Some local experts believe New Orleans should claim the crown.
Many believe that New Orleans is one of America’s most haunted cities, and we found three local experts who have reasons to agree.
As one of the United States’ oldest cities, New Orleans bears witness to countless tragedies and horror stories rooted in the city’s history.
Bond Ruggles, business manager and tour guide at Witches Brew Tours, a local company specializing in haunted tours, said the city’s history of tragedy — including early hurricanes, wars and even the yellow fever epidemic — has contributed to the haunted nature of New Orleans.
“We have definitely seen sudden and traumatic tragedies occur which I think tends to leave some residual energy; and ghosts and spirits, that’s exactly what they are, residual energy,” Ruggles said.
Not to mention, the Crescent City also has its fair share of reportedly haunted landmarks attached to some horrifying backstories.
Many have heard the tale of Madame LaLaurie and her reported torture chamber on Royal Street. Several local tour guides point to the LaLaurie Mansion in the French Quarter as the most haunted house in New Orleans.
Cari Roy, a third-generation psychic medium in New Orleans, sites local traditions honoring departed loved ones as one reason for lingering spirits. Roy also said the proximity of several cemeteries within neighborhoods could be another reason why the dead walks among the living.
One New Orleans’ prominent features are rows of above-ground tombs in local cemeteries, commonly called the “Cities of the Dead.”
St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 has been named the “most haunted cemetery in the United States.” The most famous spirit believed to roam the grounds is that of Marie Laveau, New Orleans’ Queen of Voodoo.
A couple of local experts site New Orleans’ water-locked geography as another reason for the heightened paranormal activity.
Owen Ever, curator and docent at the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum, said the fact that New Orleans is built on water could be a big reason for the residual energy.
“There’s been a lot of suffering in the area,” Ever said. “And as we believe at the museum, fear and suffering tend to leave an echo.”
Is New Orleans America’s most haunted city? Visit some of these haunted landmarks and decide for yourself.