Jemison Center - Old Bryce Mental Hospital

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Although most ghost websites will refer to this place as Old Bryce Mental Hospital, this is not an accurate designation. There is a Bryce Mental Hospital in Alabama, but it has been located in Tuscaloosa since its inception in 1861 and the Jemison Center, as this place is accurately called, was not founded as a health care facility until the 1920’s. Therefore, it could hardly be considered the “Old Bryce Mental Hospital”. This is one of those places and cases where it is hard to separate fact from fiction. Most accounts written about Jemison tell of this place being a segregated facility where freed blacks who had trouble adjusting to life after slavery were sent, and who were virtually forced back into slavery due to the need for the asylum to be self-funded. The patients were therefore required to toil in the fields and produce crops that would be profitable, making the lives of these former slaves little different than their days on the plantations. However, anyone who can do simple math can see the slight problem with this. As Jemison was not opened up until approximately 60 years after the abolition of slavery, it does not seem likely that “recently freed blacks” who had trouble with adjustment would have been there. And it does not seem likely that former slaves between the ages of 70-80 would have been sent back into the fields to toil at Jemison if they had been transferred there in the 1920’s. So already, we have a case of fact interfering with a good story and more likely the histories of the actual Bryce Hospital (which no doubt did take in some freedmen) and Jemison center getting entangled. In any event, this place was an institutionalized setting and the people who lived here no doubt did experience all the numerous horrors that were associated with being a mentally ill patient in the early 20th century. The reports of haunting include a variety of events: people hearing voices, footsteps, the sounds of slamming doors, as well as more violent encounters with hair being pulled and the sensation of being hit or kicked. This place is a falling down ruin and if you are caught trespassing, you will be prosecuted so we advise you to err on the side of caution if you are considering visiting.

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    Geographic Information

    Off 5th Street
    Northport, AL
    United States

    Get Directions »
    33.228175292666045, -87.63179397596105
    Tuscaloosa County, Alabama
    Nearest Towns:
    Northport, AL (3.2 mi.)
    Coker, AL (3.5 mi.)
    Tuscaloosa, AL (3.8 mi.)
    Riverview, AL (6.0 mi.)
    Holt, AL (8.5 mi.)
    Grimes, AL (14.5 mi.)
    Moundville, AL (15.9 mi.)
    Gordo, AL (16.9 mi.)
    Coaling, AL (17.5 mi.)
    Brookwood, AL (18.1 mi.)


    Please note: It is your responsibility to acquire appropriate permissions before investigating any location listed on this site. Private property should be respected at all times, as should all posted signs concerning trespassing, hours of operation and other local regulations. Many "ghost hunters" have been arrested because they failed to contact property owners and/or local authorities ahead of time.

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    Comments (26)

    1. I live in Tuscaloosa, its the neighboring city to north port. The two cities enter twine and becomes one city really. Nobody here knows the old Brice mental hospital as the jemison center. We call it old Brice because recently a new mental hospital was errected its Brice hospital. So we call it, “new Brice” that’s the only reason me say old Brice, not the historical stuff. And no, the hospital does not allow anyone in without special permission from the mayor or city council. Its patrolled by cops all the time so its hard to get inside. My brother went Inside and the stuff that he saw kept him awake for days. He heard screams and footsteps and he took a video on his phone and you could see a chair move. There are many graphitited places and much vandalism in the building. Many people go there to preform rituals(satanic) there are penta grams and candles everywhere. Old needles from the hospital are left laying everywhere and so is some medical enwuipment like the beds that strap you down tight and gags. There have also been animal offerings in the building( people kill the animals and do what ever they do with it). Its a scary place haunted or not.

    2. I’ve explored this area multiple times throughout my years in Tuscaloosa– not looking for supernatural experiences, but mainly just out of curiosity. I’ve never had a run in with cops, except for once, where we simply had to confirm we did not possess drugs/alcohol, and we were told to stay away from the third floor (the roof is caving in, and it’s unsafe). Going there IS trespassing, though, so I wouldn’t necessarily encourage it. The place has been trashed because of all the curious college kids– graffiti, red solo cups. broken glass, and destroyed furniture everywhere. There are remaining mattresses, nightstands, and other assorted furniture scattered about. If you are going, you MUST have your own flash light (everyone in the group needs one– it is DARK, obviously), and you need to wear long pants and hiking shoes/boots (you’re going to have to romp through some muddy fields). As far as supernatural experiences– I don’t go looking for these things and I don’t necessarily want to disrupt what might possibly be there, but I did feel colder randomly in certain spots as I walked. If you are feeling gutsy, there is a basement that has been vandalized less (probably because people were too frightened to go down there). I feel like regardless of if you believe in supernatural experiences or not, you need to be respectful of the people who lived their lives there and all of the turmoil they experienced. Further damage to this building is only going to prevent future explorers from being able to see the wonder. My favorite experience is always turning the corner and looking up to see the dark, looming building literally APPEAR before your eyes. One second you don’t see it, and then there it is. Boom. I’d recommend going at night the first time, but if you continue to feel curious but don’t have the guts to explore in depth, go back during the day. There are various other buildings around the grounds (a regular hospital, storage facilities, crematorium, etc.), and it is like stepping into a piece of history. Again, I do not ADVISE trespassing, and I do not ADVISE disrespecting the lives of the people who once dwelled in this building.

