Is there anything scarier than a serial killer? Maybe the ghost of one. While the details of someone like Ted Bundy’s crimes are enough to give most of us nightmares, there are some who say many of the deadliest killers in the world still haunt the places where they killed - or where they died - long after their own passage from this mortal coil.
Many of these places are still standing in 2019. You may pass by them every day on your way home from work or school and not even know it, until you learn their terrifying stories or feel a creeping chill run down your spine.
In the late 1800s, the man known as H.H. Holmes not only killed dozens of women, he actually built an elaborate “Murder Castle” in which he conducted his gruesome deeds. Acting as his own architect, Holmes oversaw the construction of a labyrinthine charnel house filled with traps, blind hallways, secret passages, and chutes leading to the basement so he could quickly dispose of bodies.
The rooms in the Castle were rigged with alarms that alerted Holmes if anyone tried to escape. Some acted as homemade gas chambers, while others were fitted with iron plates and blowtorches. In the basement, even worse things waited, and when authorities finally broke in they found a dissecting table, vats of acid, a crematorium, and a box filled with skeletons.
Holmes was hanged in 1896, though it took his heart some fifteen minutes to stop beating. Afterward, several of the people involved in his execution expired under mysterious circumstances. The castle itself was burned to the ground, but the chamber of horrors beneath it remained until a post office was built on the lot in 1938.
To this day, neighbors continue to report strange sounds from the basement of the post office building and dogs shy away from the office’s exterior. Employees have even reported seeing ghostly figures (presumably Holmes) prowling the basement.see more on H. H. Holmes
In the early 1990s, men began disappearing from gay nightclubs in Indiana. Police investigations eventually led them to Fox Hollow Farm, the estate of Herb Baumeister, a family man with a history of mental disturbances.
On the property, authorities found more than 5,500 bones and fragments. One searcher was quoted as saying it was “like a bomb went off in a people factory.” Herb Baumeister was suspected of slaying as many as 20 men over the course of several years, but before he could be charged with any crime he fled to Pinery Provincial Park near Ontario, Canada, where he took his own life.
Witnesses have since claimed to see Baumeister’s ghost haunting the Tudor home where he burned and buried his victims. The site even made an appearance on an episode of the Travel Channel’s Ghost Adventures show.see more on Herb Baumeister
Left in an abandoned mine when he was only five years old, William “Cockeyed” Cook may have been destined for a life of crime from his earliest days. Born with a deformed eyelid that never quite closed, he had the words “HARD LUCK” tattooed across his knuckles.
In 1950, William Cook was fresh out of prison when he was picked up while hitchhiking. He turned on his ride, and began a viscous spree that spanned Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and California before ending in Mexico. Over the course of his travels, Cook also hunted down a family of five (plus their dog) and a traveling salesman.
Cook perished in the gas chamber in San Quentin, CA and was buried in Peace Church Cemetery in Missouri. His last words were, “I hate everybody’s guts and everybody hates mine.” Rumor has it he was buried in unconsecrated ground outside the boundaries of the cemetery, and a shadowy figure can still be seen standing over his grave.
Sometimes called “Doctor Death,” Harold Shipman may have been one of the most prolific serial killers in history. While this British doctor was convicted of slaying 15 of his patients, later investigations suggest the number was more likely over 200.
After he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, Shipman hanged himself in his cell in Wakefield Prison in 2004 by tying bed sheets to the bars on his window. According to Roy Whiting - himself convicted of killing an eight-year-old girl - Shipman is still there. Complaining of being unable to sleep due to the presence of the malign spirit, Whiting asked prison staff to remove him from the haunted cell.see more on Harold Shipman