Sanitarium Hill

You are here Home  > Historical Buildings >  Sanitarium Hill

Sanitarium Hill is an area with an abandoned mansion atop a–you guessed it–hill. It was once the Lakeview Sanitarium (1930-1966), a tuberculosis treatment center, with woods behind it (now known as Lakeview Woods). In a nearby cemetery, folks have reported mists, cold spots, and more; along the trails through the woods folks have noticed hot spots, apparitions, murmured voices, and something that pulls people’s hair. Glowing has been known to come from the abandoned building, along with apparitions seen from outside.

If you've had a paranormal experience here, or have any additional information about this location, please let us know!

Rate this Haunted Place

What do you think? Is this place really haunted? Voice your opinion here! Click "thumbs up" if you think its haunted, or "thumbs down" if you think its all just a tall tale.

Geographic Information

1202 Northport Drive
Madison, WI
United States

Get Directions »
43.1377388846977, -89.37449312201352
Dane County, Wisconsin
Nearest Towns:
Maple Bluff, WI (1.4 mi.)
Madison, WI (4.7 mi.)
Shorewood Hills, WI (5.5 mi.)
Waunakee, WI (5.5 mi.)
Monona, WI (5.6 mi.)
Windsor, WI (5.8 mi.)
Middleton, WI (7.1 mi.)
De Forest, WI (7.8 mi.)
Sun Prairie, WI (8.7 mi.)
McFarland, WI (9.6 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.

Share Your Experiences

Close Comments

Comments (37)

  1. Just a note- There’s no abandoned mansion, it’s a publisher services building now. With offices and things. They give haunted tours on halloween.

    • I experienced lot of activity during the evening. I captured a woman’s voice saying help me and then please help me. Also i captured engery lights . and a spirt looking out the window. I plan on going back to find out what the women wants. And heavy breathing . im looking for someone to walk through the woods with me during the evening. Let me know if anyone is interested.

  2. at L
    akeview Church right next to the sanitorium, we played, as children, in the cemetary. Sometimes there would be sights and sounds that could not be explained.

  3. I was born and lived in Madison for most of my life, and no one I know has ever called it “Sanitarium Hill,” or “Lake View Hill” for that matter. The place is called Tuberculosis Hill on account of what the Sanitarium was originally used for. Aside from its history, it’s a great place to watch fireworks and go sledding, but I’ve never seen anything weird or strange there.

    • I also grew up in the area and enjoyed sledding, etc. all the people I know called it and still call it Sanitarium Hill. Neither myself or my spouse, who also grew up on the north side, have ever heard it called Turberculosis Hill. Even my 86 year old grandmother who lives close has never called it that even tough we all know what the building was used for. It’s most definitely called Sanitarium Hill.

      • I grew up there. Lived on Iowa Drive in 5th grade. We would walk through SANITARIUM HILL to go to the PDQ for candy in the summer. We would play in the woods. Saw an abandoned bathtub, toilet and other crazy things. creepiest thing was the brown house through the chain link fence along the woods. We climbed through a hole in the Fence and found that house had a yellow, orange and red devil painted on the garage. We always called in Sanitarium Hill. I do remember feeling like we were being followed or watched. Probably just US freaking ourselves out! lol

    • Me either. I used to watch fireworks there when I was a kid. The only strange thing I can think of is that they stopped doing the fireworks there and moved it to a different place around 2014.

    • That’s pretty cool! My sister works currently in the old sanitorium bldg. She’s a social worker for Dane Co Human Services. She hasn’t had anything weird happen in about five years of working there, but she definitely believes it’s haunted anyway!

  4. Our ghost group has been there a couple times. Last time we went one of the girls in the group walked over to the cemetery on her own while the rest of us were at the cars, then came running back a few minutes later holding her neck. When we shown a flashlight on it, 3 large scratches were forming right in front of us. So the rest of us went over there. Got a demonic sounding evp saying “get out”. Heard it a lot more clearly live in my headphones I hook up to my recorder than the actual recording.

