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Haunted Places: Central Unit Prison

Updated on June 18, 2013
Huddie Ledbetter a.k.a. Lead Belly served time in Central Unit Prison for killing a relative over a woman.
Huddie Ledbetter a.k.a. Lead Belly served time in Central Unit Prison for killing a relative over a woman. | Source

Sugar Land, Texas

How would you like to do a paranormal investigation of a prison that just shut down? I’m sure most people would say no. I on the other hand wouldn’t think twice and would immediately get ready for this one. The Central Unit Prison in Sugar Land, Texas recently closed down just over a year ago. The GAC (Ghost Adventures Crew) had the opportunity to go in and investigate this prison. They might be the only ones to do this since the rumor is the building is set to be torn down in 2013. What’s unique about this place is that this is the first prison in Texas to close down. It was also one of the worst prisons in the state of Texas.

The Central Unit housed thousands of inmates. Famous blues musician Huddie Ledbetter (Lead Belly) was incarcerated here in 1918 for killing one of his relatives over a woman. He wrote the popular song “Midnight Special.” What he was referring to in his song was a train that came around midnight near the prison. Some of the inmates believed the train represented salvation while others believed that if you were planning an escape, you would want to do it by the time the train came through.

The problem here is that anyone that worked at the prison wasn’t allowed to talk about anything that happened there. A couple of men decided to talk about Central Unit Prison with the GAC. However, they requested to have their identity concealed. One man has a son who is a convicted felon who’s been to over 14 prisons, including maximum security ones. He said that this was the worst place he had ever been to. He had witnessed many fights, including some prison riots. He knew of prisoner that was suicidal. The family was requesting that he get some kind of counseling to the major that ran the prison. They had done this for a couple of months and the major did nothing to help him. His way of helping him, was putting him in solitary confinement which was called the back gate at Central Unit. After he was put there, he hung himself.

The other man came to talk to them about the copy machine room near the inmate dormitories. He said that he had nothing strange happen to him at the prison. However, a female employee had reported several times that she had been touched on the shoulder by somebody. Every time she turned to see if someone was there, they were gone. She was not comfortable with being there on her own.

The thing about a haunted location is that it’s paramount to know about the history of a location as a paranormal investigator. It’s a rule that you need to know about the past things in order to have a successful investigation. However, the Ghost Adventures had very little to work with. You’d think this wouldn’t be a very good investigation right? Well, when you have murders and extreme violence that are undocumented, it turns out that a spirit will do anything to get your attention.

The thing that’s scary about this place is that it just had convicts in it not that long ago. So, a fresh building like this for hunting ghosts is very exciting. The GAC started in the inmate dormitories. Immediately, they heard a bang along with getting an EMF spike on their Mel Meter 1.0 mG(Milligauss.) An EMF spike indicates that spirit could be present. It was then spiking and going down between 0.0 and 1.5mG. They then told the spirit to get away from them and it immediately spiked up to 3.5mG to 3.8mG. The cameras that they had set up were going in and out of focus as the Mel Meter was spiking. While this was happening, Nick started to get sick while they captured a shadow walking behind them. They tried to debunk, but it turned out that it couldn’t have been any of their shadows from where they were standing. While this was happening, they captured an EVP in the back gate that sounded like an inmate saying “Water.”

They also conducted a spirit box session in the dormitory. For those of you that don’t know what a spirit box is, it’s a portable radio device that scans through radio frequencies delivering continuous white noise in order to capture spirit voices in real time. They captured a female saying “In here......he was hurt.” They also felt a change in temperature. They put their hands in the area where the temperature was dropping and a voice said “got me.” It seems that the spirit was indicating they are feeling it’s energy. In that same spot, they used a thermal imager and they picked up some kind of energy vortex. There were figures of people morphing in weird movements. The last thing they caught was in the shower room of a spirit saying “Goodbye.”

I have to admit that this is a one source hub, meaning that the only thing I could find on the Central Unit Prison was the episode that the Ghost Adventures did on this location. It seems that the state of Texas is very strict about allowing people into this jail. However, with little information to work with, it seems that there was a lot of paranormal activity captured at this prison. It’s set to be torn down later in 2013. With spirits that are not at rest though, perhaps somehow this will change for paranormal investigators to help these spirits move on. I’m sure they already had enough of prison in their previous life.

Central Unit Prison


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      Hora 3 years ago

      I understand who complain about jail, but why peoples go to jail?for be a good citizen? what expect get in Jail? vacation times?, is a place for punish, dead penalty? I agree, yes many was innocent, but how many? majority was right. Suffer in dead penalty? victims was suffer much more, now one woman won sued a State of OHIO, because his father was suffer 20 minutes to die, bull shit, a convict killer NO HAVE ANY RIGHT, only a right to die and suffer, who get a life for murder must suffer every day until die. How many American baby nothing doing but die every day? for eliminate a change of send innocent to jail, must change a rules system, first all Cop involve in an investigation must take full responsibility like a prosecutor and Judge, if later found innocent, well get that all Cop, prosecutor and Judge send for life in jail, if afraid send an innocent to jail all Cops be will very carefull, like a prosecutor.

    • manofmystery24 profile image

      manofmystery24 4 years ago

      kittythedreamer- Agreed. Thanks for reading!

    • kittythedreamer profile image

      Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

      Well, if it wasn't ghosts in that place, you definitely would run into some residual energy looming about. Great hub!

    • manofmystery24 profile image

      manofmystery24 4 years ago

      Thanks for stopping by again Lipnancy, and thanks for your kind words! Come back for more!

    • Lipnancy profile image

      Nancy Yager 4 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      I love your ghost stories. You are a very talented and interesting writer.