‘Tis the spooky season! Halloween is in the air and to help set the mood, we’ve rounded up a list of local paranormal places and the folklore behind them.
If you dare, follow this guide of supposedly haunted places in and around Pittsburgh…
The 13 Most Haunted Places In & Around Pittsburgh:
1. Pittsburgh City Tuberculosis Sanatorium
The Hill District
Abandoned tuberculosis hospital? Say no more. Now known as the Macabre Marcy State Hospital, this hospital opened in the early 20th century to treat patients of tuberculosis. It’s reported that hundreds of patients died within building, and their spirits still haunt the grounds today. The ghosts of patients are said to roam the building and property, walk through walls, and stare at visitors from the upper windows. In certain wings of the hospital, crying, screaming and laughter can be heard. There are also multiple tales of small children in hospital gowns bouncing a red rubber ball. However, these spirits won’t have the building to themselves much longer. In May of 2018, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that the URA has approved the redevelopment of the the building into affordable housing for senior citizens.
2. Troy Hill Firehouse
This beautiful and historic building in Troy Hill is home to some unexplainable paranormal activity. Residents of the neighborhood know that this old-school firehouse is extremely haunted. While unaccounted for footsteps and creaky noises are often heard, it is said that the spirits are actually former firefighters who are there to protect others on the job. Some say the spirits even go out on calls with the firefighters. The Troy Hill Firehouse is the city’s oldest fire station, and it closed in 2005 after 104 years.
3. The University of Pittsburgh
Ghost ate my homework? There are reports of spooky, unexplainable activity happening in various buildings all over the University of Pittsburgh campus. Some of the notoriously haunted places include: Bruce Hall, the Croghan-Schenley Room, Early American Nationality Room, and the William Pitt Union. Many people say these spaces are each home to a particular ghost. These paranormal personas include a ballerina who makes sure napping students don’t sleep through their classes, as well as the ghost of Mary Schenley herself!
4. The Depreciation Lands Museum
There is nothing to fear at the The Depreciation Lands Museum! The museum is reportedly haunted by a very helpful ghost who many credit with heroic deeds like catching the ladder of a painter who lost his balance, fixing windows, catching a woman who fell, and saving a group of girl scouts before a ceiling collapsed on them. This mysterious figure has been seen so often, he is referred to as “The Deacon,” and is said to wear a long coat and 18th century clothing.
5. The Pittsburgh Playhouse
Many people say that the Pittsburgh Playhouse is home to more than a few ghosts. One of the more well known ghosts is John Johnsand, an actor who is said to have had a heart attack on stage and subsequently died in his dressing room. Many people have also claimed to see “The Lady in White,” who paces the balcony calling out her dead husband’s name.
6. Tim’s Secret Treasures Antique Store
Talk about relics of another time! This antique store, located on McKean Ave in Charleroi, has a laundry list of startling ghost stories. In 2012, the store and its paranormal occupants were featured on the Biography Channel’s “My Ghost Story: Caught on Camera.” Some of the unexplainable stories include mysterious growling, furniture moving, unexplained footsteps on stairs, whisperings, and children playing upstairs. It is believed that the property was a funeral parlor, or a Prohibition speakeasy, in a past life.
7. The National Aviary
There are more than birds in the National Aviary on the Northside! It’s an open secret that the building is located on land that was once part of the Western State Penitentiary. The penitentiary was torn down in the late 1800s, but some spirits are said to still be connected to the land. Little information has ever been released on the hauntings, but many believe that confederate soldiers from the Civil War haunt the Aviary at night because the penitentiary was used as a Union prison during the 1860s.
8. Omni William Penn Hotel
Don’t visit the top floors of this luxury hotel! The 22nd and 23rd floors of the Omni William Penn Hotel are barred to the public, and many think it is because these floors are haunted. There have been reports of mysterious laughter, voices chatting, unexplained cool drafts, and hair-raising sensations throughout the building. Additionally, many people think the ghost of Michael York, a lingerie salesman who was found dead of a gunshot wound in the hotel during the 1970s, haunts the building to this day.