    3. I went there with a few friends once a few years back. visited all three floors. it’s a pretty eerie place. Empty rooms with small barred squares at the top, tables with straps. creates some creepy imagery man. the only thing that was odd about it was that the asbestos was so bad it made the air thin and more difficult to breathe. nothing special but cool to check out if you’re in to that kind of thng.

    4. Me and a few of my buddies went here tonight and we saw another truck coming in the trail, so we followed it but could never find the truck, so we pulled up at the asylum and went inside, we were walking up the stairs and my friend looked at me and said “I don’t feel right I can’t breathe” so we got in the truck thinking it’s ok it was just the mold and asbestos in the air, but when the headlights hit the front of the building we saw four figures, two in one window on the 3rd floor, one really tall black figure that screamed at us, and one on the first floor ( I never saw the one on the first floor but according to my other friends it was there ) and I’ve never seen or heard anything like that, I would advice do not go. This was very demonic and dangerous

    5. Me and my friends went out there and on the way out there we saw two headlights but never saw tail lights… So we thought “okay theres more people going out there so we will follow them” well we never saw those two headlights again. So we get out there and some of us go in & some of us sit in the truck. Well one of my friends saw a hand wrapped around the corner of the wall, and we heard doors slam upstairs and running… But actually theres no doors upstairs. So we all run out of there and get in the truck and we go shine the lights on the place and we saw people in the windows and a huge black figure infront of the truck and they were screaming at us, it was the loudest screan ive ever heard & i know a human couldnt scream like that. Well we were trying to get the truck in reverse and the truck wouldnt go. We finally got it to go and we got out of there. That place is nothing to mess with, i auggest you DO NOT go!!

    6. I went here tonight and although I didn’t have a violent experience, it was eerie nonetheless. The Jemison Center itself didn’t bother me too too much. I was with my friend. I think the worst thing about it was how difficult it is to breathe in there because of asbestos/mold/dust/etc. If you have breathing problems, don’t go. I went to the basement. Not that scary. I didn’t feel anything eerie until I got to the 2nd floor. There was a cold spot, but I’m not sure it was legitimate. Most of the windows are broken and it is November so cold areas are possible, naturally. We got bored with this building and went to another in the same area. You pass by a small house and then go down a road and there’s a whole other hospital. This is where things felt weird. As soon as we walked inside, it smelled like old people. Not like death or anything, but just like that weird lavender hand soap your grandma probably has in her bathroom. I ignored it and we kept walking. I swear I felt someone touch my hair, very very lightly. It may have just been my imagination, but it still spooked me. I let it go and continued walking with my friend. We walked around for quite a while. Experienced some cold spots, but again, shoved that aside because of the amount of broken windows. We were standing in a hallway looking at some graffiti and heard a noise from down the hall. My friend said it was the wind but we decided to leave anyway. As we were leaving, a door creaked open. My friend said it was the wind again, but those doors were crazy heavy. They’re made of wood. And it was definitely not that windy. Slightly breezy, but not windy by any means. It was scary towards the end.

    7. I have been many times with my friends and we have things happen almost every time. We were standing there on time and we hear what sounds like glass shatter. Another time we were walking and a door closed. Odd cause nobody else was in the building. That same time there were four of us, and we heard a voice whisper. We ran to the ran freaking out. We thought someone in the group did it, but based okay the faces everyone had that was not the case. I have personally gotten touched, I was about to walk and I something brushed my leg. I can account that this place is haunted. We have walked in when its like 85 degrees outaide, but feels like 50 degrees in there. There’s def a whole lot of temperature changes. He have also heard footsteps up the stairs. We have been numerous times, never seen a cop

    8. These buildings are slated for demolition by their owner, the Alabama Department of Mental Health. They are unsafe to be in because of structural deterioration and the present of asbestos and PCB’s in the air inside the buildings. Lead-based paint is also present. Be forewarned.

    9. Went to “The Jemison Center” tonight with my husband and a friend . It wasn’t exactly hard to get in for us , and we explored pretty much the whole premises. We didn’t have premission from the mayor or anything – but , hey ; you only live once . lol . We heard TONS of noises . We were walking by a set of stairs that led to the outside and as soon as we walked by it a loud metal scraping metal noise happened. We didnt even want to look . We went all the way to the roof . Someone saw us and reported us to the police though , so we left rather quickly . Wish I could have stayed longer!

    10. I had a uncle who was institutionalized there in the 1960’s , I was a small child, but I remember 1 room where the residents where literally hosed down to remove fecal matter and other filth from them, pretty gruesome back then for a little kid.

