My Haunted Hometown - Waverly Hills

'Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world.                                                                           
                                                                     ~William Shakespeare

In the early 1900's, Northern Kentucky was ravaged by an outbreak of the "White Plague" otherwise known as tuberculosis. This prompted the construction of a new state of the art TB hospital.

The building that still stands in Louisville, Kentucky, was opened in 1926 with 435 patient beds, but by 1932, patient numbers had increased to 480 with nearly 100 applicants on a waiting list.

The sprawling 160,000 square foot facility was comprised of five stories and a basement. Like other tuberculosis sanatoriums, it was situated on a hill because elevation to drier, purer air was thought beneficial to sufferers.

Nearly 8000 patients died there from 1926 to 1961 when the hospital was closed. In order to keep up patient morale, a body chute was constructed to dispose of the dead so they would not be visible to the remaining patients. This "death tunnel" stretched 525 feet underground to the bottom of the hill where the bodies of the deceased were collected by the family or cremated.

The sanatorium currently hosts tours with all proceeds going to restoration of the building. The current owners plan on turning it into a bed and breakfast for ghost lovers. If you visit Waverly Hills today, there is a good chance you might run into the spirit of a child that haunts the third floor and has been known to play with toys brought in by visitors. You might also hear the disembodied voices of children chanting "Ring Around The Rosy" up on the roof, encounter an apparition of one of the two nurses who died in room 502, or cross paths with the shadow people of the fourth floor.

The sanatorium has been featured on Ghost Hunters, Scariest Places On Earth, Most Haunted and The Travel Channel's Ghost Adventures.

Waverly is open to the public year around for tours and overnight stays. And don't expect to be able to go whenever the mood strikes because there's a waiting list.

Are you adventurous at heart? Would you spend the night at Waverly Hills?


Rogue Mutt said...

When I was in Traverse City on vacation this summer there was an old state mental hospital there that seemed like it would also have a lot of hauntings, although now they've converted part of it into hipster shops, which might be even creepier.

Old Kitty said...

Oh wow. That's such an imposing building! And what a history! Great stuff!!! Love your spooky hometown - amazing! Take care

Raquel Byrnes said...

Oh my gosh that is soooo cool! The whole 'death tunnel' thing just seals it. I'm writing Gothic romances right now and a haunted hospital is a super idea.
Edge of Your Seat Romance

Julie said...

Oh, I've heard about this place! I am in Cincinnati so not too far away. I've read about their tours but I admit I would never want to do it. I would be totally creeped out!! Fascinating place though.

Tanya St John said...

I've been to Waverly Hills for a private investigation. It was a great experience and I will most likely go back for another over night private investigation. Waverly Hills is no joke and is not for the faint of heart. It truly is heart breaking from some of the EVPS I caught. One in general was of a man saying "I am so scared" and he was crying. It was so loud that it gave me goose bumps cause it was like he was right next to me. Then you have your Waverly Hills pranksters (Ghosts) they are a lot of fun. And a woman that thinks everything is "Awesome" mainly when your talking about what your equipment does - She always say's "AWWWWESOME! (Almost as she's singing it) But I recommend, don't lay on the morgue slab. My husband did and he ended up with a bloody nose and busted lip. Something hit him. It was said that another person had the same injuries that my husband did and we were asked if he laid on the slab? He did. The other person that got blasted in the face also laid on the slab. There is something very sinister there and you just have to remember your in their territory! Please be respectful of them and don't provoke. It can be a very dangerous place, but as long as your respectful and nice, they won't hurt you, they are curious just as you are (I had many that followed me through the halls, they never got too close, but they watched me.)

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