A chill is in the air and Halloween is upon us, Birmingham. What better way to celebrate than to go explore some of Birmingham’s very own spooky spots? Below is a list of places where things go bump in the night… get a friend, hop in the car, and check them out, if you dare!
1) Oak Hill Cemetery
Edward Erswell was a coffin builder and undertaker in Birmingham in the 1800s. His wife Catherine wanted to be buried at Elmwood, but unfortunately for her, Edward already had a vault here. Apparently you can hear the couple still bickering over the issue at Oak Hill. Some arguments never die.
2) Homewood Library
Who knew the Homewood Library used to be the site of a church? According to two mediums, 9 spirits reside here. SCARe, Spirit Communications and Research of Alabama, has investigated the site multiple times, even conducting a mock sermon in which they heard an inexplicable “Amen.” Patrons need not be afraid, though–activity has only been reported after hours.
Find your not-so-haunted house in Homewood.
3) Bayview Bridge
There are several ghost stories associated with this bridge, one being about a woman and her wedding dress. According to one version, she died on her wedding night and still roams the bridge in her white dress looking for her groom. You know what they say, hell hath no fury… Hand prints on windshields have been reported, too!
In fact, one of our Bham Nowers reports that Mulga is full of haunted places…
4) The Tutwiler
Legend has it that the man for whom the hotel is named, Colonel Edward Tutwiler, haunts the building. Loud knocking on doors has been reported on the sixth floor.
Find your not-so-terrifying abode nearby.
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5) Cathedral of St. Paul
Father James Coyle, a Birmingham priest, was murdered at the Cathedral of St. Paul in downtown Birmingham in 1921 after marrying a white woman and a Puerto Rican man. Despite several witnesses, the killer–the bride’s father–was acquitted.
If you’d like to learn more, this site is included on Birmingham Historic Touring Company’s ghost tour by Wolfgang Poe.
6) Redmont Hotel
Two ghosts allegedly haunt the Redmont Hotel downtown. Clifford Stiles, the owner of the hotel, roams the halls and locks doors. The other is Hank Williams, Sr., whose last hotel stay was at The Redmont. Some say Williams never left, and you can still hear a guitar playing his songs…
7) Sloss Furnaces
Sloss Furnaces may be a popular Birmingham attraction now, but its history is far from glamorous. Pig iron was manufactured here starting in 1882, and workers were put through some inhumane conditions. Accidents and fatalities were frequent. A notorious Graveyard Shift foreman, “Slag” Wormwood, forced workers work through the night in terrible heat, and 47 of them died as a result. Wormwood met a grim ending himself–he fell into melting ore at the furnaces.
Find your not-so-spooky condo or casa nearby.
8) Alabama Theatre
Many ghosts have been reported at Alabama Theatre, including a construction worker that died in 1927. He still wanders the balcony.
See for yourself and take a tour with your free map above!
9) Linn-Henley Research Library
According to Alan Brown’s book, Haunted Alabama, a friendly ghost resides in the Linn-Henley Research Library. Fant Thornley, the director of the library until his untimely death in 1970, makes his presence known with the smell of cigarettes and rolling pencils in the building.
10) Bass Cemetery
This 150+-year-old cemetery is the final resting place of Civil War Soldiers, slaves and a soldier from the Revolutionary War. A murder victim, Montezuma Goodwin, is also buried here. Have you ever had a ghost experience at Bass Cemetery Irondale, Alabama? Goodwin was shot by his brother-in-law in 1904, and some say he haunts the cemetery.
Find not-so-scary homes for sale near the Bass Cemetery.
11) Hotel Indigo
The Hotel Indigo in Five Points, formerly the Pickwick Hotel, was once a medical building. According to hauntedplaces.org, a nurse haunts the hotel.
12) East Lake Park
The body of an eight-year-old girl, May Hawes, was found in East Lake in 1888. She was murdered along with her mother and sister by her father, Richard Hawes. East Lake residents have reported seeing a little girl–dubbed the “East Lake Mermaid”–playing by the lake at dusk.
13) The Lyric Theatre
The Lyric Theatre downtown opened in 1914 for vaudeville shows. The ghost of a former staffer likes to keep things tidy by moving brooms around here.
See for yourself
Is it all just a bunch of hocus pocus? Find out for yourself. Enjoy your own self-guided tour with your free map!