Savannah, Georgia is known as the most haunted city in America. There are more reports of paranormal activity here than anywhere else in the country. Learn about the city’s dark and deadly past at these top haunted spots in Savannah.
Savannah has plenty of reason to be haunted. The picturesque squares were built on both Native American burial grounds and unmarked slave cemeteries. The city has been plagued by deadly disease and bloody battles. Pirates pillaged the shores and caused trouble at the inns and taverns.
There are a lot of things that contribute to Savannah’s haunted history.
And that means there are a lot of places around town that are haunted. These 13 are just the most talked about. But walk into any historic building in Savannah and you’re sure to hear a good ghost story.
The Most Spine-Tingling Haunted Spots in Savannah
Throughout Savannah, there are stories of apparitions, spooky sounds, and eerie sensations. If you’re brave enough, check out these 13 haunted spots in Savannah to uncover the city’s dark history.
1. The Marshall House
The Marshall House is one of Savannah’s best haunted hotels. Opened in 1852 by Mary Magdalene Marshall, it was one of Savannah’s first hotels and is the city’s oldest operating hotel.
The hotel operated as a hospital for Union soldiers during the Civil War and again during the multiple Yellow Fever outbreaks. The lower level used to be the surgery room, and during restoration work in the 1990s workers found human remains believed to be the amputated limbs of soldiers underneath the floorboards.
The fourth floor is considered the most haunted part of the hotel, though there are reports of hauntings on all levels. Room 414 is apparently the place to be if you want to experience the paranormal.
During your stay at the Marshall House, you may experience disembodied voices, electronics and lights going haywire, the sound of footsteps, doors opening and closing on their own.
Guests have reportedly seen the ghost of Mary Marshall still enjoying her hotel. The sound of a typewriter can be heard coming from the former room of author Joel Chandler Harris. You may hear and see the ghosts of children playing in the hallway. Civil War soldiers with missing limbs may ask you for your help in the lobby.
There are so many reports of ghostly activity at the Marshall House, it’s easy to be convinced that this is the most haunted spot in Savannah!
But even so, guests seem to enjoy their stay at the historic hotel. If you’re brave enough to stay the night at the haunted Marshall House hotel, you can book your stay here.
2. The Hamilton-Turner Inn
The Hamilton-Turner Inn was once a grand home built in 1873 for the president of Brush Electric Light & Power Company. As such, the home was the first in Savannah to install electricity.
Mr. Hamilton was also a collector of art. To protect his artworks, he hired a security guard to watch over the house from the rooftop, rifle in hand. One night, the guard was murdered, shot in the back of the head. Today, one of the many ghosts reported at the Inn is that of a man standing on the rooftop with a rifle or smoking a cigar.
In 1915, the home changed hands to the Turner family, with Dr. Turner using the basement as his medical office. Over the years, the home had a brief stint as a boarding house and the home of the Marine Hospital Nurses before finally returning into the hands of the Turners.
Some claimed that Dr. Turner performed autopsies in the basement. The family also hosted lavish parties in the home. They would send the children upstairs during the parties, where the children would play with the balls on the billiard table. One night, the one of the children fell down the stairs to her death trying to roll the billiard balls downstairs.
Guests have reported hearing the sounds of billiard balls clacking together, though there is no billiard table in the hotel. The sounds of laughing children can also be heard drifting through the Inn.
If you want to experience the hauntings for yourself, you can book a stay at the Hamilton-Turner Inn here.
3. 17Hundred90 Inn
The buildings that comprise the 17Hundred90 Inn were built in 1821, 1832, and 1888, and every bit of the property is haunted.
There are three main ghosts that haunt the 17Hundred90 Inn: a young woman named Anna, a boy named Thaddeus, and an unfriendly, un-named ghost in the kitchen.
Anna is the most well-known ghost. Despite being in an arranged marriage, she fell in love with a sailor. When the sailor’s ship left Savannah, legend says she threw herself from a third floor window onto the brick courtyard; some people suggest, though, that she was pushed by her angry husband.
She makes her presence known in Room 204. While she is typically friendly, she seems to like attention. She may rearrange your clothing or jewelry, nudge you, or move your bed covers.
Thaddeus’s presence is usually felt on the ground floor of the restaurant and tavern at the inn. He’ll leave pennies lying o the tables. You may notice him around by a warm and friendly, yet unexplainable, presence.
The entity in the kitchen is a less friendly spirit. Workers notice this ghost by the clinking of metal, pots and pans tossed around, and spice jars thrown at the staff. The spirit may be that of a servant who used to work for the previous owners of the house, and some say that she practiced Voodoo.