  5. it used to be a tuberculosis ward back in the day but has now been renovated to be a dane county human services building. i have been there only a few times myself. twice as a foster kid, the other time i went late at night with some friends, which was a mistake… this place just seems to seeth something heinous… im all the way down in florida at the moment writing this and i am still feeling shivers and mildly ill. there are reports of many different goings on in this area. i have witnessed a few for myself. first i want to start with one of the main graveyards. its right next to the building behind a church right next to the sanitarium. there have been many reports of people seeing many graves looking freshly dug but upon return in the morning there is no sign of disturbance what so ever. i have not witnessed this particular phenomena for myself but have many
    friends who swear by it… they even claim to have video of this but i have yet to see it. there are videos of this phenomena on youtube however, and im no expert but they seem to be fairly legit due to surroundings matching up with what ive seen in the actual location. and in that graveyard the farther back you go the more risky it gets. i know this sounds ridiculous but a friend of mine who i will use the alias of D for but he sat on a grave (which i think is just taboo for disrespect.) but he could not move and was unresponsive for a solid minute of which he does not remember. he was then flung from the grave at which point he does remember flying through the air and landing. i was skeptical of this story too but i have since corroborated this story with others who were witness to this who had no prior knowledge to my investigation. moving away from the graveyard there are surrounding woods and in these woulds there have been encounters with a headless man. this p
    henomenon i have in fact witnessed. he sort of leans his torso out from behind trees and then when you blink or look away for a second hes gone. but i know others who have reported being chased. this being seems to exude evil and feed off fear for even if you have but one scared person in your party he will give chase and try to lead you into the deeper woods. but if you have a party of fairly strong willed levelheaded people he will occasionally still appear. one member of my party was exactly this way he was terrified to the point he was visibly shaking… the creature made more than one appearance to us that night and eventually chased us away. but the strange thing is he wont go near willow trees which there are some at the bottom of the hill so you should be okay near those. also he will never follow you out of the treeline he just doesnt seem to be able to for some reason. now for the old crematorium, its a little bit more out of the way but near it you can hear
    just constant gut wrenching screams of what sounds like hundreds of people… ive only witnessed this at a certain time and many other people swear by it too… in fact many of the worst things dont happen till after 3:15 am but thats when it will happen but it wont end until 3:45 am. there are also purportedly tunnels around the grounds in which people can get lost in. but i have never seen these or any real evidence of their existence. the woods in back are a place you never want to enter past dark. there are many brambles and very thick brush to the point it can cut visibility even with a full moon and flashlights down to a maximum of a few feet in front of you. but back in these woods is where the truly terrifying and mind blowing things happen. there are also purportedly drops and cliffs back there which with the limited visibility could change situations to very dangerous very quickly. the main reason for travel back there is for a purported unmarked mass grave
    which very well could not exist or be what it is claimed by so many to be. all i do know is terrifying things have happened to me and my friends back in the woods… one small instance which we all witnessed was a friend of ours suddenly getting smacked with an unseen object, and just crumpling like a rag doll… we helped her up and we saw blood streaming down her face but for the life of us even after we got back could find no cut or scrape anywhere on her… the craziest part of this story is we caught this all on tape and when we reviewed this footage we saw this dark orb come shooting out of the darkness and hit her… now heres where it sounds super bogus… we all had the tape saved and copied for each of us but one week later we could find no trace of that video ever existing… it was just gone even our physical copy we burned onto a dvd had just up and vanished we searched all through our phones, our computers and tore my friends house apart for the physical co
    py. we still have not found it… there have been other incidents in those back woods which i dont even want to think about. they make me feel to ill to even speak about or type, let alone think about. so ill move onto the main building. this is where the most strange occurrences take place… there is a phenomena you can witness from the edge of the grounds just looking at the front of this building… you can see what is clearly a woman in a red dress bounce from window to window. she will move every time you blink or look away even for a second. and then eventually she just stops appearing… ive heard it argued that this phenomena is just the red EXIT signs but that cannot possibly be for the stay stationary throughout this occurrence and are always visible as a red light. but inside the building are where the weird things happen workers have noticed doors and cabinets opening and closing anytime they leave and occasionally there are random cold spots that are very p
    recise and tiny area… these occur everywhere on the property… i talked to one social worker who reported seeing people turning corners when there was nobody on that floor, strange figures, i even had one worker admit to hearing and feeling warm ragged breathing on their neck. most of these occurrences tend to happen to anybody who is working late. and most people who have worked there late will have a story or two to tell if you can coax it from them… there are many other things in this that i plain and simple dont want to cover. for one reason or another, be it lack of evidence or that i feel you could find someone better than me to describe these incidents. i feel as an issue of safety you should never go there past 3:15 bad things happen then… its best just to leave before midnight… also i feel it should be mentioned that this place is technically off limits after a certain time… i hope you can read this… and i hope you can experience one of the only hau
    nting experiences that ive never heard of someone walking away from without a story to tell…

    • My sister has been a social worker there for over five years and has never seen anything strange!! And she believes in spirits, etc. She said there’s just nothing like that there lol!

  6. I’ve only been up there once, but my father has a few experiences that he told me. My main fright while there was seeing a man in the woods. My father on the other hand, has been told to leave the woods by a young girl, seen a boy with a gray face sitting on a tree, and an old farmer. His friend said he saw a crying bride, I of course can’t be sure if their stories were accurate but I do specifically remember seeing that man staring at me with no emotion.

  7. When I was a kid I used to sled in this hill in the winter. When my father was loading up the car I saw this lady in the woods with black dangling hair that hung low on her face and a patient night gown that she had on her that was tattered. She was walking around the forest when she stopped to face me and lifted up her hand to hint me over there. I was so terrified that I looked away and when I looked back she was gone. The story in Madison goes based off the research of it is that the women was a patient of the center, she was with child. When the child was born they threw the child in the swamp behind the center before doing traumatic tests on the women until she died. She to this day lurks around the grave yard behind the center and on the grounds searching for her long lost child. She sometimes leaves scratch marks on peoples backs and growls at them from behind. Though no children have ever been noted to go back in the grave yard she has tried to get young children 6 and under to go back there.

