Most Haunted Places in Delaware: Exploring the State’s Spookiest Locations

  • By: Timothy Rose
  • Date: 25 August 2023
  • Time to read: 19 min.

Delaware is home to many allegedly haunted places, with stories of paranormal activity and ghost sightings. These tales have been passed down through generations, and many of the haunted places have become popular tourist attractions. From the most haunted road in Delaware to the spooky mansions of Wilmington, there are plenty of places to explore for those interested in the paranormal.

One of the most famous haunted places in Delaware is Old Maggie’s Bridge in Seaford. According to legend, a young, pregnant woman named Maggie Bloxom was decapitated in an accident on the bridge in the late 19th century. Visitors to the bridge have reported seeing Maggie’s ghostly figure, and some have even claimed to hear her voice or feel her presence. This has made Old Maggie’s Bridge a popular spot for ghost hunters and thrill-seekers alike.

Another haunted location in Delaware is the Rockwood Mansion in Wilmington. This English country-style mansion-turned-museum has a long history of paranormal activity, with staff and visitors reporting changes in temperature, scents of lilac, and even apparitions of its late residents. One particular ghost named Mary is believed to haunt the mansion, as she lived there until she was 100 years old and died in the mansion. With its rich history and spooky reputation, the Rockwood Mansion is a must-visit for those interested in the paranormal.

Notable Haunted Places in Delaware

Delaware has a rich history, and with history comes ghost stories. Here are some of the most notable haunted places in Delaware:

Old Maggie’s Bridge, Seaford

In the heart of Seaford, Delaware, a seemingly ordinary wooden bridge carries with it a chilling legend. Known as Old Maggie’s Bridge, locals whisper of a tragic tale from years gone by. Legend has it that a young woman named Maggie was traveling by horse and carriage one fateful night. As she crossed the bridge, a terrible accident occurred, causing the carriage to topple into the water below. Maggie, desperate to save her baby, plunged into the murky depths. She never resurfaced.

Old Maggie's Bridge, Seaford
Old Maggie’s Bridge, Seaford

The story takes a darker turn when night falls. Travelers and thrill-seekers alike have reported eerie encounters on and around the bridge. Some claim to have seen a ghostly figure of a woman, wandering the banks, her cries echoing through the night. “Where’s my baby?” she wails, her voice filled with anguish. Others have felt cold spots, even on the warmest of nights, or experienced sudden malfunctions with their vehicles. A few brave souls have even tried calling out to Maggie, only to be met with an overwhelming sense of dread. Locals believe this is Maggie’s restless spirit, forever searching for her lost child.

The aftermath of these encounters has left an indelible mark on the community. While some dismiss the tales as mere urban legends, others are convinced of Maggie’s presence. Over the years, the bridge has become a hotspot for paranormal enthusiasts, eager to catch a glimpse of the spectral mother. However, many in Seaford advise against seeking out Maggie, fearing the consequences of disturbing her eternal search. Whether fact or fiction, the legend of Old Maggie’s Bridge serves as a haunting reminder of the thin veil that separates our world from the unknown.

Fort Delaware

Nestled on Pea Patch Island in the Delaware River, Fort Delaware stands as a formidable stone fortress with a history steeped in both war and whispers of the supernatural. Constructed in the 19th century, this Civil War prison once held thousands of Confederate prisoners of war. The conditions were harsh, with overcrowding, disease, and limited supplies. Many prisoners met their end within these cold walls, and it’s said that not all of them have found peace.

As night blankets the fort, tales of ghostly apparitions come to life. Visitors and staff have reported seeing spectral soldiers, still clad in their Civil War uniforms, wandering the corridors. The sounds of chains dragging, disembodied voices, and even the mournful notes of a ghostly bugle have echoed through the empty halls. One of the most renowned spirits is a Confederate officer named Captain Beula. He’s often seen standing by the windows, gazing out as if waiting for something—or someone. Some believe he’s still on the lookout for his troops, while others think he’s forever trapped, reliving his final days.