4. The Pirates’ House
The Pirates’ House restaurant is housed in one of the oldest buildings in Savannah. It was opened as in inn in 1753 and it quickly became the meeting point for pirates and sailors. The restaurant is made up of a few different buildings connected together over the years and one, the Herb House, is considered the oldest structure in Georgia.
Inside the restaurant, you can still see the entrance to a tunnel used to kidnap and “shanghai” men to make them part of a pirate ship’s crew. Before it was sealed off, people reported hearing voices coming from inside the tunnel.
There are reports of shadowy figures all throughout the restaurant, from the upstairs gift shop to the banquet rooms. You can ask the staff about their experiences, and they’re willing to tell you a story or two. One of the waitresses gave me and my friends a mini tour and pointed us to the stairs of the Herb House where the figure of a boy typically appears.
5. Mercer-Williams House
The Mercer-Williams House on Monterey Square may be Savannah’s most famous house, and it has seen immense tragedy.
Tragedy first struck in the 1960s when an 11-year-old boy named Tommy made his way into the abandoned home and to the roof to chase birds. Somehow, he fell from the roof and landed on the spiked wrought-iron fence surrounding the property. Tommy was alone, but a friend claimed that he saw the whole thing and that it looked as if someone or something had pushed Tommy.
The next tragedy would come in 1981 when Jim Williams, a successful antiques dealer and historic preservationist who had restored the home, fatally shot his lover Danny Hansford in the study. Williams was tried four times for murder before finally being acquitted. These events were made famous by John Berendt’s 1994 novel, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and its movie adaptation (I highly recommend reading the book before watching the movie because the film, while entertaining, leaves out so many details).
After being acquitted, Williams only lived six more months before he died unexpectedly of heart failure in the study. Many people believe that Hansford’s ghost was responsible for Jim Williams’ death.
Hauntings of the house include the figure of a young boy seen in the upstairs windows and ghostly parties, like the lavish ones Jim Williams was known for throwing.
6. Owens-Thomas House
The Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters is a 19th century Regency style mansion on Oglethorpe Square. As you might imagine, its sordid past has lent to some ghostly sightings.
Guests of the home often see a man with black hair dressed in 1830s clothing standing in the front parlor room. Chairs in the dining room seem to move away from the table on their own, and phantom footsteps and noises come from empty rooms.
A “Lady in Gray” thought to be Margaret Thomas, who lived in the house until her death in 1951. She has been spotted strolling the gardens at night wearing a large hat and a gray shawl.
7. Colonial Park Cemetery
The 6-acre Colonial Park Cemetery is the oldest remaining cemetery in Savannah, dating back to 1750 when Savannah was the capital of the British Province of Georgia.
Many people consider Colonial Park Cemetery to be the most haunted location in Savannah.
The cemetery is the site of at least one mass grave from the Great Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1820. And the boundaries of the cemetery actually extend beyond the current fence — when you walk on the sidewalks and streets surrounding the cemetery, you’re actually walking on bricked-over graves.
Those that walk by the cemetery at night report seeing shadowy figures moving among the headstones. Before the city started closing the cemetery at night, Colonial Park Cemetery was the site of many Voodoo rituals and ceremonies.
8. 432 Abercorn Street
You’ll hear a lot of stories about 432 Abercorn Street. Most of them are completely made up.
432 Abercorn is probably the most controversial haunted spot in Savannah. It was originally built in 1869, but for the last 40 years, before being bought and renovated in 2021, the house sat empty. Not that it didn’t have an owner — the owner just didn’t live there, adding fuel to the fire of the creepy legends about this place.
The most prominent story about this house is that the original owner, Benjamin Wilson, punished his young daughter by tying her to a chair and leaving her for days in the Savannah heat until she died from heat exhaustion.
The other main story about the house is that during the mid-1900s, the family living there left four children alone in the house while they went to dinner. When they returned, they found three children gruesomely murdered and the youngest unharmed and hiding in a closet.
None of this is true. Erin from Savannah First-Timer’s Guide actually does a great job debunking the 432 Abercorn rumors in this post.
What is true is that the house, as well as all of Calhoun Square, was build on or near an unmarked slave burial ground. If the souls of anyone were to haunt the home, it would be those enslaved men and women.
For what it’s worth, the new owners report zero ghostly presence. But the man of the house does seem to like sitting in the shadows of the porch and startling tour-goers.
9. Calhoun Square
Calhoun Square was one of the last city squares to be built, and it still contains all of its original buildings in tact.
