With just a month away from Halloween, many people are looking for haunted houses, corn mazes, and spooky activities for October. If you’re looking to find ghost stories based on real legends, there are plenty to be found in the state.
North Carolina features many paranormal myths – from the Devil’s Tramping Ground to Lydia’s Bridge, from the Beast of Bladenboro to the Cabelands on the Eno River. There are abandoned ghost towns along the coast, wiped out over a century ago by hurricanes, and even an entire town inundated under a mountain lake.
If you’ve ever dreamed of spending the night in a haunted hotel room or in Airbnb, there are a few spooky rentals with weird stories that keep guests overnight.
1. The Stroud House – Wake Forest
Over 80 years old, the Stroud House in Wake Forest is a popular overnight rental for those who want to spend a sleepover with ghosts.
The Airbnb page features a disclaimer, alerting potential guests to the multiple supernatural experiences that have been reported in the house.
Customers have reported hearing footsteps in the hallway or echoes upstairs, even when no one is home. Lobby and basement lights go off and on during the night, as if a playful spirit is teasing visitors. People also claimed to have seen a shadow in the kitchen and glowing orbs in the living room. There is even a spooky music box that plays spooky music on its own.
The owners say the incidents never caused any damage or appeared to be malicious. Interested parties can request a haunted tour of the house – or stay overnight, if they dare.
2. The Carolina Inn – Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill was named after an actual chapel that once stood on a hill at the intersection of two main roads in the 1700s.
The chapel is gone today, but the Carolina Inn stands on that same fateful hill.
Built in 1924, the hostel may have more than one ghost. But the main paranormal activity seems to be centered around Room 256, where the spirit of long-time resident Dr William Jacocks supposedly resides.
Guests reported that the room door locked them inside, followed by the radio turning on and playing weird or static songs with voices. They also saw wet footprints on the bathroom rug even when no one used the shower.
Some guests saw an elderly man in old-fashioned clothing strolling through the hallways at night.
Like the ghost of the Shroud House, the spirit seems playful and friendly, just wanting to tease and joke the guests.
3. The Biltmore Hotel – Greensboro
Built in 1903 by the Cone brothers, the Biltmore Hotel has had many lives over the past century – office buildings, apartments and potentially a brothel. Over the past century, he has amassed several dark legends of death and murder.
It was originally an office building intended to help accommodate all of the thriving factories springing up around the Triad region. Their elevator, added in 1920, was the first unmanned electric elevator in Greensboro, according to the hotel’s history on their website. In the 1930s, a widow named Ava B. Taylor rented the upper floors and turned them into private furnished rooms known as Greenwich Apartments. Some locals believe, however, that these “apartments” were only rented to beautiful young women – a secret brothel in the heart of downtown Greensboro.
According to legend, several ghosts haunt this hotel.
Long before it was a hotel, when the Cone brothers were still using it as a very “modern” office building, their accountant Philip was found dead in the alley next to the building – murdered. Some legends say his throat was slit after confronting the brothers over financial malfeasance. Some hotel guests claim to have seen Philip’s ghost standing at the foot of their beds at night. Others heard his anxious footsteps and scrambling the papers, as if he was still working, stuck in a ghostly loop in his old room: 332.
Other guests, however, saw a red-haired lady – possibly the spirit of poor Lydia, a lady of the night who lived in Mrs. Taylor’s brothel. She was thrown from her window after a fight with an angry customer, and her mind still lingers in room 223.
4. Grove Park Inn – Asheville
The Grove Park Inn was built in 1913 by a man named Edwin Wiley Grove, who often suffered from various ailments and illnesses. Grove’s passion was pharmaceuticals, and the Grove Park Inn served as a resort where visitors could find health and respite. Grove owned a pharmacy in Tennessee and had focused his life’s work on formulating a quinine to prevent malaria, which was much more common at the time.
He created a concoction known as Grove’s Tasteless Chill Tonic and made his millions. He became known as the “Father of Modern Asheville”.
The ghost of the Grove Park Inn, known as the Pink Lady, also looks interesting when it comes to health and healing. Some children, who are sick while visiting the hostel, claimed that the lady was sitting at their bedside.
The Pink Lady has been roaming the inn since the 1920s, and her mind seems especially active in room 545. For over a hundred years people have claimed to see her wandering the halls in a pink ball gown, occasionally flickering the lights. or rearrange objects in rooms. Not everyone saw its full appearance; many claim to have just seen a supernatural pink haze or orb.
There are many legends about the Pink Lady’s death in the 1920s. Some say she threw herself off the balcony in grief after a love affair went awry. Others say she just slipped and fell to her death. Either way, her tragic end doesn’t seem to have made her bitter. She is known for her caring and playful spirit which has brought a lot of “life” to the Grove Park Inn.
5. The Dunhill Hotel – Charlotte
An actual skeleton was found during the renovation of this century-old hotel, almost immediately sparking ghostly lore.
The Dunhill Hotel, which opened in 1929 as Mayfair Manor, is Charlotte’s only historic hotel. It opened right after the great stock market crash. One of the tallest buildings in the city at the time, it was considered a grand and refined addition to the skyline.
Legend has it that the hotel’s ties to the Depression explain why so many people, desperate and in financial ruin, jumped to their deaths from the 10th floor.
The great old lady began to deteriorate for many years, giving her a “scary” appearance that has sparked strange legends. These legends seemed to be confirmed, however, when an actual skeleton was found during the hotel’s renovation in the 1980s. According to news at the time, the remains of a man were found at the bottom of a cage. ‘elevator.
Guests of the Dunhill have said they heard footsteps in their rooms when alone. Others said they heard laughter and chuckles echoing in their bathrooms. A woman said she saw what appeared to be a man “fall” outside her window.
Some refer to a friendly ghost prankster named Dusty who tries to scare guests.
WRAL’s Hidden Historian to Present Haunted North Carolina History at Cary Regional Library
If you’re into spooky stories and hidden history, check out WRAL’s Hidden Historian on Tuesday, October 12 at the Cary Regional Library (and practically on Zoom) as she shares some of Carolina’s spookiest legends and traditions. of the North, and weighs the legends against the real history. Register here to come and see his present live.
Do you know of any other haunted rentals?
WRAL’s Hidden Historian is looking for more haunted locations, or general NC ghost stories, to explore this month. Send your suggestions to [email protected]
She plans to visit at least one haunted site each week and broadcast live from the location, all while studying how spooky myths hold up against the true story of various popular North Carolina legends.