Lilly - The Little Asylum Ghost

Photo: Lisa Toboz / Getty Images

The little ghost of the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum

On October 30, 2009, Zak, Nick and Aaron of the Ghost Adventures television show (The Travel Channel) investigated the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in West Virginia. As promotion for the live, 7-hour event, paranormal bloggers were invited to write a short, fictional story about one of the ghosts or gruesome events that took place at the asylum. I thought I'd give it a try. This is my fictional story about the little ghost, Lilly.


In all of her many years as a paranormal investigator, rarely had Sandra been as excited as she was prowling the dark, dank corridors of the long-abandoned Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum. In particular, she was intrigued by the anecdotes about a spirit that was said to haunt the institution: that of Lilly, a little ghost who stole sweets.

Lilly, so the story went, was the name given to a child born to an inmate in 1863. Her mother, Gladys Ravensfield, was an unfortunate casualty of the Civil War. Abandoned by her husband, Gladys was accosted in her home by a passing pack of soldiers who unleashed their pent-up rage and lusts upon her again and again. Madness was her only refuge from the unspeakable assault. And so she found herself in the asylum, where, as her belly swelled with the fruit of some unknown soldier's seed, she rocked in wide-eyed silence, blinded by rushing visions of murder upon that pack of men.

When Lilly was born, she was quickly taken by the hospital staff, but the child survived only a few hours.

What fascinated Sandra about the story is that the ghost often reported was that of a little girl, not a newborn infant. It was as if Lilly's spirit had grown to age three, then stopped at that age to forever haunt the hospital.

Other ghost hunters testified that Lilly seems to like sweets. Whenever they heard her echoed giggles or sensed her presence, they would discover that candy bars and other sweet snacks would mysteriously go missing.

As Sandra sat alone in the dark stillness of Gladys Ravensfield's room, she stared intently at the candy she brought for Lilly and had placed on an old table. But they remained untouched. She thought she heard a fleeting giggle. An hour passed, perhaps two. Sandra began to slowly rock back and forth as visions of blood, violence and murder rushed through her mind. Her thoughts! She wanted desperately to act them out. Sandra's mind was no longer her own. It was as if every drop of sweetness had been stolen from her.