The chilling encounters at Fort Delaware have drawn paranormal investigators from all over the country. Many have captured unexplained phenomena, from eerie EVP recordings to shadowy figures caught on camera. But beyond the ghostly tales, the fort serves as a poignant reminder of a turbulent time in American history. Today, it stands not just as a testament to the past, but as a bridge between the living and the departed. Those who visit are left with a deep sense of reverence—and often, a few spine-tingling stories of their own.

Woodburn Governor’s Mansion

In the heart of Dover, Delaware, the Woodburn Governor’s Mansion stands as a testament to history and high society. Built in the late 18th century, this elegant Georgian home has housed Delaware’s governors since 1965. But long before it became the official residence, it was the setting for lavish parties and gatherings of the elite. Yet, amidst the grandeur and political affairs, whispers of otherworldly residents have persisted, making it one of Delaware’s most haunted landmarks.

Woodburn Governor’s Mansion – Credit Jeffrey

The mansion’s rich history is intertwined with tales of the supernatural. Guests and residents alike have reported encounters with several spirits. The most famous is a wine-loving ghost, believed to be a former resident or perhaps a servant. This playful spirit has been known to empty wine bottles and even offer spectral toasts during official events. Another apparition, a young girl in period clothing, has been seen playing in the garden, her laughter echoing in the stillness. Then there’s the mysterious figure of a Revolutionary War soldier, often spotted standing guard near the property’s entrance, his presence a silent reminder of the home’s historical roots.

The tales of the Woodburn Governor’s Mansion have become an integral part of its legacy. While some skeptics dismiss the stories as mere folklore, many believe that the mansion’s long history has left an indelible imprint, allowing past residents to linger long after their time. Today, the mansion continues to serve as the governor’s residence, hosting official events and public tours. Visitors are not only treated to a glimpse of Delaware’s political history but, if they’re lucky, a brush with its resident phantoms. Whether drawn by history or the hope of a ghostly encounter, all leave with a deeper appreciation for this storied mansion’s place in Delaware lore.

The Addy Sea

Perched on the shores of Bethany Beach, Delaware, the Addy Sea is a quaint, Victorian-era bed and breakfast that offers more than just a serene seaside escape. Behind its charming facade lies a tapestry of tales that have intrigued both paranormal enthusiasts and casual visitors for decades. Built in the early 1900s, this historic inn has become as famous for its ghostly residents as it has for its ocean views and cozy accommodations.

Guests of the Addy Sea have recounted numerous eerie experiences, with each of the inn’s three floors said to be haunted by a different spirit. Room 1 is known for its mysteriously shaking bathtub, believed to be the work of a former employee who met a tragic end. In Room 6, visitors have reported waking up to the sensation of someone sitting on the edge of their bed, only to find no one there. But it’s Room 11 that holds the most chilling tale. Here, the ghost of a young woman named Paula is said to roam, her melancholic piano playing often heard in the dead of night. Legend has it that Paula was a talented musician who died under mysterious circumstances, her spirit forever bound to the room where she once found solace.

The allure of the Addy Sea goes beyond its paranormal reputation. Today, it remains a popular destination for those seeking both a beachside retreat and a brush with the unknown. The inn’s owners embrace its haunted history, even offering ghost tours and special events for the curious. Whether drawn by the promise of a spectral encounter or simply the charm of a historic seaside inn, guests of the Addy Sea are guaranteed an unforgettable stay. And as the waves crash against the shore, the stories of its ghostly inhabitants continue to captivate all who enter its doors.

Bellevue Hall, Wilmington

In the picturesque landscapes of Wilmington, Delaware, the grandeur of Bellevue Hall stands tall, echoing tales from the past. Once a proud possession of the illustrious du Pont family, this majestic mansion is nestled within the expansive Bellevue State Park. But beyond its architectural beauty and historical significance, whispers of eerie occurrences have woven a tapestry of ghostly tales around it. The mansion’s legacy, dating back to the 1800s, intertwines seamlessly with stories of laughter and screams that seemingly emanate from nowhere, particularly from its second and third floors.

