Real ghosts, haunted places and paranormal activity make the sleepy southern town of Savannah, Georgia "America's Most Haunted City." Is there really a "Curse of Savannah" to explain all of this?
Is it Hoodoo or something more sinister?
There are many mysterious happenings and ghost stories related to the Curse of Savannah. It seems like a haunted house with real ghosts is lurking around almost every shadowy corner. There are countless true scary stories that the locals will swear by.
Ghostly shrouds of Spanish moss cascading from mighty oaks everywhere and the balmy southern air create an eerie atmosphere in Savannah. Here the tales of mystery seem larger than life (death?).
Stories of the Curse of Savannah date to initial settlement and perhaps farther back to a time when missionaries, buccaneers, and American natives inhabited the coast. A number of the nation's bloodiest battles were fought on Savannah soil, including the Siege of Savannah during the American Revolution. 1,200 men were killed in one hour - only Bunker Hill had more casualties.
Plague, fire, and hurricanes have devastated the city, leaving in their wake a legacy of death and dismay. Stories of real ghosts are woven into the history of Savannah to such an extent that it is difficult to separate the real from the surreal.
A City Built On The Dead
Savannah was founded in 1733 by General James Oglethorpe and is Georgia's oldest city. The City was built initially on an Indian burial ground known as Yamacraw Bluffs. As settlers were struck down by Yellow Fever or other unfortunate events, the cemeteries filled rapidly.
Businesses and homes were forced to expand onto the ground where the dead lay resting, as the city grew. Some bodies were disinterred and buried elsewhere, but many were not. Could it be these restless spirits that haunt the city?
The Hoodoo Doctor
The story is told of a former slave and alleged Hoodoo doctor called Mathias. Having obtained his freedom, Mathias planned to infiltrate an estate posing as a slave in order to guide the slaves north to freedom via the Underground Railroad.
On a cool November night in 1859 Mathias made his move. To protect their escape he provided each slave with a mojo bag. However, one slave refused the offer and threatened to expose the plan, so Mathias killed him. Twelve slaves escaped, but Mathias was caught and thrown in jail.
Witnesses claimed Matthias was hung in his cell, but the sheriff swore he was killed in the act of attempted escape. Many believe that Matthias cursed the city in revenge and summoned the many real ghosts that have haunted Savannah ever since.
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