One of America’s 31 most haunted places is right here in Georgia


One of America’s 31 most haunted places is right here in Georgia

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Photo by Cheryl Blackerby
Christ Church, Frederica, built in the 1800s and partially destroyed by Union troops, is one of St. Simons Island’s most treasured landmarks. 

A 275-year-old church in Georgia was recently listed as one of America’s 31 most haunted places, a Google Maps user’s catalog of the spookiest sites in the country.

The list features the Villisca Ax Murder House in Villisca, Iowa, a place with a name as frightening as its bloody history.

You’ll also find buildings and towns with troubled pasts and legends, such as Salem, Massachusetts; the haunted Stanley Hotel that inspired Stephen King’s eerie novel “The Shining” and the first U.S. prison to implement solitary confinement, the Eastern State Penitentiary.

The White House also made the list.

Though most of the haunted sites are concentrated in the North, the Christ Church Cemetery on St. Simons Island, about five hours southeast of Atlanta, made the cut.

The Episcopal church at 6329 Frederica Road is one of America’s oldest churches, a historic landmark dating back to the 1730s when James Oglethorpe and the first English settlers arrived on St. Simons Island.

The church, which was reconstructed in 1884 by a lumber magnate in honor of his wife, who died on their honeymoon, “has history, it has literary significant, it has a tragic love story,” the New York Times reported in 2005.

What’s so haunted about the cemetery?

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Legend has it that a young woman with a severe fear of the dark is buried there. 

Before she died, according to, her husband would bring a candle into their bedroom every night as the daylight faded into darkness.

Years later, she became ill and as she neared death, she told her husband she was afraid of being trapped in a dark grave.

He promised her he would bring a lit candle to her grave at bedtime every night — and he did, each and every night until he died.

After his death, island residents were stunned to see the light continue to appear in the cemetery.

And today, some say that at night, you can still see a flickering light outside the cemetery walls.

The graveyard is also a setting in a novel by famed author Eugenia Price, who is buried there. 

The church is open 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday , except for major holidays. Cemetery grounds are open from sunrise to sunset Tuesday through Sunday. Both the church and cemetery are closed for maintenance on Mondays.

To schedule a tour, email

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