13 of Hollywood's Most Haunted Houses
Asylums; demons; burned out children; dead celebrities; urban legends; the wandering ghost of Dracula.
If there is something for which Tinseltown is known for, it is the abundance of skeletons it has managed to amass; not only are they metaphorical in nature - those that hide inside the dusty motes of a some actor's closet, but in some cases, some are quite literally bags of bones. Bodies and corpses which the beast is fond of sweeping under the rug.
Tragic, dreadful, macabre, devilish tales that encompass the mass of human interaction. Lover's quarrel that conclude at the end of a sharp blade; blood-curdling murders that garner international attention; doleful suicides brimming with heartbreaking remorse; abusive exhalations of dubious narcotics. Viceras, drugs, sex, lewdness, mob hits, assassinations, overdoses and every other capital offense on a police squad's academy book; all these and more are scattered, willy-nilly, throughout the Los Angeles area; the building blocks of that golden place we refer to as Hollywood.
Each cultivating its own cult-like following. Each, on its own, fertilizing the landscape with mementos of the past; erecting the framework for an urban legend, holding out for the fevered imagination of the population to gift its shell like hut, a decent structure. To fill in the bare bones manifold with the right amount of muscle and tissue. To create ghosts, legends, fables, fictions and demons. To gift it with a design. Its own genus loci.
These are Hollywood's haunted castles, it's fantasmal places, its frightful abodes... Enjoy.
RANCHO LOS AMIGOS HOSPITAL
Is there anything scarier than an abandoned hospital? Yes, one with that includes a paupers graveyard, a pet cemetery, a mental health ward and a farm. Founded in 1888, as the poor communities' the go-to place for ailments, these brutish gatherings of buildings was abandoned in the mid 50's. Stories abound, some make-believe, others not so much. In 2008, U.S Marines, using the installation as a training ground, discovered a morgue freezer... Inside? Well, the usual bits; severed legs, mummified feet and jars containing the occasional piece of human cerebellum.
BEVERLY HILLS BERMUDA TRIANGLE
N. Linden Dr. and N. Whittier Dr.
This intersection of real-estate has acquired a satanic glow over the years. A magnetic intensity, or supernatural pull, that has constantly harassed passersby on this stretch of land. Howard Hughes crashed his experimental plane in 1946; Bugsy Siegel was murdered right on one corner; publicist Ronni Chasen was executed, gunshot to the chest, on the junction of Sunset and Whittier.
Colorado Street Bridge. Pasadena.
Erected in 1913, on the outskirts of Pasadena, the Colorado Street Bridge has cultivated the well-erned alias: Suicide Bridge. 102 people and counting have jumped off this notorious structure. Since claiming its first victim, in 1919, this delightful overpass has apparently been plagued by ghosts. Phantom rail divers; eerie lights in the night; specters crossing the road, only to vanish inside the glare of a car's headlights.
BELA LUGOSI'S APARTMENT
5620 Harold Way.
After his death, in 1956, Universal Studio's Dracula has been spotted, numerous times, simply walking outside his modest apartments. On more than one occasion, the apparition has been observed waltzing about, not a care in the world, seeking his favorite cigar shop.
7000 Hollywood Blvd.
One of the big legendary, historically significant, hotels Los Angeles has to offer, is also one of the most ghost-infested. Marilyn Monroe's phantom is said to haunt her old suite; primarily the full-length mirror that once hung there. On the 9th floor, the late Montgomery Clift - the actor of "From Here To Eternity" - a trumpet aficionado, can't seem to put down his musical tool, molesting guests in the wee hours of the morning; not even death, can keep his spirit from practicing his mournfull hobby.
LINCOLN HEIGHTS JAIL
401 N. Avenue 19, Lincoln Heights.
This adorable postmark of Americana housed such pleasant creatures as murderer William Edward Hickman; a drunken Lucile Watson and the ghost of real music (Lady Gaga and Blink 182 have both filmed their music videos in this place). Each dusty place, each solitary jail cell, each "oh dear God, I dropped the soap", communal area, cultivating an atmosphere of spine-tingling anxiety.
Lincoln Heights has been abandoned, close down, but not razed to the ground, still that does not mean that the tortured spirits of so many are not walking around those dusty halls come the witching hour.
THE COMEDY STORE
8433 West Sunset Boulevard
This sunset strip stable was originally owned by Mickey "The King Of The Sunset Strip" Cohen; although it was leased to a couple of comedians, for tax purposes. Mickey, as his moniker no doubt gave him away, was not a pleasant guy... He was, for all intents and purposes, a real prat; one of those that pledge allegiance to the Cosa Nostra. The basement of this hip club was employed by Mickey's tugs as their base of operation; a convenient place where more than one "problem" was diligently, and with a swift finality, taken care of. Employees claim that while walking down the stair, or fetching something from the storeroom, they can hear cries, wails, gunshots, pleas for help and a sinister growl.
