179 Main Street
Status: Former Inn; Pub
This building was built in 1832 by John Stone who owned a lot of land in what was then called Unionville. He learned that a railroad was going to be built through the center of town so he built a hotel beside where the railroad would go through and called it the Railroad House.
John only ran the business for 2 years before leasing it to a number of others until his death in 1858. It was then bought in 1868 by a Mr WA Scott who continued the business.
As the decades went by the building began to show it’s age until in 1976 Leonard “Cappy” Fournier became the owner and began to restore it to it’s former glory. He’s also credited with being the first to investigate the paranormal activity.
It is now run as an Irish pub and has numerous very good reviews on multiple platforms.
The building is said to be haunted by no less than 7 ghosts. One of whom it said to be Mr Stone himself who is described – both living and dead – as a very unpleasant man.
An investigation into the paranormal happenings in the 1980’s led to a story being discovered of a man being murdered – by John Stone himself – in a card game gone wrong. The man apparently was buried in the basement and while the floor was dug up it has not been released what was found.
Another of the ghosts is said to be a former chamber maid. The remaining ghosts are rumored to be male guests who managed to drink themselves to death over the years and are happy with an eternal afterlife in a bar.
Intense feelings of everything from mild unease to sheer fright have been described. One former manager had birdseed suddenly fall from the ceiling onto the floor. The water taps turn on by themselves and many customers have reported being tapped on the shoulder only to turn around and find no one there.
(The Charlesgate Hotel)
4 Charlesgate East
535 Beacon Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02215
Status: Former Hotel and Residence; Former Female Dormitory; Luxury Apartment Residences
Designed by J. Pickering Putnam in 1891 this building is impressive and unique to say the least. It’s a reminder of a Boston that is long lost; one of beauty, peace and elegance.
Of course, its also considered one of the most haunted sites in Boston, Massachusetts and possibly the entire United States but we’ll get to that below.
The original purpose of the building was a hotel and a residence for the Putnam family.
It is 7 stories high and shaped like an elongated C. Until 1908 long term residents of the hotel were even given a plot of land with grass and flowers on it.
The architect - Mr Putnam - lived in the building until his death in 1917 (and yes, the stories are true he did pass away in the building). His wife Grace continued to live there until 1923 when the building was sold to a hotelier; Herbert Summers. Mr Summers owned the hotel until 1937 when he too passed away.
Ownership passed to his wife, Fanny, who continued to live there with family until her death in 1947.
In 1947 the building was sold to Boston University who renovated it top to bottom and used it as a girl’s dormitory.
From 1970 until 1981 there were many owners and the building was used as a rooming house and cheap apartments; this is also when it gained a rather nasty reputation based on it’s tenants.
In 1981 Emerson College bought the building and it was used as a student dormitory again.
In 1996 the current owners, Charlesgate Realty Trust LLC, took over and made massive renovations again. Today, the building has 56 luxury apartments which can be bought or rented - $3000 a month in 2022.
The building is now private property and cannot be entered until you are a resident or a guest.
There are numerous stories and legends about the Charlesgate.
Yes, a man did commit suicide in the building but it is the only suicide historically verifiable. Apparently, an alarm clock – even though it was not set – went off the same time every morning at his time of death from that point on. At this point the building has been renovated so many times it would be impossible to locate where the suicide took place making this legend untestable.
The first floor is said to be haunted by ghost horses who died in their stable when the Mud River flooded. Its certainly possible – and many people have seen the horses – but there are no building plans showing there was ever a stable on the grounds.
Putnam’s young daughter, Elsa, is said to have chased her ball down one of the hallways and fell down an open elevator shaft to her death. There is no historical account of this fatal accident but the rich have been hiding things from the public since time eternal so who knows. The apparition of a young girl is seen to this day running, laughing and playing in the halls.
Elsa is said to be always looking for new playmates. Should you be able to enter the building you could always apply and see what happens.
Harry Houdini himself performed seances in the Charlesgate as part of a series of test for a medium. During these tests spirits of the dead were invited into the building but Houdini ultimately declared a medium a fraud.
