When most people think about the great state of Tennessee, the first thing that tends to come to mind is music and with good reason. However, that is certainly not all that the state is known for, it is also somewhere that is home to some of the most terrifying haunted locations in America.
Let’s get up close and personal with some of the most haunted places in Tennessee:
1. Greenwood Cemetery, Chattanooga
Cemeteries are common places that have ghostly sightings and other paranormal activity. The Greenwood Cemetery in Chattanooga is no different.
The ghost that is most often seen around the Greenwood Cemetery was once a wealthy woman who lived across the lake with her husband. After becoming wheelchair-bound because of health issues her husband decided to cheat on her and eventually killed her.
People say that it is possible to see the tracks from a wheelchair on the cemetery grounds. Furthermore, people who claim to have seen the woman say she is not in human form but is more of a green mist.
Conflicting reports say they have seen the woman wandering near the lake and she appears to be a shade of green.
2. Sensabaugh Tunnel, Kingsport
People living in Kingsport have heard the stories about one of the most haunted locations in East Tennessee, the Sensabaugh Tunnel. Any place that has been around since the 1920s and is apparently the sight of a mass murder is sure to be the sight of paranormal activity.
Paranormal investigators travel to the Sensabaugh Tunnel in the hopes of acquiring an EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomenon). They also hope they might be fortunate enough to capture one of the ghosts that hang around the tunnel with their cameras.
It is not uncommon to hear the crying of a baby in the tunnel or seeing orbs in and around it.
Many visitors to the area say they have heard what they assume to be the murdered family members of Mr. Sensabaugh, the namesake of the tunnel.
3. Gwendolyn’s House, Elizabethton
People looking for haunted places in Elizabethton need to check out Gwendolyn’s House. The home has been around since the early 1900s. One of the overall opinions of the property is that it is incredibly scary to visit.
People have witnessed what appears to be the ghost of a black dog running around the house in both the basement and the hallways.
Other sightings include a woman in white who likes to stand in or near the windows of the house.
Ghost hunters that have been to Gwendolyn’s House also say that when people enter the home a ghost or entity that is angry screams at them.
Who the entity is and why they are so aggressive is not known.
4. Wheatland Plantation, Sevierville
Ghost hunters who travel to the Wheatland Plantation in Sevierville Tennessee are in for a real treat.
The location is one of the most haunted houses in East Tennessee courtesy of its horrible history that is filled with murders and deaths numbering over seventy.
The location was the location of battles fought during the Civil and Revolutionary wars. If that is not enough there are also nearly 70 graves for African Slaves, a mass grave for roughly 28 Cherokee Indians, and a couple of soldiers from the Revolutionary War.
Some of the ghosts that wander around the property are from the Chandler family who once called the plantation home. Investigators have captured what sounds like Native Americans chanting when doing a spirit box session.
In the basement of the plantation some people have sensed that children were present. Another investigator reported that she had a difficult time breathing while in the basement and began crying uncontrollably for no apparent reason.
Because of all of the death around the entirety of the plantation people have sensed or seen ghostly figures all over the property.
5. Bethesda Church & Cemetery, Morristown
In Morristown, the Bethesda Church and Cemetery is said to have an incredible amount of restless spirits wandering around. The ghosts that people have seen in and around the church are mainly confederate soldiers that perished many years ago.
One witness who was passing the cemetery and church on his way home in the wee hours of the night saw what appeared to be a Confederate soldier. He was apparently swinging an old-fashioned lantern.
Another witness stated he saw two Confederate soldiers standing outside the church carrying on a conversation. When they appeared to spot the witness they continued talking and walked around the corner of the church disappearing out of sight.
There is also the ghost of a woman who appears to be crying on one side of the far side of the cemetery. If you are there at night there is a good chance you can hear her crying.
6. Bijou Theater, Knoxville
Old theaters are frequently on lists of haunted places to visit and this list is no different. When visiting Knoxville many people like to make their way to the historic and glamorous Bijou Theater.
The structure is in remarkable condition and is a favorite spot for people looking for entertainment. Along with the entertainment people visiting the Bijou may also encounter a ghost or two.
The only ghost that has been identified is Colonel William Sanders. He passed away in the bridal suite of the theater.
Other ghosts that haunt the theater include soldiers who perished in the theater when it served as a hospital. The halls are also home to a rather angry ghost.
7. Rotherwood Mansion, Kingsport
The Rotherwood Mansion is definitely one of the haunted houses in East Tennessee that ghost hunters enjoy visiting. The home is almost 200 years old and has an incredibly tragic history.
The home was built by Reverend Frederick Ross. The beautiful home would prove to be a location of tragedy and despair for his daughter Rowena. She lost her first love on the day of her wedding prior to the ceremony.