Bellevue Hall, Wilmington
Bellevue Hall, Wilmington

As darkness descends, the tales grow more vivid. Staff members and visitors alike have reported uncanny experiences. Some speak of disembodied laughter, echoing through the hallways, while others recount chilling screams that pierce the silence of the night. The mansion, with its rich history, seems to have retained remnants of its past, with spirits that refuse to leave. These tales aren’t just limited to the mansion; the entire state park, including the lesser-known Cauffiel House, is believed to be a playground for these spectral entities.

The aftermath of these tales has left an indelible mark on the community. While skeptics dismiss them as mere folklore, many are convinced of the mansion’s haunted nature. Recognizing the intrigue it holds, Bellevue State Park has begun hosting ghost tours, especially in the month of October. These tours offer brave souls a chance to explore the grounds, the mansion, and perhaps, if they’re fortunate, experience a paranormal encounter. Whether it’s the allure of history or the thrill of the unknown, Bellevue Hall continues to captivate the hearts and minds of all who venture near.

Long Cemetery, Frankford

Tucked away in Frankford, Delaware, the Long Cemetery holds more than just the memories of the departed. It’s a place where legends and eerie tales have taken root, casting a shadow of mystery over the hallowed grounds. For locals, the cemetery isn’t just a resting place for ancestors; it’s also home to the legendary “Catman,” a spectral figure that has become an integral part of the area’s folklore.

The legend of the Catman is both haunting and intriguing. Described as a ghostly figure with cat-like features, he is believed to have been a caretaker of the cemetery in life. Now, in death, he continues his duties, guarding the graves and ensuring the peace of the departed souls. But there’s a twist to his tale. Local teens and young adults, drawn to the cemetery for late-night escapades, have often been scared away by the Catman. Some say that if you knock three times on his above-ground tomb located at the cemetery’s center, he’ll play tricks on you, often sabotaging your car to prevent you from leaving the grounds.

The aftermath of these encounters has left a lasting impact on the community. While some dismiss the tales as mere urban legends, many believe in the Catman‘s presence. Whether it’s the allure of a ghostly guardian or the thrill of a paranormal encounter, Long Cemetery continues to captivate the imagination of all who hear its tales. And as night falls, those brave enough to venture near might just catch a glimpse of the Catman, forever watching over his sacred domain.

Rockwood Mansion, Wilmington

In the bustling city of Wilmington, Delaware, the historic Rockwood Mansion stands as a testament to time, elegance, and a few spine-chilling tales. This 19th-century estate, now transformed into a museum, is not just a relic of architectural grandeur but also a hotspot for paranormal enthusiasts. The mansion, with its sprawling grounds, has been the subject of numerous ghostly encounters, making it a must-visit for those intrigued by the unknown.

Rockwood Mansion, Wilmington - Credit Bryan Costin
Rockwood Mansion, Wilmington – Credit Bryan Costin

The mansion’s most famous spectral resident is none other than the family that built it. Despite having passed away long ago, many believe that their spirits still roam the halls of Rockwood. Visitors and staff have reported a myriad of unexplained phenomena, from sudden cold spots to the faint scent of perfume wafting through the air. But it’s not just about fleeting sensations. Some have claimed to hear ghostly laughter, while others have seen apparitions, particularly in the dimly lit corners of the mansion. The tales are so compelling that the mansion even caught the attention of the popular TV show ‘Ghost Hunters’.

The stories surrounding Rockwood Mansion have left an indelible mark on the local community. While some view them with skepticism, many are convinced of the mansion’s haunted nature. Today, the estate not only serves as a museum but also as a venue for paranormal investigations and tours, especially around Halloween. Whether one is drawn by its historical significance or the allure of the supernatural, Rockwood Mansion promises an experience that is both enlightening and eerie.

