Halloween decorations are on store shelves and it's starting to feel like fall in Big Sky Country. Spooky movies are beginning to appear on your favorite streaming services and for many people, this is the season of ghost stories and creepy things. One of the most (allegedly) haunted places in Montana is the old Montana prison in Deer Lodge.

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Going to prison was much worse in 1871.

Prison is obviously not supposed to be fun, but convicts certainly had it much worse doing time in early prisons than in modern detention facilities. The museum website details some of the conditions at the Old Montana Prison, including cement shoes that some convicts were forced to wear if they were considered a flight risk. The shoes weigh 20 pounds each. Good luck running far in those foot anchors. Inmate labor was used to make over a million bricks for the prison compound.

The prison has been featured many times on ghost hunter shows.

Search YouTube for "old Montana prison ghosts" and you'll get dozens of results featuring investigations from amateur and professional spirit hunters. When the Travel Channels Ghost Adventures crew visited the site, they were reportedly overcome with anxiety.

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Photo by Evans/Three Lions/Getty Images
Photo by Evans/Three Lions/Getty Images
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Care to spend the night?

The last prisoner left the prison in 1979 when it was closed. The grounds occupy over two city blocks on the western edge of Deer Lodge and it is now a museum. Tours are available year-round, but the brave have an opportunity to spend an entire night in the creepy old prison. A company called Ghost Hunts USA offers a handful of upcoming dates. For $149 per person, you'll enter the prison at 8:30 pm and exit the next morning at 5 am. The company says,

Our overnight Ghost Hunt gives you access to the most haunted areas of the prison. You will have access to the Death Tower, Administration House, Clark Theatre, Maximum Security, The Hole,  and most importantly… the Chapel. The intelligent hauntings here are formidable! Many ghost hunters have seen full blown apparitions, some have been touched, and others have even been pushed! 

The tours will likely sell out, so if you're interested I wouldn't wait to book a reservation. Let us know if you see any ghosts.

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