Find out the top 10 abandoned and creepy prisons across the world.

1) Tuchthuis Prison, Vilvoorde, Belgium (1779-1974)

On December 30, 1773, the Austrian Empress Maria Theresa announced the establishment of the prison. It would be the second ‘modern’ prison in the country. Approximately 270 prisoners were housed in the complex. However, there was strong criticism of the design of the prison. Especially, the unhealthy position on the Senne, the bleak view and limited ventilation. In addition, the prison was poorly lighted. At a certain point, Tuchthuis Prison was holding more than 12,000 prisoners on its four floors. Murderers, prostitutes, drunks and even petty criminals were prisoned with tiny slits for light. In the early 19th century, the building was briefly converted into a military hospital before turning it to a prison again. In 1914, the army used it as barracks and also a detention center. Even the Germans used it as barracks in World War II. Crosses are drawn all over the cell walls, among other swastika carvings and personal letters. Disturbing graffiti, signs and symbols are prominent in this prison.

2) Atlanta Prison Farm, Georgia (1945-1995)

Atlanta Prison Farm was opened in 1945 and has been slowly rotting away for the last two and a half decades.
The Atlanta Prison Farm was mainly a 700 bed detention facility and the general population included petty criminals and traffic offenders. Instead of giving tickets to the traffic offenders, they were arrested and jailed. All the inmates were forced to work in farming, livestock, running a diary and others. The main aim was to give the prisoners vocational training while they contributed to the cost of their stay in jails. At its peak, the Atlanta Prison Farm housed 1,000 inmates. The authorities tried to change the policy to house more serious offenders, but the prison was considered too inefficient. It was closed in the year 1995. All that remains now are some of the most incredible graffiti and stories claiming that the prison is haunted. There are also some reports of ghost and orbs appearing in the prison. But one thing is for sure that the prison is decaying with some very dark secrets.

3) William Porter Reformatory, Tokai, South Africa (1878-1980’s)

Not much is known about this prison. But just a look at its background is enough to send chills down your spine.
16 was the age, which was allowed in this prison. This mean’t that children were housed in this monster house. Small misdemeanors and petty crimes were enough to throw children into this prison. The prison was funded entirely by “Sir” William Porter and the place was intended to rehab childred caught in crimes. Instead, children brushed their soldiers with adult hardcore criminals. Solitary confinement, child abuse, rapes, assaults were all common on children. Children were often driven to self-inflicted harm, mental imbalance and suicide.

4) Ohio State Reformatory aka Mansfield Reformatory

The Ohio State Reformatory (OSR), also known as the Mansfield Reformatory, is a historic prison located in Mansfield, Ohio in the United States. It was built between 1886 and 1910 and remained in operation until 1990. While this facility was used in a number of films (including several while the facility was still in operation), TV shows and music videos, it was made famous by the film The Shawshank Redemption (1994) when it was used for the majority of the movie.

A scene grab from the movie “The Shawshank Redemption”

On September 15, 1896 the reformatory opened its doors to its first 150 offenders. When the prison was shutdown, it housed over 150,000 prisoners. Prison guards would punish “worst-behaved” inmates by throwing them into solitary confinement. Most of the prisoners, who were in the confinement, went insane and some of them even committed suicide. Prisoners were murdered during fights, attempted prison escapes and some were even killed by the prison staff. On July 21, 1948, two inmates escaped from prison and abducted the superintendent John Niebel, his wife and 20-year-old daughter, who lived nearby the prison and murdered them in a cornfield. This was considered as the darkest day in the prison history.
Chicago Daily Tribune publishing the massacre of John Niebel and his family.

The Reformatory remained in full operation until December 1990 when it was closed via federal court order. As the result of a prisoners’ class action suit citing overcrowding and inhumane conditions (Boyd v. Denton, C.A. 78-1054A (N.D.Oh.)), District Judge Frank J. Battisti of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio ordered the prison closed by the end of December 1986. In 1995, the Mansfield Reformatory Preservation Society was formed. They have turned the prison into a museum and conduct tours. Tourists still claim they hear faint conversations and footsteps inside the cells of Ohio State Reformatory. Some even claim that they smelled unusual scents during their trips and some even claimed that they saw ghostly apparitions inside the prison. Several stories still crop up for this famous prison.

To be continued

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