Are you into urban legends and local haunts? If so, western Pennsylvania has a lot to offer! The area is teeming with legends, myths and a ghost or two. We’ve come up with a list of notable area haunts for you to check out… but only if you dare! NOTE: Always get permission before going onto private property to investigate these haunts!
Mudlick Hollow in Brighton Township
Mudlick Hollow Road
Beaver, Pa. 15009
In the 1800s, a young newlywed couple died in an accident on their way home after their wedding. At night, so the legend goes, there is a fog across the road and you can hear a carriage approaching behind you. But before it gets to you, there is a crash and a scream, then silence and the fog disappears.
Frick Mansion – Clayton House in Shadyside
7227 Reynolds Street
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15208
Some believers suspect that the ghost that haunts Clayton House is Helen Clay Frick, continuing to watch over her childhood home. Helen moved back to the house in 1981 after being away from the Pittsburgh area. She remained there until she died three years later at the age of 96. Security guards have reported hearing footsteps on the third floor of the building. Also, depressions have been spotted many times on the bed of Adelaide Frick.
McConnells Mill State Park in Butler County
Ellwood City, Pa. 16117
Rumor has it that this is one of the most haunted areas in Butler County. It is the home to many spirits who roam the hills and Slippery Rock Creek. If you park your car above the mill, a man can be seen walking down the hill to the mill. When he goes in, a light appears to turn on and screams can be heard coming from within. There is the spirit of a caretaker on the property who chases people away, too. Legend also has it that a girl who died in a car accident can be summoned by parking in the middle of the Slippery Rock Creek covered bridge, turning off your lights and honking the horn three times. It is said that she will appear in your rearview mirror, but be gone when you turn around to look.
Andrew Bayne Library
34 North Balph Avenue (Bellevue)
Bellevue, Pa. 15202
This three-story Victorian home was built in 1875 and was given to the borough by Amanda Bayne Balph in her will. The only provision was that no trees be removed from the property. This was going well until the 1990s when the trees began to die from Dutch Elm disease. The last elm tree, called “The Lone Sentinel,” died in 1998 and paranormal activity has spiked since that time. Lights and fans have been said to turn on and off, computer screens have flashed random numbers and a woman has been seen dressed in a Victorian-era outfit. The ghost of Amanda Bayne Balph is said to be friendly but lost. The haunted site even attracted author Jeff Belanger, who featured the library in his book “The World’s Most Haunted Places.”
Byers Hall at CCAC’s North Campus
8701 Perry Highway
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15237
This old mansion turned into an administration building is said to have a dark history. According to the story, a couple who lived in the mansion left their baby at home with a nanny. The nanny later went to check on the child but found her dead in her crib. Distraught, the nanny hung herself. The parents came home later to find the nanny hanging over the staircase and the ghost of their baby watching. While the second story of the building is closed off, it is said that there is a window you can look up into and see the nanny hanging with the baby’s ghost watching.
Allegheny Center, Building #7 on the North Side
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15212
Nicknamed “Agony #7” by a student, this building has a high turnover rate for those living there due to a supposed “bad vibe.” There have been several incidents of paranormal activity from cold spots, knocking, poltergeist-like activity and visual sightings. These energies are said to move freely around the building.
Fort Pitt Museum in Point State Park
101 Commonwealth Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
The Battle of Grant’s Hill was fought on the museum site during the French and Indian War. A re-enactor was also murdered there during the early 1970s. Security guards have reported seeing people on their monitors who weren’t really there. Objects have disappeared and strange sounds have been heard in empty areas of the museum.
Pittsburgh Playhouse in Oakland – Part of Point Park University
222 Craft Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Some say the Pittsburgh Playhouse is one of the spookiest places in Pittsburgh. The building itself has a colorful history. Throughout the years, parts of the buildings have been used as a church, a reception hall, a bar and even a brothel – which is where the dressing rooms now stand. There are at least five ghosts said to haunt this spot. Actor John Johns died in the Playhouse basement of a heart attack and his footsteps can be heard climbing to his old dressing room, and Point Park students have also reported seeing him. The Lady in White is a scorned bride who either shot herself or plunged to her death off of a balcony. You can also hear crying in a dressing room from Weeping Eleanor. That’s where she and her daughter died in a fire. Gorgeous George is anything but gorgeous, with a green, rotting face. It is said that he likes to sneak up on people and give them a good scare. The most recent ghost is the Bouncing Red Meanie, who first appeared on Halloween Night in 1974 during a séance.
Restland Cemetery in Monroeville
990 Patton Street Ext.
Monroeville, Pa. 15146
“Walkin’ Rosie,” a young woman buried at the cemetery, is rumored to stroll across the cemetery grounds at night. Rosie’s history is not known. Other sightings have involved Revolutionary War soldiers. Orbs have been seen and documented in photos. One investigator reported feeling a sharp pain in his lower abdomen that let up as soon as he exited a hedged area. Some feel like they are not welcome inside and have reported getting cold sensations.
Coulterville Cemetery in McKeesport
McKeesport, Pa. 15131
According to history, this cemetery and its surrounding area features an orphanage and church that burned down in the 1800s. It is said that you can see an eerie glow in the woods of the long-gone fire. Children have been seen and heard in the area. At the bottom of Coulterville Road, if you turn up 8th Street, make a left at the top and continue to the end, you should see an old church and a small cemetery. You can hear footsteps and children, as well as see figures out of your rear-view mirror. Cameras have also been known to malfunction.
To learn more about haunted areas and myths of the area:
The Shadowlands – http://www.theshadowlands.net/places/pennsylvania.htm
Southwestern Pennsylvania Haunted House Guide – http://www.swpenna.com/hauntedhouse2.asp