On Oct 21st, I reported on a story (see the above link) that AOL rated "Terror Behind the Walls" at Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia as the #1 Haunted House attraction in the United States
This penitentiary is the nation's oldest, and was THE model for today's penitentiaries.
I was compelled to go over there and see for myself what all the bru haha is about. Now I'll tell you, I didn't make it to the actual Terror Behind Walls performances (which are/were done in the evenings with actors scaring the bejesuz out of you). Still, I thought it would be interesting to take the quick ride over there and file my own "report" just for NowPublic :)
As I had stated in the previous article I posted, paranormal activity has been well documented in there, and can be seen on Discovery Channel, Travel Channel, and a host of YOU TUBE videos. MTV shot an episode over there as well. I guess though if you go looking for "apparitions" you won't find them. My time over there , was NOT in vain though. What I discovered was remarkable archetecture for it's time, and an extensive history of the penitentiary system as we know it today.
This place is MASSIVE !!! It took about a half hour walkin at a normal pace just around the circumfrence of this prison. Grant it, I stopped to shoot some pics, but I don't think pictures can really portray the enornmity of this place ...and that's just walking around the outside.
Once inside, I was in there for at least 3hours, and only saw maybe 85% of the place. I did the self guided tour, where you're given a headset and recorder type gizmo, and you just punch in the number to the correstponding number at a particular spot within the prison. I figured this was the best route to go, since I would be stopping to snap pics, ...... and look for ghosts :)
I will upload a few images here that I shot, and add the majority of them to my Flickr portfolio. My blog is also about to get very busy :) (for the newbies, just click on my photo RayBanBro66 to get to my main page. From there, you'll be able to see my latest Flickr uploads, and you can conveniently click on them to check them out)
This place is a photographers dream, with the lights and harsh shadows within. Every shot that has ever been taken in there is a testament to this. I tried to capture that as well as the isolation and despair in those cells. Sorry, no ghosts this time around :( BUT..... (yes, I just raised an eyebrow or two with that ) I noticed an interesting phenomenon in two cellblocks.
Keep in mind these cellblocks are open aired. The temperature outside was a "balmy" 68 degrees, which is mild for this time of year. However, as you step inside one of the cellblocks .... there is an icey, bone chilling cold in there. I cannot explain this. It felt like an industrial freezer in there. This is almost impossible, because again , this particular cellblock has no indoor air conditioning. It's basically wide open, yet as soon as you crossed the threshold from the mild temp outside, it was this icey to the bone chill that hits you. (I'm going to upload an image of that particular cell block and call it Icy Cold Cellblock, so you can see it) Maybe some other visitor has encountered this phenonmenon and can share their experience with us. It MAY be plausible for the white concrete to keep the place cool, by holding in cool air...which it does in other parts of the prison, but NOTHING like what I felt in this particular cellblock (which they mysteriously keep closed off .... hmmmmmmmm)
I shot two quick videos with NP in mind :) I'm self conscious about my appearance and performance, so if I appear all jittery and nervous, bear with me. I just thought it would be cool to add a personal video touch. In the first video, I inadvertently said that AOL calls this the most haunted place in the country. It should really be.... the Terror Behind the Walls attraction is the number 1 attraction in the country, per the previous article.
If you're ever in Philly, be sure to stop on over there. They're open every day, and very very affordable . (my ticket was $12 and I was in there for 3hours. Could have stayed longer, but it was closing for the day to prep for the evening activities) You'll pay far more for other attractions in the city and get waaaay less than what you get for your money in here.
I do indeed plan on re-visiting this place in the near future, and would personally recommend it for anybody considering visiting. You will NOT be disappointed...... unless you go looking for ghosts :)
For more info please visit http://www.EasternState.org for more info
RayBanBro66 .....reporting for www.NowPublic.com