The 31 Days of Hallowe'en - Great New Orleans Ghost Stories and Hauntings
New Orleans is a Haunted City
There are many hauntings in New Orleans. In fact, we don't add the "para"
to normal activity when we talk about them. For us, it's closer to normal
to have a ghost or two in you house. Our house is typical of much of the
New Orleans housing stock and was bulit in the 1870s. We have a female
ghost. My husband calls her "Carney". She likes to move things around on
the mantles and scare the cats by walking down the stairs late at night,
but otherwise she's pretty quiet. As ghosts go, she's not very scary, and
it probably typical of most ghosts in New Orleans. As such, she won't get
a story written about her. Carney is haunting a house in a one of the most
haunted ciites in the country. So, she probably won't become famous
outside of our friends and family.
Ghosts like Carney don't get a lot of press. But, others in New Orleans
do. Friar Antonio de Sedella came to New Orleans around 1774 with the
Spanish Inquisition in Louisiana. Never an enthusiastic inquisitor, over
the course of a few years, Father Sedella became the beloved Pere Antoine,
the pastor of the (then) St. Louis Church. The alley along side the St.
Louis Cathedral is named for him, it's Pere Antoine Alley. He's still
around the St. Louis Cathedral, which is not a bad place to haunt. The
Cathedral is just off Jackson Square and is really at the heart of the New
Orleans French Quarter. [
Then there's Prince Suleyman, a Turk who claimed to be the sultan, or
former sultan, of a mid-eastern country. Apparently, the Sultan had made
some violent enemies before his sojourn to New Orleans and they paid him
and his harem a deadly visit. Although dead, the Sultan has never left.
The Sultan is probably the most exotic and mysterious of the New Orleans
]Here's his story.
The beautiful Octoroon, Julie, was the mistress of wealthy Frenchmen in
the early 1800's. Julie's master kept her in great style on a fine home on
Royal Street. He provided her with fine clothes and jewelry. He made
certain she had the best cuisine to dine on and servants to take care of
everything for her. The Frenchman would come to Julie most evenings and
the two made passionate love in the sultry New Orleans nights. But, Julie
made one big mistake, she fell in love with the handsome Frenchman and
talked of marriage many times. The Frenchman was also in love, but
marriage to a woman with 1/8 black blood was unthinkable at that time.
Finally, Julie's master agreed to the marriage, if Julie could prove her
love for him. He promised Julie that if she spent the night outside, naked
he would marry her. This was in December. The Frenchman was certain that
Julie would stay outside for a while and come into her warm room before
too long. Unfortunately, the master was wrong. In the morning, he found
his beautiful Julie, naked and lifeless outside on her balcony. Now on the
coldest December nights Julie can be seen walking on her roof, naked.
I would guess the most haunted house and the most evil doings went on in
the Lalaurie Mansion in the French Quarter. Arguably, the most haunted
house in New Orleans the Lalaurie Mansion has surely endured the most
gruesome history, and its reputation for otherworldly visitations is
well-deserved and well-documented. Once the lavish home of Dr. Louis
LaLaurie and his wife, Delphine, this mansion was suddenly revealed to be
the grisly scene of experimentation on slaves when a fire broke out in
1835. [ http://goneworleans.about.com/od/famouslandmarks/a/Lalaurie.htm
]Read the entire story.
[ http://goneworleans.about.com/od/theate1/a/lepetittheatre.htm ]Le Petit
Theatre is nearly 100 years old and has operated as a community theater in
the French Quarter since its beginning. It is undergoing some renovations
now and it will be interesting to see if its resident ghost, a handsome
man in 19th century evening dress, will attend the new opening.
There are many other ghosts in New Orleans. Some in [
http://goneworleans.about.com/od/hotels/tp/hauntedhotels.htm ]hotels, some
in [ http://goneworleans.about.com/od/nightlife/p/hauntedbars.htm ]bars,
and some, like our Carney, in ordinary New Orleans homes.
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