Oakwood Cemetery – Austin, Texas

  • By: Gareth Popovic
  • Date: 19 January 2024
  • Time to read: 6 min.

Introduction of Oakwood Cemetery

The creepy Oakwood Cemetery, located in the center of Austin, Texas, draws curious visitors to explore its sacred grounds. You enter a world where history and the supernatural are intertwined as soon as you pass through its wrought-iron gates. The ghostly tales of the dead reverberate through time among the moss-covered trees and worn gravestones, each one an eerie whisper in the wind.

Oakwood Cemetery
Oakwood Cemetery – Credit TiaTaiLa

History of Oakwood Cemetery

Established in 1839, Oakwood Cemetery is one of Austin’s oldest cemeteries, predating even the founding of the city itself. It was originally known as “City Cemetery” and served as the final resting place for early pioneers, statesmen, and prominent figures who shaped the destiny of the Texas Republic. The cemetery’s history is deeply intertwined with the formation of Austin and the broader story of Texas.

In Austin’s past, one’s race and social status heavily influenced their burial location. Oakwood Cemetery, like many, had segregated sections. The northern part, known as the “colored grounds,” was reserved for African-Americans, Latinos, and non-white individuals. This division starkly reflects historical racial and social inequalities in Austin.

Among its notable occupants is Susanna Dickinson, a survivor of the Alamo siege in 1836, and her husband Almeron, who died in the battle. Their graves remind us of the sacrifices made during Texas’ struggle for independence. Another prominent figure interred here is Confederate General Thomas William “Stonewall” Jackson, a reminder of the Civil War’s impact on the nation.

More than just a cemetery, Oakwood is a living reminder of Austin’s past, a treasure trove of untold tales, and a meeting point for the past and present. Oakwood Cemetery is a living testament to the tenacity of Austin, Texas, whether you come to pay your respects to the great personalities interred here, to take in the striking architecture, or to look for the frightening stories that have become part of its lore.

Historic Photograph of Oakwood Cemetery
Historic Photograph of Oakwood Cemetery – Credit Daniel Mennerich

Haunting Legends and Supernatural Phenomena

Wandering Spirit – Eula Philips

A chilling legend about the spectral appearance of Eula Phillips, a phantom who has terrified numerous people, endures in the dark corners of Oakwood Cemetery. The narrative starts on a tragic Christmas Eve in 1885.

 Eula Phillips
Eula Phillips – Credit findagrave

Eula Phillips, a young woman of only 17, met a grisly end when she fell victim to a brutal axe murder. Initially, her husband bore the blame, enduring a wrongful conviction for her death. Tragically, his exoneration arrived too late, as a series of gruesome murders, bearing a striking resemblance to Eula’s demise, soon unfolded across Austin. Eula’s tragic end marked one of the earliest instances of an American serial killer, preceding even the infamous Jack the Ripper of Whitechapel. Some even whisper that this Texan madman might have later migrated to London to become the notorious Jack.

Psychics drawn to Oakwood Cemetery have sensed Eula’s tormented spirit, particularly in the dead of night. They speak of a bewildered, sorrowful soul, condemned to wander the cemetery, her mournful cries piercing the darkness. “She’s lost,” they insist, “unable to comprehend her own demise. Her death was abrupt and violent, leaving her trapped in a perpetual state of anguish.”

And thus, the legend endures, centered on the ghostly presence of Eula Phillips. She remains forever tethered to Oakwood Cemetery, a forlorn specter caught in an eternal limbo between life and death. Her story serves as a chilling reminder of the enigmatic and enduring mysteries that linger among the tombstones, haunting the cemetery’s hallowed grounds.

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Haunting Confederate General – Thomas Green

In the vast expanse of Oakwood Cemetery, another spectral legend endures – that of Confederate General Thomas Green, a revered military strategist during the Civil War. His story is shrouded in the bloodshed of the Red River Campaigns in 1864.

Thomas Green, a brilliant Confederate General, met a tragic fate along with most of his troops during a daring charge against a Federal gunboat in the relentless battles of the Red River Campaigns. His spirit, clad in full military regalia, is said to wander the cemetery’s hallowed ground.

What truly captivates the imagination is the recurring phenomenon of phantom hoofbeats. Numerous recordings online capture what many claim to be the eerie repetition of Thomas Green’s death, as he charges relentlessly against the unforgiving gunboat. It’s as if General Green is trapped in an endless loop, reliving that fateful moment of his demise, charging against insurmountable odds.

