Do you have a fascination with the eerie and mysterious? Are you drawn to the stories of ghosts and haunted places? If so, then you’re in luck because Iowa is home to some of the most haunted and abandoned places in the heartland.

From the infamous Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs to the haunting Villisca Ax Murder House in Villisca, there are plenty of spine-chilling locations waiting to be explored.

Picture yourself stepping into the past as you enter the Squirrel Cage Jail, a unique three-story rotary jail that once housed some of Iowa’s most dangerous criminals. Feel a shiver run down your spine as you walk through the halls of the Villisca Ax Murder House, where a gruesome and unsolved murder took place over a century ago.

These abandoned places not only offer a glimpse into Iowa’s history but also provide a thrilling experience for those seeking a taste of the supernatural.

So, if you’re ready to embark on an adventure filled with ghostly encounters and tales of the unknown, join us as we uncover the secrets of Iowa’s abandoned places. From breweries to asylums, each location has its own story to tell and its own ghostly presence waiting to be discovered.

Get ready to explore the forgotten corners of Iowa and experience the ghosts of the heartland like never before.

1. The Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs

Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs
credit – ghosthuntsusa.com

If you’re looking for a spine-chilling adventure, you have to visit the Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs. This eerie and abandoned jail is a haunting reminder of the past, and it’s sure to send shivers down your spine.

As you step inside, you’ll be transported back in time to an era when this place was filled with criminals and despair. The Squirrel Cage Jail is unique because it features a rotating cellblock, which was meant to make it easier for guards to manage the prisoners. However, this innovation also created a sense of constant unease, as the cells would slowly rotate throughout the day, leaving the inmates disoriented and disconcerted.

Today, the jail stands as a testament to the ghosts of the heartland, with its crumbling walls and ghostly whispers that seem to echo through the halls.

Despite the chilling atmosphere, visiting the Squirrel Cage Jail can be a thrilling experience for those seeking adventure. As you explore the dimly lit corridors and peep into the tiny cells, you’ll feel a sense of excitement mixed with trepidation.

The jail’s haunting past and abandoned state may evoke a subconscious desire for safety, reminding you that you’re only a visitor and can leave at any time. While the Squirrel Cage Jail is undoubtedly a spooky place, it’s important to remember that it’s now just a relic of the past, a ghostly reminder of a different time.

So, if you’re up for an eerie adventure that will make your heart race, make sure to pay a visit to the Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs.

2. The Villisca Ax Murder House in Villisca

Villisca Ax Murder House in Villisca
credit – www.travelchannel.com

Step inside the chilling Villisca Ax Murder House and feel the hair on the back of your neck stand up as you sense the presence of something otherworldly. This historic house in Villisca, Iowa, holds a dark past that still haunts its halls.

In June 1912, this quaint little town was shaken to its core when a brutal and unsolved murder occurred here. Eight people, including six children, were bludgeoned to death with an ax while they slept. The grisly crime shocked the nation and left behind a lingering sense of fear and mystery.

As you walk through the house, the creaking floorboards and faded wallpaper seem to whisper the secrets of the past. The air feels heavy with the weight of tragedy, and you can’t help but feel a shiver run down your spine. The rooms where the murders took place have been preserved, allowing you to step back in time and witness the horror that unfolded here.

You can almost hear the echoes of the victims’ last moments, their desperate pleas for mercy. It’s a chilling reminder of the fragility of life and the darkness that can lurk within even the most idyllic of places.

But amidst the eerie atmosphere, there is also a sense of fascination. The Villisca Ax Murder House has become a destination for those seeking a glimpse into the supernatural. Paranormal investigators and curious thrill-seekers flock to this haunted house in search of answers and encounters with the other side. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, there’s no denying the chilling aura that surrounds this place.

So, if you dare, step inside and experience the haunting history of the Villisca Ax Murder House. Just be prepared for the hair-raising sensation of the unknown and the undeniable desire for safety that lingers in the back of your mind.