During the times the building was used as a dormitory it is said students used Ouija boards in their rooms and contacted the ghosts trapped in the building. I don’t know about you but I did the same while living in residence in the University of Guelph and while some residences are haunted for sure this story is really neither here nor there.
There is also a story that the mafia owned the building in the early 20th century – again there is no historical proof of this – and they executed multiple people in rooms and the elevators. People report seeing the apparitions of these victims throughout the building; especially in the elevators.
There are stories of numerous student suicides when Emerson College used the building as a residence. This is just plain inaccurate as the College would have records of these suicides and it has not one report of a student suicide here in it’s records.
While we were unable to find any reports of paranormal activity since the building was converted into apartments that’s also neither here nor there. After all, if you tell people your apartment is haunted, they may think you crazy. There are uncountable records of places suddenly becoming un-haunted when new owners took over.
Activity Reported by Students And/Or People Staying in the building during it’s transitory history (1947 – 1995): apparitions; shadow figures; sudden unexplainable gusts of cold winds; doors and windows opening and closing on their own; objects moving on their own; alarms going off without ever having been set; toilets flushing on their own; toilets slamming up and down on their own; lights turning on and off by themselves; radios, record players and CD/cassette turning on and playing music on their own; batteries being completely drained in seconds; disembodied voices; unexplained noises of various kinds; sudden drops or increases in temperatures; faces appearing in windows; phantom footsteps; light anomalies and, of course, feelings of unease and anxiety as well as being followed, being watched and never really being alone.
On a personal note – there are certain locations that seem to resist being researched – Sloss Furnances in Birmingham, Alabama is another site like this – and this is one of them. I had no end of computer problems, Wi-Fi connectivity issues, internet issues etc while trying to do the research on the Charlesgate.
When looking up the address on Google Maps the location for the building kept changing and bouncing all over Boston. I’ve never had this happen before.
Maybe some places just do not want to be noticed. Makes one think. . .
(State Lunatic Asylum at Danvers)(Bradlee Danvers)(Halstead Danvers)
1101 Kirkbride Drive
Status: Residential Complex
By Period photograph, Public Domain, Link
This hospital was built in 1874 at a cost 1.5 million dollars to alleviate the over crowding at the State’s other asylums. It was built on Hathorne Hill where the infamous Judge Hathorne from the Salem Witch Trials once lived. In fact, it is thought that the corn which was infected with mold causing hallucinations was also grown on this very hill. Eating the corn is one theory as to what caused people to see things and accuse their neighbors of being witches.
And yes, that’s right, this is where the Salem Witch Trials really happened. Before changing its name to Danvers in 1752 this area was known as Salem Village. Previous to that there had been two Salems in Massachusetts – one a peaceful sleepy village which is still called Salem and the one with the witch trials now called Danvers.
There is also a legend that the Native Americans considered this hill a cursed area – although that cannot be substantiated by history. Being the home of one of the worse judges in the witch trials and the possibility that infected corn was grown here the hill was generally avoided by the ancestors of the original European settlers. Building an insane asylum here only cemented the reputation.
Danvers was built using the Kirkbride Plan (a plan in which wings were built in both directions off of the central building making the hospital look rather like a bat from above – the most violent patients were housed at the end of the wings while the most complacent were housed the closest to the staff in the center building). It was considered the upmost in patient care at the time – restraints were not supposed to be used and the rooms had windows allowing views and ventilation.
At the time the site was chosen the hill was part of a farm belonging to the Dodge family – Mr Dodge was convinced to sell to the State. When completed the main building was 700,000 square feet and designed to house 450 patients. The locals referred to it as “the castle on the hill”.
The hospital first opened in May of 1878.
By the 1920s and 30s the original plans for the institution were all but abandoned. Overcrowding had become a serious issue with over 2,000 patients being housed in the building and treatments such as lobotomies, electro-shock therapy and strait jackets becoming the norm. The number of staff had not increased with the patient population and the general state of care went from good to bad to abysmal.
