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A Tour Of This Haunted Jail In North Carolina Is Not For The Faint Of Heart

I met her on the mountain, there I took her life
Met her on the mountain, stabbed her with my knife

Hang down your head, Tom Dooley
Hang down your head and cry (ah-uh-eye)
Hang down your head, Tom Dooley
Poor boy, you’re bound to die

You might have heard the ballad of Tom Dooley, a folk song based on the 1866 murder of Laura Foster, which took place in Wilkes County. The accused, Tom Dula, was said to have been entangled in a love triangle with Laura and her cousin, Anne Melton. Anne, who was married, was in love with Tom, but Tom fell in love with Laura. Legend says on that fateful night, Laura had recently told Tom she was pregnant, and the two were to meet in the woods, run away together and elope. Instead of a happy ending, Laura was murdered and Tom was tried for the crime. He spent much of his time sitting in the Old Wilkes Jail, pondering his future and awaiting judgement. Eventually, he was hung in Statesville.

Many suspected that Anne actually murdered Laura out of jealousy. Some stories claim that on her death bed, she confessed to the crime while hallucinating black cats climbing up the wall. Today, the Dula legend and spirit is one of many factors that makes the Old Wilkes County Jail so intriguing and terrifying.

The Old Wilkes Jail seems like a terrifying place to be alone in at night. The candlelight ghost tour allows you to step inside Tom Dula’s cell and also see more historic places in the town as well. For more information on the tour, click here. Get ready to be terrified!

Have you visited here before or have your own story to share?

If you’re looking for more haunting North Carolina history, most people stay far away from this ghost town.

Emory Rakestraw
Emory was born and raised in North Carolina. She enjoys writing, photography, filmmaking, travel, wine and cheese. You can find more of her work on emoryrakestraw.com