Haunted Louisville Part 3: The DuPont Mansion, The Inn at the Park, and more
Now a bed and breakfast, the mansion was built around 1882 by the Delaware DuPonts. “We have had guests who have felt presence,” said Gayle Walters Warren, co-owner of the mansion. “They have smelled cigar smoke that would come late at night in their room. And no one smokes–we are nonsmoking facility. The story goes that it is indeed Mr. DuPont.”
Miss G’s Ghost at the First Church of Christ, Scientist
A young woman waiting for a lover who never showed up is said to haunt the staircase, according to David Domine, author of Ghosts of Old Louisville. “She’s always in a long flowing gown. She has jet black hair done up in a Gibson girl kind of hairdo. And they always used to see her pacing back and forth over the huge set of steps at the front of the structure,” said Domine.
Miss G, as she is known, was in love with a soldier. “Back then, the steps of the church were a kind of rendezvous for young couples, so Miss G. would sneak out at night and meet her boyfriend,” Domine said. They planned to elope, but when the time came to meet on the steps of the church, the soldier never showed up.
“He was one of several hundred soldiers who was struck with the flu at Camp Zachary Taylor in 1918-1919. That’s when we had the Spanish flu outbreak in this country,” Domine said. “She waited on the stairs. She finally did give up, thinking she’d been jilted, not knowing that her boyfriend was on his death bed.
“She went home and contracted the flu as well. And they never found out what happened to each other. Within two days they were both dead and buried. They say Miss G’s ghost haunts the stairs, waiting for the young man.”
The Inn at the Park
Built in 1887 by Russel Houston, president of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, the ornate home features a large sweeping staircase said to be haunted by a Miss Whipple who tutored the children there, according to Herb Warren, co-owner of the Inn at the Park bed and breakfast. When one of the children fell gravely ill, Whipple held a seance to try and contact a recently deceased doctor for help, said Warren.
Heather Funk Gotlib, an Old Louisville tour guide, said that Whipple met a witch at an old tree hoping to transmit messages to the spirit world, but the story goes that she was killed by the witch in retaliation for dabbling in the black arts.
Today guests at the inn report seeing a transparent woman going down the staircase and the noise of water running a bathtub when no water is running, Warren said.
The Ice Boy
On Feb. 6, 1912, the six-story St. James Court Flats burned. “The top three stories were completely consumed,” said Gotlib. “Because it was so cold that night, where the firemen had attempted to put out the flames, the water from their hoses had frozen on the house. So they were greeted by this ruin of ice and soot, just rising up like a stalagmite.”
It was believed no one perished in the fire, but stories began to surface of a grocery delivery boy from the nearby Cabbage Patch neighborhood who had taken shelter on the fifth floor of the house to warm up.
“He was trapped up there, and they found his little body huddled in a corner,” Gotlib said. “People thought that because he wasn’t from a wealthy family, that they could just bury the story, and nobody would really know the difference. And so that’s when rumors started to surface about this little ice boy that haunted St. James Court.” The ghost of the ice boy is said to appear in the winter when snow is on the ground.
This segment is part of Kentucky Life episode #2109 which originally aired on February 27, 2016. Watch the full episode.
This segment was also included in episode #2110, the Haunted Louisville special, which originally aired on October 29, 2016. Watch the full episode.