Savannah, GA isn’t just any other city. It’s a city so beautiful that General Sherman refused to allow it to burn in the Civil War. But could a city so beautiful escape heartbreak and horror? Furthermore we would proceed towards a comprehensive list of most haunted places in Savannah. The shrieks of injured Confederate soldiers and the sobs of their sweethearts still echo around the grand haunted mansions of Savannah. Now betrayed ghosts lurk restlessly in haunted Savannah attics, looking for the victory that never came. After the wounds of war, there are the wounds of love and the quirks of life.
What makes Savannah Haunted?
If you’re looking for haunted places in Georgia, you need look no further than The city of Savannah, Georgia. This city is literally built on its dead.
Following fires during the Civil war, plus the famous battles, famine and plague, there simply was no room for any more graves – so Savannah’s founders chose to simply build over top of where the dead lay buried. This fact by itself makes it a prime target for some very prolific hauntings.
Savannah was founded by James Oglethorpe, a freemason who designed this famous city using the “sacred geometry” well known within this secret society.
Oglethorpe designed it to be made up of several squares; squares said to be known to trap spiritual energy. Because of this, Savannah’s violent past made it the home to what many consider to be one of the most haunted cities in America. One such haunting is at 507 East St. Julian Street, what some call the most haunted house in the country.
The sighs of slaves, the Trail of Tears, Spanish seamen- there are so many histories that are buried in the antebellum town. Here we have featured a set of 10 most haunted places in Savannah for a frightful visit. Where can you go to find these pieces of past that refuse to stay quiet?
Abercorn Street, Savannah
An old 1868 house, belonging to the Belle Époque era, stands empty and deserted in Calhoun Square. Everyone hurries past it. If you stand and stare at it, your skin will begin to tingle. If you dare approach closer- against your will, as if attracted by some magnetism- you will begin to see the living room window. There, at that window, sits the ghost of a little girl, killed by the cruelty of her father. If you try to click a picture- if your hands aren’t shaking too much- your camera will shut down. Or begin to smoke.
General Benjamin J. Wilson, for whom the house was built, did not like his daughter to run over and play with the children in the Massey School opposite. Because they were public school punks and the General was an arrogant man. But, little Wilson was spirited and she defied her father to play with them. So the General got hopping mad, and he tied her to a chair in the living room. The girl waited, waited and waited. Three days later she was found dead in that chair, killed by heat stroke and dehydration. The General died later of natural causes, in the same house, and rumor has it, father and daughter never left.
This hauntings here are similar to the ghost light haunting. The ghost light road is amongst the most haunted places in Florida.
The Olde Pink House
The Olde Pink House is the place to find a classy ghost. The polite James Habersham Jr., dead since the early 1800s, may sit down for a conversation in the restaurant, speaking in a flowery historical style. He is prone to disappear mid-sentence. His presence is a manifestation of the famous Southern hospitality. He likes to make sure that everything is in place. The ghosts of what are reportedly dead slave children lock ladies in the first-floor bathroom stalls. The situation is so bad that they’ve removed the locks, but women may still be forced to stay by unseen presences. It isn’t as haunted as other places in Savannah, in terms of ghost density. But the quality of the ghost surely makes up its does the quality of the food.
Colonial park cemetery
When you have ten thousand graves, isn’t it logical to expect a ghost or two? In Colonial Park Cemetery lie many unmarked dead, with no tombstones, including victims of the ghastly Yellow fever epidemic of 1820. The walkways don’t take into account unmarked graves- so a visitor will end up stepping on some, unfortunately. It is said that some parts of the town have been built over graveyards. No wonder the ghosts are a-walking’. Among the restless is the ghost of Rene Rondolier, who was hung from a tree in the cemetery after the murder of two girls. A shadow of Rene can be spotted, hanging from a tree or walking about. Green mists and Electronic Voice Phenomena- which is a ghost science term for ‘spooky voices’- float over the large, ancient grounds of Savannah’s oldest Cemetery.