As an example, in 1939 the hospital’s population was 2,360 and 278 patients were listed as having died.
As the 20th Century continued the buildings began to fall apart and – despite administration’s desperate requests for money – the State did nothing to prevent the deterioration of both patient care and infrastructure.
Entire wards in the massive facility – over 40 buildings by the time it closed – were sealed off as patients began to be moved to other institutions. With the advent of more and more psychiatric and anti-psychotic drugs more patients were moved to halfway house and/or put back on the street.
Despite being put on the National Register of Historic Buildings in 1984 the original Kirkbride Building was closed and sealed up in 1989 with the remaining patients moved to the nearby Bonner Medical Building. In 1992 the State completely closed the facility down for good. Many patients were simply put on the street and with no where else to go they returned to the grounds and lived in the empty buildings.
For 13 years the property remained abandoned until in 2005 Avalon Bay Development bought it. Their plan was a 12 million dollar development to turn it into condos. In 2007 a fire broke out for unknown reasons destroying most of the newly constructed buildings and the construction trailers. The fire was so huge it could be seen from Boston.
In 2008 construction was completed and the new tenants began to move in. Complaints started appearing on the internet soon afterward of badly constructed buildings and rent being raised quickly without explanation. There are also rumors of above average complaints of violent behavior including domestic abuse – and paranormal activity.
In 2014 the site sold for 108 million dollars to the DSF Group and renamed Halstead Danvers.
If are looking for a now historical experience of the original site before it was converted to condos watch the movie “Session 9” which takes place primarily on site – both inside and out – and provides the best visual record of a property now lost. The actors and crew have told many stories of strange and unexplained activity which got stranger and more disturbing as time went on. At least one actor thought seriously of quitting the movie due to his experiences. The movie was shot on site in 22 days due both to budget and the fact that everyone just wanted to get away from the abandoned asylum.
All that remains of the original property now is the front façade of the Kirkbride Building, several blocked tunnels, the cemetery, D wing and G wing.
Every imaginable facet and level of paranormal activity has been recorded at this location. I will divide it into what was reported before and after the demolition and change to condos.
The tunnels – many of which still exist under the current developments – are said to be the most active on this site. Strangely enough the cemetery is the least haunted – there are no reports of paranormal activity in the cemetery.
You may also ask why – if this former asylum is so haunted – are there are so few photos of paranormal activity?? The main reason, security was very tight when it was abandoned – no less than 120 would be investigators were caught on site and charged (most minutes after entering the property).
A child of the main administrator of the hospital lived in a house on site with her parents – she had the covers pulled off of her bed by an elderly scowling woman. She did not feel threatened by the ghost.
Apparitions of former patients, apparitions of former staff, shadow people, being touched, tugged and pushed by unseen forces, feelings of unease, intense sadness, fear, anger, physical illness, nausea, being watched, wanting to leave, not being wanted and not being alone, phantom smells, mysterious mists including some moving against the wind, cold spots, warm spots, unexplained sounds including – voices, laughter, foot steps, screams, weeping, something being dragged and banging, time slips, dimensional shifts, unexplained light phenomena, sudden movement in the peripheral vision, doors and windows opening and closing on their own, objects moving on their own, objects disappearing and reappearing, unexplained winds and breezes etc.
Cold spots, unexplained breezes, being touched, tugged and pulled by unseen forces, feelings of being watched, anger, sadness and not being alone, phantom smells, electrical disturbances, unexplained light phenomena, phantom voices and weeping, shadow people and unexplained mists.
(Lizzie Borden B&B and Museum)
230 2nd Street
Status: Historic Haunted Home; Bed & Breakfast
Tours and Investigations can be Booked Through the Website
By <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/65193799@N00">dbking</a> from Washington, DC - <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/bootbearwdc/3535957840/">Lizzie Borden House (Bed/Breakfast)</a> Uploaded by <a href="//commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:LongLiveRock&action=edit&redlink=1" class="new" title="User:LongLiveRock (page does not exist)">LongLiveRock</a>, CC BY 2.0, Link
On the hot morning of August 4, 1892, the bodies of Andrew Borden and his wife, Abby Borden, were found murdered by blows from a hatchet. Abby was found in the upstairs guest bedroom and Andrew was found on the living room couch. There was at least and hour and a half between the 2 murders.
