Charleston’s Top 5 Most Haunted, Terrifying, Creepy, Eerie Locations

For a city so steeped in history, it is no surprise Charleston, SC is known as one of the most haunted cities in America.  Founded in 1670, Charleston has survived fires, earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding, and war.  With such an eerie and dark past, it should no surprise that almost every building in Charleston has a ghost story. Some of the places are obvious, others are not.  Below is a list of the top 5 places you don’t want to find yourself alone at night.  Even our tour guides are scared to be alone in some of these places.

Old City Jail – 21 Magazine Street

Built in 1802, Denmark Vesey is believed to have spent his final days locked in one of jail's towers before his execution in 1822.
Built in 1802, Denmark Vesey is believed to have spent his final days locked in one of the jail’s towers before his execution in 1822. 

Another famously haunted location is the Old City Jail on Magazine Street where it is said that over 13000 people lost their lives. Home of Charleston’s most notorious criminals during the 1800s and early 1900s, the Old Jail is now said to be haunted by prisoners who were executed on site.  The Old City Jail has been featured on every major ghost program on TV and is considered the most haunted building in Charleston.

Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon – East Bay Street at Broad Street

Now a National Historic Landmark, the Exchange and Provost served as a British prison during the Revolutionary War.
The Exchange and Provost served as a British prison during the Revolutionary War. 

Built in 1767, the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon is one of the most haunted locations in Charleston. The dungeon housed Revolutionary War POWs and pirates (Blackbeard and Stede Bonnet) and it is said that their spirits remain tethered to the building.  Underground, the dungeon kept pirates, slaves, and war criminals shackled in abominable conditions. Many prisoners are said to have suffered terrible deaths while locked in their chains.

Poogan’s Porch – 72 Queen Street

Legend goes the building's former homeowner continues to haunt the Queen Street building long after her death. (Photo credit: Bulldog Tours)
The building’s former homeowner is believed to haunt the premises long after her death. 

Another well-known haunt is Poogan’s Porch restaurant.  The legend goes, Poogan’s Porch is haunted by Zoe St. Amand, a school teacher who called the building home until her death in 1954. Witnesses have seen her creeping along the restaurant’s porch and sneaking up behind guests in the ladies bathroom, revealing herself in the mirror.

Circular Graveyard – 150 Meeting Street

The graveyard at the Circular Congregational Church is said to be haunted by ghosts of the Revolutionary War. (Photo credit: Bulldog Tours)
The graveyard at the Circular Congregational Church is believed to be haunted by the ghosts of the Revolutionary War. 

Located next to the Circular Congregation Church, the graveyard was built in 1681.  Many visitors have seen a ghostly figure walking through the graveyard before disappearing in the shadows.

Unitarian Graveyard – 8 Archdale Street

Construction began on the Unitarian Church in 1772, making it the oldest Unitarian church in the South. (Photo credit: Bulldog Tours)
The Unitarian Church dates back to 1772, making it the oldest Unitarian church in the South.

The graveyard at the Unitarian Church is one of those places that look terrifying, even in the daylight. Many claim the Unitarian Graveyard is haunted by the ghost of Annabel Lee, a Charleston woman who is said to be the subject of Edgar Allen Poe’s poem, “Annabel Lee.”

Not-So-Famous Locations
Some haunted locations will surprise you, though.  Places that are seemingly harmless, including the Dock Street Theatre on Church Street, City Hall, and The Library Society building on King Street.

The Library Society is haunted by a man in a bulky coat. Several staffers report seeing him, plain as day, before he disappears from sight, he also reportedly plays with the microfilm during the day.

The Dock Street Theatre on Church Street was originally the Planters Hotel.  There are several ghosts said to haunt the Dock Street, but Nettie is the most frequently spotted. Nettie lived in the 1800s and was a prostitute who frequented the Planters Hotel. She is usually seen floating on the second floor of the theater wearing a red dress.

Charleston City Hall, located at 80 Broad Street, is said to be haunted by General P.G.T. Beauregard. Beauregard was a General in the Confederate army during the attacks on Fort Sumter. Many have reported seeing the General’s ghost overlooking the city council chambers from a second-floor balcony.

Join Bulldog Tours for one of our many Charleston Ghost Tours…if you dare!