Hauntings of Lake Shawnee’s Abandoned Amusement Park

Posted by junketseo in Philadelphia Ghost Tours
Hauntings of Lake Shawnee’s Abandoned Amusement Park - Photo

Nestled in the heart of the folklore of the Appalachian Mountains, the Lake Shawnee abandoned amusement Park in Rock, West Virginia, stands as a haunting reminder of both the joys of yesteryears and the eerie mysteries that can shroud even the most cheerful of places. This once vibrant park has long since fallen into disrepair, reclaimed by the encroaching forest, leaving behind a shadow of history, a chilling residual aura that has captivated the imagination of paranormal enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike.

 

Who haunts Lake Shawnee’s Abandoned Amusement Park?

 

The tales of spectral encounters and unexplainable phenomena surrounding the park have solidified its status as one of the most haunted places in America. For more terrifying tales, book a Philadelphia ghost tour with Philly Ghosts!

 

A Chilling Background: A Journey Through Time

 

Lake Shawnee Abandoned Amusement Park has a history that stretches back to a time before settlers domesticated this region. The Native Americans believed this area to be sacred, and it was on this site that they buried their dead. In the 19th century, death came again to this area. It was on this spot that there happened to be committed a horrific double murder. In the year 1783, Shawnee Indians, the eponyms for the lake, killed and scalped two young children from the Clay family, a warning to these first white settlers in the county to leave this sacred area.

Then, in the late 1920s, Conley T. Snidow transformed the former Native American burial ground into a thriving amusement park. If movies have taught us anything, they have taught us that building upon a Native American burial ground is never a good idea. As it turns out, the same can also be said for this particular place. The land was believed to have been cursed, with the remains of Native American children buried beneath its surface desecrated to build the amusement park.

 

The Interests of the Park

 

The tragedies manifested slowly over time. The early years saw families flocking to the park to enjoy its attractions, which included a Ferris wheel, a swing set, and a swimming pool. However, the park’s prosperity was short-lived, as tragedy struck on multiple occasions.

In 1927, a young girl named Emiline Shrader met her untimely demise when she was struck by a truck while playing on the swing set. A few years later, in 1930, a boy named George Wythe was tragically drowned in the park’s swimming pool. These incidents, combined with the park’s eerie past as a Native American burial ground, have contributed to the speculation that the park’s land is cursed.

 

Phantoms of the Past: Hauntings and Encounters

 

As the years passed and the park’s popularity dwindled, the laughter and excitement faded, leaving an air of desolation and unease. The Lake Shawnee Abandoned Amusement Park, as it came to be called, gained a reputation as a hotbed of paranormal activity, drawing the attention of ghost hunters, paranormal investigators, and dare-devils eager to experience the otherworldly phenomena firsthand. Some things, however, are better left alone.

Among the most common accounts of hauntings at the park is the apparition of a young girl in a white dress, believed to be the ghost of Emiline Shrader. Visitors have reported seeing her swinging on the swing set, where she met her untimely demise. Other witnesses have seen her ghost wandering aimlessly near the empty pool. Some intrepid investigators claim to have heard the faint sound of children’s laughter echoing through the abandoned rides, only for it to fade into an eerie silence.

George Wythe’s tragic drowning in the pool has also left its mark on the park’s supernatural reputation. Numerous reports have described a sensation of being watched, especially near the pool area. Some have even claimed to see ripples in the accumulated rainwater water as if an invisible presence is moving beneath its surface. The disembodied cries of a young boy have been reported, leading many to believe that George’s spirit still lingers, unable to find peace.

 

Paranormal Investigations: Seeking Answers in the Shadows

 

Over the years, the Lake Shawnee Abandoned Amusement Park has attracted a plethora of paranormal investigators and ghost hunters, all eager to unravel the mysteries that shroud the desolate grounds. Many have reported capturing unexplainable phenomena on camera, such as orbs of light, shadowy figures, and eerie apparitions. Electronic voice phenomena (EVP) sessions have yielded chilling recordings of whispered voices and unidentifiable sounds.

One particular case that gained significant attention involved a team of paranormal investigators who claimed to have captured a full-bodied apparition on camera. Could this be a photo-bomb by Emiline? The image, which depicted a young girl in a white dress near the swing set, stirred debates among both skeptics and believers. While some dismissed it as a mere trick of light and shadows, others found it to be compelling evidence of the park’s haunted reputation.

 

The Ongoing Mystery

 

As time marches on and nature continues to reclaim the decaying rides and structures, the haunting atmosphere of the Lake Shawnee Abandoned Amusement Park remains as potent as ever. The stories of Emiline Shrader and George Wythe, along with the park’s grim history as a Native American burial ground, have woven a tapestry of sorrow and unease that lingers in the minds of those who dare to venture into its eerie confines.

While skeptics may scoff at the idea of the supernatural, and believers remain convinced of the park’s haunted nature, one thing is certain: Lake Shawnee Abandoned Amusement Park will forever stand as a testament to the fragile boundary between joy and sorrow, life and death, and the inexplicable mysteries that continue to captivate the human imagination. Whether one seeks an adrenaline rush from the unknown or simply wishes to pay homage to the souls that are said to wander its grounds, the park’s legacy is sure to endure, casting its spectral shadow over generations to come.

For more tales of the macabre, check out our blog. And to visit the most haunted places in Philadelphia, book a tour with Philly Ghosts!

 

Sources:

 

https://www.slate.com/blogs/atlas_obscura/2014/05/13/lake_shawnee_in_west_virginia_is_an_abandoned_amusement_park_with_a_history.html#:~:text=Lake%20Shawnee%20Amusement%20Park%20was%20built%20in%201926,family%2C%20the%20first%20white%20settlers%20in%20the%20county.

https://www.grunge.com/1039702/the-shady-history-of-the-cursed-lake-shawnee-amusement-park/

https://www.the-sun.com/news/6310305/kids-killed-haunted-theme-park-burial-ground/

https://www.southerngothicmedia.com/blog/2018/7/3/episode-012-lake-shawnees-tragic-history