Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Attention prospective ghost wardens: Haunted Florida jailhouse now for sale

Pictured: A different, probably haunted jail in France that sold at auction last fall.
Pictured: A different, probably haunted jail in France that sold at auction last fall.
Photo: Martin Bureau (Getty Images)

Online property listings have given us a wealth of bizarre houses to gawk at in recent years, but never, to our knowledge, has there been a haunted jail. That’s now been corrected thanks to the sale of Old Gilchrist County Jail in Trenton, Florida, which can be yours for just $139,990.

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The property is described on Realtor.com as a “single family home” and on the local realty group’s site as a “great opportunity to own the only decommissioned, certifiably haunted jail in the state of Florida!” The latter sales page is the one we’re most interested in. Gilchrist operated from 1928 until 1968, it tells us, and is apparently a great venue for meeting old swamp ghosts. The listing, worded like it was written by a carnival barker, reads: “See apparitions walking around the grounds in broad day. Possibly the spirits within will voice whats [sic] on their mind when you arrive before you even make it inside.”

“Home to years of grisly stand offs, killings and much more its no surprise this location is loaded with visible and Audible paranormal activity,” the page continues. “Can you can believe years ago they would lock the prisoners in and there would be no one in the jail with them? As you can imagine that opened the door up for extreme nefarious activity.” The property also includes “8 bedrooms and 8 full baths,” we should note.

An old website for the jail provides extra information for anyone hoping to settle their family in a decrepit house of misery. On one page, a former owner poses and answers a number of frequently asked questions. “Why do I own a jail?” one reads. “Because it was for sale.” “Do I like owning a jail?” another asks. “Yes,” she answers. “Is there activity there?”

“Yes in my opinion,” the owner writes.

The site’s blog page, which mysteriously stopped updating in 2011, chronicles some of what the jail’s new residents can expect. “Arlene and I had a great time and got to hang out with a lot of shadow dudes as well!!” one entry says. Another entry describes a visit from ghost hunters and pastes in one investigator’s note: “I have gone threw [sic] 5 recorders of 4-5 hours that night and have 475 possible EVP’s. So is that Jail haunted? HELL YEAH from a guy that cusses to a child approx [sic] 11 years old.”

If you are enticed by the idea of living with “a lot of shadow dudes” and the ghost of “a guy that cusses,” and would like to put in an offer on the place, now’s the time.

[via Boing Boing]

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Contributor, The A.V. Club. Reid's a writer and editor who has appeared at GQ, Playboy, and Paste. He also co-created and writes for videogame sites Bullet Points Monthly and Digital Love Child.