The South is known to be pretty spooky, whether it is the still darkness of the night, or the old
folktales that our family members expose us to. These scary tales are something that have been
passed down from one generation to the next in Black households. Some of those tales can
cause quite the fright when it involves the most haunted cities in the South.
Black Heritage Travels: 5 Haunted Cities in the South to Explore
- Beaufort, SC: There are many spooky tales that origin from Beaufort, SC. The Gullah Geechee Island is said
to hold many mysteries, traditions, and history between those mossy oaks. Speaking of those
big oak trees, it has been passed down in the Black community that down Land’s End Road on
St. Helena Island, you can see a bright light at night that is from the ghosts of runaway slaves
who were caught and hung from one of the oaks on that road.
- New Orleans, LA
Princess and the Frog is not the only tale that realms from the “Nola” bayous. No, baby, it gets a
little more spookier than the Shadow Man and Mama Odie. However, Voodoo, Hoodoo, and
witchcraft make New Orleans one of spookiest cities in the south. Some of these tales are sure
to cause the heebie-jeebies within the French Quarter.
The people of New Orleans share a tale about a lady named Delphine LaLaurie, owner of the
LaLaurie Mansion, where slaves were found in a basement nude and tortured after LaLaurie
was arrested for torture of a young servant girl. Well, apparently those spirits still have
unfinished business and there have been reports by multiple owners that you can hear the
screams of slaves coming from the empty house, ghostly slaves walking the premise, and
chained slaves attacking people.
- Mobile, Alabama
As we go deep down south, we learn about Micheal Donald, who was one of the last recorded
lynchings by the KKK in the US. While most of these haunted tales are at least a hundred years
old, this true story happened in March of 1981, to a 19 year old African-American man. Michael
Donald’s body was found hanging in a Midtown lot, and some natives have reported that the live
oaks on the road where he was lynched [renamed Michael Donald Ave] brings unwanted
guests such as roach infestations.
- Savannah, GA
River Street Scare. River Street is a popular destination in the south where people crowd for
festivities like St. Patrick’s Day, and mostly everyone is either drinking, eating, celebrating, or all
three! We know that River Street is full of festivals, but it is also filled with history. For instance,
the Ghosts on River Street is a tale of the spirits of slaves, servants, and dock workers that
roam as shadows or humans in 18th century disguise when the sun goes down. Legend has it
that these spirits sometimes still work their old jobs and have wounds that look fairly fresh.
- Charleston, SC
As a native the low country, being a South Carolinian, I can tell you many haunted stories that
have been passed down to me. However, one of the most haunting cities and tales in South
Carolina happens to be one of the greatest tourist attractions in the South. Beautiful Charleston,
with its bridges, beaches, and bone-chilling history. The Slave Mart Museum is a very popular
attraction off of the Battery, and people experience things that are quite paranormal. Some
people say there is a strange smell, while others report hearing old hymns and cries of agony of
slave spirits who were auctioned away from their families and never reunited. I’ve been myself,
the feeling is unexplainably eerie.