The Haunted History of West Virginia


Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum has many historical artifacts that tell its history.

The mountains and the hills of West Virginia hold many stories, some of which have been around for centuries. This spooky season, take time to visit the haunted historical places of West Virginia. Such as the souls that still haunt the Lunatic Asylum in Weston and a hotel that was built in the early 1800’s. All haunted Locations offer tours during the Halloween season.

Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum
Between 1858 and 1881 the Weston State Hospital was built in Weston. The hospital is now known as the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum. The hospital was a place where the mentally ill could live and receive treatment. The Weston State Hospital was originally meant to hold, and treat about 250 patients at a time. All of these patients were treated morally and were taken care of well. As time went on, the hospital started housing more and more patients. By the late 1940s, the hospital held more than 2,000 patients, which was about nine times more than originally intended. Since the hospital wasn’t intended for the large amount it held around the mid 1900s, the conditions of patients became crowded and cruel. It was said that the hospital started offering money to those who admitted a loved one. In exchange for money, most of the patients admitted then were not mentally ill. It has been said that even the most mentally stable patient could lose their mind there. In 1994, The Weston State Hospital was formally closed due to the inhumane treatment of patients. Now, the old hospital is now open for haunted and informational tours.

Moundsville Penitentiary
Ever since West Virginians can remember, the West Virginia Penitentiary, often called The Moundsville Penitentiary, was considered to be a home to ghosts and wandering spirits. The rumors began after the penitentiary got shut down in 1995 due to the cruel and unusual punishments that took place during its years of service. The facility held some of the most violent criminals in the country, many of whom were never able to leave the place alive. It comes to no surprise to West Virginians that this type of environment would leave behind a few angry spirits. During the time of the first sightings, individuals would report seeing an inmate wandering around where prisoners were not allowed. However, no inmates were unaccounted for when they investigated. Other hotspots for activity include the death row, psych ward, chapel, etc. Even the staff had reported seeing glimpses of apparitions, strange noises, and disembodied voices. Tourists have felt brushed, tapped, and have even seen the ghosts of prisoners roaming around and vanishing into thin air. The West Virginia Penitentiary is considered one of the most haunted prisons in all of the country today and has also been listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today, tourists have a chance to partake in tours and investigations to experience the phenomenon for themselves.

The Blennerhassett Hotel
The Blennerhassett Hotel, located in Parkersburg, West Virginia, was built in the late 1800’s. This historic hotel is still open for business today. In the 1900’s, visitors started reporting to the staff that they had been seeing ghosts and spirits within the walls. These paranormal sightings were also supported by the staff. In the early 2000’s, a few of the staff members stated that they saw a man in industrial era clothing, in the laundry room, which was located in the basement of the hotel. In the majority of the other reported sightings, guests stated that the spirits were clothed in industrial era clothing, (1760-1840). This included top hats, long trench coats, and fur scarves. This year, the Blennerhassett Hotel was named the “most haunted in West Virginia” by “Thrillest” this year. You can book your stay all year, or visit for a paranormal investigation or a historical tour.