SURRY, VA — Every region has at least one place or story that gives locals the chills, where the tales are retold as Halloween approaches, and history-laden Virginia is no exception. The website Thrillist listed the most haunted places in America to give horror fans everywhere a look at lore and legends that creep folks out across the country.
So which Virginia site has been named the creepiest? It’s Bacon’s Castle in Surry, built in 1665 and certified as the oldest brick house in North America. Built on the James River not far from Jamestown, the former plantation that at one time kept at least 100 enslaved workers has reports of disembodied voices, floating heads and visitors being shoved by unseen forces.
Here’s what Thrillist says about Bacon’s Castle:
“There’s no shortage of spooky and sinister places to visit in Virginia — after all, old battlefields are some of the most haunted grounds anywhere. But if it’s a haunted house you’re after, Bacon’s Castle — built in 1665 and the oldest brick home in the country — is it. People have reported encountering disembodied voices and wails, floating heads, books flying off shelves, rockers a’rocking, and unwanted visitors being pushed around. In addition to regular tours, the castle hosts Historic Haunt Nights when you can take a candle-lit ghost hunt with the Center for Paranormal Research and Investigation. The final one is October 27th; tickets are $30.”
Preservation Virginia acquired Bacon’s Castle in the 1970s at auction and restored and furnished the house in the 1980s. In recent years the staff has worked to expand the history of the enslaved people kept on the property.
A 45-minute tour guided by a trained interpreter helps visitors learn about the lives of the families who made Bacon’s Castle home. Engage with fellow visitors and discuss Bacon’s Rebellion and the ways that uprising set the stage for further conflict in early America.
Or you can walk through the exhibit space and explore the grounds and outbuildings, including the 1830 slave dwelling, a smokehouse and both 18th- and 20th-century barns. Find more information on the Preservation Virginia website.
The most haunted site in the District of Columbia is a pre-Civil War cemetery that is the final resting place for a vice president, members of Congress and legendary FBI director J. Edgar Hoover.
Here’s what Thrillist says about Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C.:
Capitol Hill’s Congressional Cemetery dates all the way back before the Civil War and serves as the final resting site for tons of government honchos, including a vice president, Supreme Court justice, six cabinet members, 19 senators, and 71 representatives. The first director of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover, and Marine Corps band director John Philip Sousa are also on the premises. You can visit the cemetery during its 9 to 5 business hours, or better yet attend a spooky “Soul Stroll.” The guided tours are offered at twilight and 10pm on the weekends before Halloween, and VIP ticket holders get to drink in a Prohibition-style speakeasy that’s popping up in the cemetery’s main vault.
Free cemetery tours are given at 11 a.m. every Saturday from April through October.
See the full list of America’s most haunted places from Thrillist here.
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Is a national and foreign correspondent based in D.C. She files investigative reports and covers breaking news on a range of topics, including corruption, police shootings, etc. Before joining the TimWorld in 2018, she worked at the Miami Herald. She was a John S. Knight fellow at Stanford University.