Abandoned West Virginia Amusement Park Has Dark History

Amusement parks are usually filled with the sounds of children’s laughter and the sweet smell of cotton candy. At Lake Shawnee Amusement Park in Rock, West Virginia it has been decades since children have happily played there.

The amusement park occupies ground that is a desecrated Native American burial ground. If being built over a graveyard wasn’t a curse enough the park is also the site where the Mitchell Clay Farm once rested. Mitchell Clay had three children- Bartley, Tabitha, Ezekial. Sadly, all three were murdered by a band of natives. Clay retaliated and in a bloody battle slaughtered several natives. Conley T. Snidow bought the property in the 1920’s and built the Lake Shawnee Amusement Park.

Local Residents Hoped New Park Would Stop Curse

Many locals believed that the construction of the amusement park would bring an end to the tragedies that took place at the site, but heartbreakingly that was not the case.

The amusement park was open until 1966, and its history is a dark one. During its operation, at least six people were killed on the amusement park grounds. Those deaths included a young girl riding the circling swing who was killed by a truck when it backed up into the swing’s path, and a young boy was found drowned in the amusement park’s swimming pond.

In 1966 the park was closed for good, and the owner abandoned the “cursed” site. Today the park’s structures and rides are still standing; the site is used to give visitors haunted tours. Local legend states that the park grounds are haunted by different ghosts.

Nature and Spirits Have Taken Over the Park

The rides and structures are rusted and have been overtaken by nature. The amusement park’s present owner, Gaylord White, says that he has often seen and heard the old wooden swings, where the young girl was killed, creak and move. He adds that he has seen the swings move when there was no wind to move them.

White says if you touch the seat of the swing while it is in motion you’ll find it warm. He believes that warmth is created by the spirit of the little girl killed on the ride.  White also claims that he has seen the little girl’s ghost dressed in a pink ruffled dress covered in blood.

The Park Visited by Paranormal Investigators

The park has been visited been visited by several paranormal investigators.  Folks from the Discovery Channel’s “GhostLab” and the Travel Channel’s “The Most Terrifying Places in America” have filmed stories on the park.

You can watch a video of a group known as Virginia Paranormal Investigators exploring the amusement park on YouTube. The group took several photos during their visit and claimed to have caught “several orbs.” They also captured a “strange mist” on film that they could not see when or after the photo was taken. One of the investigators stated he felt an overwhelming feeling of sadness when he was close to the swing where the little girl died.

The Amusement Park is Now Open for Haunted Tours

Today the amusement park is open to those who want to see if the stories of paranormal activity are true. Some visitors have reported hearing children’s laughter near the park’s playground while others have claimed to see the ghost of the young girl on the old swing.

Each year from October 25th to October 31st, Lake Shawnee opens for tours. You must bring a flashlight, and the amusement park’s owner warns “you may not like what you hear or see.”

More Information on Lake Shawnee Amusement Park- If You Dare!

For more information about touring the Lake Shawnee Amusement Park call (304) 921-1580 or visit the park website at http://www.wvlakeshawnee.com.

Add These Abandoned Adventures
To Your Bucket List

Looking for a unique adventure and willing to expand your travel destination? Check out these abandoned places that All The Rooms Blog shares with readers.

All located in Virginia, these abandoned destinations await you!

  • Wise County Orphanage in Wise, VA
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  • Western State Lunatic Asylum in Staunton, VA
  • Swannanoa Palace in Afton, VA
  • Professor Cline’s Haunted Monster Museum in Natural Bridge, VA
  • Pamplin City Main Street in Pamplin City, VA

You’ll find everything from an abandoned asylum to a haunted orphanage. These visits are not for the faint of heart- but if thrills and chills are what your heart desires, plan a vacation now! All The Rooms Blog is the largest accommodations search engine, combining sites like Expedia, Airbnb, and 400+ other sites you may not have even heard of yet. If you’re ready to plan your next adventure, check them out and book the perfect accommodations for your thrilling getaway here!

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