The supernatural is rife in Philly!
A key city in the revolution, Philadelphia’s one of the oldest cities in the country. But with its rich history comes mystery and strange happenings and so the beautiful city is said to be plagued with ghouls and ghosts of times past. Some evidently spooky, others not so much, these are but nine of the most haunted spots in Philadelphia–a city which is said to be rife with paranormal activity. Check these out to get in the mood for this spooky season, if you dare!
1. The Academy of Music
A popular opera and ballet destination for both the dead and the living, Philadelphia’s Academy of Music is steeped in rich, musical history, but it’s also said to be the home of a few nasty spirits. Invisible spectators are said to have left seat cushions mysteriously indented, even when no one is there, and have pulled on many an innocent guest’s hair…Not to mention they’ve also pinched at least one visitor!
2. The Betsy Ross House
U.S. flagmaker Betsy Ross is said to still haunt the halls of her historic home, now turned into a museum. Having gone through the death of her husband and the painful loss of several of her children during her lifetime, Ross’s ghost can often be seen and heard crying in her house’s basement. It’s also rumored there’s a rather mean spirit haunting the house along with Betsy, one so scary it even made a staff member climb out of the window and onto a flag pole. Yikes!
3. Christ Church Burial Ground
This historic graveyard is the final resting place of Founding Father Benjamin Franklin, but its also home to his pick-pocketing spirit. If you visit Franklin’s grave you’ll notice people like to throw pennies at it in honor of his being credited for coining the proverb “a penny saved is a penny earned.” Well, his trickster spirit apparently still roams the grounds stealing pocket change from unsuspecting visitors and even throwing their change back at them.
4. City Tavern
A favorite among the Founding Fathers for after-work drinks, City Tavern is said to have the oldest server in the country. He’s been around since the colonial era and is so committed to his work that he’s still serving guests in the afterlife. A bride and her friends are also said to haunt the tavern after dying in a fire that burnt the establishment back in 1834. People have claimed to see moving tables, clinking silverware, and a ghost in a wedding gown.
5. Eastern State Penitentiary
Probably the most haunted spot on our list, this Fairmount prison is allegedly packed to the brim with spirits. Eastern State Penitentiary housed many famous criminals back in the day, including gangster Al Capone, so the fact that a locksmith once saw a row of chained up spirits inside a cell should probably come as no surprise. The castle-like building is also home to one of the most terrifying Halloween attractions in Philly, which has unfortunately been canceled this year due to the pandemic.
6. First Bank of the United States
Don’t throw away your shot at running into the ghost of Founding Father and first U.S. treasurer Alexander Hamilton. This bank in Old City was founded by Hamilton back in 1791 and has been closed for 30 years now, but Hamilton’s ghost is said to still wander its halls.
7. Fort Mifflin
During the war of independence Fort Mifflin was the site of a major Revolutionary War battle in which 400 men held off the British troops allowing Washington’s safe passage to Valley Forge. The fort was named by the History Channel and the Travel Channel to be one of the most haunted sites in the world and taking into account how many men lost their lives here there’s no wondering why.
8. Independence Hall
Independence Hall is also one of the favorite hangouts of Benjamin Franklin’s ghost. Apparently, he’s often seen hanging out and examining the declaration of Independence in the very hall in which he signed it. His apparitions are often accompanied by a big misty cloud. Spooky!
The spirit of disgraced major general Benedict Arnold is also said to roam the grounds. Arnold served as a military officer for the Revolutionary forces early in the war of Independence and was a trusted ally of George Washington. He later defected to the British side and died as a disgraced brigadier general back in England. Could he be trying to atone for his actions by wandering the halls of this building in the afterlife
9. Laurel Hill Cemetery
One of the country’s oldest cemeteries, Laurel Hill has 70-acres worth of gravesites through which ghosts and spirits can roam freely. The graveyard is said to be one of the most haunted spots in the Philadelphia area and hosts paranormal investigations as well as ghost tours every Halloween!
[Featured image: Unsplash]