Exploring the supernatural has become a favorite past time for many. Thanks to popular television shows like Ghost Hunters International and Paranormal State, disturbing spirits in their natural habitat has been brought to the forefront.
People have become braver than ever before as they explore old buildings and take midnight strolls through graveyards snapping photos hoping to capture things they can’t see with the naked eye.
Every city has tales of their own “Midnight Mary” and such, but while they may lay claim to a haunt or two, these are peanuts compared to the ghostly gatherings going on elsewhere. Certain towns and areas are prone to more paranormal activity than others, so if a person is serious about their hobby, they need to go where the spirits are to increase their chances of finding what they are searching for. The more activity reported in an area, the better chances of bagging their prey.
Here are three of the most notorious haunts in America.
This former gold mining town is a hotbed of paranormal activity. So much so, in fact, it was featured on the show Ghost Adventures.
In 1862 gold was discovered around Grasshopper Creek by John White and the town sprung up from the dust. Deserters from the Civil War, outlaws, and businessmen intent on earning a few bucks all migrated to the city along with the miners and the town soon developed a reputation for lawlessness.
Prospectors later struck gold in nearby Virginia City, then called Alder Gulch, and many of the prospectors started mining there instead. The road between the two towns became a dangerous one to travel. Murders and robberies were commonplace. Stagecoaches were held up by gangs of outlaws more so than almost any other route.
It was eventually discovered that the leader of the most notorious of these gangs was none other than the sheriff of Bannack, Henry Plummer. Gallows were erected behind a saloon, where Plummer was hanged. Nowadays the town is a state park and visitors are free to explore the over sixty still-standing buildings.
Dorothy Dunn, a young girl, drowned in a dredge pond in 1916. It is said that children still see her dressed in a blue dress. She has been known to attempt talking to them. Now and then she can be seen in a second-floor window of a former hotel. An older woman has also been seen from the window but it is unclear who she is.
People have reported hearing children crying. A woman walking through one of the buildings said a large heavy door suddenly slammed and she felt cold spots.
Where the old general store used to be, apparitions have been caught on film. A woman captured a group of misty figures gathered around a piece of furniture as though they were involved in a discussion of some sort.
This is only the tip of the ice burg in Bannack. There is plenty more to send chills down the spine of those willing to explore further.
Gold miners followed William Bodie to this spot in 1859 with hopes of discovering what turned out to not be there. At one time the town consisted of gamblers, outlaws, and prostitutes who reigned freely, and the population reached 10,000, but it has now stood abandoned for 150 years.
In the winter of 1878-1879 hundreds of the town’s residents died from exposure to the cold and disease. Powder magazine explosions and falling timber as the area was excavated killed many of the miners.
When the forlorn and disappointed miners deserted the town, they took very little with them. Shacks are still adorned with furniture, pots, and pans, and other items needed to sustain life. Store shelves are still stocked with supplies. The entire town appears as though it is waiting for its residents to return, though they never will.
It is rumored that spirits still guard the town. Anyone caught pilfering anything still left there will be struck with the “curse of Bodie.” Park Rangers have stated they receive unmarked boxes from previous visitors returning small items, such as nails, they stuck in their pockets as souvenirs.
Most of the 168 remaining structures are said to be haunted and one ghost hunter described the town as “a ghost town that really is a ghost town.”
The J.S. Cain house is said to be haunted by the spirit of a heavy-set Chinese maid, and numerous figures have been spotted staring out of windows in other buildings.
There is also the Bodie cemetery where only the bravest of the brave dare wander. A man visiting the cemetery with his little girl said she started giggling and speaking to an entity he could not see.
Cahawba was the first state capital of Alabama. It was a bustling center for transporting cotton before the civil war, and after the war became home to many freed slaves. By 1900, after yellow fever outbreaks and floods from two intersecting rivers, the town was abandoned.
It has since become the Old Cahawba Archaeological Park and guests are free to roam the empty streets, buildings, and the cemeteries.
Known as “Pegues Ghost,” an eerie ball of light has been seen floating in thin air. It was first spotted in 1862 by a young couple on a walk through the forest. Colonel Pegues was fatally wounded in a civil war battle and the light appears behind his former residence.
Not too long ago paranormal investigators set up a recording device in one of the cemeteries where whites were buried. A voice was picked up saying “Don…Key.”
This was believed to be the voice of a key-stealing slave. The following day, the park manager, named Don, lost his keys. They were found in the slave cemetery, next to the very grave of this slave.
So. Here are three extremely haunted places for you to check out. Are they simply stories, or are they real? There’s only one way to truly know. Good luck and happy hunting!