A widely-known fact around here in the Philadelphia/New Jersey region is that The Philadelphia Zoo is the oldest zoo in America.

This is a fascinating piece of Philadelphia history. Nestled right along the Schuylkill River, the zoo was first chartered in 1859, but because of complications caused by the Civil War, its grand opening was delayed until 1874, acccording to the website. This makes the zoo over 140 years old. 

Take a look at this picture from its grand opening on July 1, 1874! Truly fascinating.

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But what you probably didn't know, is that among the lions, giraffes, reptile house, and big cat walks that we enjoy today, there also lies the site that makes The Philadelphia Zoo arguably the most haunted zoo in America!

If you've ever been to the zoo, you probably never even noticed it, or gave it a second thought... But it's right there in plain sight.

This is "The Solitude House". Look familiar to you? It's settled right across from the Small Mammal house.

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Plain and inconspicuous. And obviously very old. It's been there longer than the zoo itself!

It was originally built in 1784-85 for the benefit of John Penn, William Penn's grandson, who preferred to live a quiet, solitude life, hence the name "The Solitude House."

Credit: 6ABC Localish
Credit: 6ABC Localish
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As explained in a video featured on 6abc's Localishthe zoo is monitored 24 hours by zoo workers, many of whom have reported seeing mysterious full-body apparitions in the house and hearing mysterious music playing from the house's cryptoporticus. There's also a light in the attic that mysteriously turns itself on.

Here's the cryptoporticus. There have been sightings of apparitions dancing in this spooky area!

Credit: 6abc's Localish
Credit: 6abc's Localish
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People who have been in or around the house agree: there's definitely a presence in the house. Could it be John Penn... or someone else? Since the house has been there for a century-and-a-half, it's anyone's guess...

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Check out the video down below to hear the full story!


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