Reviewed by: Emily Phillips
When you’re in a city as old as Huntsville is, you can expect to hear some stories of ghosts, lost spirits and other paranormal activity lurking in some of the city’s oldest spots.
Ghost hunters and enthusiasts of the paranormal often point to Huntsville as one of Alabama’s spookiest cities. Here are some of the city’s haunted places (at least that’s what I’m told):Read more: Haunted Huntsville – 5 spooky places in the Rocket City
Dead Children’s Playground
Dead children’s playground is set in the middle of Maple Hill Cemetery, which is the largest and oldest cemetery in Alabama. That kind of adds to the spookiness of the spot. Maple Hill Park is located at 1351 McClung Ave.
According to the legend, Huntsville was the site of child abductions in the 1960’s, and the bodies of the children were found in the area of the playground. Since that time, there have been reports of swings moving on their own, sounds of children playing and giggling and other activity that makes this one of the spooky places to visit if you’re into that thing.
Cedarhurst Mansion, a.k.a. the ‘Sally Carter House’
This home, located inside the Cedarhurst subdivision off Drake Avenue (which, unfortunately, makes this spot harder to visit unless you have permission from a resident of the gated community), was built in 1823 and occupied by the family of Stephen Ewing.
The story I have been told is that a girl named Sally Carter was visiting her sister, Mary Ewing, at the house when she was struck with a fatal illness and died on November 28, 1837, just shy of her 16th birthday.
She was buried on the property, but as years went on, her grave had so many visitors that she and her family’s tombs were relocated to Maple Hill Cemetery. However, the legend is that Sally’s casket was empty when it was moved. Leaving many to believe her spirit still lurks in the house.
Several reports — one from a security guard at Cedarhurst — have told of doors in the house opening and closing on their own, footsteps up and down the stairs at odd hours of the night (the home is not occupied, by the way, as it serves as the clubhouse for the Cedarhurst community).
Built before the Civil War, the Lowry House part of the Underground Railroad, and the home has been the site of many sightings and noises in the house that could be the spirits of those desperate souls, according to renowned ghost hunter Lesley Ann Hyde of Southern Ghost Girls.
In fact, Hyde says a full-bodied apparition was seen in the kitchen. Other strange things have happened and it is said there are several bodies buried on the grounds of the property in unmarked graves.
The Lowry House has become a popular haunt for paranormal investigators who believe otherworldly spirits live within its walls. Caretakers have experienced unexplained incidents, but they’ve all been positive, apparently.
The Lowry House is located at 1205 Kildare St NW.
Thomas Bibb’s Grave
Thomas Bibb was President of the Alabama State Senate and became the second governor of Alabama, following his brother’s death.
Bibb owned a plantation in Limestone County, and wanted to buried at his beloved Belle Mina plantation, but his wishes were not honiored when he died, as he is buried at Maple Hill Cemetery
Legend has it that Bibb still isn’t happy about his relocation, and on a full moon, a carriage drawn by white horses shows up to take him home to Belle Mina.
Historic Huntsville Depot
Huntsville’s Historic Depot was built in 1860 and is the oldest surviving train depot in Alabama, and is said to be haunted by Civil War soldiers.
In 1862, the Depot was occupied by Union forces and used as a prison for Confederate soldiers. The Depot, now a museum, has preserved graffiti the soldiers left on the wall, and some believe the soldier’s spirits still loom in the building.
The ghosts are mostly sighted on the second and third floors. There are also reports of the specter of a train engineer still walking the platform, making sure the tracks are clear.
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