“abandoned home to history's most violent criminals”
This place is on private property. Listing for informational purposes only. Please do not visit without express permission from the land owner. The Former West Virginia Penitentiary housed some of the most violent criminals in history. Many of the prisoners who lived here also died here. The prison is known to have one of the highest levels of paranormal activity in the United States and most people who have survived the dungeon of horrors believe that the prisoners still haunt the darkened hallways of the prison today. The prison at Joliet provided the prototype for the West Virginia Penitentiary. It was an imposing stone structure fashioned in the castellated Gothic architectural style (adorned with turrets and battlements, like a castle). Only the dimensions of West Virginia's facility would differ; it would be approximately one-half the size of Joliet. No architectural drawings of the West Virginia Penitentiary have been discovered, so an understanding of the plan developed by the Board of Directors must be obtained through their 1867 report, which details the procurement of a title for ten acres of land and a proposal to enclose about seven acres. On the north side would be a street 60 feet in width, and on the west 140 feet for street and yard to the front buildings. The prison yard would be a parallelogram 682 1/2 feet in length, by 352 1/2 feet in width, enclosed by a stone wall 5 feet in thickness at the bottom, 2 1/2 feet at the top, with foundation 5 feet below the surface, and wall 25 inches thick. At each of the corners of this wall would be large turrets, for the use of the guards, with inside staircases. Guardrooms would be above on a level with the top of the main. The superintendent's house and cell buildings would be so placed that the rear wall of each would form part of the west wall. Day Tours, Twilight Tours, Thriller Thursdays, PPI's and Ghost Adventures....Visit the Penitentiary....Where History Meets Mystery. DAY TOUR ADMISSION: Adults: $12.00 Seniors: $9.00 Children ages 6 - 16: $6.00 Age 5 and under: Free
Very interesting setting. The murals in an old lunch room will blow you away. The tour was pretty long and worth the $12. Don't get there too early very limited seating. Some of the tour will give you an odd sense of being there, like someone is watching you almost. Wear walking shoes and a jacket. Great place to stop and stretch your legs.
I have visited twice. And both times the tour was great. What an awesome thing to experience without having to actually go to prison. Alot of crazy history here. Neat little town too.
Wanted to take a day trip from Cleveland with my kids this summer. Did an internet search for haunted places in the US and this was on a couple top 10 lists, it's a few hour scenic drive down interstate 77 and reasonably priced tour. Got directions to the cemetery from our tour guide too.
Beautiful building in an interesting location.
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West Virginia State Penitentiary
- Sun, Tue - Sat: 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
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