Salem’s Top Haunted Houses: Unearth the Ghostly Legends of MA

  • By: Gareth Popovic
  • Date: 2 August 2023
  • Time to read: 4 min.


Step into Salem, Massachusetts, where history and intrigue await. This captivating city along the Massachusetts coastline is famous for its witch trials and haunting folklore. Wander through historic streets with colonial architecture, but beware of lingering spirits. From The House of the Seven Gables to The Witch House, Salem offers a mesmerizing array of haunted places. Venture into the mysterious and supernatural world of its most haunted locations as we unravel chilling secrets of the past. The following are one the best haunted houses In Salem.

The Witch House

Known as the Corwin House, this historic structure holds a profound connection to the infamous Salem witch trials. Once belonging to Judge Jonathan Corwin, who played a role in sentencing 19 people to death for witchcraft, the house stands as the sole surviving building in Salem directly tied to the dark era of the trials.

The Witch House
The Witch House – Credit Massmatt

With nearly four centuries of history, the Corwin House now serves as a museum open to the public. Many believe that the spirits of those sentenced to death by Judge Corwin haunt the home, while others claim that the judge himself, along with his four deceased children, roams the premises. Visitors to the site have captured apparitions on film, experienced cold spots and encountered strange presences. The echoes of the past seem to linger in this historic abode, leaving an eerie ambiance that continues to captivate those who dare to explore its haunted history.

Old Burying Point Cemetery

Amidst the hallowed grounds of Old Burying Point Cemetery lies a tapestry of spirits from Salem’s past. Established in 1637, it stands as the oldest cemetery in Salem and one of the country’s oldest. Among the notable figures interred here is Judge John Hathorne, infamous as the “Hanging Judge” from the witch trials. Known for his merciless rulings, Hathorne sent numerous accused to the gallows, regardless of guilt.

Today, tales abound of his lingering spirit, often sighted near his 300-year-old grave. As the great-great grandson of Hathorne, author Nathaniel Hawthorne remarked that the judge’s association with the witch trials left an indelible stain on his legacy.

Joshua Ward House

Explore the Joshua Ward House, Salem’s most haunted residence, steeped in chilling history. This grand manor stands on the former grounds of George Corwin’s home, the malicious sheriff linked to the Salem Witch Trials.

Joshua Ward House
Joshua Ward House – Credit Babak

Step into the haunting echoes of Corwin’s dark legacy, as he oversaw the gruesome “pressing” of Giles Corey, an elderly man accused of witchcraft. Corey’s refusal to plead led to a horrifying fate, crushed under heavy weights as he allegedly cursed Corwin and Salem. The legend suggests Corey’s curse binds Corwin’s spirit to eternal wandering, and the house’s basement remains a hotspot for chilling encounters. Prepare yourself for a spine-tingling journey into this haunted dwelling, where the chilling presence of history will leave you breathless.

Salem Jail

The historic Salem jail, built-in 1813 and abandoned in 1991, housed prisoners for almost 200 years. Today, the old building is undergoing renovations to become apartments, a restaurant, and an exhibit showcasing its dark history.

Salem Jail
Salem Jail – Credit Elizabeth

Despite being built after the witch trials, legend has it that the Salem jail was constructed on the site of the dungeon where accused “witches” were once held. The jail’s appalling conditions, including dirt floors, lice-infested bedding, and harsh winters, led to the suffering and death of many inmates. Though now housing different residents, the centuries-old negative energies have sparked rumors of apparitions, cold spots, and poltergeist activity

The Lyceum

The Salem Lyceum, established in 1830, delivered lectures, debates, and seminars to the public. Now known as Turner’s Seafood, it once hosted famous speakers like Ralph Waldo Emerson, John Quincy Adams, and Frederick Douglass. Alexander Graham Bell even demonstrated the telephone here in 1877.

The Lyceum
The Lyceum – Credit Salem State Archives

Many believe the Lyceum is haunted by the spirit of Bridget Bishop or another “witch” hanged during the trials. Reports of poltergeist activity, such as boxes thrown and objects flying off shelves, have led employees to feel pushed or touched by unseen entities.

Hawthorne Hotel

The Hawthorne Hotel, built in 1923, is one of the newer haunts in Salem. Guests have reported smelling apples and seeing an apparition of a woman, possibly Bridget Bishop, the first victim of the witch trials. The hotel is believed to be built on the site of Bridget Bishop’s former apple orchard, adding to the eerie connection.

Room 612 is believed to be the most haunted, with guests seeing a woman figure outside the door. Room 325 is another hotspot with faucets turning on, lights flickering, and a baby’s crying heard. Many believe Bridget Bishop is behind these paranormal encounters.


Discover the best haunted houses In Salem, where history and mystery merge. Witch Houses, warehouses, Jails, and a Hotels hold eerie tales from locals and witnesses, weaving captivating urban legends. While some are private residences, the truth of their haunting is open-ended. Uncover enigmatic stories with respect, curiosity, and an open mind. Salem’s ghostly folklore awaits your exploration.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Hermitage

Previous Post

The Hermitage: Unraveling the Haunted Secrets of a Historic Mansion

Next Post

The Ozark Howler