The big, beautiful sky may draw visitors to Texas, but hat is not the only reason tourists are flocking to the various cities. Despite the many historic, architectural, and cultural draws, Austin, Texas has another sort of paranormal following. The recent uptick of ghost tours in the area has sparked unprecedented interest in past and present hauntings in the area. Here are some of the most popular buildings & office spaces in Austin, Tx to find ghost sightings.
Texas State Capitol
The ghost of former staffer Robert Marshall Love is said to haunt the halls of the Texas State Capitol building. The domed structure has been home to more than one supernatural occurrence over the years. Love was killed in the building, while working at his desk. Other guests are more mysterious though, having never worked in the building. Perhaps the most famous apparition is the woman in a red dress, who appears at random evening intervals, perhaps waiting for the love of her life or a missed date.
Built for a high ranking military officer circa 1894, this private home consistently ranks among the most popular sites to witness paranormal activity in Austin, Texas. Major George Washington and his wife Alice lived a solitary life despite their considerable wealth. Although she played the piano quite well, her songs displayed the sorrow of not being able to have any children. Upon her death, the home and property was given to the University of Texas for use by students and faculty alike. The building still boasts an ethereal presence and guests claim a piano can be heard piping out a sad song throughout the night.
Renowned architect Alfred C. Finn transformed rolling hills and flatlands into an exquisite country club for the elite of Texas society. In 1923, those select citizens did not necessarily have a great rapport with minority peoples and tensions arose between staff, guests, and local communities. More than thirty acres of the citadel are still used today to host private parties, wedding ceremonies, and other celebratory functions. Aside from the invited guests, some other guest appearances have made themselves available over the years. Countless photos detail light orbs that are presumably spirits from ghosts that have never left the grounds. Well documented cases of sightings are reported each year, usually by multiple attendees of the same functions.
The ghost stories associated with the Texas Governor’s Mansion have been circulating since the 1850s. Over the decades, specific hauntings have been attributed to former guests and even residents of the mansion. Perhaps the most famous former guest said to still be roaming the halls is none other than Sam Houston, who prefers his old bedroom in the mansion to the otherworldly accommodations. Rumors abound regarding a story of unrequited love that may have started the trend of hauntings by previous guests. A young man whose proposal was rejected by the niece of a former mayor allegedly killed himself in his room and has haunted the area ever since.
From West Avenue to Congress Avenue and along 7th Street and Cesar Chávez Street, the Warehouse District features modern renovation at its finest. What used to be a storage area for agricultural crops and equipment has received a complete makeover and now boasts one of the trendiest areas in all of Austin. Despite the facelift though, some of the old remnants remain in the new buildings. Unexplained happenings, such as electricity mishaps and inexplicably stalled elevators are replete with strange noises and even stranger smells. These are attributed to paranormal activity from ghosts who are somewhat unhappy with the makeover.
Apparently, Colonel Jesse Driskill is still so proud of his hotel that he cannot bear to leave the premises even after more than one hundred years. The first of its kind in Texas, this hotel was well ahead of its time in regards to architecture, service, and safety. Strange noises and sightings throughout the hotel have intrigued guests for many years, but somehow keeps them coming back. Tragically, Suite 525 was the scene of two gruesome suicides, both by brides near their wedding night. All the other spirits roaming the halls of the Driskill hotel seem to be downright friendly. In fact, Driskill seems to be enjoying the company and relaxing with his favorite cigars according to the smell.
Despite being warned against building a home in the area, Mr. Gideon White made his home in a log cabin there in 1839. Unfortunately, this was the height of tensions between settlers and Native Americans. It was also around the same time that the new frontiers were being invaded by diseases such as cholera, yellow fever, measles and other unpleasant diseases. Later excavations uncovered multiple grave markers and some gravesites that were apparently unmarked or their markers had been deteriorated over time. The massacre of Native Americans at Shoal Creek is an unspoken monument to supernatural occurrences and frequently tops the list of ghost tour encounters.
At first glance, it probably does not seem too unusual to have hauntings at a cemetery. This graveyard is home to more than twenty thousand residents and has been the final resting place for many unmarked graves since its dedication in 1839. Famous generals and peasants alike are rumored to haunt the grounds. For the past several decades, reports of cold spots, moaning sounds, and floating apparitions have been witnessed. Halloween walking ghost tours never disappoint guests looking for a spooky scare in the Oakwood Cemetery.
The Omni Downtown
No ghost tour would be complete without a modernized version of a folklore type urban legend. In this rendition, a man falls to his death from his balcony on the top floor. His apparent suicide left guests reeling and his own spirit unsettled. His ghost is said to roam the halls, particularly the room where he last stayed. Multiple guests have reported seeing an apparition or feeling a cold presence in the room.
The Walter Tips House
The ominous building that now stands as an operating financial institution used to belong to the Walter Tips family. It was reportedly haunted then and made guests and even some family members feel uncomfortable. The property was later sold to a Mr. Theo P. Meyer, who also experienced the same unnatural phenomenon. Even today, visitors to the bank report an eerie feeling that they are disrupting the spirits within. There is never a dull moment in Austin, Texas. If the marquee attractions are not enough to hold the interest of tourists, the ghost tours of Austin’s most haunted office buildings and other spaces will certainly leave a lasting impression.