Cannonball House, Lewes

In the historic town of Lewes, Delaware, the Cannonball House stands not just as a testament to times gone by, but also as a beacon for tales of the supernatural. While its walls bear the scars of a British-fired cannonball from the War of 1812, many believe that the spirits of the past have never truly left. Over the years, the house has become synonymous with eerie occurrences, drawing both history buffs and paranormal enthusiasts.

Whispers of ghostly apparitions have long been associated with the Cannonball House. Visitors often speak of seeing shadowy figures moving through the rooms, particularly in the dim evening light. Soft footsteps, unexplained cold drafts, and the faint murmur of voices from seemingly empty rooms have been reported. The most intriguing tale is that of a former resident, believed to be a pilot from the Bay & River Delaware. This spirit is often seen gazing out of the windows, perhaps still watching over the waters he once navigated. Some say he’s searching for his ship, forever lost to time.

The tales surrounding the Cannonball House have left an indelible mark on the community of Lewes. While some dismiss them as mere folklore, many are convinced of the house’s haunted nature. Paranormal investigators have been drawn to the property, eager to uncover the mysteries that lie within. Whether it’s the allure of history or the thrill of a ghostly encounter, the Cannonball House promises an experience that lingers long after one departs its hallowed halls.

Poplar Hall, Odessa

Nestled in Odessa, Delaware, Poplar Hall stands as a beacon of history and mystery. This house, which has witnessed years of war and destruction, is not just a testament to the resilience of the past but also a hub of paranormal tales. Built in 1739 by Judge Samuel Dickinson, the house faced the wrath of a British raid in 1781 during the Revolution and was nearly obliterated by a fire in 1804. Yet, its walls have tales that go beyond mere historical events.

Poplar Hall was once the abode of John Dickinson, famously known as “The Penman of the American Revolution.” Though he resided in the house for a mere two years, many believe his spirit has never truly departed. Visitors to the house, now owned by the state of Delaware and operated as a museum, have reported uncanny sounds emanating from John Dickinson’s study. The distinct sound of a quill pen scratching across parchment paper can be heard, echoing the writings of a time gone by. But that’s not all. The mansion has been a hotbed of other mysterious occurrences. Doors that refuse to stay shut, tools mysteriously moved, and even a key that went missing only to be found under a previously unnoticed coiled rope.

The tales of Poplar Hall have left many intrigued and some spooked. While some attribute these occurrences to the playful spirit of Susan, a family member who tragically perished in a fire, others believe there might be more spirits roaming the halls. The house, with its rich history and eerie tales, continues to draw visitors, historians, and paranormal enthusiasts alike, all eager to experience the blend of history and mystery that Poplar Hall offers.

Delaware City Hotel

Delaware City Hotel is a name that resonates with tales of the past and whispers of the supernatural. Located in the heart of Delaware City, this historic establishment has seen countless guests come and go, but some say not all have truly left. The hotel, with its vintage charm and creaky wooden floors, has been the backdrop for many stories, some of which have taken a paranormal twist.

Delaware City Hotel - Credit Chris Connelly
Delaware City Hotel – Credit Chris Connelly

Guests and staff alike have reported eerie occurrences that defy explanation. From the soft, distant sound of laughter echoing through empty hallways to the sudden drop in temperature in certain rooms, the hotel seems to be alive with activity. Some have even claimed to see apparitions of former guests, dressed in period clothing, wandering the corridors or staring out of windows. One particular tale speaks of a lady in a Victorian dress who is often seen in the ballroom, dancing alone, lost in her own world. Her identity remains a mystery, but many believe she’s a spirit from the hotel’s early days, still reliving her moments of joy.

The aftermath of these encounters varies. While some guests leave with a thrilling story to tell, others are left deeply unsettled, vowing never to return. Paranormal investigators have been drawn to the Delaware City Hotel, hoping to catch evidence of the supernatural. Some have recorded unexplained voices, while others have captured ghostly figures on camera. Despite the chilling tales, the hotel remains a popular destination, with many visitors eager to experience its haunted history firsthand.

