Albertville Public Library
200 Jackson Street
Should my spirit remain on this plane after my death, it’s my sincere wish that I would remain in a library. The public library in Albertville, a small town in the north east part of the state, is typical of small town libraries throughout the country, but on one account is not so typical: it may be haunted. Built in 1964, the building replaced a much older home. Local legend indicates that spirits from that home may have taken residence in the library building. Apparently harmless, the spirits make their presence known by turning faucets on and playing on the elevator.
In 2010, Albertville was devastated by an EF3 tornado which damaged the library. I can find no word if the spirit remained after repairs.
Albertville, Alabama. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed
16 January 2013.
Eberhart, George. “Library Ghosts: Southern U.S.” Encyclopedia
Britanica Blog. 29 Oct 2008.
Penot, Jessica. Haunted North Alabama. Charleston, SC: History Press,
600 Greensboro Avenue
Like the spirit or spirits that haunt the Albertville Public Library, the identity of the spirits at the Bama Theatre are just as mysterious. This historic 1938 theatre was built by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) during the Great Depression. While research into the theatre’s past have revealed no deaths to link the haunting to, this may be a case of residual energy remaining after years of crowds visiting the theatre.
|Marquee of the Bama Theatre, 2010, by Carol M. Highsmith.|
Courtesy of the George F. Landegger Collection of Alabama
Photographs in Carol M. Highsmith's America, Library of Congress,
Prints and Photographs Division.
One particularly interesting story from the theatre involves an employee who arrived early one morning. As he was making coffee, he heard the elevator moving. He stood at the doors expecting to greet the rider but when the doors opened, he was greeted with a blast of icy air. This is perhaps the most chilling of the paranormal events in this building. Others working in the building have reported shadow figures, odd lights and the distinct feeling of being watched. The building was investigated by the Alabama Paranormal Research Team in recent years, though little evidence to support a haunting was uncovered.
Alabama Paranormal Research Team. Investigation Report on The Bama
Theatre, Tuscaloosa, AL. Accessed 29 November 2012.
Higdon, David & Brett J. Talley. Haunted Tuscaloosa. Charleston, SC:
History Press, 2012.
405 North Commissioners Avenue
The fortunes of Demopolis’ Lyon family reflect the rise and fall of the entire state during the 19th century. While the family owned a large plantation, Bermuda Hill, outside of town, the family required a home in town for business and social functions. The home, Bluff Hall, was constructed in 1832 by Allen Glover for his daughter Sarah and her husband, Francis Strother Lyon.
|Bluff Hall, 2008, by Altairisfar. Courtesy of Wikipedia.|
The revised WPA guide to the state describes the house as “fortress-like in its strength and severity,” an apt description for the magnificently sited home. Occupying one of the bluffs above the Tombigbee River, the home illustrates the Lyon family’s remarkable and powerful position in the region. Francis Lyon, the home’s first owner, served in the Alabama State Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives and the Confederate Congress, all the while running his plantation at Bermuda Hill. The home remained in the Lyon family until just after the turn of the 20th century when another family purchased it as a residence. The Marengo County Historical Society purchased the home in 1967 and restored it to its antebellum glory.
Since its purchase by the historical society, evidently no one had stayed the night in the home until 2003. A group of people staying overnight in the home encountered odd sounds during the evening. When the President of the local Chamber of Commerce went to investigate she was confronted with the apparition of a child on the stairs. Local historians have suggested that the child was the spirit of Leonidas Mecklenburg “Merk” Polk, Francis Lyon’s grandson and also grandson to Confederate General Leonidas Polk, who passed away in the home of scarlet fever in 1877.
“Area rich in ghost stories, folk lore.” Demopolis Times. 30 October
Bluff Hall. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed 14 December
Francis Strother Lyon. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed
14 December 2012.
Hendrix, Barry H. “Image may have been real.” Demopolis Times.
5 November 2003.
Walker, Alyce Billings. ed. Alabama: A Guide to the Deep South, New
Revised Edition. NYC: Hastings House, 1975.
Between Evergreen and Greenville
Interstate 65 ferries drivers from the shores of the Gulf of Mexico in Mobile, Alabama north to the shores of Lake Michigan in Gary, Indiana. The roughly 40 mile stretch between Evergreen, in Conecuh County, and Greenville, in Butler County, is the setting for a legend. Like much of the state of Alabama, this area was initially part of the huge nation of the Muscogee or Creek people. After Alabama’s creation in 1819, these native lands were flooded by land hungry pioneers and tensions rose as the natives watched the theft and degradation of their homeland. Skirmishes between the two groups brought war and orders of removal from Washington. Thousands of Muscogees were forcibly removed from their rich and fertile homeland and resettled in the dry and barren Oklahoma territory.
The Muscogee left behind villages, farmland, their hunting grounds, trails and the bones of their ancestors. According to legend, I-65 cuts a swath through part of this sacred Muscogee territory and, as a result, this section of interstate is cursed. One statistic on this stretch of road that has been passed around states that “between 1984 and 1990, there were 519 accidents, 208 injuries, and 23 deaths on this 40 mile stretch of highway, though the road is straight, even and well maintained.” Not being an expert on highway statistics, I don’t know how this compares to comparable stretches of road. It sounds high, but then again, out of context, I’m not sure how to interpret it.
Back to the legend, many of these accidents are supposedly caused by a something, possibly a human figure, darting across the road. Other reports involve bright lights temporarily blinding drivers. Then again, none of the information on this legend provides specific reports. Perhaps it may just be another old Indian curse legend.
Granato, Sherri. “Haunted America: Interstate 65 in Evergreen,
Alabama." Yahoo Voices. 24 October 2011.
Hauck, Dennis William. Haunted Places: The National Directory. NYC:
Haveman, Christopher. “Creek Indian Removal.” Encyclopedia of
Alabama. 23 February 2012.