Hunting for Hauntings in America’s Oldest City: Ghost Hunting in St. Augustine Part 2
Hah hah- Part 2, you say, where the heck was part one? Check out my Ghost Walk Tour- where I learned the name of the ghost I had encountered on a previous trip to St. Augustine. Part 1 here.
I found a ghost! I found a ghost! At least, I think I did. You’ll have to be the judge of that one in the pictures below. I must admit, since I discovered that I had personally encountered a real St. Augustine ghost years ago, I’ve been a bit obsessed with ghosts in the nation’s oldest city. St. Augustine is one of the most haunted cities in the United States- mainly because it lost a vast amount of people to a yellow fever epidemic. Then they built the city on top of a big graveyard- double whammy. I am not sure what a ghost actually is- a dead spirit, a rip in the fabric of time or some weird imprisonment sentence, but it seems to be a person- or embodiment of a real person stuck in a certain spot. And I found another one…I think.
On our previous trip to St. Augustine, we had lunch at Harry’s Seafood Bar and Grill, the famous New Orleans styled restaurant with windows (upstairs) with a view to Matanzas Bay. Located in a rambling antiquated house, Harry’s looked to be a prime ghost hangout, so the first thing I asked the waiter was: “Are there any ghosts here?” (There are ghosts in most dwellings here, like ancient ruins under any building and park in Athens, Greece.) So I was not surprised at his answer: “Yes, a long time ago, this was a family house and there was a woman living here…and a fire…some people have said they’ve seen her in the women’s restroom.”
The waiter then assured me that he had never personally seen the ghost, but her name was Katerina and she died in a fire. I thought it convenient that she haunted the women’s toilets and not the adjacent men’s (ah, a skeptic am I!) Was she a real ghost or a figment of one too many rum runners? My daughter and I checked out the women’s restroom. Twice. No ghost. We consoled ourselves over their yummy Oreo beignets.
Was Katerina a real ghost or a figment of one too many rum runners? My daughter and I checked out the women’s restroom. Twice. No ghost. We consoled ourselves over their yummy Oreo beignets.
Then we tried the fort that evening. A stroll around the ancient Castillo de San Marcos was sure to bring out a ghost or two. Not even the night watchman. Nada.
We had explored St. George Street earlier that day and I had snapped away at the historic buildings – I love old buildings. I even ran across the St. George Street entrance to snap a picture of the city gates (there is supposedly a ghost who hangs out there). Nothing again. On whim, I turned and took a photo of the old cemetery. Later, while I was loading photos onto Instagram (yes, I Instagram!) (www.Instagram.com/theadventuresofmom) that I saw my ghost- a man standing in the graveyard- he has his hand on the cemetery wall and he’s wearing a white shirt, waistcoat and jacket. Take a look below and you be the judge: ghost, lighting or figment of my imagination?
Things to know Before You Go:
- Ghost hunting can be scary for kids, so determine your kid’s spook level before any hunting for haunts.
- The BEST way to learn about the St. Augustine ghosts is to take an official ghost tour. There are several tours in the city offered. I did the St. Augustine Ghost Tour years ago with my sister. They tell you what and who to look for and how.
- Hunting for Harry’s ghost? Harry’s in St. Augustine is located at: 46 Avenida Menendez, St. Augustine, FL 32084. Upstairs back woman’s bathroom. It’s a good place to eat too (we did lunch). And if you don’t find Katerina, there are plenty of other spirits of the liquid nature- and the Oreo Beignets are awesome- try with ice cream!
- Take plenty of photos- your camera captures things too quick for the human eye.