The beautiful magnolia-filled Bonaventure Cemetery plays host to the spirit of six-year old Gracie Watson of the illustrious Habersham who visitors have sworn they’ve seen. A statue of hers stands before her grave, and weeps occasional tears of blood. A cemetery is creepy enough. But ringed around with innocent magnolia trees, these two are collectively the best haunted places in Savannah. Because if you are not haunted by ghosts, you will be haunted by history.
Mercer-Williams house is now a beautiful museum, but it was once the scene of crime. And where blood is spilt, the stain remains. Jim Williams, antiquities dealer, was a respectable man. Under his roof, young Danny Hansford (allegedly not at all respectable, a gigolo) was found shot. Jim Williams was acquitted- the whole story can be found in the book ‘Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil’. An old man and a young one have been spotted walking the halls. Another haunting story is that of a little boy who fell off the roof, straight onto one of the metal spikes that impaled him. His ghost is said to do the exact same thing, Again and again. Any mention of the ghosts though, might get the visitor kicked out. It ain’t polite to ask about personal ghosts- even in a haunted place in haunted Savannah, GA.
Haunted Kehoe House Inn
For nice domestic ghosts, Kehoe House is the place. Built by ironmonger William Kehoe in 1892, it was inhabited happily by him and his wife Annie. They had at least 10 children .But they had their share of tragedy too. A pair of twin children died here at the age of 4 or 5 by getting stuck in the chimney. They were not discovered for days by their distraught mother, until a peculiar smell had begun to waft around the fireplace. The heartbroken Annie Kehoe as well as the boisterous child-ghost has not left their haunted house in Savannah.
Visitors to the Kehoe Inn, especially those who dare to take room 201 or 203, encounter the gentle ghost of Annie Kehoe that lovingly caresses their cheeks while they sleep. The light in William’s study in the cupola, which is far away from the rooms used by the staff or guests, switches on by itself. Noisy children can be heard playing about, but open the door and you won’t find any.
Marshall House Hotel
During the Civil War, the Marshall House Hotel was used as a Civil War Hospital by the Confederate Forces. After many years, during renovations, amputated limbs were discovered buried below the floor-boards, recalling the agony of the war, when there was no anaesthesia. Another way to understand the agony of those times is by meeting one of the people dressed in Civil War uniform who can be found in the corridors, who, it must be warned, do not exist. A nurse-like presence checks pulses in the middle of the night. There is nothing like a war to leave residual souls, wrenched away by misery from a peaceful afterlife. Savannah is haunted by the terrible tragedies of war, despite having been spared the fire by General William Tecumseh Sherman.
Haunted Inn and Restaurant, Savannah
In Room 204 lived Anna, who jumped to her death, unable to bear the shame of being unmarried and pregnant, and the betrayal of her lover. In Room 204, women may find their jewellery moved around, or a visitor at the foot of their bed. When the room is empty, sobs can be heard coming from inside. Poor Anne is gentle, but restless. An angrier ghost hangs out in the pub, which throws pots, and pushes women. It is said to be that of a Voodoo practitioner, whose power haunts the entire three buildings of the Inn. Occult West Nigerian magic, imported along with many unfortunate slaves, was once found as an undercurrent in the whole of the Deep South. This increases the variety and types of haunted places in Savannah. From privateers to private tragedy, we got it all.
Moon River Brewing Company
The Moon River Brewing Company was left as a ruin for over 150 years after the end of the Civil War. When in 1990, someone decided to make it a happening place, they didn’t reckon with prior claims. Like that of James Stark, that was killed by town physician Philip Minas. Or of Mrs. Johnson, who may be spotted dressed à la 1830. In the Brewery, however, there are ghosts galore that are not harmless. They grab at the shoulders, arms and hands of patrons. They are ‘intelligent’ ghosts that interact- and not benevolently- with the people who have made their quiet abode noisy. Some people consider it the most haunted restaurant in Savannah.
Haunted Madison Square, Savannah
Listing the haunted places in Savannah doesn’t do justice to the ethereal unearthliness of this lovely town. It’s the entire brig that’s haunted- full of ghosting and disquieting paranormal occurrences. Madison Square, presided over by the statue of heroic William Jasper, who was a Patriot soldier, is built over the graves of many British soldiers who died during the disastrous Siege of Savannah, during the American Revolutionary War. Many of these soldiers were not dead when buried- too delirious to speak, they were tossed in and covered up, buried alive by the cruel accident of fate.
