The haunted history of Baltimore is rich with intrigue. From haunted buildings, houses, military forts, ships, to cemeteries, here is our choice for the top 10 most haunted places in Baltimore.
Docked in Baltimore’s Inner Bay, this seafaring vessel abounds with the ghostliest stories on the open waters.
Tragedies of war leave no wonder to the hauntings that ensue. For this c1855 vessel, the haunted military history is just darn scary.
War casualties and injuries, sickness and accidents all play into the hands of the hauntings the ship holds.
The bottom deck was once used as a prison and sickbay and is where most of the hauntings take place.
Crew members are wandering around the decks in old-time uniforms. Horrific screams and conversations when no one’s around are heard.
The hauntings remind us of the complex part of history no one wants to hear until it becomes a ghost story.
THE BALTIMORE COUNTY ALMSHOUSE
In 1874 Baltimore opened the County Almshouse to provide shelter for uncared-for children, elderly adults, sick people, and the mentally insane.
The Almshouse was plagued with overcrowding that led to poor living conditions and ultimately some deaths. Seventy-five-year-old Anthony Rose fell to his death in 1909 when he stepped unknowingly into an open elevator shaft. Many believe his spirit remains in the building to this day.
Small children playing and throwing things are heard on the third floor. Constant chatting of women is often heard. The faces of people are seen in the windows and throughout the halls.
Dead bodies from the Almshouse are buried in a cemetery behind the building. Alone and forgotten, perhaps the troubled lives they lived have kept them around in the afterlife.
GOVERNOR CALVERT HOUSE
Definitely worth listing in the 10 top haunted places in Baltimore; the Governor Calvert House is one of Maryland’s most haunted inns. Dating back to 1695, the house has been renovated and expanded four times over the years. In all actuality, this has merely given the ghosts more room to play!
In the 1940s, a woman committed suicide in the house. Her tormented spirit remains in the place and is seen wandering through the hallways.
A man dressed in 1700s clothing is seen roaming the first floor. Many believe this is the ghost of Governor Benedict Calvert, who lived in the house in the 1720s.
The most notorious haunting is the ghost of “Dominic.” Dominic worked and died in the house and apparently has no intentions of leaving. Very much aware that he’s dead, Dominic hangs around to peer at women guests. But have no fear. Dominic promises to look but not touch!
Hotel owners called in paranormal investigators in the 1980s when renovations accelerated the ghostly activity.
If you’re going to stir the pot, be prepared for the spirits to come out to play!
EDGAR ALLEN POE HOUSE
The dark writer, Edgar Allen Poe’s life story, is as creepy as the several locations he haunts in the afterlife. His ghost is seen all over the Baltimore area where he lived during a time in his life. His favorite Tavern, his family home, and the Westminster Church Cemetery all carry his presence.
It’s speculated that Poe isn’t the ghost haunting the house he lived in for two years with his wife, Victoria. But those are the speculations of some and not all. Apparitions of a portly older woman who putters around the house like she must have done while alive. This may be Poe’s Aunt or Grandmother who both lived in the house with him.
Knocking on walls, windows, doors opening and closing, and thumps in the night are all claims of the ghosts within the home walls. Poe is seen outside the house walking towards his favorite watering hole, “The Horse You Came In On Saloon.” Whether Poe’s ghost is inside the house or not, the Edgar Allan Poe House is one of Baltimore’s most haunted locations!
THE HORSE YOU CAME IN ON SALOON
Speaking of Poe’s favorite watering hole, The Horse You Came In On Saloon ranks in Baltimore’s top ten most haunted places.
One of the only continuous operating bars, The Horse You Came In On Saloon, has remained open since its existence. It’s also Maryland’s only existing bar before, during, and after the prohibition. Referred to by locals “The Horse,” some believe this was the last stop for Edgar Allan Poe before being found in the gutter fevered and delirious.
The bar has strange, unexplained happenings, such as a chandelier that swings on its own and a cash drawer that repeatedly opens on its own. People have seen mysterious orbs around the bar area where Poe used to sit. Many see Poe walking down the street towards the bar, perhaps to drink before the last call. Stop by the bar for a drink if you dare, but don’t be surprised if you fall victim to one of Poe’s pranks. He likes to pull the barstool out from under anyone who doubts he is there!
Best remembered as the home of our country’s national anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner, Fort McHenry isn’t just haunted by casualties of war victims.
During the War of 1812, only four Americans died at the fort. However, the Civil War was a different story. The lower chambers were used as a prison, and several prisoners were executed there.
In 1919 the Spanish Flu epidemic gave reason to use the fort as a hospital. Not only did patients die, but many nurses that tended to the sick also died from the disease themselves.
Hauntings at the fort include the ghost of Lieutenant Levi Claggett, killed by a mortar that hit the cannon where he was standing. He is seen standing guard at his post, keeping watch for enemy invasion.
A soldier, Private John Drew, was caught sleeping during his command. He committed suicide in the jail and is seen in the cell he died in and pacing back and forth on deck where he fell asleep.
The wife of a non-commissioned officer whose children died during another epidemic takes her grief out on the living in a hostile manner. She pushes people down the stairs and knocks others unconscious.
Lights turning off and on, sounds of footsteps, and cries of the executed prisoners from the jail add to the paranormal activity that envelopes Fort McHenry to this day.
