It's important to be aware of all the urban legends in every state, because you obviously need to know what you're up against should you make the trek across the country.
So we decided to put it all together for you in one, easy, somewhat terrifying spot!
In Alabama, the story of Hell's Gate Bridge lives strong. Rumor has it a young couple drove off the bridge late at night and died. Since then, the bridge has been closed off but if you stop your car there on certain nights, you can gaze into the fiery pits of hell.
In Alaska, the "Bushman" or Big Foot is the most well-known urban legend. The Bushman is rumored to be a species of creature known as a "Tornit." Legend has it that a long time ago, the Tornits and Inuit native Americans lived harmoniously on the land with an agreement of peace. However, a Tornit broke one of the Inuti kayaks, which prompted the Inuit to kill the Tornit. Since then, the Tornits migrated to a safer location. Big Foot is believed to be one of the few, angry Tornits who stayed to exact revenge on the people who live in the area.
The Lost Dutchman's Gold Mine is a dangerous urban legend that has gotten people killed. People who are in desperate need of money try to find the missing gold mine that German immigrant Jacob Waltz supposedly located in the 1800s but never harvested. Anyone who has gone to look for the mine ends up with a terrible fate. They are found without their heads, attacked by snipers, or completely vanish with no trace.
The "Dog Boy" legend in Arkansas is one of the most disturbing stories. Rumor has it that Gerald Floyd Bettis was a deranged lunatic who would gain satanic powers by performing experiments and rituals on dogs. Bettis died of a drug overdose many years ago, but neighbors still claim they can hear the howling of the animals in the distance. More recently, people claim to have seen spirits that resemble Bettis in their homes.
In 1984, one woman's blood shut down an entire hospital and poisoned 23 hospital workers. Many people believe she was not human. Gloria Ramirez had her blood drawn in the ER and the second her blood started to come out, a foul smell filled the entire room and she began to turn oily. Of the 37 employees in the emergency room, 23 of them experienced symptoms. Some passed out immediately, others lost the use of their limbs. One worker spent two weeks in intensive care. Ramirez died 40 minutes after her blood was drawn. To this day, there has been no concrete explanation as to what was in Ramirez's blood that would have such an adverse affect so quickly.
The "Ridge Home", or Colorado State Home for Mental Defectives, was built in 1909 and was a place for the 'undesirables' to be housed. This included orphans, mentally disabled adults, and kids deemed insane. The Ridge Home shut down, but it remained a hot spot in the city for people to visit. Stories of flickering lights, shadows, voices, and moving objects have all been reported, presumably the spirits of residents-past.
Connecticut boasts, perhaps unluckily, the most interactions with 'melon heads' in the country. Legend has it that these creatures are the escapees of an insane asylum that burned to the ground. The strange appearance of melon heads come from cannibalism and inbreeding. It's rumored that if you come across a melon head, they will eat you on the spot.
So this one isn't the worst possible ghost story, but it's definitely an inconvenience. There was a judge in Delaware by the name of Samuel Chews. People always mocked him for his name, pretending to sneeze in front of him or greeting him by saying "Ah, Chews!" When he died, Chews came back to haunt all the people who mocked him, sending them into uncontrollable fits of sneezing.
The Devil's Chair is certainly a mysterious tale. Legend has it that Satan himself sits in this chair at a cemetery in Florida. If you leave an unopened can of beer on the chair, it will be empty by morning. Sometimes the can has been opened, but sometimes the can is completely sealed and still empty. Satan is rumored to visit anyone who dares to sit in his chair.
In Georgia, the Baby Bridge is a well-known urban legend. According to history, a poor farmer found out his wife was pregnant with their fifth child. Knowing they couldn't afford another child, the husband asked the doctor to immediately kill the baby after it was born. The doctor agreed, and after the delivery he threw the baby off this bridge into the water. Legend has it if you visit the bridge on a full moon and sprinkle baby powder around your car, you'll see tiny footprints in the powder and hear the distant sound of a baby crying.
The Night Marchers of Oahu walk the island of Hawaii at night to reclaim land that was stolen from them. They are solid apparitions, and if you see one you are warned to run in the other direction. Making eye contact with a night marcher could seal the death of yourself or a loved one. Locals encourage anyone who encounters night marchers to lay on the ground and play dead.
Idaho's most terrifying urban legend is actually fairly recent. In 2014, the security system at Pocatello High School was triggered, presumably by an intruder. However, the camera footage only show a shadow figure moving on camera, causing the lights to flicker on and off as it passed by. The school is already home to many legends, some of which are believed to have stemmed from a suicide pact where several girls died by hanging themselves from their lockers.
