Paranormal Activity: Scare Yourself Silly in San Francisco
There are 812,826 living people in San Francisco as of 2011. Notice, we said “living.” How many un-living people are populating San Francisco is anyone’s guess. The city is known for being home to some of the most haunted spots in the nation. The next time you’re up for a bit of a fright, Halloween or not, check out some of these seriously spooky locales.
No haunted list regarding San Francisco would be complete without the most obvious choice: Alcatraz. The prison, no longer in use, sits upon a rock in the middle of the San Francisco Bay. Park rangers and visitors alike have tales of hearing ghosts and seeing apparitions in the hallways of this now infamous prison. Take a walk through the walls of this historic site; if you dare. Be sure to utilize the buddy system just incase an angry spirit decides that you need to be locked up.
2.Winchester Mystery House
This house is reported to be the most haunted in the world. Here’s how the legend goes: Sarah lived in the house by herself, never stopping construction. After Mr. Winchester died of tuberculosis, Mrs. Winchester consulted with a psychic. The psychic told Mrs. Winchester that she was plagued by the spirits of every person killed by her husband’s rifles. Sarah was advised that as long as she built a temple in their honor, and never stopped building, that she would not be killed. Sarah died in 1922 and, in the years since, visitors to the house report paranormal activity within its walls.
3.Queen Anne Hotel
This creepy hotel stands on the grounds of a former girls’ school. Miss Mary Lake, head mistress of the school, is purported to roam the hotel’s fourth floor. Are you brave enough to spend the night? If you are, be sure to keep your eyes open for the ghostly apparition of Miss Lake.
What happens when two men duel to the death? One dies of course. The unlucky soul of this duel happened to be Senator David Broderick. In 1857, Senator Broderick partook in a duel with then state Supreme Court Justice David Terry. The two men fought to the death over the issue of slavery in the great state of California. Senator Broderick is said to have been haunting the mansion ever since.
Imagine losing your toddler to a drowning accident. Would you ever stop searching? Visitors to Stow Lake report seeing a ghostly woman in white skirting the water’s edge. Rumor has it that she is still looking for her toddler, even in death.
Chinatown is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the city. Known for its shops and restaurants, this section of the city is also hiding a secret. Look closely at Cameron House and you see a red and gold charm on each door. These charms are said to seal in the spirits of the immigrants that met their deaths when the original building burnt down.
You can literally scare yourself silly in San Francisco if you know the hot spots. This list is only a sampling of the dozens of haunts in the city. If you want to find the places that will have you screaming for the hills, take one of the many ghost tours offered throughout the city.
Author Robin Knight writes for San Francisco blogs where you can read about fun things to do in the Bay Area.