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5 Places on the American East Coast Haunted by Animals

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In addition to humans, there have been numerous accounts of animals still wandering among the living long after they have passed on. If you are interested in a getaway where you can experience and/or see an animal spirit, you will probably be interested in travelling to one or more of the following haunted destinations located on or near the East Coast of the United States.

Knickerbocker Hotel

Linesville, Pennsylvania is home to the historic Knickerbocker Hotel. The original owners, Milo and Clara Arnold, first opened the hotel (at the time, known as "Arnold House") in early 1882. Some of its ghostly inhabitants include Clara Arnold herself, who succumbed to tuberculosis just three years after the hotel opened, and at least one small child. Another spirit that roams the Knickerbocker is a cat that resides in a second-floor room known—very appropriately—as the "Cat Room". It is speculated that the spirit is an orange tabby cat that once stayed at the hotel. The ghost feline has been captured on video sitting on a chair, and its meow can also be heard in another video.

The hotel's current owners are Peg and Myrle Knickerbocker. While the building no longer serves as an actual hotel, people can rent space inside for parties and other special occasions. The owners have also permitted some paranormal groups to investigate inside the Knickerbocker. In addition, ghost enthusiasts can look for spirits inside the building from the comfort of their homes by viewing the Action Cam on the hotel's website.


Candle Shoppe of the Poconos

The Candle Shoppe of the Poconos, located in Swiftwater, Pennsylvania, may appear to be an ordinary store at first glance. However, the century-old building has a grim past. At one point, it was used to conduct medical experiments on spider monkeys. The shop was built in 1897 and was originally the residence of William Redwood Fisher, the doctor who performed the experiments. The monkeys were kept in cages and experimented on in the basement of the building. After the candle store opened, the cages and old medical equipment were still in the basement. The store's current owner, Linda Schlier, and other people working at the shop have heard stampeding sounds coming from inside the building and have even smelled the monkeys that haunt the store. Most of the ghostly activity takes place at night and is why employees refuse to walk around the shop alone after dark.

The candle shop was featured in an episode of Animal Planet's "The Haunted". Schlier has even turned the basement into a haunted attraction that is based on the store's macabre history.

The Hanging Hills

There is an over hundred-year-old legend that looms over the scenic Hanging Hills of Hubbard Park in Meriden, Connecticut: the legend of the Black Dog. Those who claim to have seen the dog say it is completely silent and does not leave any footprints. Several deaths in the area have also been blamed on the canine. A geologist named W.H.C Pynchon, who published one of the earliest accounts of the Black Dog, stated, "If you meet the Black Dog once, it shall be for joy; If twice, it shall be for sorrow; and the third time shall bring death." Pynchon had personally seen the dog himself- not once, but twice. His second sighting of the canine took place when he was conducting research in The Hanging Hills with fellow geologist, Herbert Marshall. While Pynchon had seen the Black Dog twice, it was the third time Marshall had seen it. When the dog approached them, Marshall slipped on ice and fell to his death.

Since then, there have been numerous others who have also claimed to have seen the mysterious canine, and additional deaths have been blamed on third encounters with the dog. The park is open all year, so those brave (or foolish?) enough to seek out the Black Dog can do so at any time of year they wish, although the recommended time to visit the park is from March to October.


Emlen Physik Estate

The Emlen Physik Estate of Cape May, New Jersey, is the town's only Victorian house museum and is also known as "Cape May's original haunted house". It was built in 1879 by Dr. Emlen Physik, who moved into the mansion with his mother, Frances, and her sisters, Emilie and Isabelle. All eventually died in the house, and all three of the women are believed to still be residing in the building to this day. In addition, a number of Dr. Physik's dogs are also said to still be roaming the halls of the mansion. For many years, Dr. Physik was the head of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and had taken in numerous dogs. When the canine spirits are around, there is said to be some disturbance, since Frances was not fond of the animals and would not allow them in the house. However, Emilie, who was a dog lover, would sneak a few of the pups into her room when her sister was not around.

Those who would like to have a chance to experience paranormal phenomena or even see the ghosts of the Emlen Physik Estate can schedule a tour of the building. In addition, those interested in touring the mansion after dark can choose to be part of the Midnight at the Physik Estate Tour, a late-night group tour where ghost writer and psychic medium, Craig McManus, shares his paranormal experiences and may even contact one or more of the spirits of the estate.

Jacob Hummelbaugh Farm House

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania is said to be a paranormal hotspot, which is not much of a surprise since so many lost their lives during the famous battle that took place there during the Civil War. The town is also home to the Jacob Hummelbaugh Farm House. The building's history includes being used as a Union Field Hospital and was where Confederate Brigadier General William Barksdale succumbed to his injuries after being wounded during a battle. It is said that his cries of pain can still be heard on certain nights.

Along with Barksdale, his dog is also thought to still reside on the farm. After Barksdale died, his heartbroken dog is said to have stayed at his master's grave all day and night and every now and then would be heard letting out a pitiful howl. Barksdale's wife and others who lived nearby made attempts to coax the dog away from the gravesite with food and water, but the loyal canine never budged. He eventually died of hunger and dehydration, and his body was found still laid out at his master's grave. Legend says that on the night of July 2nd, the day of Barksdale's death, the mournful cries of his dog can still be heard echoing throughout the farm.

Today, the Jacob Hummelbaugh Farm House is owned by the National Park Service. Visitors can freely explore the outside of the building, but need permission from a park ranger if they want to tour inside.



© 2018 Jenn


Penny Leigh Sebring from Fort Collins on June 11, 2019:

I've experienced several canine and feline hauntings in my life. I had a ghostly dog that would wake me up expecting to be fed in the morning at one of my condos when I was younger. It was kind of nice not having to rely on an alarm clock.

BeccaDawn on August 29, 2018:

Interesting read. I had a cat that unfortunately had to be put down and the next day, I saw her outline flitting across the floor - just as she always done -in the sunshine coming through the living room window. An eye-opener for me. Thanks for sharing

Jenn (author) from Pennsylvania on April 16, 2018:

Thank you, CerioT!

Cerio on April 16, 2018:

Those places are creepy, but intriguing.

Hanging Hills is such a wonderful place. Loved to be there one day. Followed you!

Jenn (author) from Pennsylvania on April 16, 2018:

Thanks Shauna. Yes that story about the dog was very sad. I have a dog myself, and it is amazing how loving and loyal they are to their people.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on April 16, 2018:

Interesting, Jenn. The last story about Jacob Hummelbaugh's dog is heartbreaking. Our pets are so loyal to us. Poor thing literally died of a broken heart.

Jenn (author) from Pennsylvania on April 15, 2018:

Thanks Mary!

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on April 15, 2018:

I have heard of animal ghosts or spirits before but have not visited places you mentioned as I just haven't been aware of them so thanks for the info.