If you thought the rapist clown ordeal was just in 2016, think again. In 1991, "Homey The Clown" terrorized kids in the Chicago area, driving around in a white van and kidnapping kids to rape them. Homey was never captured, even after extensive police investigation. Ultimately, he was deemed an urban legend and forgotten, despite many, MANY people stepping forward to corroborate his existence.
This one is pretty straight-forward. Legend has it that Indiana is home to a Big Foot type creature who is over seven feet tall with giant yellow demon-eyes. Probably best not to walk in the woods alone with that thing on the loose.
It's believed that the Black Angel of Council Bluff, this cemetery statue, vanishes from its stand at night and flies around the graveyard. The statue was built in memory of Ruth Ann Dodge, who says that she saw an angel in a dream who offered her a glass of water that would give her immortality. She drank from the cup and died days later, but it is believe this is how she is existing forever.
Hope you don't like hamburgers, because this will turn you off them forever. In Kansas, legend has it there's a deformed man who was maimed in either a car crash or house fire. He lives on Hamburger Hill in Kansas and at night he hunts people who come near his house. He kidnaps them and grinds their body into ground meat so he can eat them for dinner. All while they're still alive.
Sleepy Hollow Road is not a place you want to visit in Kentucky. Along the road is "Crybaby Bridge" where legend has it parents would throw their sick babies to their death. If you dare to drive by the bridge, you can hear terrified baby screams alongside it. People have also reportedly been tailgated by driver-less black hearses along Sleepy Hollow Road and it's believed to have been a prime location for Satanic rituals in the 70s and 80s.
Ellerbe Road School in Louisiana was dubbed the Demon School after dozens of unspeakable things happened within its walls. Vanishing children without a trace, a torturous janitor who preyed on kids, and Satanic rituals taking place on campus, the school is a cesspool for legends and evil happenings. The building is currently slated for demolition.
In Maine, a tree is the root cause of their urban legend. Or at least, what's carved in the tree is. The faces carved in the tree are those of Native Americans who still haunt the area. People who have visited the tree also claim to have witnessed ghosts of cats, dogs, and horses that are buried in the pet cemetery next door.
The Goatman is not to be confused with the British man who spent time in a field to study goats. The Maryland legend is said to be an insane scientist who conducted terrible experiments on goats. One day, an experiment backfired and caused him severe brain damage. Now, he roams the area with an axe and is the one blamed for all the deaths of humans, pets, and wild animals. There have been eye-witness accounts of the Goatman, but nothing ever confirmed.
Taunton State Hospital was a mental institution where the staff were more insane than the patients. It was the workplace of nurse Jane Toppan, who killed 31 patients under her care, claiming she wanted to kill more "helpless people" than anyone else in history. Legend has it the hospital workers were so desperate to cure their patients, they performed Satanic rituals on them.
Similar to the Bermuda Triangle, the Michigan Triangle is legend to have swallowed aircraft and boats without leaving behind a trace. Witnesses claim to have seen red lights above the Triangle, leading many to believe it's actually UFOs which are causing the disappearances. The Michigan Triangle is also rumored to have an "electronic fog" which causes time to speed up and slow down.
Dead Man's Trail in Minnesota has two supposed histories behind it. The first is that a Native American man hid along the trail after he was convicted of killing a European. Others say it was named after a Native American woman left her baby on the trail while she was being chased by authorities. She intended to come back for her child, but he had been swept away into the river when she returned. Witnesses say they've seen the woman frantically searching for her baby along the trail.
Mississippi has been accused of a disease cover up, after rumors of Mercritis surfaced. The disease allegedly came over from Europe in the 1950s and caused men to give off an unusual odor. This smell was said to give women extremely homicidal tendencies, which made them kill the men they smelled. It reached the height of disaster when a village of affected women chased one man into a freezing river, and they all drowned. Mississippi has tried to cover up the entire scandal, with many claiming it's because they didn't have a cure.
The worst part about this "urban legend?" It's actually true. Someone checked into a hotel in Kansas City, Missouri and complained several times about a nasty smell coming from the room. The claims were dismissed many times, but after constant persistence, housekeeping went to check the room. What they found was a dead body decomposing under the bed. It turns out, the body had been there for a while...and many guests and checked in and out of that room without noticing.
