Nestled in Savannah’s Historic District like a gingerbread palace, the Old Pink House contains a rich history and some dark secrets.
Built in the late 1700s by one of Savannah’s first established families, the house survived fires, changes in ownership and the Civil War. For two and a half centuries, the Old Pink House continues to stand in Savannah as a centerpiece for legend and folklore.
I never got a chance to take a look at the Old Pink House on my last press trip to Savannah. But passing it on the street one morning, I found myself so enchanted with it, I decided to make the 300-mile journey once more.
So, after the oppressive summer heat cleared, I packed a thermos of coffee and headed down the I-95 corridor to the Southern city of Savannah this fall to uncover the mystery and traditions still kept alive in the Old Pink House.
Savannah: The Spirit World’s Friendliest Host City
Sometimes called “The Most Haunted City in America,” Savannah emanates a feeling of the otherworldly.
With Old World style historic homes and famously beautiful, crumbling cemeteries, this charming city smells of fresh seafood and the mossy, earthly scent of hundred-year-old backyard gardens.
It’s no surprise then that the Old Pink House is just one of hundreds of sites and properties with a reputation for ghostly activity.
But Savannah’s signature pink house is undoubtedly one of the most famous. With a reservation list that sometimes requires booking weeks in advance, locals and tourists alike flock here, as much for its upscale menu as its intriguing history.
Haunting of the Old Pink House
Marquelle Jones meets on the front steps with a warm, bright smile.
With a deep, impressive knowledge of everything from the architecture to the house’s lineage of ownership, he isn’t so much your typical restaurant owner as a local historian.
I get right to the point. “Got any ghost stories?”
Marquelle says he doesn’t have any personally, but people who worked at the old, haunted mansion over the years passed down a few.
One in particular persists—the Little Girl Ghost. I asked if he knew her name.
“Nope, no name.” But the locals believe she is the spirit of the child of the enslaved people who once worked in the house. He says once, a guest took a photo of her that the owners placed in the property safe.
Mysteriously, one day, it disappeared.
But one day, one of the workers spotted an orb in the cool downstairs cellar. The security captured her terrified silhouette and the orb.
Naturally, someone uploaded it to Youtube.
(The cellar has since been converted into a rather snazzy colonial bar, with high-end wines available by the bottle).
He leads me through each rooms upstairs, which the owners continue to maintain with near-fanatical respect for its history.
The Ghost of James Habersham
Of course, the legend of the original owner, James Habersham, still lurks in the ghost stories of his cotton-candy-colored house.
One source claims that Habersham’s spirit still wonders the lusciously appointed hallways of the old mansion in his colonial garb, enflaming unlit candles and making a nuisance of himself.
But whether you go for paranormal thrill or the goat cheese stuffed artichoke fritters, take a walk down the haunted streets of this underrated city.
It’s truly magical.