Many places in South Carolina are a breeding ground for paranormal activity. Pirates and wars make for ample opportunities for spirits to linger on the soil and in the air in the Palmetto State. But other places and certainly other things besides where wars and general debauchery occurred can incite ghosts to hang around and make for creepy encounters. Here are 13 of the best places to spot a ghost in South Carolina.
1. The Old City Jail in Charleston.
This old haunt has enough ghosts from the departed prisoners who died here to turn your world upside down. Among the top reports are disembodied voices that will give you the creeps, and sightings of Lavinia Fisher, hanged here in 1820. Fisher is thought by some to be the first female serial killer in the U.S.
2. The Historic Belmont Inn in Abbeville.
Two different and very extroverted ghosts are known to make themselves seen and heard here at this historic inn in Abbeville. The first is a Scotsman who lurks in the stairs and likes to knock on doors and "run" in the middle of the night. The second ghost is "Abraham," and is seen mainly on the first floor out of the corner of your eye.
3. On the beach at Hunting Island State Park.
The laughter of a child is sometimes heard on the beach here (when no children are around) after a small boy drowned here a long time ago. The lighthouse keeper who tried to save him is also seen walking the beach searching for the boy in the waters.
4. Hunting Island Lighthouse.
Visitors touring the Hunting Island Lighthouse have reported hearing a knock on the front door of the light, but report there's no one there. Legend has it that the knock is the ghost of a former lightkeeper who believes he is locked out and he's banging on the door to get in.
5. The vanishing hitchhiker on SC-107.
On rainy, foggy nights this overlook on SC-107 is frequented by the "vanishing hitchhiker" thought to be the ghost of an upstate man whose plane crashed near here in the 1950s. He hitches a ride, always to the same place, and then vanishes the moment he gets out of the car.
6. Poogan's Porch restaurant in Charleston.
A spinster school teacher named Zoe who used to occupy the old house that is now Poogan's Porch is seen roaming through the restaurant looking for her sister who died and left her alone here. Two different accounts say Zoe ended up falling down the stairs here to her death, or, that she was sent to an asylum for the insane and she died there.
7. Stoney-Baynard Plantation Ruins in Hilton Head.
Visitors touring the Stoney-Baynard ruins have been surprised to see the funeral procession of the former owner, William Baynard, passing by the ruins of his old home. Creepy.
8. The graveyard at St. Philips Church in Charleston
The ghost of a woman who lost her baby haunts this historic graveyard in Charleston. She preys on pregnant women.
9. Salem Black River Church in Mayesville, Sumter County.
The ghost of former church clergyman whose family died of the plague is often spotted appearing as a shadow of a man near the building in the rear of this church.
10. White Point Gardens in Charleston.
The ghosts of some of the many people (prisoners and pirates) hanged in this very public spot have been spotted wandering in this park in Charleston's historic district.
11. On the beach at Pawleys Island.
The "Gray Man" of Pawleys Island has been making the rounds for ages. He's mostly likely to appear on the beach when there's an impending hurricane. He's so "famous," some locals actually heed his early warnings.
12. West End Cemetery in Newberry.
The "Bride of West End Cemetery" has been spotted on many occasions. She's waiting on her true love to come get her.
13. The Fairfield County Courthouse in Winnsboro.
The ghost of Mary Ingleman, the first witch of Winnsboro, hangs around the grounds of the courthouse where the courts pronounced her a witch and sentenced her to die. They tried on more than one occasion to execute her but to no avail. After her eventual death by natural causes she returned to the courthouse to wreak havoc. She's seen late at night on the steps and roaming the grounds.
Have you encountered any of these ghosts? How about others? We’d LOVE to hear about it in our comments!