Only 2 people were on the grounds when the murders took place; a young maid named Bridget Sullivan who was washing the windows when Mrs Borden was killed and, in the attic, when Mr Borden was killed, and Lizzie Borden herself. Lizzie claimed to be in the house when her mother was killed and, in the barn, when her father was killed. Lizzie, a 31-year-old spinster, was living at home at the time.
She was accused of the murders but was later acquitted by a jury. Lizzie died on June 1, 1927 from pneumonia and dispute continues to this day over who the actual murderer or murderers were.
Since 1996 the house where the Bordens were killed is now a Bed & Breakfast and is available to stay at and for tours.
As of 2021 the house is up for sale.
The apparition of a woman in Victorian clothing is seen straightening the furniture and dusting. Phantom footsteps are heard on the stairs at night and on the third floor. Doors open and close on their own. Phantom conversations are heard in empty rooms. Lights flicker on and off and electrical equipment sometimes fails to work. Phantom indentations like people have been sleeping on beds have happened while people’s backs were turned.
4 West Broadway
Status: Former Residence; Former Boarding House
Paranormal Attraction; Overnight Investigations can be booked
In the 1880’s Sylvester Pierce had amassed a large fortune building furniture in Gardner at the head of his company SK Pierce & Sons. He decided it was time to have a mansion constructed befitting his stature.
It took 100 men a year and half to build the house. A 7000 square foot monstrosity with no less than 10 bedrooms for one man, his wife, their son and assorted servants. Spare no expense became almost trite in the construction of this painstaking beautiful home. Many features of the home were hand made.
The Pierces moved in and then things went suddenly wrong. Just weeks after moving in Susan – Sylvester’s wife – contracted a bacterial illness that ended her life quickly. A year later he would marry Ellen – who 30 years younger – and have 2 more sons but by 1888 Sylvester, himself, was dead and gone.
The mansion was passed to his young widow who kept the house and family business up with the help of her sons but eventually she would also pass away. The mansion and the business now fell to SK’s sons who immediately disagreed and went to war.
In the end the youngest son – Edward – took over the business and the mansion; but it was too late. The business was failing and the family’s once huge fortunes were disappearing. Edward turned the mansion into a rooming house in attempt to make money inviting in some very unsavory characters and activities quickly followed.
Gambling, drinking and prostitution became the norm in home’s once proud walls. There are also stories of murders happening as well – the most famous that of a prostitute in the infamous red room. One man mysteriously burned to death in the former master bedroom but the room itself was virtually unharmed. A child is said to have drowned to death in the basement.
The mansion went through many owners for the rest of the 20th Century most of whom told stories of some very aggressive and powerful paranormal activity. In 2015 The Dark Carnival bought the property and renovated it back into the Victorian Mansion it once was.
They run a Halloween attraction with actors during the Halloween season but allow investigations into the real paranormal activity the rest of the year.
Based on information from previous investigators this location can be very aggressive and the ghosts should not be aggressed against. Only experienced investigators should take on this location.
Ghosts identified at the mansion: SK Pierce, Susan Pierce, Edward Pierce, a nanny called Mattie, a man called David who may have murdered the prostitute here, the murdered prostitute, unnamed dark entities in the basement, a young boy, a younger girl and the man who burned to death in the master bedroom. And this may only scratch the surface of the number of entities in this house.
Recorded Activity: apparitions and shadow figures from misty to full bodied; objects moving on their own from doors opening to large furniture moving across rooms; screens flying off of windows; possession; touches, tugs and pulls from unseen entities including someone almost being pushed out a third floor window and another who was pushed toward the stairs; aggression toward the living; a loud roar which shakes the entire house – this is thought to be SK expressing his anger toward what his mansion has been reduced to - ; sudden cold and hot spots; unexplained breezes; mysterious mists; light anomalies; phantom footsteps in the hallways and on the stairs; phantom terrible smells; feelings of being watched, not being alone, not being wanted to the point of malevolent hatred and pretty much every other level of paranormal activity.
