It’s that time of year again, Halloween and the ensuing scary stories and ghost tours are almost upon us. There are scores of haunted cities that aren’t just scary on Halloween, but every day. Here are three of my favorite spooky cities.
Perhaps the most famous haunted city in the United States is Salem, Massachusetts, which in 1692 was the site of the infamous witchcraft trials. What began with the accusation of three girls, soon escalated to widespread hysteria with more than 150 people being arrested and nearly 20 executed. The city has fully adopted its history and is a major draw for modern day witches, as well as home to a massive Halloween celebration. One of the most haunted areas of town is Gallows Hill, which is said to be haunted by the spirits of the girls killed for being witches.
Williamsburg is one of the great colonial cities of the United States, and thanks to some amazing restoration work, visitors can experience what the capital city must have been like in the 17th century. Of course, along with great age comes great history, especially the spooky kind. There are many stories associated with Williamsburg, but one of the most famous is the story of the Two Little Boys of Williamsburg. According to legend, there was once a father who had a little boy who was six years old, as well as a slave of the same age. The boys always played together, exploring the glens and forests of the area. Then the father passed away suddenly, and was buried in a small graveyard. His son died a year later from the same disease and was buried on top of his father. The slave boy died as well and was added to the family grave. Thousands of people since have reported seeing the boys in Williamsburg, one African American and one Caucasian, holding hands and skipping down the road. They have red glowing eyes and float a few inches above the ground and have terrified the thousands of people who swear they’ve seen them.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Most people don’t realize just how old New Orleans is or how unusual its long history can be. New Orleans can be a little strange and has always been the destination for all kinds of people operating on the fringe of society. Of course, New Orleans revels in this spirit of the strange and avant garde, particularly when it comes to spooky legends. One of the most famous ghost stories associated with the city is the strange tale of Marie Laveau. Laveau was a Creole woman who gained a massive following during the 1800s as one of the first practitioners of voodoo. She died in 1881, but for years after many people claimed to see her walking throughout the French Quarter, and more than 120 years later many ghostly legends about the “Voodoo Queen of New Orleans” still persist.
What are your favorite cities for spooky ghost stories?