She went on to lose another love and eventually her daughter perished. Unable to live Rowena killed herself by drowning in the lake in which her first fiancé perished.
After so much tragedy Rowena’s spirit is still present at the Rotherwood Mansion. People have seen her wandering around the property in a long flowing white dress.
People have also heard unnerving laughter after sundown, seen creepy eyes in the windows and even witnessed a large black dog, which is a ghost, roaming the property and howling.
It is believed, after the home changed hands it became the property of a slave owner, the laughter and other unusual activity is from the ghosts of some of the former slaves.
8. The Delta Queen, Chattanooga
The Delta Queen was once an impressive vessel that carried people around the Tennessee waterways and more. Today the Delta Queen is a hotel docked in Chattanooga.
People can come and see the impressive Delta Queen, stay the night and enjoy a fabulous time. Some of the guests that visit the Delta Queen also get the opportunity to encounter shadows in some of the bedrooms.
Some people find their attempts to enjoy the Delta Queen’s bar prevented courtesy of the ghost of Mary B. Greene who still lives on the ship.
9. Lakeshore Asylum, Knoxville
Back in 1886 Tennessee needed a mental institution so they opened the East Tennessee Hospital for the Insane. Years later it was renamed the Lakeshore Asylum.
People who have gone to the Lakeshore Asylum to investigate state there is a lot of ghostly activity through the building.
Ghost hunters and other people who have found themselves within the confines of the old structure have heard screams of what can only be former patients echoing around the halls.
Strange looking figures have also been spotted around the building.
10. The Historic Read House Hotel, ChattanoogaSTAY HERE
The Sheraton Reed House Hotel is one of the haunted hotels in Tennessee that has verified ghosts haunting the building. The hotel has served and an elegant place to stay for people since the late 1800s.
It has also been home to deaths by natural causes as well as murders and suicides. The ghost of Annalisa Netherly is believed to haunt Room 311, the location where her husband murdered her upon finding out she was having an affair.
Outside of Room 311 things get moved around in rooms, people see shadows in mirrors some people have even claimed to see what appears to be someone reclining on the bed when no one is there.
Some guests of the hotel and former employees state there is also the ghost of a man and a woman who may have been a prostitute haunting the hotel to this day.
Some say the man’s ghost hangs around because he was either murdered or committed suicide while on the premises.
11. Carnton Plantation, Franklin
Carnton Plantation has the unusual feature of having a front porch that overlooks a graveyard where approximately 1700 Confederate troops were buried in the wake of a bloody battle nearby.
Shortly after the mass burial, the mansion was transformed into a hospital. There were four Generals who died inside and the staff held on to their bodies so that survivors would later be able to pay their respects.
All of this explains why so many witnesses have seen the ghosts of confederate soldiers roaming around the mansion and its grounds. However, these are not the only spirits said to haunt the Carnton Mansion.
It has also been suggested that the spirits of the Carnton children are also haunting their former home since only two of the five children survived to adulthood.
All of this is more than enough to secure Carnton Mansion as one of the most haunted houses in Tennessee, but there are yet more restless spirits here!
Among the other spirits spotted in the mansion are a young girl who was murdered by a jealous suitor, the family cook who is struggling to let go of her duties to the family and a beautiful woman with long dark hair.
12. Resthaven Memorial Gardens, Clarksville
If ever there was a location that fails to live up to its name, then surely it has to be RestHaven Memorial Gardens. There is not much restful about a place that is considered to be one of the most haunted locations in Tennessee.
Nearby, you will find a house in which a brutal slave owner once resided. It is rumoured that one of the slaves raped his daughter and got her pregnant. The owner killed the slave in a fit of rage.
The slave’s ghost is often seen wandering the grounds and the memorial gardens in search of his lost child.
This has led to speculation that he did not rape the girl, but that the pair had fallen in love – something the slave owner was unwilling to accept as a possibility.
13. Wheatlands Plantation, Sevierville
Wheatlands Plantation has a long history that is marred by murder, death and destruction. It is absolutely no surprise to those who know this history that the house has been named one of the most haunted houses in Tennessee!
This is not the first house to stand here, the original actually burned to the ground in 1825 claiming the lives of 4 children. This probably explains why there are so many reports of a child like spirit in the basement of the new building.
There is also a mass grave on the property which is said to hold the remains of 28 Cherokee Indians, 2 Revolutionary War soldiers and almost 70 African Slaves.
There have also been more than 70 known murders on this property and some of the walls are still stained with blood. It is no wonder this place is infested with spirits.
