There's something inherently chilling about old orphanages. Maybe it's the fact that scary orphanage stories abound - after all, the buildings are associated with heartbroken and lonely children. And not all of these tales concern the living. Plenty of real life ghost stories feature orphanages filled with restless and vengeful spirits.
These scary orphanage ghost stories all take place at actual haunted orphanages or abandoned orphanage sites around the world. These creepy stories aren't just campfire fodder, but are based off of real life tragedies that actually occurred at these places. You can even visit these locations, if you're in the mood for a firsthand ghostly encounter. Just be warned - you never know what might come home with you.
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Children Who Fatally Burned Linger At Gore Orphanage
According to Ohio legend, Gore Orphanage in Vermillion burned down in the 1800s. Rumor has it that the fire was started by a disgruntled employee, or by the owner himself to collect insurance money. None of the children survived the fire.
The site has since been razed and abandoned. But visitors to the area claim that you can see ghosts of the orphan children frolicking about the woods. Others report smelling burning flesh and hearing the screams of children, and even finding tiny hand prints on their parked cars.
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The Smell Of Smoke Still Lingers At Crybaby Lane
Raleigh's Crybaby Lane was once the spot of a Roman Catholic orphanage. When a fire broke out in the dormitory in 1958, it gutted the building and slayed many of the orphans. All that remains is a patch of grass and the cornerstone of the original building.
Months after the fire, neighbors continued to complain to the city about the strong smell of smoke. People walking through the field felt as though they were being suffocated. And, creepiest of all, they heard the cries and screams of the orphan children. Because of this, the surrounding houses have now been abandoned.
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Punished Orphan Boys Roam St. John's Orphanage
Opened by Sisters of Mercy and the Catholic Church in 1905, St. John's Orphanage in Goulburn, Australia, housed 200 boys at its peak. By many accounts the boys were treated as slaves and cruelly punished. They were given one set of clothing upon arrival, and they were beaten and caned regularly. Neglect was common, and most of the orphans were not educated beyond fifth grade.
As it wasn't the happiest of places, it's no surprise that it is now known as one of the most haunted locations in Australia. Disturbing messages are written on the walls, seemingly by someone who once lived there, and the spirits of little boys supposedly still roam the premises.
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An Evil Headmaster Haunts The Fairmount Children's Home
A privately owned orphanage known as The Fairmount Children's Home opened in Alliance, OH, in the 1870s. Unfortunately, the headmaster of the orphanage was said to be a cruel man who tortured and even slayed the children who lived there. That is, until one night in 1944. According to legend, the children rose up against the headmaster and hanged him from a pipe in the basement.
The headmaster supposedly began to haunt the orphanage, looming over children's beds and appearing as a shadowy figure in the back of class photos. The orphanage eventually shut down and was abandoned in the 1990s before it mysteriously burned down.