Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum

As usual, we took back roads as we headed home from the ramp festival.  As we were driving along, I suddenly spotted this place.  I almost wrecked the car.  This is the Weston State Hospital which was originally named the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum.  The shear size of this place stopped me in my tracks.

This place opened in 1864 and closed as recently as 1994.

It is the second largest hand-cut sandstone building in the world, the first one being the Kremlin.

Though it is one of the scariest places I have ever seen, it is also haunting in it's beauty.

It was originally supposed to house 250 patients.

It ended up holding over 2400.

It was built to be self-sufficient and had it's own farm where many of the patients worked.

Check out the outdoor areas on this building, they are all screened in.

Uncontrollable patients were kept in cages.

It was forcibly closed due to deplorable conditions and overcrowding.

The greenhouse.

Can you just imagine the stories this place holds?

A road next to it is called Asylum Drive, another is called Watch Tower Rd..
Construction was halted for a while due to the Civil War.

I pulled over so The Blog Tech could take pics of this sign. Look closely at the front entrance!

That is a patient leaving the building.  The Blog Tech was like.....let's get the hell out of here. I was like...I want a closer look.

If you enlarge this pic you can see a person standing inside.  It is a nurse dressed in 1940's nurse attire.  Apparently, they give tours.  We are going back.  You can google this place to learn lots more about it.


T & C's Travels said…
You can spend the night and explore the buildings while you walk with the ghosts. The town of Weston also has a wonderful glass museum. Be sure to stop by if you go back.
Mary said…
That place makes me sad, can you imagine the terror the "patients" had to feel. Wives being sent there to just get them out of the way. Anyone just a bit eccentric set there, as well as the poor souls who were suffering from a mental illness. Just horrible, nowhere I would want to be even on a tour. I am with Blog tech..move on.
Places like this hold so many memories of human misery, they give me the willies. I feel buffeted by that energy any time I am near such a place.
Cottage Tails said…
I'm with the blog tech - it has such a sad feel about it
Anonymous said…
It ius an amazingly beautiful building but I sure wouldn't want to walk around there by myself at night :-) :-) :-)

Those walls are filled with horrible stories. I wouldn't mind going that tour though :-)

I'll read more about it on the net!

have a great day!
petoskystone said…
Just waves of sadness & fear. Are the gardens still used? The glass museum sounds interesting.
Mary Ann said…
Oh my gosh, all the ghost-hunting shows have gone there, it is SO CREEPY! Is it really still in use or are those tourist cars???
Blog Tech, don't go!!!! Or at least, let her go on the tour, without you! -shiverrrrrrrrr-

There are a certain kind of people, who made a habit of getting into (sneaking into) such old, decrepit buildings... And take photos, I guess.

No thank you. Not I. I'm not a big-on-ghosts person, but I'd still be afraid I might bring some very troubled soul, back home with me.

Scaredy-cat Tessa
Craig said…
It's austere but in a slightly baffling beautiful way.
Guillaume said…
Wow! It could pass as a place for one of Lovecraft's stories. It could easily be a setting for a horror story actually. Was any filmed done there? Beautiful and eerie.
Barb said…
A fascinating post. I agree, the buildings are hauntingly beautiful.
AlphaBetsy said…
Wow! This is going on my list of places to visit.
I had a game..a computer game about an insane asylum..and I never did finish it or solve the mystery of the child crying for it's Mommy. I had to wonder if it was a take of on this place..
Doesn't that place's entrance look like an intrance to a black hole of no return? Those place were nothing but torture chanmber what what I've read of them. The game unnerved me and I gave it up and then the computers changed and it would no longer work in the newer ones.
What an adventure you were on.
p.s. Not a place I would like to work. It's bad enough where I live! LOL Are going to take
I honestly don't think it's something I would want to do..but at first I very interesting..but no. Blog Tech is right..glad you got the hell out of there with NO tour.
1st Man said…
Wow, no words. That must be so haunting, but the building itself has an sends of beauty at the same time.
I can't imagine the misery & horror those walls bespeak! I'm like the Blog Tech...let's get the hell out of here!
Fascinating place. What history the place has. If only those walls could talk, what stories they would tell. Let's hope mental health in this century is not headed back to the dark ages of then.
Jeri Landers said…
It's very spooky and slightly creepy..
Oh the stories it could tell....not sure I would want to hear them though!
sandra said…
100 % beautiful and 100% spooky as all heck!!! Horrid stories abound in this place but its just soooo tempting to check it out!!
I bet you couldn't even light a sage stick in this joint. All the spirit would just smudge it out ;],lol.
chickpea678 said…
Creepy! Stay away!