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3. The Old Capital Brewery in Iowa City

Old Capital Brewery in Iowa City
credit – littlevillagemag.com

As you enter the Old Capital Brewery in Iowa City, you can’t help but feel a sense of nostalgia and excitement wash over you. The old brick walls and rustic wooden beams tell stories of a bygone era, and you can almost imagine the sound of laughter and clinking glasses filling the air.

The brewery, which once thrived with life and activity, now stands abandoned, a relic of its former glory. But as you wander through the empty rooms and corridors, you can’t shake the feeling that you’re not alone.

The Old Capital Brewery is said to be haunted by the spirits of its past patrons and workers. Visitors have reported hearing footsteps echoing in the distance and feeling a cold breeze brush against their skin, even on the warmest of days. Some have claimed to see shadows moving in the corners of their eyes, and a few brave souls have even captured eerie apparitions in their photographs.

While these encounters may send a shiver down your spine, there’s a certain thrill in being able to glimpse into the supernatural world. So, if you’re up for a unique adventure and a brush with the unknown, step inside the Old Capital Brewery and prepare to be captivated by the ghostly tales that linger within its walls.

4. The Eldora State Training School in Eldora

Training School in Eldora
credit – www.desmoinesregister.com

Located in Eldora, the Eldora State Training School holds a chilling history and a reputation for paranormal activity. As you step onto the grounds of this abandoned institution, you can’t help but feel a shiver run down your spine.

The dilapidated buildings and overgrown landscape are a stark reminder of the troubled past that once plagued this place. It was here that troubled youth were sent, hoping to find rehabilitation and a fresh start. However, the stories of abuse and neglect that emerged from the Eldora State Training School paint a much darker picture.

Legend has it that the spirits of the children who suffered within these walls still linger, their tormented souls unable to find peace. Whispers of ghostly apparitions and strange noises echo through the empty hallways, sending a chill through your bones. As you explore the crumbling buildings, you can’t help but feel a sense of unease.

It’s as if the walls themselves hold the secrets of the past, silently bearing witness to the pain and suffering that occurred here. While the Eldora State Training School may be abandoned now, its haunting history continues to captivate the imagination of those brave enough to venture into its ghostly realm.

5. The Iowa Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home in Davenport

Soldiers' Orphans' Home in Davenport
credit – en.wikipedia.org

Walking through the remnants of the Iowa Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home in Davenport, you can’t help but feel a deep sense of sorrow for the children who once sought solace within these walls. The faded paint on the walls and the dilapidated furniture serve as haunting reminders of the lives that were once lived here.

As you walk down the empty hallways, the echoes of children’s laughter seem to linger in the air, as if the spirits of the past are still present, yearning for comfort and companionship. You can’t help but imagine the stories of these orphans, their hopes and dreams, and the hardships they faced.

The Iowa Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home was meant to be a place of refuge, a safe haven for those who had lost their parents in the war. But as you explore the deserted rooms, you can’t help but feel a sense of unease, as if the ghosts of the past are silently pleading for someone to listen to their stories. It serves as a stark reminder of the fragility of life and the importance of cherishing the safety and security that we often take for granted.

6. The Otter Creek Bridge in Anamosa

Otter Creek Bridge in Anamosa
credit – www.jonescountyiowa.gov

Imagine yourself crossing the worn wooden planks of the Otter Creek Bridge in Anamosa, feeling the slight bounce beneath your feet as you take in the idyllic scenery that surrounds you.

The bridge, once a vital lifeline connecting the community, now stands as a haunting reminder of the past.

As you walk, you can’t help but feel a sense of awe mixed with unease. The bridge’s weathered appearance tells the stories of countless travelers who have crossed its path, their footsteps echoing in the wind.

The Otter Creek Bridge may seem peaceful, but its history is shrouded in mystery. Legend has it that the bridge is haunted by the spirits of those who met their untimely demise here. Some say they have heard whispers in the darkness, while others claim to have seen apparitions floating along the creek below. Yet, despite these tales, the bridge exudes a certain charm that draws visitors from near and far.

As you continue your journey across the bridge, the sound of rushing water fills your ears, soothing your spirit. The bridge’s rustic beauty juxtaposed with the serene surroundings creates a captivating scene that beckons you to explore further.

