Opelika Boasts "Real" Haunted House

Opelika's Parks and Recreation department owns an old home with a violent past. It's believed the original owner still haunts the place more than 150 years after his murder. Built around 1850, the Penn Yonge house was once a popular meeting place.

"The house was originally built by Horace King and contracted by Penn Yonge in the 1800s. It was a place of social activity during that time. People would come and stay for a month at a time," said Barbara Kent, Opelika Parks and Recreation.

While Yonge had a way with the public, it's said he was a hard man to work for. It wound up costing him his life.

"One night he was going to bed, and he was walking up the staircase. There's a little alcove in the steps, and a worker was hiding there and jumped out and killed him on the 13th step," Kent said.

Yonge was buried across the road, but some strange things have happened since then.

"Every caretaker that has lived out here has reported unusual happenings, and these caretakers did not know each other. So there was a string of unrelated tales. Somebody's heard a piano playing. Somebody else has seen a man in a big red hat," said Kent.

This legend has helped turn the house into a Halloween "Trail of Terror."

"The trail itself is a mile and a quarter long. We've got probably 25 different scenes scattered out among the sound effects, lighting effects and fog machines," said Sam Bailey, athletics director for OPR.

Approximately 5,000 people come through the house and trail every year, hoping to catch a glimpse of the supernatural.

"We're a statewide-known haunted attraction, and we've got a good reputation. So we hope to keep building," Bailey said.