Virginia has a countless number of haunted places, and they can be found in just about every area of the state. For the brave of heart who dare venture into some of these most haunted locations, I’ve mapped out a road trip that conveniently makes its way to seven of them. In just under six hours, you can make a circular route through the Eastern portion of the state, passing through Williamsburg, Virginia Beach, and other notoriously spooky towns. If you haven’t yet made plans for Halloween, this’ll make your evening all the more memorable…for better or for worse! For the interactive Google Map,
1. Wythe House (Williamsburg)
The historic estate known as the George Wythe house was constructed in colonial times, circa 1753 as a place for the elite to stay. During the Battle of Yorktown, for example, it was where George Washington made his headquarters. The haunted history of this site dates back to 1779, when a resident by the name of Lady Ann Skipwith died. The details of her death are uncertain aside from the fact that it was unexpected and tragic. Lady Skipwith’s husband then married her sister, an act that apparently has caused Ann’s jealous spirit to remain on property.
2. Fort Magruder Hotel & Conference Center (Williamsburg)
Aside from being a welcoming accommodation to visitors, Fort Magruder Hotel and Conference Center in Williamsburg also doubles as a museum. It was the site of the civil war battle known as the Battle of Williamsburg and thus houses some fascinating artifacts and garments from that time period. This celebration of Civil War history has seemed to attract haunted spirits that may have been around during the times of battle. Hotel housekeepers and residents alike have noted beyond peculiar instances of paranormal activity here.
3. The Boxwood Inn (Newport News)
Legend has it that no more than seven ghosts reside on the site of the Boxwood Inn Bed & Breakfast in Newport News. The building was completed in 1896 and during its history has served many purposes, including a post office and general store. At one point, after the Inn had sat idle for nearly a decade, four million dollars’ worth of antiques were found inside. Today, it’s a charming place to visit, although you can probably count on an eerie encounter or two.
4. The Ferry Plantation House (Hampton)
Also known as Old Donation Farm or the Walke Manor House, the Ferry Plantation House is a beautiful building that dates back to 1642. It was here that passengers could travel by ferry along the Lynnhaven River to other nearby plantations. In its extensive history, the building has also served as a courthouse and school and today functions as a museum. Witnesses claim there are exactly 11 ghosts which haunt the premises of the Ferry Plantation House, the most famous of which is the Witch of Pungo. This woman was accused of witchcraft and tossed in the river, and she continues to haunt the grounds today.
5. Cold Harbor Battlefield (Mechanicsville)
The Battle of Cold Harbor was found just outside of Richmond from May to June of 1864. During this iconic battle, Confederate soldiers nearly demolished Grant’s army of men, who lost somewhere around 13,000 soldiers. Both sides faced enormous tragedy and terrible conditions that resulted in malnourishment and dehydration. Today, visitors will learn more about this battle and some may even detect the presence of those who lost their lives on these grounds. Many have reported seeing strange lights, smelling gunpowder, or hearing the sound of horses in the distance.
6. Central State Hospital (Petersburg)
The next stop is the Central State Hospital, formerly known as the Central Lunatic Asylum in Petersburg. It was among the first institutions of its kind where African Americans in need of treatment were admitted. Unfortunately, in the mid-19th century, conditions of the asylum as well as treatments were not as advanced as they are today, and many individuals suffered greatly on these grounds. Today, it’s considered to be one of the most haunted asylums in the state.
7. The Glencoe Inn (Portsmouth)
Last but not least, we arrive at the Glencoe Inn. Overlooking the Elizabeth River, this charming bed & breakfast was built in 1890. The Inn preserves the town’s history as an important 19th century port. If you decide to make this your last stop and are looking for a place to stay the night, you’re in luck. While this building is said to be haunted, the ghost is the incredibly friendly spirit of an elderly woman who apparently tends to the garden and leaves a rosy fragrance in the halls.
Have you visited any of these haunted locations recently? Be sure to share your experience!