Creepy chair sitting in old room

Looking for a Spooky Adventure? Discover the history and mystery of the Ohio State Reformatory!

Looking for a Spooky Adventure? Discover the history and mystery of the Ohio State Reformatory!

The Ohio State Reformatory is an iconic landmark. Dating back to the late 1800s, The Ohio State Reformatory was designed to reform inmates and release them back into society. However, it soon became overcrowded, and conditions deteriorated. By 1990, the reformatory was finally closed down. The Reformatory is the perfect place to have a spooky adventure through history, stories, and even paranormal activity! Spooky season is just part of the fall. Download our Vacation Guide and access the top sights in our area! Now let’s explore the Ohio State Reformatory! 

Guide to the Ohio State Reformatory 


The Ohio State Reformatory has a long history. Opening in 1896, the reformatory was designed by architect Levi T. Scofield. The building was built to have an intimidating yet impressive design to scare inmates into reforming. This reformatory was one of the first to use the theory of separation of inmates by age and crime. In the early days, the reformatory had a high success rate, and many inmates were being rehabilitated; this continued for a few years until conditions deteriorated. After closing in 1990, the reformatory began the road to restoration. 

Restoration and the Current Reformatory 

After the reformatory closed, there was talk of tearing it down. However, the reformatory was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1991, and in 1994, it was designated a National Historic Landmark. In 1998, the Reformatory Preservation Association was formed to restore the reformatory. After the reformatory was restored, it became the site of the Ohio State Corrections History Museum and attracts thousands of visitors annually! 

Visiting the Ohio State Reformatory 

Visiting this historic landmark is a must for Ohio visitors! The reformatory offers guided tours for $35 per adult and self-guided for $25 per adult. Admission prices also vary for students, military members, children, and seniors, so be sure to review pricing! Visitors can also enjoy tours about Hollywood hits filmed here, such as “The Shawshank Redemption,” limited access areas, the Ohio electric chair, and even guided bus tours! No matter what you’re interested in exploring, there is a tour for you!

The reformatory also offers detailed virtual tours to access the site from anywhere! These tours allow you to explore the site, view reformatory artifacts, and get an overall sense of the site from anywhere!   

Paranormal Activity

Paranormal activity has been documented at the Ohio State Reformatory for decades! For those interested in the haunted past of the site, booking a paranormal activity tour is a great option! Visitors arrive at night and walk the halls of one of the most haunted prisons in the United States! 


The Reformatory also hosts events for those interested in attending! Currently, the Escape from Blood Prison event is being hosted and will surely frighten you! For all events, check out their events calendar

After Your Tour, escape to the White Oak Inn!

The Ohio State Reformatory is about an Hour from The White Oak Inn and makes for an easy day trip! Come and experience the extraordinary history at one of America\’s most notorious sites! After a spooky adventure, refresh at our inn! Guests enjoy tranquil accommodations and packages to customize their experience. Book your Halloween escape today! 

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