Unraveling the Haunting Mystery of Lake Shawnee Amusement Park

The world is dotted with numerous abandoned amusement parks, but none are quite as enigmatic or eerie as Lake Shawnee Amusement Park. Nestled in Princeton, West Virginia, this former playland is now a haunting attraction steeped in mystery, allure, and ancient folklore.


The Origin and Brief History of Lake Shawnee Amusement Park

Lake Shawnee Amusement Park’s history is as diverse and enigmatic as its present. The park occupies land that was once home to the Shawnee tribe, hence its name. The amusement park’s story dates back to the late 1920s, when it was established by Conley T. Snidow.

However, the history of the location dates much farther back. Before it became an amusement park, it was the location of a despicable incident known as the Mitchell Clay Settler’s attack, where three children were reportedly killed in bloody battles between Native Americans and European settlers. This tragic historical event set the tone for the land’s reputation as haunted grounds long before the amusement park was even conceptualized.

What Made Lake Shawnee Amusement Park Popular?

Despite its troubled past, Lake Shawnee Amusement Park became popular in the 1960s and 70s. It boasted a variety of attractions such as a Ferris wheel, a swing ride, and a swimming area. The park became a go-to destination for families, accommodating up to 20,000 visitors annually during its peak.

Was It the Attractions or Something Else?

Though its rides were a major draw, the amusement park’s location played a significant role in its popularity. Nestled by a picturesque lake and surrounded by lush greenery, it provided visitors with a much-needed escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. However, the park closed down in 1966 after two children tragically died on its rides, adding to the land’s grim history.

Lake Shawnee Amusement Park Today: A Haunted Attraction

Today, Lake Shawnee Amusement Park stands abandoned, with remnants of its past eerily lingering. The rusted Ferris wheel and dilapidated swing ride lend a chilling atmosphere to the place, attracting ghost hunters and thrill-seekers alike. It has been featured on several paranormal investigation shows, including ‘Scariest Places on Earth’ and ‘Ghost Lab.’

What Makes It Haunting?

Multiple reports of paranormal activity have surfaced over the years. Visitors and ghost hunters have claimed to hear children’s laughter, see apparitions of former park-goers, and even observe the rides moving on their own. Some believe that the park is haunted by the spirits of those who died tragically on the property, both during its time as an amusement park and before.

The Legacy of Lake Shawnee Amusement Park

Despite its foreboding reputation and chilling atmosphere, Lake Shawnee Amusement Park holds significant historic value. It stands as a somber reminder of the battles once fought on its ground, the joy it brought to families as an amusement park, and the tragedies that led to its closure.

What Is Its Impact Today?

While the park no longer operates as a traditional amusement park, it’s become a popular destination for thrill-seekers and history buffs. The park also opens its doors for an event called the “Dark Carnival” every Halloween, offering brave visitors a unique and spooky experience.

Amidst the rusted rides and dilapidated structures, the spirit of Lake Shawnee Amusement Park lives on. It’s a testament to the cyclical nature of life and death, joy and sorrow, past and present. Whether it’s haunted or not, the park continues to command attention, inviting people to explore its eerie charm and unravel its profound history.

Scroll to Top
Skip to content