Long before North Carolina became a state in November of 1789, an incident happened that became America's most haunting mystery. The mystery of the Lost colony of Roanoke in 1590 has never been solved. There are many other haunted and strange places in North Carolina, some quite unusual, and some downright spooky.
It was not unusual that colonists were lost, killed, captured, or sometimes just disappeared. However, to have a whole colony of 120 people disappear all at once, with no trace, is quite unusual and still remains a mystery since 1590. That is what happened to Roanoke, the Lost Colony.
For over 400 years, research and theories from numerous sources have never solved the mystery. Hopes of finding out what happened were highly raised when in 1937 a stone was found that was supposedly carved by one of the missing colonists, Eleanor Dare. Several stones were found from 1937 - 1941, all were claimed to be carved by Eleanor with messages of what happened and where the colonists were heading. It has never been proven that the stones are authentic or a hoax to heighten the mystery. The last stone found indicated that Eleanor died in 1599 -- there is no clue as to who had carved that stone.
For more information on this mystery, see the related link below titled: Roanoke Colony - Historical Mystery
Brown Mountain is in the foothills of the famous Blue Ridge Mountain range. The strange happenings on Brown Mountain have brought curious mystery seekers from all throughout the nation, including the United States government. Two US Geological surveys have been conducted to investigate the mystery.
The mystery involves strange lights that have no explainable source. They can be seen on any clear night as they appear along the ridge of the mountian. The lights have been seen as stationary, bobbing up and down, or moving quickly from one place to another. They appear from and vanish to an unknown place in the night sky.
Any possible answers to the mystery have been dismissed. One theory is that the lights are reflections from headlights of vehicles traveling on Rattlesnake Knob a distance away -- yet these lights have been reported since before automobiles were even invented. Investigations have ruled out phosphorus, strange gases emerging from the earth, and other geological anomalies involving rocks.
Like most mysteries, many people are happy to have this one of the strange lights remain a mystery, to talk about and investigate.
Phantom Rider Of The Confederacy
In the town of Fletcher, near the Calvary Episcopal Church, a young woman is often seen riding a palomino horse. She is seen for only a few moments, then swiftly gallops away on her horse. Her quick action of leaving indicates that she is being chased by someone or something.
This apparition travels along the gravel edge of the highway. She has long blond hair and wears a Confereate cape, which billows out behind her. Under the cape she wears a filmy gown. The first sighting of this ghost, in early 1865, was by a troop of Union soldiers. They began to follow the woman and were led into an ambush by Rebel soldiers who opened fire on them. Twenty-three Union soldiers were killed. In a report filled out later, it was stated that the woman vanished just before the Rebels opened fire.
A search party went out several times to find the woman. Each time she was spotted, the troops could not catch her, for she simply would vanish.
Ashe County Hospital
The Ashe County Hospital in Jefferson was built in 1939. The building served as a hospital until 1969, then was used as an office building. Paranormal investigations have reported hearing disembodied voices and the bell of an elevator when the electricity was not in service.
Not too far from Raleigh is the town of Smithfield. Hannah's Creek Swamp lies just outside the town. This is a place where not many are brave enough to enter into, for there are fifty ghosts who haunt the swamp. They hang, ragged and menacing, from trees.
During the Civil War, General Sherman and his Union army moved through the area and left behind the spoils of battle. After Sherman's army left, a group of fifty marauders came through, hoping to steal anything of value. Confederate troops captured and hanged the marauders from the trees in the swamp, where they still haunt the area.
Visiting North Carolina
There are many more tales of haunting and strange happenings throughout North Carolina. If you love to investigate ghostly tales and haunted places, check with the local library or online for more interesting stories.