Infamous Places

Another false start for Savannah hauntings

My Savannah trip has me very excited about it’s haunted houses and mysterious past. But what I keep finding are false starts and dead ends. Here’s another example of a story that let me down.

A website I was reading had a picture of a house where the woman who took the photos sees two evil red streaks in the photo. You have to look at the enlarged original, but there they are, two wild swirls of red in the window.

The picture was taken during twilight and her camera doesn’t like low light. The lines follow the same horizontal pattern basically mirroring each other. Again you won’t find that in nature, which makes me wonder. It was getting dark and the camera doesn’t adjust well to low light situations. Based on my previous photography experience we’re looking at a slow shutter speed and fringing. Basically, a perfectly normal, just slightly blurred picture that catches some reflection off the glass. The camera is at a slow enough speed to capture the movement of the sun as the person taking the photo moves slightly.

Again, this just proves that people want to believe, just like Mulder said.

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432 Abercorn, Savannah GA

On my recent trip to Savannah there was a lot of discussion about 423 Abercorn, a home which sits abandoned with it’s checkered past. The "legend" goes something like this:

A General (Benjamin J. Wilson) of the Civil War lived in the house with his wife and daughter. The wife is taken by the yellow fever epidemic and the General has to raise the girl alone. Being the cliched inept father that he is, he doesn’t like the kids his daughter chooses to play with since they are lower class and ties her to a chair in her room as a punishment. The little girl is forced to watch them play without her and since this is Savannah and summertime she dies of dehydration. The spirit of the little girl lives on and now you can see her face in the glass window looking out.

It’s certainly a spooky story, but here’s my problem – not only is this story absurd, bordering on the ridiculous, I think I’ve heard it before, or at least a variation of it. Anytime the story starts of with, "Legend has it", you might as well say, "Rumor has it". The only difference between rumor and legend is the amount of time a story’s been around. But again this story is so nutty that I can’t even begin to believe it.

But let’s get to the good part. There are pictures of this place and you can clearly see the face in the window! How awesome! It fits the story perfectly, there is a small sad looking out the window of an abandoned house.

Alas, if you study the pictures for more than a minute you will notice something. Something not quite right. There is indeed a face in the window, but it’s the exact same face in the exact same place each and every time. And I mean the exact same place, the middle pane on the bottom row in the window. The odds of that occurring naturally are unfathomable. Nothing in nature works like that. Lightning never strikes twice. When you blow up the picture it all becomes clear. When you look beyond the face and study the items in the room you can see a man made object casting a shadow and creating what people feel is a face to match the story. There is something sitting on the fireplace mantle.

All the pictures are taken from roughly the same spot, outside on the sidewalk, at night, most likely during a ghost tour. They’re all taken from street level, looking up, not eye level looking through the window itself.

I think we have a case of mistaken identity. In my mind, the story is far too vague to be valid. It lacks any and all significant detail. The building is old and abandoned. The reason it’s unoccupied are varied, but there is a pretty simple explanation I’ll get to later. Finally, something catches a person’s eye and the story takes a paranormal spin. Is 423 Abercorn haunted? Who knows, but I highly doubt it. At least, it’s not haunted with the details of this story…

Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures of the house, but, all you have to do is type in "423 Abercorn" and you’ll find pictures and stories galore. So, what do you think?

Click here to see plenty of user submitted photos of 423 Abercorn in Savannah GA

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Bird Girl as featured in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

We finally saw the Bird Girl as featured in the movie and on the book cover. I’m a little disappointed actually. She has nothing to do with Savannah, or a Savannah artist, or a little girl of some prominence or even Bonaventure. Its just a statue made in 1936 that everyone ignored until it’s picture was taken at the last minute for the book cover. The guy got lucky and photographed a creepy little statue for a murder mystery. I thought the statue would be steeped in history and lore. Absolutely not. It’s just a statue of a girl holding two bowls. It used to be in the cemetery, nowhere near Johnny Mercer or John Williams, but when people went down there to see it, it was yanked out of there. Now it sits in an art gallery where you can’t take pictures of it, this way you’re forced to buy little statues that cost an absolute fortune! They are trying to milk out every dime from tourists. It’s an interesting statue, but after learning the real story behind it, it’s commercialization, and it’s complete lack of a tie in to anything related to the movie or Savannah, I’m sort of put off.

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