As their website says this location is not the faint of heart. It is one of the active locations that can be easily accessed.
(Medfield Insane Asylum)
45 Hospital Road (original address)
1 Stonegate Drive (current address)
Status: Former Psychiatric Complex, Formerly Abandoned, Some Buildings Demolished, Parklands, Remaining Building are Not Accessible
By <a href="//commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:Ghostfacesouthshore&action=edit&redlink=1" class="new" title="User:Ghostfacesouthshore (page does not exist)">Ghostfacesouthshore</a> - <span class="int-own-work" lang="en">Own work</span>, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link
This facility was established in 1892 and was the State’s first institution for housing the mentally ill. It was also the first hospital that followed the Cottage Plan with multiple separate buildings for staff and patients.
In 1914 it was officially re-named as Medfield State Hospital. At its height the campus consisted of 58 buildings over 1.4 square miles. 2,200 patients could be housed and treated and the hospital generated its own power and had a large farm onsite.
Unlike the majority of its contemporaries there are no horror stories from Medfield. With the history of treating mental illness being what it is many patients would have been treated in ways we would consider inhumane in the 21st century but no tales of overcrowding, assaults, medical experiments or patients in restraints for months at a time.
In April of 2003 the hospital was shut down and the buildings closed up. Almost immediately the town of Medfield purchased the property and opened it up as a park. The grounds are open from dawn to dusk – entering the property at night is trespassing – but the buildings cannot be entered.
A few of the buildings have been demolished but the majority of them are still standing. This location is often used for filming so, at times, part of the campus will be closed off for this. Shutter Island was filmed here as was The New Mutants.
The Medfield State Hospital Cemetery is on site and accessible when the park is open. Patients were interned there from 1918 to 1988; it contains 841 gravesites.
There are numerous reports of paranormal activity at this location dating back to when the hospital was still operating.
Apparitions of former patients and staff have been seen walking the grounds, in the cemetery and looking out of the unbricked windows and doors of the buildings. Movement has been seen in buildings which are locked up with no one in them.
Feelings of unease, not being alone, not being wanted and being followed. Empathic feelings of fear, loneliness, misery and manic. Disembodied voices and other unexplainable sounds including crying, laughing, loud bangs and footsteps have been heard.
Doors and windows opening and closing on their own. Touches, tugs and pulls by unseen presences. Objects moving on their own and other poltergeist activity.
Light anomalies, electrical disturbances, cold spots and mysterious mists.
Church St is the closest road to the West Portal
Status: Active Railway Tunnel; Extreme and Potential Lethal Danger
By <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://www.flickr.com/people/7327243@N05">Doug Kerr</a> from Albany, NY, United States - <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/dougtone/10976827983/">Hoosac Tunnel - Massachusetts</a>, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link
Warning: This is, by far, the most hazardous haunted location on the website. There are many potentially lethal accidents just waiting for the unprepared or unwary. We don’t want anyone’s last thought to be “gee I found this place on the Our Paranormal World website I thought it would be safe”. Use extreme caution at all times! We want to explore the world of the paranormal; not become part of it.
This is an active railroad and is 4.75 mile (7.64 km) tunnel. Entering this tunnel is foolhardy at best and lethal at worst.
Best map of the East Portal is here: https://hoosactunnel.net/maps/
Construction on this tunnel began in 1851 with a newly invented steam powered boring machine. It bored a perfect hole into the side of the mountain for about 10 feet before stopping and never working again – the failed tunnel it created can still be seen just to the right of the East Portal of the real tunnel. An attempt was then made to drill the tunnel with gunpowder and hand drills – this was given up because of the slow progress (only 60 feet per month). So, this tunnel became the first commercial one blasted with nitroglycerin.