Suppose you’re a paranormal investigator looking to document ghostly activity at the fort. In that case, you need to go through some red tape to do that! Management requires a special permit to be filed. It seems they prefer the fort be regarded as a history lesson and not the paranormal playground it has become!
Middleton Tavern was built in the 1700s as a private residence until ferry operator Horatio Middleton purchased it in 1750. By law, a ferry operator had to provide lodging for its customers. Middleton converted the home into an “Inn for Seafaring Men.” An essential stop for travelers using the ferries to cross the Bay, prominent patrons included George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin.
It’s mere speculation who stuck around after death and haunts the tavern. It may be Horatio himself. However, the staff named the most prominent ghost Roland. Roland is clad in revolutionary clothing and stands watching out the window looking towards the water. It’s as if he is watching for the ferry to come in. Something he probably did many times in life. It’s obvious when Roland comes around because of the distinct smell of cigar smoke. An exception may be made for Roland, but the living is forbidden to smoke in the tavern!
Staff and guests report glasses flying off the shelf one by one shattering on the ground. Tables with dirty dishes have been knocked over, wall lanterns turned upside down, and shadowy figures are seen in various places around the room.
Even if you don’t see any paranormal happenings at the tavern, you will most certainly feel the rich history within its walls.
THE ADMIRAL FELL INN
Dating back to the 1700s, the Admiral Fell Inn has had its fair share of death and tragedy.
In the early 1900s, the Women’s Auxiliary established The Anchorage, a boarding house to care for injured and sick soldiers. Many of the soldiers never recovered to make it home, and outside the walls was no safe place like The Anchorage was for sailors. Life was tough in those days, and brothels, saloons, illegal gambling halls, and mobsters all permeated the area.
It was expanded in 1929 by the YMCA. Renamed the Seaman’s YMCA, during its operation, it housed over 50,000 sailors in thirty-some years!
With tragedy and death, the hauntings abound. The ghost of a sailor that committed suicide wanders the halls.
A murder victim in room 413 watches guests of the room. Used as a hospital during the war, a nurse still checks on her patients from room to room.
In 1999, Gary Mick, a homophobic, brutally murdered Christopher Jones in room 413. Housekeepers report strong gusts of cold air passing by their faces, icy hands on their shoulders, and an apparition of a man standing near the door. Paranormal investigators have gotten EVP recordings of a male voice calling out “murder” and “head.” Most likely because he was murdered by being bashed in the head!
The Admiral Fell Inn is truly one of the top 10 most haunted places in Baltimore!
LORD BALTIMORE HOTEL
The Lord Baltimore Hotel was built during the great depression. The paranormal activity tied to the building stems from the deadly desperation felt by most during that era. The stock market crashed caused a surge of suicides, and Lord Baltimore Hotel was one of the many spots for the despaired investors to carry out this feat.
Although the hotel ranks the second most haunted place in Baltimore on this list, it’s considered one of Maryland’s two most haunted hotels. The other being the Admiral Fell Inn.
The hotel has more than twenty recorded deaths of those part of the Great Depression’s suicide pact. Their ghosts are seen throughout the hotel and property.
The most famous resident ghosts are a young couple and their seven-year-old daughter. The couple was part of the roof jumpers and tragically took their daughter with them when they plunged to their deaths.
The couple is often seen dancing in the ballroom, but the ghost of their daughter (nicknamed Molly by staff) is a part of the hotel history the most. The 19th floor is where the little girl hangs out the most, bouncing and rolling a red ball. Known to chase after staff members, the hotel has lost several employees due to her presence.
When riding the hotel elevator, don’t be surprised when it stops at the 19th floor and the doors open to no one waiting to board. The elevator seems to have a mind of its own, picking up and dropping off people that just aren’t there. And watch out for the icy hands in the elevator that many have felt during their ride between floors.
Management assures guests that the resident ghosts are harmless. Your visit to the hotel will be both luxurious and fun. I wouldn’t count on getting much sleep, however. And don’t be surprised if your remote control goes missing!
WESTMINSTER BURIAL GROUNDS
It goes without saying the best paranormal hot spots are cemeteries. How could they not be?
The number one spot for the 10 most haunted places in Baltimore is Westminster Burial Grounds, established in 1787.
Residents of the cemetery include Edgar Allan Poe (his ghost “appears” to get around the Baltimore area), General Samuel Smith, and Colonel James McHenry. And these are just a few.
The most notable, of course, is Edgar Allan Poe. His gravesite is the most visited and has the strangest phenomena surrounding it.
Poe died in 1849, and oddly, in the 1920s, the figure of a man dressed all in black with his face obscured by a scarf began to appear in the early morning hours at Poe’s grave. The mysterious man left roses and a bottle of Poe’s signature drink, cognac. This repeated every year on the anniversary of Poe’s death until 2009. Poe himself is seen standing before his grave with an expression of sadness on his face. Perhaps he is still longing for something unknown, even in his afterlife.
The screaming skull is the most terrifying report of the cemetery’s ghost hauntings. Folklore says a minister who was brutally murdered had a screaming noise coming from his body, frightening those preparing his dead body for burial. Somehow his skull was packed with cement before being buried at Westminster. That obviously didn’t silence the skull as a high-pitched scream comes from the area near his grave.
Lucia Watson Taylor was a young girl who died at 16. She is seen sitting at her own grave praying, with noted long hair and a flowing white gown.
If you’re thinking about causing any havoc in the burial ground, think again! The 19th-century groundskeeper chases off perpetrators with his shovel and shouts obscenities at you!