While Athens may only have a population around 23,000, the town is infamous for its paranormal activity. Both USA Today and ABC Family’s “Scariest Places on Earth” have listed Athens as one of the most haunted cities in America. While there are a plethora of haunted attractions throughout Athens, the town is most known for being home to the Athens Lunatic Asylum. The mental institution was in operation from 1874 until 1993 and was notorious for housing violent patients and the administration’s liberal approach towards lobotomies. Today, the Athens Lunatic Asylum is an Ohio University property called “the Ridges” and is overrun by student explorers, disembodied screams, and bloodstained floors.
Conspirators believe the Athens’ founders were possessed by the ghosts. There are five cemeteries platted throughout the town. It is believed that if you connect the location of each cemetery it will display a pentagram. At the center of the pentagram is Wilson Hall, home to Ohio University’s most famous ghost story. Wilson Hall Dormitory room #428 is home to a ghost that died in mysterious ways in the 1970′s. Students observed strange noises, blood on the walls, and objects moving on their own. The school closed off the room as it was deemed inhabitable. The Wilson Hall room is the only dorm in the country to be sealed off due to “inexplicable behavior”.