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Rolling Hills Asylum

E. Bethany, New York

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Rolling Hills Asylum

Rolling Hills Asylum, E. Bethany, NY

Illustration: Rolling Hills Asylum
Located between Buffalo and Rochester, Rolling Hills Asylum's enormous 53,000+ sq. ft. brick building sits on a knoll in the hamlet of E. Bethany, N.Y. and has been a popular destination for ghost hunters for many years. Opened on January 1, 1827 and originally named The Genesee County Poor Farm, it was created by Genesee County to house those eligible for assistance including paupers, habitual drunkards, lunatics, the blind, lame or otherwise handicapped, orphans, widows, vagrants, and even a murderer or two. In the 1950s it became the Old County Home & Infirmary, and then in the 1990s was transformed into a set of shops and later an antiques mall. When the property owners, vendors and shoppers began to notice strange occurrences, a paranormal group was called into investigate and Rolling Hills' spooky reputation was born. Reports include disembodied voices, doors mysteriously held shut, screams in the night, shadow people and more.

Rolling Hills Case Manager, Suzie Yencer relates one chilling experience: "It was September 2007. While working a public hunt, we had a gentleman with us that was filming a documentary about the building. He wanted to try an experiment in one of the rooms. The room he chose was in the basement, popularly known as The Christmas Room. The experiment he wanted to try was to sit in the room with no lights or equipment on. The only light we would use was a pink glow stick in the middle of a circle of people. We also placed a small ball and a toddler size rocking horse in the circle. The gentleman conducting the experiment requested that only I talk and try to make contact with the spirits. The more I talked, the more strange occurrences began to happen. The glow stick started to move back and forth, and the rocking horse began to slowly rock. A few of the guests in the room including myself saw a hand and arm come out of nowhere and reach for the ball in the circle and then just vanish...."

The Rolling Hills website provides more details and information about ghost hunts and other events.

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