Norwich State Hospital, Preston, CT

Norwich State Hospital Haunted?

Several people who have been to the hospital grounds say that being there gave them a feeling of uneasiness. The structure of the abandoned hospital looks truly terrifying especially at night. The fact that it held over 700 criminally insane patients just adds to the horror of the place.

The hospital’s Salmon building is one of the area’s paranormal hotspots. This was the asylum’s maximum security building, a place where the criminally insane were housed. It was basically turned into a prison, with steel doors, bars and rooms which were similar to cell blocks. Numerous events were said to take place in the Salmon building.

When Norwich was still open, nurses would report seeing children on the second floor. Some would hear screaming coming from the Salmon building. Doors could be heard loudly scraping open although the only entrance to the building was on the first floor.

It is said that the hospital’s residual energy comes from the fact that patients were tortured in the hospital. Barbaric things were done to them. The staff would allegedly starve them, beat them, sexually abuse them, and even pack them in ice.

Paranormal investigators who have been to the hospital report hearing disembodied voices, objects moving and doors slamming by themselves. Most of the activities take place in the Salmon and Earle buildings. However, the tunnels are also very active.

Various ghost hunters have also mentioned hearing a woman sobbing in the hospital. Security guards on their rounds of the property have heard beeping sounds from the lobotomy rooms, as if operations are being carried out. There are also reports of sudden cold blasts of air, even during hot and calm summer days.


After opening its doors in October 1904, Norwich State Hospital held 95 patients and then slowly expanded to over 20 buildings holding more than 2,000 patients. As well as housing the mentally ill, it also began taking in patients with tuberculosis and patients who were chemically dependent.

Several deaths took place in the hospital but the first death was recorded in 1904.  One of the patients committed suicide by hanging himself. Two of the hospital’s employees were killed in a hot water heater explosion in 1919. There are also other deaths which took place outside the hospital, such as the hospital employee who died while crossing the road.

The hospital finally closed its doors in 1996 and the patients were transferred to other locations. There have been several unsuccessful attempts to sell the property. In March 2009, the town of Preston bought almost 400 acres of the land and in the same year the Preston Redevelopment Agency was created to oversee the development of the property.

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