While the legends may give you pause, there is a comforting sense of safety that lingers in the air. Perhaps it’s the bridge’s steadfastness, standing tall against the test of time, or maybe it’s the knowledge that you’re surrounded by nature’s embrace.

Whatever the reason, the Otter Creek Bridge in Anamosa is a place where history and tranquility intertwine, inviting you to step into the unknown and discover the ghosts of the heartland.

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7. The Marquette Cement Manufacturing Company in LaSalle

Marquette Cement Manufacturing Company in LaSalle
credit – eofp.net

As you approach the Marquette Cement Manufacturing Company in LaSalle, you can’t help but be captivated by the towering structures that once hummed with the energy of the industry.

The abandoned factory stands as a testament to a bygone era, its rusted machinery and crumbling walls echoing the ghosts of a once-thriving workforce.

But as intriguing as it may seem, it’s important to remember that exploring this abandoned site can be dangerous.

The decaying buildings and unstable structures pose a significant risk to anyone who dares to venture inside.

The floorboards creak underfoot, and the air is thick with the stench of decay.

It’s a place that seems frozen in time, with remnants of the past scattered throughout.

But as enticing as it may be to explore the forgotten hallways and forgotten corners, it’s crucial to prioritize your safety above all else.

The Marquette Cement Manufacturing Company may hold a certain allure, but it’s crucial to resist the temptation and admire its history from a safe distance.

8. The Rock Island Swing Bridge in Davenport

Rock Island Swing Bridge in Davenport
credit – www.postcard-past.com

Now that we’ve explored the haunting remains of The Marquette Cement Manufacturing Company in LaSalle, let’s embark on another spine-tingling journey through time.

Imagine yourself standing on the banks of the mighty Mississippi River, in the historic city of Davenport, Iowa. As you gaze across the water, your eyes lock onto the eerie silhouette of the Rock Island Swing Bridge. This abandoned structure, once a vital transportation link, now stands as a ghostly reminder of the past.

The Rock Island Swing Bridge, also known as the Arsenal Bridge, was once a bustling hub of activity. Built in 1896, it served as a vital railway and pedestrian bridge connecting Davenport to the Rock Island Arsenal. However, as time went on and transportation methods evolved, this magnificent structure was left to wither away in the winds of change. Now, its skeletal remains stand as a testament to the passage of time and the ghosts of the heartland.

As you step closer to the Rock Island Swing Bridge, a chill runs down your spine. The creaking of the rusted metal and the whispers of the wind create an eerie symphony that sends shivers down your spine. You can almost envision the ghostly figures of long-gone workers and travelers, their presence lingering in the air. The bridge, once a lifeline for the community, now holds a mysterious allure that draws you in, even as your subconscious mind silently urges you to seek safety.

As you continue your exploration of abandoned places in Iowa, remember to tread carefully and listen to the whispers of the past. The Rock Island Swing Bridge is just one of the many ghostly remnants that dot the heartland, each with its own story to tell. So, venture forth, but always trust your instincts and keep that subconscious desire for safety close at hand.

9. The Oxford Orphanage in Oxford

Orphanage in Oxford
credit – en.wikipedia.org

Stepping onto the grounds of the Oxford Orphanage in Oxford, your heart sinks as you feel the weight of sorrow and loneliness that still lingers in the air. The dilapidated buildings stand as silent witnesses to the countless lives that were once nurtured within their walls.

As you walk through the empty corridors, the creaking floorboards seem to echo the whispers of the children who once called this place home. You can almost hear their laughter and feel their innocent spirits lingering, as if they’re still seeking the love and care they were denied.

Despite the sadness that permeates the atmosphere, there’s an undeniable sense of intrigue and curiosity that draws you in. The Oxford Orphanage holds a certain mystique, as if it holds secrets waiting to be uncovered.

Each decaying room tells a story of the lives that were forever shaped within these walls. The peeling wallpaper and broken windows serve as reminders of the hardships these children faced, yet there’s a strange beauty in their resilience.

