In first part of Horror State – Oregon we talked about Portland, the largest, and one of the oldest major cities in Oregon. This part is going to encompass other locations.
Oregon has a history of asylums with horrible conditions. Poisonings, deaths, experimenting on patients, you know all the lovely elements that make horror movies so scary.
Oregon State Hospital, Salem Oregon — Opened in 1862, it was initially named the Oregon Hospital for the Insane following the closure of the previously named Oregon Hospital for the Insane that was located in Portland. It is also one of the oldest continuously used psychiatric hospitals in Oregon and one of the longest continuously operated hospitals on the West Coast, yes it is still open to this day.
In the early 1900s it was known for participating in the fields of electroconvulsive therapy, lobotomies, eugenics, and hydrotherapy. Obviously there were deaths at the hospital. It got so crowded that in 1961 another hospital was built just to ease some of the overcrowding. After the other hospital closed, Oregon State Hospital came under fire for its treatment of patients, and in 2005 it came to light that the Oregon State Hospital had between 3,500 and 5,000 canisters of cremated remains. There are numerous accounts of individuals who died in the hospital, especially during the days of when it was called the Oregon Hospital for the Insane. Bathtub deaths, poisoning deaths, even some due to electricity have been recorded. One thing that is interesting is that currently there are 1,500 individuals who died and supposedly were buried at the Oregon State Hospital’s cemetery, but they are missing.
Now one of the original buildings is a hospital museum, but I doubt some of the darker sides are displayed.
Fun fact about Oregon State Hospital. One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest was filmed there. This is a place that I want to visit now that I know they have a museum.
Oregon State Hospital
McMenamin’s Properties, Various locations – McMenamins is a local family turned business who buy old buildings and restore to their previous glory. I spoke on the Bagdad theatre in part 1, but they have many other buildings, and most of them are haunted. Crystal Ballroom in Portland, Grand Lodge in Forest Grove, Poor Farm at Edgefield, White Eagle Hotel in Portland, and Hotel Oregon in McMinnville are all properties that have had reports of ghostly activity. It is not surprising as these buildings are all old and left to the elements until bought and restored by the McMenamins. I have spent time at the Grand Lodge and it is an imposing building with a doctor’s office that has been turned into a bar. Obviously not everyone who still resides at these buildings want them to be popular again.
Battery Russel, Warrenton, Oregon – Between the Civil War and World War II, Oregon actually had many military installations. While there is only one, not counting reserves or national guard installations, the past refuses to fade away. Battery Russel in Warrenton Oregon is part of Fort Stevens. This place is really creepy. Not only are some of the battery underground and so it is hard to see and even harder to navigate, even during the middle of the day. As one of the places that the Japanese bombed during World War II there have been many stories about ghosts wandering around the fort. You can even stay the night if you want, I dare you to, because I will not be.
If you are interested in more places in Oregon that are creepy or you know about another place, let us know.