    11. I went today by myself. Was curious and interested by things id heard about the place so i went. Didnt see or hear anything that would lead me to believe it is haunted but i wouldnt say it isnt haunted either. I did hit some cold spots just as soon as i walked in the front door. It was just after 5 pm and around 80 degrees outside. Ive heard this place was an insane asylum and ive heard it called “the boys colony”. Either way it is as the pictures make it out to be. Lots of graffiti on walls. Lots of old beer cans/bottles. Im going back to explore more of it again.

    12. Please be careful if you go here. It’s a fun place to visit but it’s known to have homeless people and meth addicts staying in there. They are unpredictable and may not be very friendly or enjoy you being there.

    13. We went there on several occasions while I attended Alabama. The last time we ventured there was probably our fourth or fifth visit, so we were feeling a bit more courageous than usual. I was jumping up and down on one of the mattresses that are left about, they’re the old spring kind so you get quite a bounce. I was in the middle of the mattress and going straight up and down, but someone on my way back down I landed on straight concrete on a turned ankle. My friends helped me hobble outside on what I’d later find out was a fracture and we sat in the drive and tried to yell for the rest of our group. On the second floor in one of the windows above the entrance, someone was just standing there facing us and we kept yelling thinking it was one of our friends. Next thing we knew, our friends popped up on the roof because they had managed to climb up through a hole in the third floor ceiling. All of them were accounted for, and when we proceeded to yell at the person on the second floor to see who it was they screamed and ran from the window..

    14. I was a patient here in 1993..I got to learn all of the cool history while being their, I can say that I got the help needed being there I needed and moved on to becoming a adult with three beautiful adult children 🙂


      • The Jemison Center – also referred to as ‘Old Bryce’ closed in 1977. Perhaps you are speaking of the ‘new’ Bryce Hospital adjacent to the University campus.

    15. I went 2 weeks ago with a big group and we didn’t feel anything eerie. The only scary part was being in the main building. I only went because i had to write a paper on it for my english class and it’s actually an interesting place. There is a putt putt course by the nursing home that the nurses would use to relieve the stress of working there. There are also bats in the hospital so be aware if you go in that you get swooped by one. The main building has mattresses every where and dust from the crumbling cement. Be very careful of the hanging metal from the ceiling while venturing in the dark. The upstairs floor is very unsteady so be very cautious. The crematorium has bones in the bottom of some of the ovens and ash too. Don’t be extremely scared but don’t take Bryce lightly. Be respectful due to people used this place for their final resting place. Those people were laid to rest on this property so be very respectful. You don’t want to awaken something you can’t handle.

    16. As of March 2016, the Jemison center and the hospital down the road are still there and largely intact. My boyfriend and I took the three hour drive from Chattanooga, Tennessee to Northport in hopes of exploring an abandoned (and possibly haunted) hospital and we were not disappointed. First of all the small dirt road leading to Jemison is eerie. Trees line both sides of the road, as well as abandoned crop fields on each side. And then the hospital appears before you and it’s massive. I read how homeless people and addicts frequent the place, so we were both armed to the teeth. As soon as we entered the first floor and we’re looking around we heard footsteps and doors shutting on the 2nd floor. We both froze and listened for a minute, then, thinking it was a crazy hobo, we hurried back outside to check the windows to the second floor and saw nothing. So we calm down and head back inside and explore and experience nothing else. We also explored the furnace. It was all beautifully creepy and desolate. We then head to the hospital down the street. For a while, we experience nothing. But when we get to this one corridor with a giant hole in the wall exposing a room, I peek inside and see a shadow of a person move out from my view, as if not wanting to be seen. I whisper to my boyfriend that I saw a shadow and we immediately hear a bunch of racket and footsteps, do we decided to leave. I hope back into our truck while my boyfriend keeps watch, just in case. Next thing I know he jumps into the truck saying he heard a bunch of footsteps on pavement, like a group of people running towards our truck. Needless to say, we got the hell out of dodge. But I’d love to go back soon.

      • How did you make it from there in 3 hours? I live in gadsden al and it took me almost 4 and a half hours and gadsden is closer than Chattanooga?

    17. My friends and I visited here back in 2016 and experienced a few strange things. Mainly footsteps and whistling. After we heard the whistling, we decided to stick around and see if we could make contact with any entity. We did, and it threw things at us. My friend was struck in the face by unknown debris, and as he left the room another piece of debris came flying out after him. We decided to wait around to see if anything else would happen, and another 3 times debris was thrown at us by an unknown entity. After that, a couple of our friends began acting strange and wandering off on their own. After we found everyone, I and two other friends who seemed unaffected gathered everyone and left. Very surreal and unforgettable experience.

    18. Can anyone tell me step by step directions on how to get here? The link to directions didn’t work. I’ve always wanted to go, but could never find it.

    19. go to the city of northport just outside of Tuscaloosa and locate the dollar general store its right behind it some people park there and sneak in

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    Disclaimer: The stories posted here are user-submitted and are, in the nature of "ghost stories," largely unverifiable. makes no claims that any of the statements posted here are factually accurate. The vast majority of information provided on this web site is anecdotal, and as such, should be viewed in the same light as local folklore and urban legends.