As you explore further, you can’t help but feel a subconscious desire for safety, a yearning to protect and shelter those who were once forgotten. The Oxford Orphanage may be abandoned, but its ghosts of the past continue to haunt our hearts, reminding us of the importance of love and compassion for every child in need.

10. The Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison

State Penitentiary in Fort Madison
credit – www.fortmadison-ia.com

You can’t help but be captivated by the foreboding presence that looms over the Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison, as if the very walls are whispering stories of hardened criminals and their desperate attempts for redemption.

As you step inside, the heavy iron doors creak, and a chill runs down your spine. The air feels heavy, filled with the echoes of past turmoil and anguish. It’s a haunting reminder of the lives that were once confined within these walls.

Walking through the prison, you can’t help but imagine the struggles and conflicts that took place here. The cold, gray cells stand as silent witnesses to the stories of those who lived and suffered here. It’s a sobering experience, reminding you of the importance of safety and the need for a just society.

The Iowa State Penitentiary serves as a stark reminder that there are consequences for our actions and that we must work towards a world where everyone feels secure and protected.

11. The Green Castle School in Green Castle

Green Castle School
credit – www.placesthatwere.com

Imagine yourself walking through the halls of the Green Castle School in Green Castle, where the echoes of laughter and learning once filled the air.

As you step inside, you can’t help but feel a sense of nostalgia and curiosity. The abandoned classrooms, with their dusty desks and forgotten textbooks, seem frozen in time. It’s as if the spirits of the students and teachers still linger, their presence felt in the faint whispers that seem to dance in the breeze.

You can almost picture the children running through the corridors, their footsteps echoing with joyous abandon. The walls, adorned with faded artwork and motivational posters, tell stories of a time when knowledge was cherished and dreams were nurtured. However, as you explore further, you can’t shake the eerie feeling that someone is watching you. The creaking of the floorboards under your weight adds to the suspense as if the ghosts of the past are warning you to tread carefully.

Despite the haunting atmosphere, there is an undeniable beauty in the Green Castle School. Nature has started reclaiming the building, with vines snaking their way through broken windows and sunlight streaming in through shattered glass. It’s a reminder that even in abandonment, life finds a way.

As you make your way back to the entrance, you can’t help but feel a sense of gratitude for the safety and comfort of the present. The Green Castle School may be abandoned, but it continues to captivate the imagination, reminding us of the importance of preserving our history and cherishing the memories of those who came before us.

12. The Iowa Juvenile Home in Toledo

Juvenile Home in Toledo
credit – www.desmoinesregister.com

As you leave behind the chilling history of The Green Castle School, it’s time to venture into the haunting tales of The Iowa Juvenile Home in Toledo. Brace yourself, for this abandoned place holds memories that will send shivers down your spine.

Picture this: you step into the eerie silence of the Iowa Juvenile Home, the air thick with anticipation. The walls whisper stories of troubled souls who once roamed these halls.

As you explore the empty rooms, you can’t help but feel a sense of unease. Your heart races and every creak of the floorboards sends a jolt of fear through your body. The remnants of the past seem to cling to you as if the spirits of the forgotten are desperate to make their presence known.

But don’t worry, my friend, for you are safe. The ghosts of the heartland may haunt this place, but they cannot harm you.

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13. The Malvern Manor in Malvern

Malvern Manor in Malvern
credit – www.desmoinesregister.com

Stepping into the Malvern Manor in Malvern, you can’t help but feel a lingering presence, as if the very walls hold secrets waiting to be uncovered. The air is heavy with history and the faint whispers of the past.

As you explore the dimly lit hallways and rooms, you may catch glimpses of shadowy figures out of the corner of your eye, sending chills down your spine. It’s as if the spirits of the past are still trapped within these walls, longing for release.

The Malvern Manor has a reputation for being haunted, and for good reason. The stories of paranormal activity are numerous and spine-tingling. Guests have reported hearing disembodied voices, feeling cold spots, and even witnessing full-bodied apparitions.

