Alcatraz, San Francisco Bay, California

Is Alcatraz Haunted?

Alcatraz Island and the prison has been the home of infamous gangsters, hardened criminals, and yes you guessed it – ghosts! The penitentiary is rumored to be haunted by the very people who were inprisoned within its cells.  There are feelings of loss of freedom, fear, regret and anger.

One of the most feared entities in the former prison is “The Thing”. The Thing has glowing eyes and it has supposedly been seen by the inmates, as well as the staff in the prison. There have been reports of disembodied voices, putrid smells, sobbing and banging metal doors.

Being a high security prison; anger, grief and death are aren’t strangers to Alcatraz. Two of the first people to die in the prison are Jacob Unger and Daniel Pewter. They passed away in a landslide while doing some excavation work.

There was also an incident in the part of the prison which is referred to as “The Cell”. It’s in Cell Block D where inmates who tried to break the rules are kept. They would be stripped naked and held in a cold cell where they had access to just the basics. Mattresses were only given at night and promptly taken away in the morning.

A guard reported that there was a figure haunting the block. The apparition had been seen numerous times and several people have claimed to have attacked by a man with glowing eyes.  On one occasion a prisoner screamed and claimed that he was being attacked all throughout the night. The guards ignored him thinking he was hallucinating or just trying to aggravate them. After screaming for some hours in the night, he finally fell silent. When guards opened the cell in the morning, they found the man dead and there were visible hand-prints on his throat.

Psychics that have visited the prison have reported cold spots; sudden emotional outbursts while in the building; apparitions that claimed they have been abused; and other traces which point to ghosts and spirits in unrest.

Brief History

Alcatraz is a Spanish word for Island of Pelicans. Originally and island prison was built here during the American Civil War and it was called “The Citadel” back then. The Citadel served as both a military defense and prison, however, it collapsed, and the current prison was built on its remains. When it was still in operation, it had full blown security and because of the tight security only one person has ever escaped it and made it to the San Francisco mainland, John Paul Scott. He escaped in 1962 and was so exhausted from his swim from the island that the two boys who found him thought he was trying to commit suicide. They called the police to report the apparent suicide and he was promptly arrested and sent back to prison.

The prison had a horrific execution punishment. Executions were carried out via hanging and electric chair. Alcatraz housed some of the most notorious criminals in the world, including Al Capone. A guard was murdered in the 1930s and two died during the ill-fated 1946 escape attempt.  Five prisoners committed suicide and at least twelve died while trying to escape.

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