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My Brief Experience At Alcatraz


As much as I believe in ghosts and have had experiences throughout my entire life, I'll be honest... When my family and I got to Alcatraz in the middle of the day during our vacation to San Francisco, I didn't expect much of anything to happen. Especially not since it was absolutely swarming with people, being the 75th anniversary of the prison (at least I think, they had posters mentioning this when we walked in and were selling shirts saying as much), and you really couldn't go anywhere and be alone in the entire complex-inside or out. That was fine by me though, I was just excited to get a chance to explore the buildings and island, and as much of a paranormal enthusiast as I am, it didn't really bother me to think that I might not have any sort of ghostly encounter there.

Obviously since I'm telling my story here, I was wrong in my doubting. But, what happened on that vacation was something I was happy to experience no matter the fact it definitely creeped me out in the moment, mostly because I have always wanted to visit this prison and it was a great memory, better than any other souvenir I could have bought at the gift store.

Things went pretty much as expected for a while. We decided to take the self-guided audio tour and look around, like everybody else was doing. As usual I was going ahead of my family, since my parents and brother had my little sister with them, and my grandmother was stopping every few minutes to take a ton of pictures for memories. At one point I got far enough ahead of them that I decided to wait, and I really wish I had been paying attention to which cell block I was at so that I could look up more stories and history of the prison to see if anybody else had the same experience, but I leaned up against one of the cells in a block that had less people than the others, to wait for the rest of my family to catch up.

While I was there I felt something grab onto the back of my coat with enough force to pull the back of my bra strap with it. Followed by a low, husky male voice saying "Hey". The voice was actually pretty loud and that, combined with my bra strap pulling away from then snapping back against my skin, startled me enough to jump away from the cell and spin around to look. Nothing was there, of course. The pulling and voice weren't really malicious or suggestive in any way, it seemed and felt more like somebody trying to get my attention... But it sure surprised me. And then after it, I thought that was just the coolest thing ever and was overjoyed to have gotten a paranormal experience my first time at Alcatraz, since it's so far away from where I live.

I really wish I could share this experience with my family, but my father is a huuuuge skeptic, my brother doesn't have any interest in the paranormal after telling my parents of his own experiences and having my father telling him to stop being so ridiculous, my mother believes but pretend she doesn't in my dad's presence... And my grandmother, I'm not sure. I know she's experienced things, but she also gets really preachy on the matter sometimes. So I'm eternally grateful a site like this exists, where I can share my stories with like minded people, and/or skeptics who are a bit more open minded than my family.

I'm really curious if anybody else had something happen at Alcatraz that was similar to my experience, though. If you have, please tell me!

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, FantomeNocturne, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

aaren1022 (1 posts)
4 years ago (2018-06-25)
I have experienced ghosts and haunting's my whole life. I have premonitions and have been told I have psychic abilities. The moment I stepped off the ship yesterday on a trip to Alcatraz with my kids I was overwhelmed with a feeling of pin prickle on my skin and became light headed and dizzy. As we started the audio tour I instantly felt like there were spirits around. As we started to walk down the cell block that was solitary confinement I heard a low deep whisper in my right ear of a man say "hey" and the hair on my arms stood up. I looked around but everyone had their head phones on and were paying attention to the audio. I waited until we got finished and asked my daughter who is 21 and my kids if everyone heard some guy say "hey" in the tour. No one else heard so I thought maybe it had to be in the recording but I asked and was told it is not. Naturally my next stop was to look on the internet to see if anyone else experienced this. I found this website and registered just so I could leave this comment. I believe we all experienced the same ghost saying "hey"! Just my opinion! Glad I am not crazy! Lol
JaxReed (1 posts)
6 years ago (2016-07-08)
Last Thursday, June 30th, I had the same experience on Alcatraz. I was listening to the audio tour near the library when I heard a voice in my right ear say "hey". I turned around and no one was there. My wife and daughters were ahead of me and no other tourists were relatively close. I didn't tell my family at the time, I waited until we got back to the hotel that night and googled to see if anyone else had a similar experience. Once I found these stories I shared these and my experience with my wife and kids. I wish I had checked the audio to see if it was on the recording as this would be the only reasonable explanation. I'm 53 years old and have never experienced anything paranormal before.
Brant6783 (1 posts)
7 years ago (2015-07-11)
Hi, I've just been looking at this and it's very interesting. I was at Alcatraz on monday 6th July and I was walking down c block and had the audio on listening about the history etc. During this I heard a voice come on and say "hey" clear as day. I wasn't touched I looked at my girlfriend and asked if she heard it but she never. I then heard a lot of muttering when by d block but couldn't make it out. I thought I was going mad but sounds to me like I had an experience. I asked the workers when back if something was on audio and they said no.
Hromm (1 posts)
9 years ago (2013-06-19)
What a cool story to read! We went to Alcatraz on Friday, June 14th. While also on the audio tour at the very beginning on Michigan and just after the pictures of the inmate narrators I walked just in the first cutoff and someone whispered "hey" in my right ear! I immediately turned around expecting my husband or sons and there was no one!

I talked to my boys and husband to see if maybe they heard it too thinking it was on the audio but none of them had the same experience! I feel excited that I had this experience and am glad that others have had similar experiences!
looney85 (3 stories) (188 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-22)
Thank for aswering! And yes I'm trying very hard to get a few of my friends to go with me this year and trust me if something happens or if I catch something in a pic. I'm definitively posting them with the story! 😁

Looney 😊
FantomeNocturne (1 stories) (3 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-21)
Looney85: That's a shame about the replies, but oh well. Thank you for answering me on that one! And I was, when I didn't expect anything at all. XD I knowww I'm mad at myself for not taking a picture or anything, because it would have been awesome to catch something. And oh yes go, it's sooo much fun! <3 I hope you get to go there, and that you can do an evening tour of the place too. If anything happens to you there, you also have to put up a story about it and let us know.

