Famous Scary Ghost Stories

Charlotte Gerber
A spooky raven

Scary ghost stories have been told around the world for centuries. Popular scary stories generally have an underlying message or warning about engaging in a particular activity. For example, the "Sea Hag of Lake Erie" story warns sailors not to let down their guard after a storm has passed. Another example is "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," which warns people not to wander roads alone at night. Whether you enjoy folklore, urban legends or real ghost stories, the following chilling tales will give you the willies!

Famous Scary Ghost Stories

There are many scary stories that have become famous, due in part to the fact that there is some element of truth to them. The following stories have been around for decades, and still scare people to this day.

Black Aggie: A Grieving Statue

The story of Black Aggie takes place in the Druid Hill Park Cemetery, located in Maryland. In 1925, Felix Agnus, the publisher of the Baltimore American, placed a creepy statue of a grieving angel on the Agnus family plot. The shadows created by the angel, especially on dark nights, gave rise to rumors that the woman whose grave it stood guard over haunted it. One night a local fraternity decided to make a visit to this statue part of their initiation ceremony. Stories had been circulating that this statue came to life at night and its eyes glowed red. It was believed that if you stood under the statue, its arms would reach out and grab you, crushing you to death.

On this particular night, the initiation was going according to plan when the two fraternity brothers conducting the initiation froze in terror. They believed they saw the statue come to life with glowing red eyes. They tried to get the initiate to walk away from the statue, but he wouldn't. The fraternity brothers ran away, screaming in fright. The caretaker of the cemetery awoke to the noise and went to investigate the commotion. He found a young man dead at the foot of the statue.

Whether this statue is really haunted or not remains a mystery. However, the Agnus family eventually donated it to the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C. It won't be making people die of fright anymore, at least not in that cemetery.

Screaming Jenny of Harper's Ferry

This tale began during the time when people started moving into the abandoned shacks left by the B&O Railroad during the depression. People who lived in these shacks often built fire pits within the sheds to keep themselves warm during the cold winter months. A woman named Jenny was one of these unfortunate people, forced to live in meager surroundings. One night as she warmed herself by the fire, her clothing caught fire from a stray spark. She ran from her little shed, screaming, and continued to run down the railroad tracks heading for the nearby station. Her running fanned the flames, and she became a ball of fire. An oncoming train saw the ball of fire and tried to stop, but it was too late; Jenny was run over by the train.

The body of Jenny was buried in a pauper's grave, and the incident was forgotten. One night another train came down the tracks, and the engineer saw another ball of fire. The train once again screeched to a halt, and the engineer looked for the person he was sure would be dead on the tracks, only this time there was no one dead on the tracks or under the train.

To this day, train engineers report the figure of Jenny, still screaming, on fire and on the tracks in Harper's Ferry.

The Lincoln Funeral Train

After his death, Abraham Lincoln's body was carried through New York on a train. This funeral train slowed down, or came to a complete stop, at many stations along the way. According to some, every April it still makes that journey, much to the shock and surprise of onlookers. As the story goes, the train will make an appearance along the same railroad tracks, and on the same day, each April. The train is described as having a blue light and draped with funeral bunting. The coffin of the fallen president is also visible, draped in an American flag. People who witness this train also mention the dozens of ghost soldiers who appear to salute the train as it passes. After the procession has passed by, clocks in the immediate area are found to be six minutes behind, apparently as a result of the stop made by this ghostly train at the local station.

More Ghost Stories

If you enjoyed these popular ghost stories, there are many more available on the Internet. Whether you like slightly scary stories for the campfire or ones that are simply too fantastic to be true (think Bloody Mary), you'll find them on the following websites:

Famous Scary Ghost Stories