But despite the eerie atmosphere, there is a certain fascination that draws people to this place. It’s the allure of the unknown, the thrill of experiencing something beyond the ordinary. So, if you’re seeking an adventure into the supernatural, the Malvern Manor awaits, but be prepared for the unexpected.

14. The Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs

Deaf in Council Bluffs
credit – www.pinterest.ca

Now that you’ve explored the chilling halls of The Malvern Manor, it’s time to venture into another abandoned place in Iowa that is sure to send shivers down your spine. Welcome to the Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs, where the echoes of forgotten voices still linger in the air.

As you step onto the grounds of this eerie institution, you can’t help but feel a sense of melancholy. The once vibrant campus that was home to countless deaf students is now a haunting reminder of the past. The abandoned classrooms, with their dusty desks and faded chalkboards, stand as silent witnesses to the lives that were once shaped within these walls.

As you walk through the empty corridors, the hushed whispers of the past seem to surround you, as if the spirits of the students and teachers are still present, longing to be heard. The echoes of laughter and learning that once filled these halls have now been replaced with an eerie silence, broken only by the creaking of floorboards and the occasional gust of wind.

As you explore further, you come across the old dormitories, where the students once slept and dreamed. The empty beds and discarded belongings give a glimpse into the lives that were abruptly interrupted. It’s as if time stood still here, frozen in a perpetual state of longing and sadness. The abandoned school may be empty of living souls, but the stories and memories of those who once called it home are etched into every corner.

As you leave the Iowa School for the Deaf, you can’t help but feel a mixture of curiosity and unease. The ghosts of the past still roam these halls, their presence felt by those who dare to venture into this abandoned place. It’s a reminder that even in the silence, the echo of the past can still be heard, and the spirits of the forgotten can still find a way to make themselves known.

15. The Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute in Mount Pleasant

Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute
credit – kcrr.com

As you approach the crumbling walls of the Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute, you can almost hear the whispered cries for help that once echoed through its halls.

The eerie silence that now surrounds the abandoned building only adds to the sense of unease that fills the air. It’s as if the ghosts of the past are still lingering, trapped within the decaying walls.

The Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute was once a place of refuge for those suffering from mental illnesses. But now, it stands as a haunting reminder of the struggles and pain that so many endured within its confines.

The broken windows and overgrown vegetation serve as a stark contrast to the once-bustling institution. It’s a place where the past meets the present, and where the line between reality and the supernatural becomes blurred.

As you stand outside, a sense of curiosity mixed with caution washes over you. The subconscious desire for safety pulls you closer to the entrance, but a voice in the back of your mind warns you to stay away.

The stories of the institute’s dark history linger in the collective memory of the town, and it’s hard to ignore the chilling tales of restless spirits that still wander the abandoned halls.

The instinctive need for security battles with the intrigue of exploring the unknown. In the end, it’s up to you to decide whether to listen to that voice of caution or succumb to the lure of the abandoned Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute.

Conclusion

You’ve explored the forgotten corners of Iowa, uncovering the ghosts of the heartland.

From the eerie Squirrel Cage Jail in Council Bluffs to the haunting Villisca Ax Murder House in Villisca, these abandoned places hold a sense of mystery and history.

The Old Capital Brewery in Iowa City and the Eldora State Training School in Eldora tell tales of a bygone era, while the Iowa Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home in Davenport and the Iowa Juvenile Home in Toledo carry the weight of past lives.

As you ventured further, you discovered the chilling Malvern Manor in Malvern and the Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs, both filled with stories waiting to be heard.

Lastly, the Mount Pleasant Mental Health Institute in Mount Pleasant stood as a testament to the struggles of those who sought solace within its walls.

These abandoned places in Iowa are not just remnants of the past, but reminders of the human experiences that once existed within them.

In your exploration, you’ve witnessed the ghosts of the heartland, their whispers echoing through time.

These abandoned places in Iowa hold a unique allure, drawing you in with their stories of love, loss, and the passage of time.

As you leave these forgotten corners behind, you can’t help but feel a sense of reverence for the ghosts of the heartland and the history they carry.

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