Smyrna Museum, Smyrna

In the quaint town of Smyrna, Delaware, the Smyrna Museum stands as a beacon of history, but it’s not just the artifacts that draw attention. This museum, housed in a structure once known as “The Barracks,” has tales that go beyond the displayed exhibits. While the museum showcases the rich history of the town, there are whispers of unexplained occurrences that have left many visitors with more questions than answers.

The museum’s walls, which have witnessed centuries of history, are believed to echo with more than just the past. Visitors and staff have reported strange sounds, from soft whispers to footsteps when no one else is around. Some even claim to have felt an unseen presence, as if being watched by someone from the shadows. The most chilling tales revolve around apparitions, seen fleetingly before vanishing into thin air. These spirits, believed to be remnants of the past, seem to have stories of their own, waiting to be discovered.

The tales of the Smyrna Museum have intrigued both locals and tourists. While some come to explore the town’s history, others are drawn by the allure of the paranormal. Over the years, the museum has become a hotspot for paranormal enthusiasts, eager to uncover the mysteries that the old “Barracks” holds. Whether it’s the artifacts or the ghostly tales, the Smyrna Museum promises an experience that is both educational and spine-tingling.

Christiana Fire Company Station 12, Christiana

In the heart of Christiana, Delaware, the Christiana Fire Company Station 12 stands as a beacon of safety and service. But beyond its role in firefighting, the station holds tales that send shivers down the spine. While fire stations are typically associated with heroism and safety, this particular station has become the talk of the town for reasons that venture into the realm of the supernatural.

The station is believed to be haunted by two distinct spirits, often likened to the dual personalities of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. One spirit is described as kind and benevolent, while the other is darker and more malevolent. The latter is often seen as a shadowy figure, looming ominously in the doorway of the engineer’s room. This dark apparition seems to make its presence known more frequently than its kinder counterpart. Tales suggest that these two spirits are in constant conflict, reminiscent of the battle between good and evil. Firefighters stationed here have reportedly witnessed these spectral occurrences, adding credibility to the tales.

The stories surrounding the Christiana Fire Company Station 12 have left an indelible mark on the community. While some dismiss them as mere tales spun around a campfire, others believe in the station’s haunted nature. Paranormal enthusiasts and curious locals often visit, hoping to catch a glimpse of the spirits said to roam its halls. Whether it’s the allure of the unknown or the thrill of a ghostly encounter, the station promises an experience that is both chilling and unforgettable.

Famous Ghosts and Spirits

Delaware is home to many famous ghosts and spirits, some of which have been the subject of ghost hunting expeditions and paranormal investigations. Here are a few of the most notable:

  • Phantom Soldier: The ghost of a soldier has been seen in Fort Delaware State Park, which was used as a prison during the Civil War. Visitors have reported seeing a man in a uniform walking through the fort, and some have even claimed to hear the sound of marching feet.

  • The Shadowman: The Shadowman is a ghost that has been seen in several locations throughout Delaware, including the John Dickinson Plantation and the Governor’s Mansion in Dover. He appears as a dark figure with glowing red eyes and is said to be a malevolent presence.

  • Headless Horseman: The Headless Horseman is a famous ghost that has been seen in many locations throughout the United States, including Delaware. According to legend, he was a Hessian soldier who was beheaded during the Revolutionary War and now rides through the countryside at night, searching for his missing head.

  • Charlie Miller: Charlie Miller was a notorious bootlegger who operated in Delaware during Prohibition. He was shot and killed by police in 1927 and is said to haunt the site of his former speakeasy, which is now a restaurant called the Deer Park Tavern.

  • Old Maggie’s Bridge: Old Maggie’s Bridge is a short bridge in Seaford that is said to be haunted by the ghost of a young pregnant woman named Maggie Bloxom who was decapitated in an accident on the bridge in the late 19th century. Visitors have reported seeing her ghostly figure walking along the bridge at night.