This square is also confirmed to be built on top of a mass unmarked slave burial ground. In 2004, city workers uncovered bones at the southeast corner of the square in front of the Massie Heritage Center.
People often report feeling a heavy sense of unease when walking through the square. This uneasy feeling has likely contributed to the rumors surrounding the famous 432 Abercorn Street residence mentioned above, as well as false tales surrounding the Espy House where the spirit of a man believed to be Wesley Espy can be seen on the porch.
10. Savannah Theatre
Built in 1818, the Historic Savannah Theatre is one of the oldest theaters in the country. And since ghosts seem to love the drama of the stage, it’s also one of the most haunted spots in Savannah.
The theater has had to be rebuilt a few times: in 1898, a hurricane damaged the theater’s roof; in 1906, a fire destroyed the building; another fire in 1948 kept the theater closed for two years.
Reports of hauntings date back as early as 1895 when a Savannah newspaper claimed police patrols would hear applause and ruckus coming from the closed theatre after hours. Another article that same year recounts the theater owner’s experience of finding a small fire had broken out in a dressing room and had burned only a small hole in the center of the room, but the fire had seemingly put itself out.
The Savannah Theatre has three major ghosts: an actress named Betty, a young boy known as Ben, and a spirit knowns as The Director. Betty is still drawn to the stage and can be seen many nights behind the curtain, ready for her performance. Ben loves playing pranks and is often found in the balcony. The Director can be heard yelling at actors and critiquing their performance.
11. Wright Square
Another of Savannah’s picturesque squares has a haunted reputation — Wright Square is known as the Hanging Square.
Back in the day, Wright Square was where convicted criminals would be publicly hanged. In 1735, Alice Riley was hanged in the square for committing the first murder recorded in Savannah. Prior to her conviction, she gave birth to a baby, and now people claim to see her ghost wandering the square in search of her child.
Riley maintained her innocence throughout her execution. Legend goes that Spanish Moss, which Savannah is known for, doesn’t grow where innocent blood was spilled. And you won’t find any moss on Wright Square.
This square is also home to the grave of Chief Tomochichi, head of the Yamacraw in the area who gave land to James Oglethorpe to build the city of Savannah. His grave was placed in the middle of the square, but the story goes that his gravestone was destroyed to make way for a monument for William Washington Gordon, founder of the Central Georgia Railroad.
Later, a large granite boulder with a copper plate was erected at the southeast corner of the square as a monument to Tomochichi, along with a historical marker at the original gravesite.
Now the ghost of Tomochichi is said to haunt the square, unsettled by the desecration of his grave. Rumor has it if you run around his boulder three times while saying “Where is Tomochichi?”, you’ll get the response “Nowhere”.
12. The Olde Pink House
The Olde Pink House restaurant is housed in the Habersham house, which dates back to 1771 and once served as the first bank in Georgia.
The house’s original owner, James Habersham Jr., has been seen still hanging around his home, raising a toast to the restaurant’s patrons in the tavern downstairs. He might also be the one responsible for cleaning up after patrons and lighting the candles on the tables.
Both guests and employees have reported hearing a woman crying upstairs. On the pub level, so many women reported being locked inside a bathroom stall that the management removed the lock. Yet, even with the lock removed, it seems the spirit still tries to keep the door closed and women have to struggle with opening the door.
13. Madison Square
Madison Square is one of the most haunted squares in Savannah. This location is where many soldiers fell during the Battle of Savannah. It’s even rumored that a mass grave was created here where not only the dead but also the mortally wounded were placed to be buried alive.
A common ghost sighting is that of a black shadowy man who floats through the square. People have recorded EVPs on this square suggesting the spirits that linger are of those fallen soldiers.
The houses on Madison Square are said to be haunted as well, including the Sorrel-Weed House and the Green-Meldrim House. This isn’t surprising given that bodies of British soldiers have been found during construction for homes on the square.
Top Savannah Ghost Tours
The best way to see even more of Savannah’s haunted spots is to take a ghost tour! There are all kinds of tours to choose from: walking tours, driving tours, pedal pubs, cemetery tours, and even a hearse tour!
Check out these top-rated Savannah ghost tours for a scary good time:
- Bonaventure Cemetery After-Hours Tour — Go behind the cemetery gates after-hours and learn about the tragic stories of those buried in Savannah’s most famous cemetery.
- Savannah History & Haunts Candlelit Walking Ghost Tour — Delve deep into Savannah’s dark history with this popular walking tour guided by the glow of a lantern.