  8. I live on Lake View Avenue in the Sanitarium’s Doctor’s House …. I used to live in the Doctor’s House … we had bought it from the Prescott Family who had lived there for many years too! Paul Prescott will tell you as I am telling you the entire Hiil was a sacred burial ground. The woods are haunted, and I had seen specters many times … but never knew at that time what was really happening!

    This was the Lake View Tuberculosis Sanitarium that now has been renovated to be a Dane County human services building. I lived there for 13 years and after I sold the house and packed up my family and left … then I realized that we had left some kind of strangeness behind with that house … since the entire acreage always seemed to seethe, even now, with something heinous, evil and malicious!

    There are reports of many different goings on in this area. I have witnessed a few myself. First the Graveyard behind an old little church. There are many reports of people seeing the graves opening up complete with phantasms floating and moving around.

    When walking my dog one winter evening in December of 1990. I witnessed a mist move about from behind a tree then on to another and when I briefly looked away it was gone. Once I heard a “growling” from behind me and as I picked up my pace I felt pursued all the while getting deeper and deeper into the woods. This one really creeped me out! A true haunting … KP

  9. I did some research, we want to investigate the woods across from it. The trails close at 10PM if anyone’s wondering. Dane County Parks owns it, and more information can be found on their website.

  10. We’re definitely going back (during trail hours). The first time heading out there, it was so dark we could hardly see where the trail was. Bring a flashlight with you. We used my crappy night vision camcorder which is almost completely useless. We were only there for a few minutes until we decided to turn back to avoid drawing too much attention to ourselves. We did however hear something approach us right as we turned around, and I picked up a very faint whisper on camera that sounded like “get out—–of here, get out of here”. Very hard to tell because the microphone is really bad on that camera. We have new equipment now and are planning on checking it out again once the weather warms up a little more.

  11. I experienced a woman’s voice Saying help me and then please help me. Heavy breathing and energy lights and mist and red eyes looking at me in the cemetery. Anybody interested in walking through the woods . prefer at least 2 people. Let me know if your interested.

  12. I was employed at lake view 1962 to1966in the powerhouse plus maintenance. and lived in the dormitory, great place to work super benefits. I felt like being a member of a wonderful family with fellow workers. at no time did I witness any paranormal activity on the job. working alone at night in the plant. Isometimes would like to relive those great years agin. .

    • Those are the best kind of places to work – where you get along with everyone and great benefits. It sounds like you were very happy working there. I have a theory that energies we can’t explain – (especially negative energies) are attracted to negative emotions. I think that if you are happy and positive, the less likely you are to experience negative phenomena. It’s been my observation that people who experience things like this may have a negative frame of mind at the time or something going on in their lives that is dysfunctional. This is just my observation. I could be totally mistaken. Another thing I’ve learned throughout the years is that just because you don’t experience something does not mean it does not exist. Racism is a good example for those who have never experienced it.

  13. My family owned the farm where the sanitarium is now. My great great grandfather was a farmer and shot him self on the land. I found the old farmer sighting interesting, as it was probably him. My grandmother is also buried in the cemetery along with all my relatives who came here from Germany. All this land was the Sachtjen farm for a long time. They also built the little church.

    • That’s interesting! What was your great great grandfather’s name, … if you dont mind me asking. It’s an interesting piece of madison history and makes me want to take another up there behind the human resources building.

  14. I have never been to this place or even the state of Wisconsin, but I like researching unexplained phenomena. I have a theory that negative energies are attracted to negative emotions. It’s been my observation that people who experience negative energies appear to have some sort of dysfunction going on in their lives at the moment. Law of attraction – like attracts like. I’ve also learned throughout the years that just because you have not experienced something yourself does not mean it does not exist. Racism is a good example of this. Anyway, this is just a hypothesis of mine – I should not even call it a theory. Everone experiences dysfunction and negativity – please don’t think I am saying that these phenomena are only experienced by the down-trodden. Sometimes the physical atmosphere of a place is just “off” – which leads to a feeling of uneasiness that may be the catalyst for starting an avalanche of other negative emotions. I’ve also noticed that people who have not experienced these phenomena appear to have a more positive outlook on life. I think these phenomena are real. Quantum physics is just beginning to learn how our thought patterns can interact with our physical environment where we see things that we normally would not be able to see. Remember, this is just my opinion. I can’t prove anything one way or another.

  15. Sanitarium Hill is certainly atmospheric and at times eerie. The Sanitarium is in no way, however, related to the little cemetery next door behind the Lutheran chapel. The cemetery is very unlikely haunted. The cemetery is the resting place for mostly hardworking, nonsensical Germans and Norwegians who are hopefully enjoying a well deserved rest. Generations of my family are buried there. I actually mowed the cemetery in High School and have helped mark out graves there. A beautiful and peaceful place.

Share Your Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a photograph taken from this location? Use the "Browse" or "Choose File" button below to select an image to upload along with your comment.


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.