The Most Haunted Bars & Pubs
Everyone knows a good bar has to have a good selection of spirits, but sometimes those spirits do not come in bottles. Do to their traditional importance in communities bars and pubs tend to be establishments which people do not wish to leave, even when they pass on from this mortal coil. Drinking establishments tend to be hot spots for paranormal activity. If you are looking to have an encounter with the ghosts of the past while enjoying a good drink be sure to check out one of these haunts.
Earnestine & Hazel’s (Memphis, Tennessee): At the historic South Main area in my hometown is a dive bar which for years has provided people the best place to grab a beer and one of their famous Soul Burgers. While this Memphis institution began as a pharmacy, it became a bar when it was purchased by Earnestine and Hazel. The husband of one of the owners was a concert promoter who would bring many of the great blues acts here after gigs for; food, beer, drugs, and some company from the women who worked upstairs. All of this led to a long colorful history building the bar’s reputation. While legend holds that lives have ended at Earnestine & Hazel’s, their spirits still lurk, whether at the downstairs bar or the dark labyrinth of hallways on the floor above. The veteran staff of Earnestine & Hazel’s all have stories to tell curious patrons of disembodied voices, mysterious figures and orbs, and even music from an unknown source. Fittingly for a city rich in music history, the bar’s most famous paranormal oddity is it’s jukebox which has a tendency to come on by itself and often play songs which strangely coincide with events going on in the bar. This is a phenomenon witnessed numerous times and nobody has an explanation for it.
White Horse Tavern (Newport, Rhode Island): You do not earn the status of America’s oldest bar without picking up a few ghosts. Originally built as a home for Francis Brinley in 1652, the bar which would become the White Horse has served as a civic and social hub for the community throughout it’s history. The most famous resident spirit of this tavern is a older man whose name has been lost to time. Legend holds that he died on the second floor sometime during the 18th century, ever since his spirit has been seen usually lingering by a fireplace. He is not the only spirit you will find here (and I don’t mean the bottles behind the bar), as the sounds of a young girl crying is frequently heard. The disembodied sounds could originally be heard in the restroom, but have since spread throughout the historic bar.
Old Town Pizza (Portland, Oregon): During the city of Portland’s rougher days there stood the brothel, the Merchant Hotel. Inside the hotel was a young sex slave named Nina who tried to escape the clutches of her pimps to tragic results. After coming forward with knowledge of the illegal activity she was caught up in she was found dead shortly thereafter. In the 1970’s the Merchant Hotel became a far different business, the Old Town Pizza. If you find yourself dining in the atmospheric basements of this establishment you should not be surprised to catch a whiff a perfume or feel a brief touch as Nina is said to still haunt this site. From time to time patrons and employees have seen the sad apparition of the young woman dressed in black moving silently around. While enjoying a slice and beer at this pizzeria, keep in mind right beneath your feet are Portland’s infamous Shanghai Tunnels. It is here during the 19th century poor sailors were kidnapped and transported to the docks via these underground passageways to be “recruited” to work on a ship. As you can imagine such a dark past still lingers and sometimes the events from those tunnels makes itself known.
Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop (New Orleans, Louisiana): Originally built by America’s most infamous pirate Jean Lefitte as a front business, and according to many witnesses he still lingers here. Often seen as a shadow or even a mist forming the outline of a man, the privateer’s spirit seems to enjoy standing by the fireplace. On the second floor of Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop, the ghost of a woman who lived here during the 1890’s who is particularly talkative with guests. Not only does she like to talk to guests in a whisper of a voice, but she seems to know their names as well. Those on the staff have claimed this has understandably given some people panic attacks. Though ghosts are not the only supernatural entities to haunt this tavern, as many have reported a sinister being with red glowing eyes lurking around in the darkness looking to terrify unsuspecting witnesses.
The Drovers Inn (Inverarnan, North Lomond): For 300 years this Scottish pub and inn has happily provided good food and warm lodgings for those who need it. And it seems as though the establishment has done their job so well that some do not want to leave. But perhaps one of their most famous haunting is from those who never actually made it to the inn. In 1792 an impoverished family wandered the Scottish lowlands hoping to make it to the Drovers Inn but tragically perished in the cold on their journey. Now during the winter travelers have caught fleeting glimpses of this lost family wandering the grounds still trying to make their way to the inn. If you do check in for the night be sure to ask for their famous Room Number 6, which seems to be an epicenter for supernatural activity. Guests have reported; disembodied voices, mysterious lights, and things moving on their own. The Drover’s Inn even has a spirit named, Angus who serves as a cautionary tale for those looking to drink the bar dry. As a cattle drover taking livestock to his highland chieftan, Angus popped into this pub to sample the local ales while his cattle rest in the barn. While he did this a rival clan stole the animals, and later when Angus tried to have his revenge they killed the young man. To this day it has been reported that Angus searches the pub for his killers.
The Ancient Ram Inn (Wotton, Gloucestershire): Where one of England’s oldest pubs now stands was once a burial ground for ancient Pagans, and perhaps that energy still lingers. The Ancient Ram Inn was built in 1145 and to this day is held as the oldest building in Wotton. In 1968, John Humphries purchased the pub and when wandering through the worn and weathered structure he made a number of macabre discoveries. Evidence of occult activities and the skeletal remains of children were discovered in the building. Being the owner of the Ancient Ram has not made Humphries immune to it’s supernatural activities as he has claimed to have encountered ghosts and demonic entities. It seems as though every room in the pub has it’s own paranormal phenomana. The Bishop’s Room is haunted by a hooded monk who hurls furniture while the Weaver’s Attic hosts the spirit of a bartender’s daughter who was murdered in the 1500’s. Perhaps the most infamous if the Witch’s Room where an accused witch tried to find refuge before being drug out into the street and burned to death.