Fancy a grizzly day out? Well this ‘haunted’ former-prison, complete with the electric chair used to execute prisoners on death row could be right up your street.
Spine-tingling pictures reveal the now decommissioned internal workings of West Virginia State Penitentiary (WVSP) which was listed as one of America’s top ten most violent correctional facilities before it closed.
Now re-opened as a tourist attraction, pictures from inside the eerie penitentiary show the isolation room, the cell block and the maximum security cell as well as the administration building and visitor centre.
However the most striking image is that of ‘Old Sparky’, the sadistically named electric chair which was used to kill nine inmates.
Frank C. Grace, a Research and Development director from Massachusetts, travelled to Moundsville, West Virginia to visit the prison and spoke about the spooky experience:
It was creepy walking around with just two other people, I did hear a disembodied voice inside the hospital section. I love to visit these historic places and even more so if they are reported to be haunted. [In] the basement part of the building. There were no lights, creepy paintings on the walls, and violent things have occurred there when WVSP was in operation.
Built in 1866, the building housed some of the most violent and dangerous criminals in the US – the most infamous being William “Red” Snyder, a violent murderer who killed his own father, whose ghost is now said to haunt the prison.
A total of thirty-six murders happened inside the prison during operation and at its height it suffered severe overcrowding, with three prisoners often sharing one tiny five by seven foot cell.
I think this as a tourist attraction is a great idea. The prison had a horrible past and mistakes were made in prisoner treatment and care. As the saying goes, those that don’t know their history are doomed to repeat it.