14. Rotherwood Mansion, Kingsport
It was built in 1818 by a wealthy reverend named Frederick Ross. He intended the home to be a sanctuary, but instead it became a place of despair.
Ross’ daughter Rowena had to watch helplessly as her husband to be drowned in the nearby river on their wedding day.
She became somewhat reclusive and seldom left the house. At last she was ready to open her heart again, but this time her lover died of yellow fever within the first year of their marriage.
Ten years later she tried a third time to find love and even gave birth to a daughter of her own.
However, once again she was left devastated when the girl died. Rowena could take it no longer and drowned herself in that same river her first love had. Could it be that she was cursed? Is that why she still roams the property always looking for true love?
Later, the mansion was purchased by a cruel slave owner who is said to have tortured his slaves. Did his evil deeds contribute to the hauntings here?
Many have said that he is to blame for a menacing presence that takes the form of a black dog. There have also been reports of maniacal laughter and of terrifying faces peering in the windows at night!
15. Pegram Family Cemetery, Pegram
In 1970, a group of developers bulldozed an area along the Harpeth River while working on a housing development. However, in the process they tragically destroyed the Pegram Family Cemetery.
The dirt from the land was sold as fill dirt across two counties. Five years later, the river waters rose and all of the homes built on the land that was once the cemetery were flooded.
During the flood, some coffins that had not been relocated floated to the surface. One in particular belonged to the town’s very first postmistress – Carrie Pegram Heath.
Since then the town has had nothing but bad luck. It floods with some regularity and the seemingly cursed land has had no end of financial hardships.
There is an overall feeling of unrest and malice lingering in the air and some of the homeowners have claimed to see tombstones appearing and disappearing in their gardens.
16. Orpheum Theatre, Memphis
The Orpheum Theatre in Memphis is said to be haunted by the spirit of a little girl named Mary who died in some kind of accident on a nearby street.
She has been hanging around in the theatre for about sixty years now even although the original building burned down in 1923 and reopened in 1928.
She is often seen in her favourite seat – C5 and sometimes she is heard giggling while running up and down the aisles.
17. Tennessee State Prison, Nashville
Tennessee State Prison was built in 1898 and over the years that it was in operation it gained notoriety thanks to several attempted break outs, riots and overcrowding.
It also became famous when it was used during the filming of both ‘The Green Mile and ‘Ernest Goes to Jail’. Today it lies abandoned, but it is certainly not unoccupied!
There are frequent reports of cell doors closing by themselves, cold spots, phantom footsteps and even boot prints in the dust where no living person has walked!
18. Bell Witch Cave, Adams
One of the most famous ghost stories from Tennessee has got to be the tale of the Bell Witch. Even those who are not particularly interested in the paranormal know this story!
The Bell Witch was said to have murdered John Bell and also tormented his entire family with poltergeist style activity for several years. At one point, the terror was so intense that President Andrew Jackson refused to stay in the Bell house overnight!
This malicious spirit is said to be an extremely wicked woman named Kate Batts. She was malevolent in her life and even more so in death as evidenced by her murderous ghost. She is still said to haunt the cave next to John Bell’s farm…
Some of the most commonly reported activity includes sightings of strange looking animals, rattling chains and unexplained knocking.
19. Hales Bar Marina & Dam, Guild
Hales Bar Marina & Dam was built along the Tennessee river in 1905 in order to tame the natural whirlpool.
The local Native American tribes were not happy with its construction and were said to have put a curse on the dam. Could this be why the structure is said to be one of the most haunted buildings in Tennessee?
Visitors, staff and paranormal groups have all reported a variety of paranormal activity which includes Native American war cries, chanting, dark figures and even the apparition of a little girl in a pink dress who is said to have drowned here.
It is said that her remains are still trapped in the dam which would explain why she has been unable to rest.
If you’ve got a keen interest in the paranomal or just thrill-seeking in general, then spending a night in one of the most haunted hotels in Tennessee should be on your bucket list! To be in with te best chance of experiencing something paranormal, ask for the most haunted room!
The birth place of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Memphis draws millions of visitors each and every year. However it’s not just the music and the culture that brings people to Memphis, its the history and the haunted sites too. From historic theatres and cemeteries to old museums and even the home of Elvis, all of which are some of the most haunted in Tennessee.
More Haunted Cities in Tennessee
Perhaps better known for its music, Nashville certainly plays to the beat of its own drum. However, it’s not only the music that draws people in, it’s the haunted locations and the ghost stories too. Ghost hunters statewide flock to Nashville to try and catch something paranormal.
With a history dating back to the late 18th century, Knoxville, a.k.a. the Marble City has seen its fair share of war, death, and tragedy. It’s a perfect storm for many ghost stories and haunted locations to come to fruitition.