SILENT MOVIE THEATER
11 N. Fairfax Ave.
A place worthy of its own made-for-tv film; a story of lovers, murder for hire, tragic ends. The original owner, John Hampton, was a movie buff; acquiring the premises for the sole intent of showing off his personal film collection. Mister egghead, used his own bathtub to develop the negatives; mixing toxic substances as if they were nothing more than a refreshing bubble bath. The process ultimately got a hold of his lungs and little by little ate him out. With no other recourse, the odd duck forfeited the deed to his protegee, Lawrence Austin. All was going squeaky clean, until one fateful night, in 1992, when, visitors watching a flick, heard a loud report coming from the lobby. On investigation, they discovered Austin had been murder; shot to death. Austin's lover and the theater's projectionist, James Van Sickle, had hired a hitman to do away with Lawrence. The motive; they wanted to get their hands on the property.
Both delinquents are serving jail time. Austin's ephemeral corpse has been spotted on numerous occasions in the cinema's lobby while upstair, visitors are certain the can hear footsteps and a smell a toxic odor.
THE HOLLYWOOD SIGN
6342 Mulholland Highway.
Like moths to a flame, this celluloid icon, attracts the desperate and downhearted; in the same way that San Francisco's Golden Gate is a beacon for suicidal personalities. Off from the letters, a leap fueled by sadness, many a tormented souls have gone. Actors and actress; civilians with not a dime to their name; spurned lovers; killers weight down by their guilt. The Hollywood Sign has its abundance of poltergeist, each holding out a candle and a tale, ready to spook the living daylights from a happy-go-lucky tourist or a passing hiker.
Among the most well-known apparitions, there is one in particularly that stands out. In 1932, the body of a blond, blue-eyed woman was discovered in a messy heap, below the letter H. She was rapidly identified as Peg Entwistle, a small time comedic actress, with personal ties to such Hollywood greats as Humphrey Bogart. Speculation as to why she chose to end her life runs rampant in Tinseltown to this day. Nonetheless, various onlookers and visitors swear they've seen her, on dark moonlit nights, jumping from the letter H, reenacting her death.
4730 Crystal Springs Dr.
Doña Petrenillas creepy story has been immortalized by such writers as Michael Imlay, still, it bears repeating for the authenticity of this article. Just before the turn of the century, Doña Petrenillas' beloved uncle, the deed owner for the Giffith Park, died unexpectedly of small-pox. Due to various turns of fate, Doña was cheated out of her uncle's will; primarily the land on which the park now stands. Legend has it, that the purloined and tricked Doña put a devil's curse on the property, damning all who would hold its boundaries in their greedy grasps. Since then, bad luck has befallen those who call Griffith Park theirs.
The man, who's namesake now adorns the Park's entrance, Griffith J. Griffith, went to prison for violently beating, bludgeoning, shooting and all around maiming his wife.
Both his ghost, as well as Doña's, can be seen wandering around the premise, warding out would be invaders.
Hollywood Boulevard & North Las Palmas Avenue.
Although, no evidence has ever been brought forth to validate the claim I'm about to make, it is nonetheless worth mentioning... Mostly because of its Chilly spooky Factor. According to urban believe - and bumpkin yarns that ultimately turn into legends - the famous theater was built over the burned out husk of an elementary school. It is rumored, that in 1901, after a devastating calamity, a fire devoured the school. Flames licking walls; an infernal blaze, spawned from the very depths of Hell, churned this quaint little establishment into black ashes. The end result was the death of 25 children and their lovable teacher. As you can imagine, as life sometimes does resemble a Stephen King novel, the mutilated corpse of the kids and melting form of "Miss Elizabeth," are said to roam aimlessly across the shadowy halls; begging for help and leaving a miasmic stench of cooked pork and soaked soil in their wake. Sadly, the establishment has passed many coats of paints and hands, and the Vogue Theater has gone the way of the dodo. It now caters to an adult crowd as The Supper Club.
1999 N. Sycamore Ave.
Overlooking the dazzling lights of the L.A., cityscape, the handsomely built and expertly decorated Yamashiro Japanese Restaurant has a view few can envy. It is said, the J.F.K.'s, ghost can be glimpsed from his vantage point - his grave - on top of Arlinton Hill in that National Cemetary, on rather amazing sunsets. "Not a bad place to spend eternity,"our beloved President had confided in Jackie O' while picking up their kid from a Field trip to Robert Lee's house. His spirit does not haunt Arlington on account of unsettled business, or vengeful hijinks; it really just digs the wonderful vista. The same can be said of Yamashiro, all who enter it are instantly spellbound by its sweeping panoramas. As such, when patrons ultimately kick the bucket, their souls like nothing more than to take a pilgrimage and marvel at past glories. Former brides, who have tied the knot in the parlor room, can be heard chatting up their bridesmaid; old barkeeps have been witnessed sneaking out a bottle of scotch to the terrace; couples and even complete family of ghouls have known to frighten a waiter or two.
1126 Queen's Hwy.
Once one of the most luxurious ocean liners, this fine lady had the misfortune of being subscripted into the war effort. Ships, and hotels, by their very essence, cater to a passing clientele. A spectrum of all sorts of natures waltzes across their halls or hulls on a daily basis. Each harboring a secret desire or some malevolent intent. Suicides, murders, accidents, cover-ups, continually besiege these constructs' delicate frames. Add, to that heap of thickening paranormal ingredients, a fine dash of War World Two, and you basically have a bechamel sauce of Supernatural proportions. Ever hallway, stateroom, cabin, deck, pool, engine room - in other words, all the cruise's areas - are said to be haunted by a horde of poltergeists.
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