the lobby
- Francis “Daddy” Thomas, a tour guide of Bethlehem before his death ins 1822
- and Mrs. Brong, the hotel’s first landlords
The alleged most haunted room is 932, where lamps flicker, figures appear in the mirror, and guests even report being woken up by a male asking them why they’re in his room.
Gettysburg Battlefield, Gettysburg
As one of the bloodiest battles in history, the Gettysburg Battlefield is the site where 8,000 Confederate and Union soldiers died over just three days. Of course, it’s allegedly haunted! Ghostly sightings are frequent here, and visitors report speaking to these soldiers just before they disappear into thin air.
Ready for a curveball? Gettysburg is considered to have already been haunted by a very famous spirit, George Washington. Many soldiers say he appeared before them and led the way.
Coulterville Cemetery, White Oak
If the sounds of kids laughing, playing, and enjoying themselves outside at a cemetery at night with absolutely no kids in sight, then Coulterville might be for you. Unfortunately, tragedy is their story. An orphanage once stood nearby the cemetery but burned, killing several children. Now, some see shadowy figures of children running around, while others eerily report child-size handprints on the cars. It’s also quite usual, (just in this case) to see a child in your rearview mirror as you depart the cemetery.
Eastern State Penitentiary
As the first penitentiary in the nation, Eastern State Penitentiary was made to force prisoners to spend their time alone and in silence to reflect on their crimes. If you thought it couldn’t get worse, prisoners were also subject to physical and psychological torture, which led to an immense amount of mental illness amongst the inmates. If you plan to visit, expect to hear screams, footsteps and odd noises. Others also report the feeling of being grabbed or followed.
Betsy Ross House, Philadelphia
Though known for designing America’s first flag, you might be in for something more than a history lesson at the house of Betsy Ross. Some visitors report to see Betsy herself crying in the basement. Others often hear cries and moans coming from the gift shop where a security guard was murdered in 1980. Nearby places are also allegedly haunted, so you can knock them all out with a Philadelphia Cemetery and Urban History Tour.
We’re hoping these spooky destinations get you in the. . . spirit for Halloween! Whether you’re spending the holiday in your RV or going out, remember to be safe! Happy Halloween!
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