  • Cat Man’s Grave: The grave of a man who was known as the “Cat Man” is located in the cemetery of the St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Lewes. He was a local eccentric who was known for his love of cats and is said to haunt the churchyard to this day.

Ghost hunters and paranormal enthusiasts have long been drawn to Delaware’s haunted locations, and many have reported experiencing strange phenomena and unexplained occurrences. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, Delaware’s haunted history is a fascinating subject that continues to captivate visitors and locals alike.

Haunted Places Outside of Cities

Delaware is not only home to haunted places in cities but also in its vast natural landscapes. Here are some of the most haunted places outside of cities in Delaware:

Cape Henlopen State Park

Cape Henlopen State Park is a popular destination for nature lovers, but it is also known for its paranormal activity. Visitors have reported hearing strange noises and seeing apparitions of soldiers from the Civil War. The park was once home to Fort Miles, a military base during World War II, which may explain the presence of these spirits.

Cape Henlopen State Park - credit Lee Cannon
Cape Henlopen State Park – credit Lee Cannon

Lums Pond State Park

Lums Pond State Park is another outdoor destination that is believed to be haunted. Visitors have reported seeing apparitions of a woman in white and hearing strange noises coming from the woods. It is said that the woman in white is the ghost of a woman who drowned in the pond many years ago.

Pea Patch Island

Pea Patch Island, located in the Delaware River, is home to Fort Delaware, a Civil War-era fort that served as a prison for Confederate soldiers. Visitors have reported hearing footsteps and seeing apparitions of soldiers wandering the grounds. The fort is open for tours, and visitors can experience the eerie atmosphere for themselves.

These are just a few of the haunted places outside of cities in Delaware. Whether you believe in the paranormal or not, visiting these locations can be a thrilling experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some of the most haunted places in Delaware?

Delaware has a number of haunted places that are believed to be home to mischievous spirits. Some of the most famous haunted places in Delaware include the Rockwood Mansion, the Addy Sea Bed and Breakfast, and the Fort Delaware State Park.

Can you share any ghost stories associated with Delaware’s haunted places?

There are many ghost stories associated with Delaware’s haunted places. For example, at the Rockwood Mansion, visitors have reported seeing a ghostly woman in a white dress, believed to be Mary, a former resident of the mansion. At the Fort Delaware State Park, visitors have reported hearing strange noises and seeing ghostly apparitions, believed to be the spirits of former prisoners of war.

Are any of Delaware’s haunted places open to the public for tours?

Yes, some of Delaware’s haunted places are open to the public for tours. For example, the Rockwood Mansion offers guided tours that take visitors through the mansion and its grounds, giving them a chance to learn about the history of the mansion and its ghostly residents. The Fort Delaware State Park also offers guided tours that take visitors through the fort and its prison, giving them a chance to learn about the history of the fort and its haunted past.

What is the history behind the haunted places in Delaware?

The haunted places in Delaware have a rich history that dates back to the state’s early days. Many of these places were once home to prominent families or served as important sites during wars and other historical events. Over time, these places have become associated with ghostly sightings and other paranormal activity.

Have there been any paranormal investigations conducted at Delaware’s haunted places?

Yes, there have been many paranormal investigations conducted at Delaware’s haunted places. These investigations have included the use of equipment such as EMF meters, thermal cameras, and audio recorders to capture evidence of paranormal activity. Many of these investigations have yielded interesting results, leading to further exploration of Delaware’s haunted places.

Are there any reported sightings of ghosts or paranormal activity at Delaware’s haunted places?

Yes, there have been many reported sightings of ghosts and paranormal activity at Delaware’s haunted places. Visitors to these places have reported hearing strange noises, seeing ghostly apparitions, and feeling a sense of unease or being watched. While some of these sightings may be attributed to natural phenomena or psychological factors, many remain unexplained, adding to the mystery and intrigue of Delaware’s haunted places.

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