You can listen to the podcast episode right here!
Our Haunted Weekend
So April and I decided that we needed a weekend away and what better way to enjoy each other’s company than through haunted Savannah, GA? A friend of mine told me “Nick, that’s not very romantic!” but to us, it was one of the best getaways we had in a long time.
We visited haunted locations like the Sorrel-Weed house and took a haunted tour around downtown Savannah, and we even stayed overnight in a haunted inn: the Foley House Inn.
The History of the Foley House
So, the stories go a little something like this:
From www.hauntedrooms.com, it reads:
“The Foley House Inn was built in 1896 by Honoria Foley. Honoria was the widow of an irish immigrant. The Foley House Inn was undergoing renovations in 1987 the owners found a skeleton not in the closet, but behind a wall they had just knocked down.
The Skeleton was thought to be that of a rich lodger that was murdered for his money. This discovery has led to the ghost of a man in top hat being seen walking in the gardens at night. The ghost has been nicknamed Wally by staff at the hotel. There have also been reports of strange noises and rushes of air at the hotel.”
No matter where I looked via the internet, this was the story. So, I felt like there was some justification to it, or…Foley House Inn is really controlling what media is portrayed. Regardless, the Inn was beautiful and I wanted a room, so I booked it. We stayed in Room 304.
This Place is Stunning
Once we finally arrived at the Inn, we realized there were going to be quite a few steps in the process. The amazing staff checked us in, told us about parking and someone else took us to our room. We passed by the gorgeous dining room and made our way through a number of up and down staircases.
Winded from the steps we realized what part of the house we were in by the view from the balcony.
We had access through the bathroom ceiling to the attic but April wouldn’t allow me to push through for EVP’s. Go figure.
More of the story goes to the garden that’s behind the old building, so we took plenty of pictures, of course. Although we didn’t see or hear any of the proclaimed hauntings in this area, we found it to be a serene area where one could enjoy breakfast after staying in a haunted room.
A haunted night on the town
So, part of the legend from the Foley House Inn’s website states that guests will see someone in the garden wearing a top hat. This claim is that this person is the boarder that was buried in the walls of the Foley House.
During our haunted walking tour of downtown Savannah, our tour guide also mentioned this as we were walking through one of the many squares. His claim is that some people/tourists mistake a person wearing a top hat and costume as one of the many actors that provide a similar walking tour. If you haven’t been on one of these tours, some of the guides dress in costume for the effect of the ghost stories they’ll tell.
The tour guide also proclaimed that these sightings of a man in a top hat were in the early morning hours. The significance of this is that the tours don’t usually start until the afternoon into the evening.
With that said, I didn’t experience anything while in the Foley House itself, other than a magnificent breakfast and the noisy drinkers outside our balcony.
Byron needs to go outside
The next morning however, I took Byron out for his morning walk. I walked the many staircases down to the street before my morning coffee and out we went. I’m a writer, so morning coffee is a lifeblood first thing in the morning. Without it, I second guess anything.
We walked out to the square so he could do his business and we were the only beings on the bright sunny Sunday morning. Then someone walked by across the square wearing a white shirt, suspenders and a derby hat. He was walking pretty briskly. Then he was gone.
It didn’t dawn on me right away, again, I hadn’t had my morning coffee yet, the things I heard and read about this area with the man walking around in a top hat and that of the tour guide that mentioned tourists making the mistake that these people were tour guides dressing up the part.
I’ll first point out that the hat was wrong. The man I saw was definitely wearing a derby hat. A derby hat is completely different than a top other than color preferences. A derby hat is rounded, where a top hat is pipe shaped.
I tried to follow the man after I realized what was happening. He was originally across the square from where Byron and I were and it is possible that he turned a corner and simply was no longer in my sight. But I never kept my eye away from him until he was gone. I moved towards the tree he disappeared behind and looked down every road. He was nowhere to be seen.
So to give a much clearer picture of where Byron and I were, I want you to remember the movie, Forrest Gump. C’mon, we’ve all seen it. The multiple scenes where Forrest is waiting for the bus telling his story to all the strangers…Yep, the very same square. If you remember, there are roads and sidewalks all around this square and I can guarantee you that I peered down every one of them looking for the derby hat guy. Vanished.
Did I actually see one of these men that other tourists proclaim to see? I can’t be certain, but I want to say “Why yes, yes I did.” I’d like to know your thoughts on my experience. Do you think I saw a ghostly figure walking through the square in downtown Savannah on a bright Sunday morning? Leave your comments below and share this post. I love telling stories, especially from real experiences.
April thinks I’m a zombie
I don’t know whether April believes me or not. If she were to go off my reaction once I climbed the staircases back up to our room, she would say yes, that I absolutely saw a ghost before I had my morning coffee.
But then again, she claims I’m a zombie before that first sip as well.
Tell me your thoughts and I’ll keep writing about haunted locations that I visit for the research for my books. It’s instances like this that keep me writing and now you know where I get the ideas for my books. Feel free to check them out on Amazon.
To read more about the Foley House Inn, be sure to check out their page on the hauntings here: Foley House Hauntings
Thanks for reading,
Forrest Gump. Dir. Robert Zemeckis. 1994.