Top 5 Most Hunted Houses

With over 1,200 haunted houses in the United States alone, and seven billion dollars spent each year on costumes, candy, and activities, it’s easy to see how Halloween clawed its way to becoming the second largest commercial holiday. During peak season, haunted houses can see anywhere from 8,000 to an astonishing 60,000 guests. While battling large crowds for hours just to be scared by a person in a rubbery mask might be the norm, why not venture out and visit a place where the cries of the dead are enough to keep you up at night.

The destinations featured below are the top five haunted places in the United States that need nothing more than a retelling of their chilling history to send shivers down your spine.

The destinations featured below are the top five haunted places in the United States that need nothing more than a retelling of their chilling history to send shivers down your spine.

Villisca House

Located on 508 E Second St. in the town of Villisca, Iowa, the small framed Villisca house became a site for the paranormal when it witnessed the grisly murders of a husband, wife, their four children, and two girls who just happened to spend the night.

While the killing of the Moore family took place on June 10, 1912, Visitors to the house claim to hear children crying, screams for help and see a mysterious figure walking around with an ax. Paranormal experts have investigated the property and believe the souls of the family still wander the property, waiting for justice. To this day, the murderer has never been identified. Restored back to its original form, guests can take a tour, or if brave enough, stay overnight.

Moundsville Penitentiary

Once exceeding over 2,400 inmates, the Moundsville Penitentiary has seen its fair share of death and decay. Historical documents show that over 1,000 inmates met their untimely death while being incarcerated at the penitentiary. Although a majority of the deaths came from unsavory living conditions and violence, 94 inmates were executed during the life of the prison.

Since its closure in 1995, the prison is said to house hundreds of ghosts. One spirit that has become somewhat famous over the years is the Shadow Man. While his identity is unknown, many believe he is the spirit of a maintenance man who was brutally stabbed to death by prisoners for informing the guards of gang activity.

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The Winchester Mystery House

The Winchester House, located in San Jose, California, is nearly as famous as the repeating rifle that Oliver Winchester manufactured. The Victorian style home was a product of Sarah Winchester, who after losing her daughters and husband to illness, sought the help of a medium. The medium informed her that a terrible curse was put on the family, and they would be haunted by all the people who were killed by Winchester rifles.

To appease the spirits, Sarah began building a house for all the lost souls. Over 38 years, Sarah overlooked the construction of the house until she died. The house is now opened to the public and contains 160 rooms, 40 bedrooms, 47 fireplaces, numerous hallways that lead to nowhere, stairways that abruptly end, and over 10,000 panels of glass. While guests are free to explore, they are warned to be weary of the souls who call the mansion home.

Bell Witch Cave

Located in the town of Adams, Tennessee, Bell Witch Cave is a site where the Bell family was tormented by a ghost known as the Bell Witch. While the cave was opened to the public, visitors are warned that the site is haunted, and anything taken from it is cursed.

The legend of the cave varies depending on who is telling the story, but most variations seem to surround Kate Batts, the neighbor of the Bell family, who claimed she was cheated out of purchasing the land from the family. Fueled by her hate for the Bells, Kate tortured the family by physically abusing the children, haunting the family, and even cursing the father. Visitors to the site have not only seen ghosts but have encountered a violent force while exploring. It’s advised not to visit Bell Witch Cave alone.

Gettysburg Battlefield

Known as one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War, Gettysburg has become not only a place of historical relevance but also one of the most haunted locations in the US. At the time of the battle, over 50,000 Union and Confederate soldiers lost their lives as they fought one another.

Since Gettysburg was opened to the public, visitors claim to have heard cannon and gun fire, screams, moans, and some have even seen ghosts of the fallen. One of the most popular spots on the battlefield for tourists is Devil’s Den. Located at a large rock formation, dozens of bodies and limbs were found scattered around the area and has since become a prime location for anyone looking to encounter the paranormal.

Article by Chris Piner

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