Defunct Essex Cty Hospital Scheduled for Demolition

UPDATE: Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. and officials from K. Hovnanian Homes confirmed today that demolition would begin in the next few weeks. A reader sent Baristanet a photo of the nurse’s quarters. Can anyone spot the ghost in the picture at the bottom of the story?

It’s time of service past, the now defunct Essex County Hospital Center campus in Cedar Grove — which housed and treated psychiatric patients from 1896 until its final closure in 2007 — has been slated for demolition. In a news conference this afternoon, Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. will join with officials from K Hovnanian to discuss the details of the plan. The County Executive requested that K Hovnanian remove the abandoned buildings because they had become “safety hazards and eyesores in the community,” according to a press release.

Formerly known as the Overbrook Insane Asylum, the facility has been a source of eerie fascination for many, and the site of ongoing alleged paranormal activities.

The subject of TV shows Ghost Adventures and Ghost Hunters in 2008, the 90-acre ground is said to be haunted. According to Weird New Jersey, which has written extensively on the hospital’s history, Overbrook suffered a major catastrophe during the winter of 1917. The failure of the hospital’s boilers during particularly cold weather resulted in the death of 24 patients in 20 days, with patients freezing to death in their beds. The New York Times featured the tragedy  on December 21 of that year.

Watch the video above by Baristanet’s special reporter on creepy places, Wheeler Antabanez, and then tell us if you believe in paranormal activity. Is it just a sad old eyesore, like the county says, or is it haunted. Or both.

We put the question to you, Baristaville: Once the building comes down, where will the ghosts go?

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  1. Sooo haunted ! I even have a picture of one of the ghosts – verified by a friend who was with us when we first saw ghosty who looked a regular man buring something. It wasn’t until we saw him in the picture, taken decades before, in the same courtyard that we said – OMG that is the guy in the same clothes.

    Can’t wait for the haunted condo development.

  2. I’d love to but I am at work and posting to baristanet is the only online slacking off I can get away with.

    If you go to the overbrooke offical website it is there are a picture of the nurses quarters. (?) You can see the guy as if walking out of the quarters and away from the camera. Same old baseball hat and jacket.

    Some argue it’s a reflection off leaves, but the friend who was there that day sees him too.

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