Pennhurst Asylum: Site of 'Ghost Hunters Live' Oct. 31 show

1934 photo of Pennhurst has exclusively learned that Pennhurst Asylum in Spring City, Penn., will be the site of Syfy's Ghost Hunters Live Halloween show on Oct. 31. The asylum, just 45 minutes away from the Philadelphia airport, was founded in 1908 as a way to deal with the mental and physically ill of society. This will mark the second time in 2011 that the TAPS team will visit the site. The first was investigation was last March's "Pennsylvania Asylum" episode.

Originally known as the Eastern Pennsylvania Institution for the Feeble Minded and Epileptic, the asylum was founded on at-the-time progressive ideas about dealing with the "defectives" of Southeastern Pennsylvania. Over time rampant allegations of abuse emerged from within Pennhurst's walls. Overcrowding and neglect led to patients being drugged, restrained, locked up and left for long periods as a form of control; patients were also often left to fend for themselves over nights and weekends when doctors or staff were absent. Patient rape and beatings by staff were additionally reported. Focus was placed on the deplorable conditions of Pennhurst in a 1968 five-part expose series by NBC10 news (which you can watch here). The institution was then at the center of a major lawsuit in 1977, which was heard in the U.S. Supreme Court in 1980, that established the constitutional rights of the mentally ill patients had been violated. This was the nation's first lawsuit of its kind. Pennhurst forcibly closed in 1986 and has since become known as one of the country's most haunted locations.

What's interesting about the choice of Pennhurst for the live show is that the location hosts a Halloween haunted house attraction. Even though the Pennhurst campus takes up 112 acres with more than 20 buildings, it would seem the haunted attraction could provide unique challenges to securing the investigation site.

The first time TAPS investigated Pennhurst, Grant Wilson reported hearing a disembodied voice saying "Spring City;" Jason Hawes and Grant both saw a shadow figure; Adam Berry and Amy Bruni heard dragging noises; audio was collected of a voice saying "go home" along with an EVP of a giggling child. Whether the ghosts of Pennhurst exist or not, the tragedy of this location was all too real. Pennhurst has also been featured on Ghost Adventures in 2009 and Paranormal Challenge in 2011.

What do you think about Ghost Hunters investigating Pennhurst for Halloween? Do you think there is a better location? Will you watch? Who would you like to see as a guest investigator? Do you want to see Josh Gates back as a host? Sound off on our forums.