Corpses have been unearthed during the construction of the Square. Unearthly footsteps can be heard at midnight, and solidly black shadow-men seen. The groans of soldiers and their accusations may be whispered into the pedestrian’s ear. After such dishonor and suffering, maybe they’re too unhappy to leave. The haunted Sorrell-Weed House is said to channel this bad energy. On the way to the basement, you may feel as if a pair of hands is choking you- or a strange and inexplicable nausea.
The Hampton Lillibridge House
Not in it’s original location, the Hampton Lillibridge house was bought by Jim Williams and is the site of the murder of Danny Hansford – a story made popular by the film Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.
Although Williams was tried 5 different times for the murder of Hansford, he was never convicted. However, a year later Williams himself died in the exact same spot where Hansford was found dead – an act some might call revenge from beyond the grave.
Now it’s said that the spirits of Williams and Hansford still live in the house, as well as a depressed sailor who was reported to have hanged himself there. Construction workers claim to have seen ghosts of men dressed in black and grey numerous times on its grounds and have heard the voices of the deceased.
They have also been the subject of attacks, having objects thrown at them and doors slammed in their faces. Pictures that have been taken on the third floor have reportedly had crosses “burned” into the film after they were developed. The house is for sale to anyone bold enough to attempt living there and, I don’t know the cost, but you have some bargaining power I’m sure.
The Pirate’s House, Savannah
Want more? Well another haunted location in Savannah, Georgia is at The Pirate’s House, which is now a restaurant – but when it was built in 1754, it was an inn for weary seafarers and pirates. Hence the name.
The Pirate’s House is claimed to be the setting for the beginning of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island by many, and some have reported seeing the ghost of the pirate Captain Flint sitting at tables or stomping around in heavy boots.
This was an inn where sailors and pirates frequented. There was a tunnel in the cellar that lead to the Savannah River. It was said sailors would be knocked out and dragged through the tunnel. They would resurface at the river and the pirates put them on their ships and forced them to be pirates.
In the old days, if you drank too much at the Pirate’s House Inn, you might be flogged over the head and wake up on a privateer’s ship to heaven-knows-where, ‘shanghaied’. There was a long tunnel below the restaurant to the seafront, which was used to smuggle sailors on board, or illicit liquor, or some people say, to bury yellow fever victims.
Hauntings of the Pirates House
This Inn is where Captain Flint, from Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, is said to have made his base. And no wonder. Savannah was a flourishing port and was known for plenty of privateering activity; and attracted a grand quantity of desperados and delinquents eager to make a quick and blood-stained buck.
Besides the ghost of Captain Flint ( who may or may not be a fictional character), the Inn is haunted with seamen dressed in 18th or 19th century costume, who died in one of the many violent quarrels between French and Spanish privateers. The chairs and plates change positions in the night and the coffee pot can throw itself against the wall. And sometimes, laughter can echo from the empty second floor, which is used only for storage.
This is only a small sampling of the locations where this city houses the spirits of its dead – and if you’re looking for ghosts in Savannah, you don’t have to walk far. It is said that “even the trees have teeth” because human bones have been found uprooted from the ground and ingrained into the plant life. It seems that every square inch of Savannah is a home to death.
The Wright Square, Savannah
Yet another haunted location in Savannah is in the right square, located almost directly in the center of the city. This story involves a servant named Alice, who used to wash her master’s hair. One day she simply got fed up with the way her master treated her.
Alice decided she would kill her master by drowning him while she was washing his hair. She was unsuccessful and ended up getting caught. She was hanged.
However, Alice was pregnant at the time and her restless spirit is said to have become trapped here for eternity. Moss is prevalent on the buildings in Savannah, but it will not grow on the side of the square in which she was hung.
Want to explore other spooky locations? In that case, don’t forget to visit the haunted Sorrel Weed house in Savannah. Now when you have known about the most haunted places in Savannah, GA, The daring one among you would take a visit out there. Happy Haunting !!