On Saturday, October 21, 1899 the New Orleans Times-Democrat ran an article under the headline: “Real Ghost Story. The Old Carrollton Jail Said to be Haunted.” Through the use of the exact words of the police officers, the article chronicles the eerie occurrences at the local jail.
Built when the town of Carrollton took over as the new seat of Jefferson Parish in 1852. It was a bland brick and stucco building, two-stories tall with large doorways and heavily barred windows. Quite simply, it was bleak and hideous. Within a year of its completion, it was already beginning to resemble an “old ruin” with “evident signs of decay.”
While many of the police officers who served at the Carrollton Jail stated that they didn’t believe in ghosts, most agreed that the strange things happening there seemed to defy rational explanation. And over time everyone stationed there experienced something unusual in some way shape or form; from footsteps and noises, furniture moving on its own, lights turning on and off, and objects moving without cause.
It is unsurprising that the haunting of the Carrollton Jail has become a part of the deep folklore of New Orleans — a ghost story that can pinpoint its origin to an exceedingly specific event, an October 21, 1899 article in the New Orleans newspaper, The Times-Democrat.
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