Nitroglycerin is an incredibly unstable chemical that is apt to violently explode with even the slightest movement. While it did certainly allow the tunnel to be created, dozens of workers were killed handling the unstable compound. The tunnel is nearly 5 miles in length and is, at its greatest depth, 1,718 feet (almost 1/3 of a mile) under the western summit. A large central shaft was dug 1,028 feet down to the tunnel to allow the build up of coal exhaust to escape.
195 men lost their lives digging the tunnel.
The worst tragedy in the tunnel was on October 17, 1867 when a gasometer leaked and the fumes found a candle igniting an explosion. Several men killed by flying debris or from lack of oxygen. Thirteen men fell down the vertical exhaust shaft. They were presumed dead from the explosion but when they were found several months later it was revealed they were trying to built a raft when they died of suffocation.
The tunnel opened on October 13, 1875 as the second longest tunnel in the world – Mont Cenis in the Swiss Alps was the only one longer. Until 1916 it held the honor of being the longest tunnel in North America; it is still the longest transportation tunnel east of the Rockies.
The tunnel is still used by freight trains making traversing it extremely hazardous for the obvious reason (being hit by a train is always either immediately fatal or causes life threatening injuries) but also because the trains leave potentially fatal amounts of diesel exhaust behind them trapped in the tunnel. The only way to not get run over is to pin yourself to the wall of the tunnel and pray. Bricks also fall at random intervals from the tunnel ceiling. It takes approximately 6 hours to walk the tunnel. There are also live electrical wires everywhere, some of which are lying in pools of water. Any trip into the tunnel contains all the dangers of extreme spelunking combined with high-speed trains in an enclosed environment.
Should you decide to venture through there is no such thing as being too prepared. The following equipment has been described as mandatory – a hard hat, waterproof footwear and clothing (the tunnel is extremely wet in places), a small flashlight with lots of extra batteries, plenty of water and food – basically everything you would take on a day long hike as well as everything you would need to go into a cave.
Entering the tunnel is not only dangerous but also trespassing. Permission would not to be obtained before venturing inside.
This location is considered one of the most haunted places in New England. Considering the dangers inherent in even investigating this tunnel let alone actually building it this comes as no surprise.
Apparitions of former workers who can appear in any form from looking like any living human to misty forms to shadow figures. These apparitions appear both in the tunnel and in the surrounding area. Some of the apparitions have interacted with the living including speaking, touching and taking objects.
Phantom sounds of moans and screams are very common in the tunnel. Many disembodied voices are reported including having your name called out and, in some cases, warning of dangers such as an oncoming train.
Other activity: phantom footsteps, touches and pushes from invisible presences, light anomalies, general feelings of unease, of being followed and of being watched. Many investigators have been unable to penetrate more than 100 or so into the tunnel before having to leave due to the intensity of the haunting.
739 Washington Street
Status: Decommissioned Des Moines Class Heavy Cruiser
By Unknown author - U.S. Navy photo <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="http://www.history.navy.mil/our-collections/photography/numerical-list-of-images/nara-series/80-g-k/80-G-K-11000/80-G-K-11921.html">80-G-K-11921</a>, Public Domain, Link
The USS Salem was the last US all gun heavy cruiser to be built. Her keel was first laid on July 4, 1945 and she began her shakedown cruise on March 25, 1947. and was commissioned on May 14, 1949. She is a Des Moines Class Heavy Cruiser.
During her career she performed as the flagships of both the 6th and 2nd Fleets and sailed the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. She has never fired her guns in anger but did have her share of death when she functioned as a hospital ship during the relief mission following the 1963 Ionian earthquake where she was the first US ship on the scene.
She has performed many exercises with the British, Greek, Italian and French Navies while performing her duties. She was also part of a US show of Naval power during many crises in the Middle East which kept open conflicts from breaking out.
In 1959 she was decommissioned but held in reserve at the Philadelphia Shipyards for a war with the Soviet Union that never came. In October of 1994 she sailed to her final harbor at Quincy, MA.
She now functions as a museum ship and paranormal investigations are available on selected Friday nights to be booked – see the website link above.
