The history of Old South Pittsburg Hospital

Old South Pittsburg Hospital

The Old South Pittsburg Hospital is considered by many to be one of the most haunted locations in Tennessee. If you are interested in experiencing a haunted hospital firsthand or would like to indulge in overnight ghost hunting, this is the place to be. This particular structure is located at what many refer to as the foothills of the South Pittsburg Mountain in the State of Tennessee. In the year of 1959, four medical professionals founded the facility and named it the “South Pittsburg Municipal Hospital”or “SPMH” for short. It consisted of a total of 68,000 sq ft and was designed to meet the medical care needs of the growing community. Many physical additions were constructed throughout the next several decades to the haunted hospital. Many lawsuits, wrongful deaths, child abuse deaths, and many tragic deaths due to fatal illnesses occurred. Unfortunately, due to a new hospital being built the long serving nonprofit hospital quietly closed its doors. Old South Pittsburg Hospital was closed in the year of 1998. Since then, it has been dubbed as one of the most haunted places in Tennessee.

In order to truly appreciate the paranormal activity associated with this haunted hospital, it is first important to learn a little information pertaining to the history of the land where the facility currently stands. Two of the most distinctive geological characteristics about the property is that there is a natural based spring that runs underneath the hospital and runs into a still existent well from a former plantation. It also flows directly into the Northwest region of the Tennessee River. It is because of this natural spring that many individuals throughout history were attracted to the area. The second is that the hospital today sits on solid Limestone that the natural spring runs underneath. It is believed that the well that has running water acts like a natural battery in combination with the Limestone to these spirits, and gives them energy to manifest and interact with investigators.

In 1920’s there was a large plantation that existed on the property. Unfortunately, there was a large fire and the entire plantation burned to the ground. Sadly, 7 children lost their lives in this fire. In its earliest days, the City of South Pittsburg was referred to as “Pittsburg Landing”. During the Civil War a ferry landing located approximately one eighth of a mile from the hospital’s grounds transported soldiers from the North and the South to the region so that they could make their way to the popular battlefield known as the “Chickamauga”. It is also where the battle of Shiloh occurred. It has been said that this was the bloodiest battles in the Civil War up until that date.

Back in the year of 1778, a Cherokee tribe identified as the “Chiaha” used the land where the haunted hospital now stands for living and engaging in day to day activities that enhanced their survival. Examples of these activities included growing extravagant orchards, hunting for various types of animals native to the region and fishing. During the Civil War era, the tribe permitted the soldiers from the North to use a section of land that is now under the Old South Pittsburg Hospital to store various supplies such as artillery and encampments. They found safety against the foothills behind the Hospital. Unfortunately, the Confederate soldiers eventually invaded the region during the Civil War and launched assaults on the Union Soldiers. As a result, many Union members, individuals of the tribe and even Indians in the Cherokee Tribe died and the Confederate Soldiers emerged victorious. Many believe that these deaths contribute to the land’s reputation as being one of the most haunted places in Tennessee.

By the end of the hot summer of 1863, the Union Soldiers successfully reclaimed the land until the end of the Civil War. Despite this, many individuals residing in the community experienced numerous hardships because of the fact that many soldiers took the livestock that they raised, the foods that they stored, items that could be used for first aid purposes and other types of necessities. It was then that the residents realized that they could experience a high level of fortune by selling the various types of minerals native to the region as well as the limestone heavily present in the geography of the area. Not too long after experiencing success in this endeavor, the St. Louis – Nashville railway came to the region and offered more opportunities for the region. The town was finally founded in 1873, and the name was changed to South Pittsburg.

South Pittsburg Hospital opened its doors in 1959, and quietly closed in 1998 making way to a larger facility in Jasper, TN. The hospital has 3 floors and many wings. Many say it had a very dark history and disturbing history. Some believe the spirits of many generations still walk the hallways looking for someone or something from the past. Many of these lost souls are intelligent spirits and will interact with visitors often.

Paranormal Activity at the Hospital

Throughout the history of the hospital, many have reported various types of paranormal activity. Many believe that the hauntings could be a direct result of the colorful past related to the land that the hospital sits on. Others believe the activity stems from theinjuries, illnesses and deaths that occurred while the Old South Pittsburg Hospital serviced the community. Regardless of what has resulted in the paranormal activity, one thing is certain, this hospital is considered to be one of the most haunted places in Tennessee. Many paranormal investigators have conducted overnight ghost hunting tours and have acquired evidence that indicates that something unusual is occurring in and around the structure. This evidence as well as the stories from locals, Nurses, Doctors, and past employees and patients that all point to the fact that this haunted hospital has many stories it wants to share. The following highlights some of the stories surrounding the Old South Pittsburg Hospital:

Early in the 1920’s there was a tragic fire to a plantation that once stood here on the property. During the chaos in the night, 7 children lost their lives to fire. This may explain the large amount of children encountered here. Do they know what happened?

