When you think of castles, you usually think about the majestic, beautiful, ancient castles in Europe. But the United States has its fair share of castles, too. But, some of the castles in the U.S., for one reason or another, have become abandoned and fallen into disrepair. Even if you’re into the whole ghost hunting thing, I wouldn’t suggest spending the night in any of these castles. First of all, it’s against the law to trespass, and secondly some have become so run-down it would be dangerous to explore them. Each of these castles has been touched by death and is said to be haunted by the spirits of those who died there. Read on to learn more…
1. Castle Mont Rouge
The Castle Mont Rouge was built by artist Robert Mihaly in the style of Russia’s castles. It’s made from cinder block and marble and even has spires and copper onion domes. Mihaly chose the North Carolina mountains as the location of the castle that he hoped would someday be his country studio. Unfortunately, Mihaly’s wife died just before the castle was finished. Legend has it that he was so depressed after his wife’s death, he never completed the interior of the castle.
While the artist is said to visit the castle occasionally, it remains abandoned. Even so, one first floor room of the castle is filled with books, a bed and a small kitchen. After Michelle Bowers, creator of the popular page Abandoned Homes Of North Carolina, published photos of the castle, Mihaly attempted to raise funds to restore and finish the castle, but was unsuccessful. Mihaly’s wife, Anna, is said to haunt the castle she didn’t get the chance to live in.
2. Hearthstone Castle
This medieval style castle was built by E. Starr Sanford in 1897 in Danbury Connecticut. It was called Hearthstone Castle due to the many stone fireplaces it contains. Although Sanford built the castle to use as a summer home, he and his family only lived there 5 years. It has been abandoned since 1985, and has fallen into such disrepair that it has been condemned by the city of Danbury. The city has since built a tall chain-link fence around the property to keep people out.
People have claimed to see a ghost dog on the property, as well as, a a ghostly man running through the grounds. Could the ghostly man be Sanford? Possibly, since he died under such unusual circumstances. When the ship he was on was hit by lightning, he went into shock and died in 1914.
3. Squire’s Castle
Squire’s castle is a tudor-style castle in Cleveland, Ohio. It’s original function was that of a caretaker’s house, and was built in the late 1890s on the grounds where Feargus B. Squire was planning to build his mansion. However, when Squire’s wife died in the castle after reportedly tripping over some furniture and breaking her neck, the mansion was never built. The castle was sold in 1922. Mrs. Squire is said to haunt the castle.
While the exterior of the castle is still in good condition, sadly the interior is totally deteriorated. Currently owned by the Cleveland Metroparks System, the castle is used as a backdrop for weddings. Visitors to the park are allowed access to some of the areas surrounding the castle during the day.
4. Bannerman’s Castle
Bannerman’s castle is a Scottish-style castle that was built on Pollepel Island on the Hudson River in New York City in 1900. It’s no surprise that the castle was built after Scotland’s magnificent castles since Bannerman was a Scottish immigrant. The castle was built for the practical use of housing Bannerman’s military surplus goods business. But, after many fires and explosions throughout the years, the castle was abandoned. A smaller replica of the castle was built near the warehouse castle and served as the private home for Bannerman and his family until 1940.
The Iroquois who once lived on the island believed it was haunted due to all of the bad things that happened there. A tugboat captain is also said to have died after his boat crashed on the island near the castle. Bannerman is said to have ignored the captain’s pleas for help. New York City bought the castle in 1967 and, although there is a trust in place to care for the building, it remains abandoned.
5. Beta Castle
This medieval-style castle was built on the grounds of the National Park Seminary girl’s school in Forest Glen, Maryland in 1904. It gets its name from having served as the school’s Pi Beta Nu sorority house. The castle was a magnificent sight to see with its Gothic windows and large, crenelated turret. But, after the school closed in 1942 and the property was purchased by the U.S. Army, the building fell into disrepair.
The building was used by the Army as a rehabilitation center for soldiers wounded during World War II and is said to be haunted by the soldiers who died there. The Army has occasionally attempted to restore this historic building, but it remains in sad shape.
6. Wyckoff Castle
Built on on Carleton Island near Cape Vincent, N.Y. by William O. Wyckoff, this beautiful building was once known as the grandest estate in the Thousand Islands. But, the “grand estate” appeared to be doomed from the very beginning. Wyckoff, who made his fortune after inventing the Remington typewriter, died in his sleep from a heart attack on his very first night living in the castle. His wife died just one month previously from cancer. Their son, and only heir, Clarence, had no interest in living in the home, and it has remained abandoned for over 60 years. The last owner was General Electric.
As the Wyckoff’s were doomed to never enjoy their beautiful dream home, it’s no wonder that they are said to haunt the castle. As apparent proof of its haunted status, the words “Help me” are written on a high ceiling in an upper-floor room. The castle is currently on the market for $495,000. But, since restoring the property would cost millions more, it continues to remain abandoned.