This is basically Montana's version of the Loch Ness Monster. It's believed to be at least 25 feet long, with a "whale-like tail" and "spiked dorsal fins." Though not believed to be harmful, the Flathead Lake Monster is Montana's most well-known urban legend.
Legend has it that there were two deranged farmers who bought extra powerful fireworks and got extremely drunk one night. They found some rabbits on their farm and decided to have some fun, seeing as rabbits kept destroying their crops. They strapped the fireworks to the rabbits and sent them running off, only to watch them blow up. The last rabbit, however, seemed to realize what happened to its companions, so instead of running away, it ran towards the farmers' beloved truck and jumped in the window. The fireworks went off, and then truck exploded.
This is probably the most popular legend in the United States. Legend has it that Area 51 is where the government controls and suppresses the alien presences in the country. The military acknowledges the existence of Area 51, but denies alien existence on the premises. Witnesses claim to have seen aliens on the premises, or UFOs above the facility, but there hasn't been any evidence to confirm this.
New Hampshire is home to the very first alien abduction. Betty and Barney Hill say they were driving home one night when they saw a strange light in the sky. They watched it for a couple minutes, then continued on their way. They then realized hours had passed since noticing the light. Later, the Hills would be put under hypnosis and recall that they were probed and experimented on.
In New Jersey hundreds of years ago, a Native American witch predicted her 13th child would be a demon. When she gave birth, her child looked normal at first. Then it grew a horn and satanic tail. The devil-human hybrid fled home, but has been sighted many times over the years. Napoleon Bonaparte's brother swears he witnessed the Jersey Devil while in the state.
The Chupacabra is a New Mexico legend that came over from Puerto Rico and Mexico. It's a vicious beast that feeds on goats and other animals. You're probably better off getting a dog.
The Rake is a recent phenomenon in New York that no one can explain. In the early 2000s there were reports of a Gollum-type creature who would cause victims to feel extreme and violent emotions. Anyone who looks at The Rake in the eyes is guaranteed death, often times by a long drawn-out and emotionally scarring beating.
The Beast of Bladenboro is relatively recent in terms of urban legends. In the 1950s, the first rumblings of such a beast surfaced. Livestock animals were found with their jaws broken and blood completely drained. Witnesses claimed to see a "wolf" or "giant cat" creature preying over the animals, but there was never any concrete proof. The attacks finally stopped, but in 2006 they started again. A team from History Channel was sent to investigate and all they conclude is that it "might" be a cougar. It also might be the Beast of Bladenboro.
New Hampshire may have been the home of the first alien abduction, but North Dakota in 1966 was the sight of an alleged alien invasion. There were more reports of UFOs in that year than any other location. The government claimed these sightings were actually a result of rockets which were launched in August of that year, not many people were buying it.
If you're looking for a portal to hell, look no further than Satan's Hollow in Ohio. According to legend, the passages of an old sewer system are haunted by a "shadowman" along with other angry spirits. Satanists are rumored to use the tunnels for headquarters, and that there is an "altar room" deep within the depths where you can give a human sacrifice to summon Satan himself.
The Hex House in Tulsa belonged to Carol Ann Smith in the 1940s. She kept mostly to herself but could often be heard doing satanic rituals in her house. Eventually, neighbors called the cops and it was discovered that Smith was keeping two women in cages in her basement. They had been there for over 10 years. It's legend now that the foundation of her house, though destroyed, still attracts paranormal activity to this day.
Crater Lake in Oregon is the site of pretty much everything. UFO sightings, BigFoot, and hikers turning up dead are all believed to be results of Crater Lake. In the 1970s, a body was found, appearing to have been melted into its own clothing. The boots were gone, and the socks were found a few feet away filled with toe bones. There's a long list of people who have gone missing near Crater Lake, but none of them have legitimate explanations as to what happened.
The Cult House, located on a road known as Devil's Road, is a mystery in itself, as no one really knows what's going on inside. People just know it's not good. There are black SUVs parked outside when the house is occupied, and they'll chase away any other approaching vehicle who tries to get information. The occupants are all dependent on who you ask. Some say it's a Satanic Cult, others say it's the KKK, and one theory is that it's an extremely wealthy family who are inter-marrying so the fortune stays in the family.
That movie "The Conjuring"? Ya, it was based off a real house. The Perron family lived in the 18th century house, knowing it was haunted by ghosts. Carolyn Perron experienced a horrific apparition of "the head of an old woman hanging off to one side over an old gray dress." The apparition told them to leave the house of face death. Bathsheba, the ancient Satanist who haunted the house, possessed one of the kids.