9. Connellsville Carnegie Free Library
Considering the fact that the Carnegie Library in Connellsville is located on the site of the former Connell Graveyard, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that many believe this building haunted. In order to construct the library on the graveyard the bodies were supposed to be exhumed. However, some say that many of the bodies were never removed and are still buried under the building to this day. There have been reports of mysterious noises and footsteps throughout the library.
10. Hill View Manor
Enter the haunted Hill View Manor… if you dare! Located in New Castle, this building is well known for being extremely haunted, and is frequently visited by serious ghost hunters from around the world. In fact, private groups that want to investigate the paranormal activity can reserve the facility. Previously known as The Lawrence County Home for the Aged, the building opened in 1926. The space changed over the years, and officially closed in 2004, although it’s still occupied by many spirits. The patients are believed to linger in the hallways to this day. There is a dark energy that resides in the building as a result of the ill manner in which patients were treated when staying here.
11. Century Inn
On a quiet road in Scenery Hill, Pennsylvania, rests the historic Century Inn Bed & Breakfast. This inn dates back to 1794 and once hosted famous visitors like Andrew Jackson, Marquis de LaFayette, and Henry Clay. The Century Inn is said to be home to some unexplained paranormal activity. There have been reports of mysterious figures appearing in doorways, a room that is unexplainably cold, and footsteps appearing in the snow as if someone walked through a wall.
12. 3406 Brownsville Road
The house at 3406 Brownsville Road is the subject of the book The Demon of Brownsville Road, published in 2014 by Bob Cranmer, a former-resident of the home. In the book, Cranmer describes the house’s dark history and the unexplained paranormal activity he and his family experienced while living there. The book goes on to describe how Cranmer and his family cleansed the house, specifically with the Mel Gibson movie The Passion of the Christ. While many people doubt the legitimacy of his story, Cranmer insists that the story had to be told to explain the pure “evil” that exists in the world.
13. Green Man’s Tunnel
The legend of the Green Man’s Tunnel is the true story of “Charlie No-Face,” a boy who suffered a tragic accident while climbing power lines, resulting in the loss of his eyes and nose. The accident happened near the tunnel, and the spirit of Charlie reportedly walks the area at night, shrouded by a mysterious green light. There are also reports of a man who hacked his family to death with a hatchet inside of the tunnel.
Disclaimer: This article is based upon unverified myths and legends about Pittsburgh landmarks.
Where is the spookiest place in Pittsburgh? Leave it in the comments below!
I stayed in a hotel called RnR in Mt Pleasant PA for several weeks. The hauntings were common knowledge in the area the walls are covered with pictures of orbs taken in the hotel. I stayed on the third floor and you could see shadows walking up and down the hall under my door from the lights in the hallway all night..my wife would get up open the door to check but there was never anyone there..I mentioned it to the staff and their reply was oh it’s the milkman! I guess the milkman lost control of his vehicle coming down the hill and crashed into the hotel killing him and a little girl which her ghost has the run of the downstairs being the restaurant and the milkman hangs on the upper floors where I was staying ..I did work cooking for them for awhile but at night they would send me alone into the basement to get stuff out of the freezer but the tension and overwhelming feelings of dread were just too much to handle. one night it was really bad so I said I’m outta here and never went back
the scariest place in Pittsburgh is the Little Girl Scout House in New Ken PA…there are ghosts that sit on the end of your bed at night and a military soldier that sits in the hallway at night! A little girl with long hair sits in the hallway and you can see shadows in the windows!!Some people use it for events but if you sleep over then you are in for a surprise!!
joyce cleary says
Pittsburgh Playhouse ghost is John Johns not johnsan. I was in a show with him. I was a dancer he an actor. I shall always remember him because he told me I had bedroom eyes.
Cameron neilly says
I think my house is haunted. Today I was in cyber school and I had my door completely shut. Keep in mind my mom was downstairs with my little sister who is 14 months old. I hear my door handle turn then my door just opend. I thought it was. My mom playing a prank on me but I wasnt her.
Yeah but that’s not near Pittsburgh… closer to