Pensacola is old. We’re talking established-in-1559 old.
A city with 463 years of history is bound to have a few ghosts here and there.
While there are no confirmed ghost sightings, there are more than a dozen places that have a history of strange things happening.
From a lighthouse and Civil War forts to Victorian houses and cemeteries dating back hundreds of years, here are 12 places that might make you question whether or not ghosts are real.
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The Pensacola Lighthouse might be Pensacola's best-known spot for paranormal activity. The Travel Channel has featured the lighthouse on its "Most Haunted Lighthouses" segment, and the popular show "Ghost Hunters" also filmed a segment at the lighthouse, which is supposedly home to up to eight spirits.
Before Naval Air Station Pensacola was closed to the general public, night tours were available. Visitors could hear tales of some of the spirits, like Ellen Mueller, who grew up in the lighthouse and even married there before she died while giving birth.
Fort Barrancas and Fort Pickens
Confederate soldiers who died in battle are said to haunt Fort Barrancas at Naval Air Station Pensacola, not far from the lighthouse. Across the water, Fort Pickens is also said to be haunted, with numerous reports of apparitions appearing over the years.
Many of the spirits said to be haunting Fort Pickens are Native Americans. They allegedly take the form of sounds through ghostly whispers and conversations. People have also reported to being overcome by strong emotions when next to a section of a wall that was blown away in an explosion of gun powder.
Several people online have made claims to have seen apparitions of dead Confederate soldiers at Fort Barrancas. Others have said they heard moaning and saw cell doors move on their own.
The Grand Dame of Palafox was built in 1925, and like any good old-time theater, it's said to be haunted. People have reported hearing and seeing strange things on the balcony. Local psychic Sharon Renae investigated the Saenger and said her investigation did pick up electronic voice phenomena (EVPs).
St. Michael's Cemetery and St. John's Cemetery
Both of these historic resting places are said to be active spots for paranormal activity. Strange lights and voices have been reported at St. Michael's Cemetery. St. John's Cemetery supposedly hosts a notorious Pensacola madam, ghosts of children and the ghost of "Railroad Bill," an African-American outlaw in the late 19th century.
Was that a ghostly apparition’s hand on your shoulder, or someone just another patron trying to squeeze their way through to the bar? The typical Seville Quarter experience doesn’t really give one an opportunity to notice other-worldly happenings, but there have been a few reports of the paranormal from customers and employees.
Sharon Renae, a Pensacola psychic who has participated in numerous paranormal investigations in Northwest Florida, attests to the ghostly activity at one of Pensacola's most beloved and oldest nightclubs. She said the club is haunted by the ghost of a bartender named Wesley who died in a cooler, and customers have reported strange, distant voices and distant laughs.
Old Christ Church
A favorite place for weddings, many forget that three of Old Christ Church's rectors were buried underneath the church, located at 405 S. Adams St. Built in 1832, there have been tales about visions of the rectors in the church bordering Seville Square and in the heart of the Historic District. (Pretty much every place in the Historic District has had at least a few reports of paranormal activity, from the Kennedy House on South Adams Street to the Gray House on South Alcaniz across from Seville Square.)
Pensacola Victorian Bed & Breakfast
Built in the late 19th century, visitors to this location have long reported unexplained sights, sounds and smells — music, children giggling, scents of bacon and eggs though no one has been cooking, and sightings of a woman in a long flowing gown.
The Imogene Theatre, 6866 Caroline St., Milton, received heavy structural damage in January 2009 from a devastating fire but was rebuilt several years later. People have reported seeing a gentleman walking the balcony or the ghost of young Imogene Gooch, the daughter of the man who bought the theater in the 1920s and the namesake of the building.
The Gray House
Located at 312 S. Alcaniz St. across from Seville Square, the Gray House is featured in the Pensacola ghost tour. It is said to be haunted by Thomas Moristo, an old Spanish sea captain. People report cold spots, apparitions and poltergeist activity.
Coon Hill Cemetery
Coon Hill Cemetery in Jay is infamous among locals as being one of the most haunted locations around. So much so that you can now only visit the cemetery by appointment. Dating back to the early 1800s, Coon Hill cemetery has a vast number of reported ghostly phenomena such as hearing children singing, disembodied hands, cold spots and orbs that appear in photographs.
This article originally appeared on Pensacola News Journal: Haunted places in Pensacola: 12 spooky places local say are haunted