As a result, the legend persists, with General Thomas Green’s ghost eternally interred in Oakwood Cemetery, replaying his disastrous charge against the Federal gunboat and serving as a chilling reminder of the never-ending tragedies of war that reverberate throughout time.

Disturbing the Dead – Dug out Remains

A persistent story of medical professors who secretly entered unmarked graves is said to have occurred within the fabled walls of Oakwood Cemetery. There, they stole recently interred remains and let loose agitated spirits upon the landscape.

Whispers of these gruesome acts speak of stolen cadavers being covertly given to students for research. It’s a sinister tale that provides an explanation for the agitated ghosts that stalk this location. These tortured spirits wander among the moonlit gravestones, disturbed by the destruction of their final resting places for all time. They now live as ghosts as a result of the evil deeds that disturbed their unending sleep.

The legend lingers, etched into the annals of Oakwood Cemetery, where the stolen cadavers and their anguished spirits continue to haunt the land, a chilling reminder of the unsettling practices that once disturbed the peace of the deceased.

Popular Culture and Media Coverage of Oakwood Cemetery

Renowned for its rich history and eerie mystique, Oakwood Cemetery has earned its place in the spotlight through various television programs and documentaries dedicated to exploring the world of the paranormal. One notable appearance was in the gripping series “Eternal Enigmas: Unraveling Haunted Legends,” where intrepid investigators delved deep into the cemetery’s ghostly tales and spine-tingling encounters.

In the realm of literature, Oakwood Cemetery has left an indelible mark, featuring prominently in works such as “Ghosts In The Graveyard: Texas Cemetery Tales” by Olyve Abbott and “The Ghostly Tales of Austin” by Carie Juettner. These literary treasures peel back the layers of the cemetery’s supernatural narratives, offering compelling accounts of its spectral past.

History buffs and believers in the paranormal are both attracted to Oakwood Cemetery by its enigmatic appearance in media and popular culture. This ancient place of worship emits an air of mystery and the supernatural, attracting anybody looking for an immersive experience in its alluring and ethereal atmosphere.


One cannot help but sense the spirits of the dead as the shadows grow longer and the air grows chilly in Oakwood Cemetery. The ghostly recollections of stories of love, sorrow, and the strange linger in the breeze, serving as a chilling reminder that Oakwood Cemetery is more than just a place of rest but also a place where the lines between the living and the dead are hazy. May the mysteries of this sacred place continue to pull the curious and the brave into its timeless embrace until the next time we meet.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Where is Oakwood Cemetery located?

A. Oakwood Cemetery is nestled in the heart of Austin, Texas, a place of historical significance and enduring mystery.

Q. Who is Eula Phillips, and why is she legendary?

A. Eula Phillips was a young woman whose tragic murder on Christmas Eve in 1885 left her spirit forever haunting the grounds. Some believe she’s connected to a larger serial killer mystery, even predating Jack the Ripper.

Q. Tell me more about General Thomas Green’s legend.

A. General Thomas Green, a Confederate soldier, met a grim fate during the Red River Campaigns in 1864. His ghost, adorned in military attire, is said to roam, with phantom hoofbeats echoing his ill-fated charge against a Federal gunboat.

Q. Is it true there are stories of stolen cadavers associated with the cemetery?

A. Yes, eerie tales persist of medical professors raiding unmarked graves for freshly buried bodies, supposedly used for gruesome student experiments, leaving disturbed spirits in their wake.

Q. Can visitors explore Oakwood Cemetery at night?

A. No, Oakwood Cemetery maintains strict visiting hours, ensuring peaceful rest for its eternal residents. Nighttime entry is prohibited.

Q. Do guided tours take place at Oakwood Cemetery?

A. Certainly, guided tours are periodically offered, allowing visitors to delve into the cemetery’s rich history, including its eerie legends and haunting past.

Q. Is Oakwood Cemetery genuinely haunted, and is it safe to visit?

A. Oakwood Cemetery has earned a reputation for its spectral presence and eerie atmosphere. While it’s considered safe to visit during regular hours, some visitors have reported ghostly encounters. Respect and mindfulness toward the sacred space are encouraged as you explore its haunting history.

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