Employees that worked at this hospital when it was in full operation share stories of many unusual events that occurred during their shifts. It was not at all uncommon for these employees to observe various inanimate objects such as medicine carts, hospital beds, wheelchairs and other items seemingly moving on their own. Individuals on overnight ghost hunting adventures have also observed this phenomenon.

Nurses once employed by the Old South Pittsburg Hospital claim that they have observed dark, shadow figures in the corridors and rooms of the structure late at night when patients shouldn’t be roaming the halls. Many of these visions were enhanced by seemingly disembodied voices. Many felt that these figures were intruders that meant harm against the hospital or patients. However, upon investigation by hospital security, it was discovered that there was no living presence in the regions where the apparent shadows were observed.

On the third floor of this haunted hospital, many have reported the fact they have seen a shadow figure of a man approximately seven feet in height that they believe to be one of the past surgeons that practiced in the medical facility. It is common for these reports to come with witness statements claiming that this spirit tells the living to get out and/or leave the premises. Many spirits that seem to be intelligent hauntings have informed several of the living that this spirit does not want them associating with the living. While no one has experienced any type of injury associated with this spirit, they have felt his presence in an overwhelming manner and claim that it appears as if he is hiding something. By participating in overnight ghost hunting, you too may be able to experience this presence. Many that have experienced this presence agree this is one of the main reasons they consider it to be one of the most haunted places in Tennessee.

There is a female spirit that apparently is in the basement region of the Old South Pittsburg Hospital that many appropriately refer to as the “Naughty Nurse”. This female seems to touch individuals in places that are deemed private and also whispers sweet nothings in the ears of those that visit the basement. In addition to this female, a spirit that looks as though he was a doctor in life has been spotted. Some have experienced a protective soul that was a janitor named James, that died in the 60’s. He was from Louisiana, and of Cajun decent. Some have heard him pacing or whistling. Last but not least a child may be seen or heard in the basement region of the haunted hospital as well.

The second floor is the largest in the building. Back in the day, it housed everything from an Emergency room, old nursery, general admission, and the geriatrics, and the Morgue. It is a very active floor, and many photos and videos have been captured of a shadow person coming out of the walls, walking down the hallways, and lurking around corners. There has been reports of a child playing hide and seek, and calling out. This child believed to be a young girl that died of a head injury has been captured on a Thermal Flir behind a water cooler. She seems to be very playful in nature, and is not aware she has passed. She seems to like to play tricks on those that aren’t noticing what is around them. She has been captured on Flir playing “Hide and Seek” at the water cooler. Sounds of moving furniture, banging, and a woman screaming. It seems as though there is a woman in pain on this floor and has screamed many times. You are able to hear this with your own ears, and has been captured on EVP’s. There are 2 Nurses that actually died in the hospital from heart attacks and are believed to still be tending to patients.

The third floor of this haunted hospital seems to have quite a few ghosts as well. One of the most popular is a toddler that appears to be either two to three years of age that is active and seems to enjoy playing or urging the living to play with him. Many individuals have stated that he requests to be held. He is fondly referred to as “Buddy”. In addition to this, a apparition of an elderly woman is often observed. Many also claim that they have heard a female nurse on this floor as well walking and talking to someone that we can’t see. And last but definitely not least….. There is a large shadow figure that lurks around the corners, has been captured on film during the daytime hours, and has been caught many times on evps telling you to “get out!” Many doors open and close when requested to do so. There are 2 elderly ladies that were in the Detox/Psych evaluation wing during the 80’s. One is a sweet and gentle lady. Her name is Nellie. She is particularly fond of younger males. When she was a patient, only the younger orderlies could get her to cooperate with the Nurses and Doctors that provided her care. The other less social woman is Irene. She is of a more salty nature, and does ask people to leave the room. She has been recorded saying swear words to investigators. She does not welcome investigators, and would prefer to be left alone.

If you would like to experience one of the most haunted locations in Tennessee, you should visit the Old South Pittsburg Hospital. One of the easiest ways to do so is by participating in an overnight ghost hunting adventure. By staying at this haunted hospital, you may have the pleasure of capturing evidence that suggests that there is life after death. There are many intriguing stories surrounding the Old South Pittsburg Hospital and several tales that make this one of the most haunted places in Tennessee.