Para-Expo 2022 by Spirit Chasers Paranormal and Connecticut Paranormal Research Team is being held here May 20-22, 2022.
A shadow figure has been seen walking in the corridors near the anchor room. Apparitions are most commonly seen in the ward room (shadow figures are also seen crossing this room), dentist’s office, infirmary and lower ops. Apparitions have also been seen near the starboard hatches in the forward wardroom.
Throughout the ship phantom noises are heard of the former crew still doing their duties from when the ship was functional and battle ready. Phantom footsteps and disembodied voices are heard. The sounds of men running across the upper decks by witnesses below are reported when the ship is otherwise empty.
Due to safety concerns the room that was used as a morgue for earthquake victims is off limits to investigations.
(Turner House)(Turn-Ingersoll Mansion)
115 Derby Street
Status: Former Residence; Museum
The earliest part of what is now the House of the Seven Gables was constructed in 1668 for Captain John Turner. It was 2 room 2 ½ story house facing Salem Harbor with a large central fireplace. It is now located in the center of the house with the dining room being formed of the once central ground floor room.
It remained under the ownership of John Turner II and John Turner III. By 1676 a kitchen and parlor had been added to the ground floor and another bedroom on the second floor.
John Turner III lost the family fortune and sold the house to the Ingersolls of which Nathaniel Hawthorne – who wrote the famous book published in 1851 based on this house was a relative.
Nathan Hawthorne, whose relative John Hawthorne had been a judge during the horrific witch trials, strongly believed his family was cursed by the evil done during the witch trials.
In 1908 Caroline Emmerton bought the house and renovated it from 1909 to 1910. After turning it into more what was described in Hawthorne’s novel rather than anything historically accurate, she opened it as a museum with the admission being used for household costs.
The birth house of Hawthorne – which was located 4 blocks away – was moved to the site and can now be toured by anyone who pays admission onto the site.
The museum remains open to the public now and has been a public museum now for 112 years in 2022.
The official policy of the house is that it is not haunted and there are no ghosts present. The Salem Ghost Tour stops outside the house but does not enter.
The apparition of a man is seen on the “secret” staircase. It is not so secret as its in Hawthorne’s book, so everybody’s knows where it is. Many try to link both the ghost and the staircase to the Underground railroad but there are no connections, and the staircase was built almost 50 years after the Civil War; there was no Underground Railroad after the war.
The attic was once used as the servant’s quarters and the phantom footsteps of one of those servants are still heard. It is a young boy who’s giggles and laughter are also heard. A few lucky witnesses have even seen his apparition in the attic.
Susannah Ingersoll – the cousin of Nathaniel Hawthorne and first told him the stories of the horrors of the witch trials almost 2 centuries before – also haunts the house. Her apparition forever wanders the halls of her home and is often see looking at the windows to see who is in her gardens.
Other Reported Activity: apparitions, shadow figures, disembodied voices, unexplained sounds, light anomalies; empathic feelings of unease to the point of nausea in the attic; chills and strong feelings of not being alone and being watched.
7 Pope Street
Status: Execution Site; Historic Memorial
The Entire Scope of the Salem Witch Trials is Far Beyond this Article and this Website. If you want to know more about them, please Click Here.
For many years the site of the execution of 19 innocent people by hanging for witchcraft was thought to be the aptly named Gallows Hill. However, in 1921 local historian Sidney Perley brought this into question when he claimed to have found the real execution spot.
After 15 years he finally convinced the city of Salem to purchase this site – known as Proctor’s Ledge – and put it aside. No memorial was erected and most people still believed the 19 were hung on Gallows Hill.
Due to very poor record keeping by the horror show that was the Salem Witch Trials it was extremely difficult to say either site was the one.
In 2010 Salem’s historical society decided to find the answer once and for all and began a project that would take 6 years to complete. They went through every record left from that period and it was actual eyewitness accounts from 1692 that finally revealed the truth; accounts of people being able to see the hangings from their own houses.