Geetha50: Nope! That much I know for a fact because this happened while I was leaning against the bars of a small prison cell, and the voice and pulling came from inside the cell itself. And this is one of the ones you aren't allowed to go into, plus I also did spin around pretty quickly to look when I heard the voice and felt the movement. Nobody there, it was eerie. Haha, I guess it was a resident of the cell letting me know that was his turf or something like that.

Shady4u: Hey! XD and that's an awesome coincidence, I have to watch a video on the prison again myself. Thank you! C:
Shady4u (2 stories) (188 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-21)
Hey there! Maybe its a coincidence but I just saw a video on this prison moments before I read your story! The narrator explained some prisoners, but I remember only one's nickname that is "baby face". I enjoyed your story. Great story. Thanks.
geetha50 (15 stories) (986 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-21)
Personally, I do think what you experienced was the paranormal but I do have to ask. You mentioned that there were a few people on that cell block. Could it have been someone in the group of people that did it to freak you out and moved away?

Tell me when you are going to the prison a head of time and I will see if I could make it. I would love to make the trip.
looney85 (3 stories) (188 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-20)
P.S. And this is the only way to reply, I don't think you can do it individualy. 😕
looney85 (3 stories) (188 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-20)
Thank you for sharing your story. You were in the right place at the right time lol. Imagine if you would of taken a pic. And something would of showed up... That would of been amazing! But I understand your excitement. I've been to San Francisco twice but never had the chance to go to Alcatraz and I'm dying to go. I only live 5 hours away and I'm going for sure this year (I hope! Crossing fingers). 😆

Thanks again and I do hope you get to go back for an evening tour, and keep us posted!

Looney 😊
FantomeNocturne (1 stories) (3 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-20)
Since I'm totally new here, I'm not sure if there's a way to reply to each comment individually, or if you have to do it this way. I'm sorry to sound like a pain, but if any of you guys see this and there is a way to reply to individual comments, can you tell me how? I'm so sorry, I know that sounds like such a stupid question. XD;

Anyway, I'll reply this way for now!

Rockangel13: Aw, thanks!:3 And yeah, that's what I've felt like. Well, the ghosts and history. And oh there is? I didn't even know that, I'll certainly have to check it out. Thank you for the suggestion.

Zack84: They do, right? But I can't say I didn't expect it, it's a famous place so that seems pretty standard. And aw, I'm sorry to hear that! That's okay though, I know that feel. I went to eastern state another year and nothing happened for me there. I'd really love to give those places a try someday, if I ever get to go back. Sad thing is I live so far away from California I don't get much opportunity to visit.

Zzsgranny: I loved Alcatraz too, so full of history and it was a lot of fun to explore, even with people nearly everywhere. And I really should! I do know it wasn't in solitary confinement, because I went there with my family a few minutes after and have pictures there. It was in one of the more regular cell blocks, but I can't for the life of me remember which one or which cell number it was. I feel pretty stupid for not taking a picture of that after it happened, but I guess I was just too excited to think clearly haha.

I am so with you on that one, that'd be awesome. I hope you do get to go on the evening tour and have fun, that sounds like where the most action would happen. And thank you for commenting!

Lilady4: I was definitely surprised, but then I thought it was the coolest thing ever. XD I hope you do get to do a tour there someday, even if you don't experience anything paranormal it's so much fun to walk around and explore the place. Thanks, and to you too!

Mamachong: I think they and a lot of other people have gone here, and I can't blame them. I sure would love to do a ghost hunt here if I ever had the opportunity. And I hope you do get to someday, it's great! I would absolutely recommend it if you're ever in the area.
mamachong (11 stories) (228 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-19)
I believe it was ghost hunters... They did one of their shows there. Lots of activity. I would love to go there and tour.
Lilady4 (7 stories) (427 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-19)
Oh, how scary! But, to be honest, that would be pretty cool, and I would personally love to do a tour like that.
Love & Light, Rachel ❤
zzsgranny (18 stories) (3327 posts) mod
9 years ago (2013-03-19)
FantomeNocturn: I love Alcatraz. It's an amazing place. You might want to Google about it to see if you can remember where this took place, because it kind of sounds like something that would happen in the Solitary Confinement block.

I wish they had private ghost hunts like Mansfield Reformatory, because I think it would be well worth it to investigate without all the tourists around. The next time I go back, I'm going to book the evening tour. They're smaller groups, and let's face it, it would be much spookier! 😆

Thank you for posting!
Zack84 (8 stories) (32 posts)
9 years ago (2013-03-19)
Nice story. Huge crowds at "haunted places" in California suck. I'm glad you were able to have an experience at least. I've never had one in Alcatraz (been there twice). I've also tried Preston School of Industry, the Winchester Mystery House, Hearst Castle and the grounds of California's first State Asylum in Stockton. They're all pretty commercial, well except the state asylum which is now rubble. You might want to give one of those places a try if you haven't already.
rockangel13 (guest)
9 years ago (2013-03-19)
Very nice story. Alcatraz is known for its ghosts, right? In this site itself, there's an article about the Alcatraz ghosts, and what the prison used to be like long back. If you want to read it, just click the famous hauntings option at the top of the screen. I'm just suggesting, because I don't know if you've already read it. Anyway, great narration and story 😉


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