The Lizard Man is very real, according to residents of South Carolina. This is a witness account of being attacked:
“I looked back and saw something running across the field towards me. It was about 25 yards away and I saw red eyes glowing. I ran into the car and as I locked it, the thing grabbed the door handle. I could see him from the neck down – the three big fingers, long black nails and green rough skin. It was strong and angry. I looked in my mirror and saw a blur of green running. I could see his toes and then he jumped on the roof of my car. I thought I heard a grunt and then I could see his fingers through the front windshield, where they curled around on the roof. I sped up and swerved to shake the creature off.”
The Lizard Man has been spotted and reported many other times, with police finding abandoned cars with strange bite marks and scratches on them.
Legend has it that two university students were killed on 26th street while running on the road. If you are jogging or driving by yourself at night, you can see two people's shadows running on the side of the road.
In Tennessee, legend has it that there was a man named Tom who fell in love with a girl. They started dating, but it was later revealed that she was married. The husband found out about her affair and decided to exact revenge on the cheating couple. He found a make-out point he knew they spent a lot of time at and emerged from the bushes, stabbing his wife to death. He then skinned Tom alive. Rumor has it that if you visit the place where they were killed, a figure with no skin will appear, dripping with blood, and causing pain to anyone in his path.
On the side of the University of Texas Medical School building, there is face that will not go away. Legend states it's the face of the man who originally owned the building and never wanted it to be donated to the medical school. According to students on campus, the wall has been sandblasted, painted, and even REPLACED, but the face never leaves.
Another legend that's actually true...but still terrifying. Ted Bundy, noted serial killer, dressed up as a police officer and approached a woman, letting her know her car had been broken in to, and stating she needed to come with him to the police station to file a report. She obliged, but then quickly realized his car was not a cruiser, but just a plain car. She kicked Bundy in his crotch and ran to the actual police to report what happened.
The Bennington Triangle is added to the list of unexplained areas of disappearance. Big Foot sightings, UFO reports, and disappearing people are all common happenings in the area. Paula Jean Welden was one of the most prominent disappearances. She took a path which cut through the Bennington Triangle, and she was never seen or heard from again. Her college actually shut down so students could search for her, but they never found her.
The legend of the Bunny Man is pretty freaky. In the 1970s, there were reports of a man dressing up in a bunny costume and threatening people with a large axe. Legend has it the man was an former asylum patient, who escaped when inmates were being transferred to a different hospital after their shut down. One of the inmates was never found, and he's believed to be the bunny man. The following Halloween, a group of teens went adventuring through his tunnel. The next morning, their bodies were found hanging over the bridge.
According to legend, Maltby's cemetery was home to the 13 Steps to Hell. There was an underground tomb belonging to a wealthy family, with 13 steps leading down to it. If you walked to the bottom of the stairs, turned around and looked up, you'd look right into the depths of hell and lose your sanity. Several children played the game, saw hell, and never spoke another word for the rest of their lives.
In 1952, two brothers witnessed a bright light fall from the sky and land in the distance. They told their mother, who told a state trooper, and the group went to search for the source. They came across a "pulsating ball of fire" with a 10-foot creature who chased them away. When the police came to investigate, nothing was left but a terrible smell. To this day, the government says the group just saw an owl.
Glen Tucker was a plastic surgeon who would experiment on patients without their consent. The Miami Times spoke with Jan Lehman, one of Tucker's patients, to find out just how awful he was.
"From the start, the second procedure seemed odd. Lehman awoke from the anesthesia to watch Tucker wheel her from a crowded prep room down a hallway. The first operating room was occupied by a janitor mopping the floor. The second was eerily empty.
Lehman passed out again and then awoke with electrical tubing up her nose. Tucker soon entered the room and ripped it out by hand, tearing all the stitches. When she made it home from her second surgery, still dazed and heavily medicated, she knew instinctively her nose was worse than ever, she says."
Tucker was ultimately caught, so he tried to fake his own death. It didn't work, and he was found by reporters. Tucker killed his wife, his cat, and then himself.
In Wymoing, there were rumored to be "little people" who were no more than 2ft tall. They lived only to attack the Native American people, chasing them with small bows and poisonous arrows. This was considered purely legend until 1932 when a prospector found a 14 inch mummy in the mountains. After anthropologists examined the body it was determined the body belonged to a 65 year old adult.