In 2016 it was announced that Proctor’s Ledge was, once and for all, declared as not only the execution site but also where the bodies were dumped.
The most common report is that there is a dark insidious energy that hovers over the place permeating the surrounding forest and even the ground.
The Lady in White – who is well known in many places in Salem – makes appearances here. She is known for suddenly being there and then disappearing just as quickly.
Near the crevice where the bodies of the victims were said to be thrown apparitions of people said to be the 19 are seen.
Phantom wails of anguish are also heard here.
Cold spots are frequently reported here.
There have been several photos taken of unexplained light anomalies in the area.
Other Reported Activity: disembodied voices and the feeling of not being alone and being watched.
194-264 North Drive
Status: Former Boys Reform School; Partially Demolished; Partially Repurposed; Partially Abandoned
By <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:LymanSchool" class="extiw" title="wikipedia:User:LymanSchool">LymanSchool</a> at <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/" class="extiw" title="wikipedia:">English Wikipedia</a> - Transferred from <span class="plainlinks"><a class="external text" href="https://en.wikipedia.org">en.wikipedia</a></span> to Commons., CC BY-SA 3.0, Link
The school was originally created on 100 acres (400 hectares) in 1886 with about half of the property being used as a farm which was maintained and worked by the students.
It replaced a huge building built in 1848 which was abandoned after a violent and bloody riot showing housing all the boys in one structure was not a viable option. This building would eventually be repurposed to become the Westborough Insane Hospital.
When it was first built the school was nearly destroyed by fires set by boys who are said to have escaped and never found. Most people believe the school administrators probably killed the offenders and buried them in unmarked graves.
The boys were all sent to the school from the Courts, although they were not all criminals per say. Many were sent here for disobeying their parents, being stubborn or skipping classes. Previous to the 1970’s minors in Massachusetts were not granted any protections from the Constitution meaning the Courts could do pretty much anything they wanted.
In fact, there was even an old law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that allowed stubborn children to be put to death.
This is not to say that weren’t some really nasty boys here after all Albert DeSalvo (the Boston Strangler) graduated from this “school”.
Until the 1950’s the boys were taught agricultural and farming skills but as the world changed so did the training. By 1955 the training was more focused on industrial skills including carpentry, groundskeeping and laundry.
The school was extremely martial and breaking even the smallest rule could be punished by everything from having privileges revoked to spanking (which was probably a much more severe beating than being paddled by your parents).
Christian education was mandatory – as was attending church services every Sunday – and every boy not Catholic was simply labelled Protestant. No Constitutional rights; no freedom of religion.
The students lived in huge buildings called cottages with about 100 boys – segregated by age – in each cottage. The top floor was the dormitory, and the lower floors were the living areas. A married couple lived in a separate apartment in the cottage and was responsible for all the boys in the building.
About 300 boys “graduated” from the school every year.
The school finally closed in 1971; but not because of any outcry as to how the boys were treated - as happened with many other similar institutions – but because the trade unions argued the boys were doing union labor without being in the unions (so the unions weren’t making any money). Changing the system would have cost the government 10X what is was costing them now.
Meaning; the school was closed in 1971 as it was no longer cost effective to run.
After the closure some of the school’s 40+ buildings were demolished and some of the newer ones were taken over and repurposed. There are, however, a few of the original buildings still standing – some in good shapes and some not so much – that are protected by their heritage standing.
Reported activity dates back to when the school was operating as well as the decades when large parts of campus were left abandoned previous to the repurposing and demolishment.
As with similar closed institutions the older buildings seem to be the most active.
One of the most commonly reported activity is faces appearing in the windows of the empty buildings.
Other Reported Activity: apparitions of young to teenage boys; shadow figures; disembodied voices; light anomalies; electrical disturbances; objects moving on their own; unexplained noises from low whispers to cries and screams to loud bangs; cold and warm spots; unexplained breezes; phantom footsteps; lights turning on and off even in buildings with no electricity; touches, pokes and prods from unseen entities; physical sensations including nausea, dizziness and headaches and feelings of being watched, not being wanted and not being alone.