- Spooky Savannah Haunted Pub Crawl — Stop in for a drink at some of Savannah’s most haunted bars.
- Fraidy Cat: The Family Fun Ghost Tour of Savannah — Here’s a walking tour of Savannah’s haunts that you can bring the kids on.
- Historic Savannah Theatre 3 Hour Investigation — Take part in a paranormal investigation of this 200-year-old Savannah landmark.
- Savannah Ghosts & Gravestones Trolley Tour — Ride along aboard the ‘trolley of the doomed’ as you listen to stories of Savannah’s haunted past.
- Haunted Hearse Ghost Tour of Savannah — Take a ride in the back of a converted hearse as you get an entertaining look at the city’s dark history.
- Savannah Haunted Bike Tour — Exercise caution as you alight on a thrilling bike ride past the city’s most haunted spots.
Top Haunted Hotels in Savannah
Savannah has way more than just 13 haunted sites, and a lot of them happen to be hotels. This is great if you’re the type of person who loves staying in haunted hotels (I’m too scared to even try). Book a stay at one of the top haunted hotels, inns, and B&Bs in Savannah listed below!
- The Marshall House — one of Savannah’s first hotels and the oldest still in operation, so it’s surely full of ghosts
- The Hamilton-Turner Inn — 1887 B&B with a possible haunted basement
- 17Hundred90 Inn — 1821 B&B with ghosts around every corner
- The Kehoe House — adult-only B&B that’s as romantic as it is haunted
- Foley House Inn — 4-star accommodation where a body was once found inside the walls
- The Olde Harbour Inn — 1812 inn with a friendly ghost
- The Eliza Thompson House — adult-only B&B with its share of ghostly sightings
- Planters Inn on Reynolds Square — historic hotel with Southern charm and wandering spirits
- East Bay Inn — haunted hotel steps away from the Savannah River
Or if you want a likely not-haunted place to stay, check out the recommendations below.
Where to Stay in Savannah (Non-Haunted)
Find the perfect place to rest your head on your visit to Savannah (that isn’t haunted!), from the top rated accommodations to unique stays you can’t get anywhere else.
Haunted Savannah FAQ
Savannah’s rich history and centuries of dramatic events contributes to its hauntings. From its role in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars to its maritime past and historic cemeteries, the city has seen its fair share of troubles. It’s no wonder Savannah is one of the most haunted places in the U.S.!
The Marshall House hotel, the Pirates’ House restaurant, and the Mercer-Williams House are just three of the most haunted places in Savannah, Georgia.
Some of Savannah’s haunted places you can visit at night for a good scare. Any private homes and museums you’ll have to just see from the outside at night. But the haunted squares are great places to explore after dark.
There are tons of ghost tours of Savannah’s haunted spots! The Savannah History & Haunts Candlelit Walking Ghost Tour and the Historic Savannah Theatre 3 Hour Investigation are popular options.
Savannah does have ghost tours that are good for families. The Fraidy Cat: The Family Fun Ghost Tour of Savannah is a great kid-friendly ghost tour option.
Haunted Savannah Map
Create your own tour of Savannah’s haunted sights! I’ve put together this map of all the haunted spots listed in this blog post to help you get started.
You can click the star icon at the top of the map to save it to your favorites and open the locations in your own Google Maps app.
I hope you have a scary good time in Savannah exploring these haunted places!
More Savannah, GA Itineraries
Check out more fun things to do in Savannah, Georgia with the help of these itineraries:
- Romantic Things to Do on Your Honeymoon in Savannah, Georgia
- How to Spend the Perfect Girls’ Weekend in Savannah, Georgia
- 4 Incredibly Fun Things to Do in 24 Hours in Savannah, Georgia
Want More Haunted Travels?
Check out these other spooky locations around the world:
- 13 Most Haunted Places in Georgia
- 13 Most Haunted Places in Atlanta, Georgia
- 10 Creepy Haunted Places in Dahlonega, Georgia
- 13 Chillingly Haunted Spots in San Antonio, Texas
- 7 Spooky and Haunted Spots in Huntsville, Alabama
- 10 of the World’s Most Terrifying Haunted Castles
Ready to visit Savannah, Georgia? Plan your trip with these tips.
- Book your flight: Find the cheapest flights using Skyscanner, my favorite flight search engine.
- Find accommodation: You can find top hotels in Savannah using Hotels.com.
- Get packing: Make sure you’ve packed everything you need with my packing list resources.
Have you visited any of these haunted places in Savannah, Georgia? Let me know in the comments!