School & Community
Haunted Areas Near Rhea County
Although there are plenty of organization-sponsored “haunted houses” throughout Rhea County, some of us are out searching for the real thing. Believe it or not, there are plenty of local areas that have spooky histories.
Mile Marker 10 – Crossville
It is said that if you go to mile marker 10 on Highway 68, near Grassy Cove, and put your car in neutral, it will be pushed up the hill by ghosts. If you put baby powder on the trunk of your car, you will be able to see the handprints on it. The reason behind this is in August of the year 1955, there was a bus wreck on the same hill, and many children died. The children are pushing you up the hill because they are moving you away from the oncoming traffic.
Shipley Hollow – Sale Creek
If you follow Daugherty Ferry Road off of Highway 27 in Sale Creek, you will come upon Shipley Hollow Road. A woman is supposed to haunt both of these roads. She comes from the Shipley Hollow Cemetery, just off of Shipley Hollow Road. The woman’s identity is unknown, and she may have been there for many years. Supposedly, she is seen as a glowing, see-through figure.
Craigmiles Mausoleum – Cleveland
The Craigmiles Mausoleum is located behind St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Cleveland. It is the burial place of the Craigmiles family, a family where each member died a tragic death. The white marble surface is stained crimson red and is said to be the blood of each of the members of the Craigmiles. The stains did not start showing up until Nina Craigmiles, the mother, died, and grew more noticeable after each family member passed. The stains still remain today.
East Tennessee State University – Johnson City
The well-known university in Johnson city is said to be the haunt of a few ghosts, and students and teachers have claimed to have seen them in certain halls or dorms. ETSU is said to be the most haunted college in the South, with almost every building having some sort of spirit. Perhaps the most famous, Gilbreath Hall is haunted by the spirit of the college’s first president, John Gilbreath. He still walks the halls after dark, enforcing each and every rule. There are also other buildings that are said to be haunted, such as Yoakley Hall, Sherrod Library, Cooper Hall, Burleson Hall, Mathes Music Hall, and Sigma Chi Fraternity House.
Swan Pond Church – Harriman
Swan Pond Church is surrounded by woods and even a cemetery, which definitely gives it the creepy atmosphere. It is in one of the oldest areas in Harriman, dating back before Harriman was even founded. This church is most famous for a preacher who hung himself in the bell tower, some time in the 1980s. According to rumors, if you drive around the church at night, you are able to see the preacher hanging from the bell tower.
Tennessee Wesleyan – Athens
The second college on the list, it is known to be haunted by dark figures that speak to one another. They are said to be seen near two trees, and a local legend says that two star-crossed lovers were buried beneath them. The star-crossed lovers were a Native American Chief’s daughter, Nocatula, and a white man whose love had been ridiculed by a member of the tribe, Mocking Crow. Mocking Crow soon killed the white man. When Nocatula found him dead, she stabbed herself. They were buried next to eachother, putting a tree seed in one hand each.
Greens Cavern – Cleveland
Outside of Greens Cavern is an open field, and on Halloween every year, a tall shadowy figure can be seen carrying a sickle while roaming around. If he sees you passing by him, he will capture your soul and take it with him when he returns to the cavern at midnight. The reason behind this remains a mystery.
University of the South – Sewanee
Colleges are the housing of plenty of ghosts, as you can tell already, and it is no surprise that there is another on the list. The most infamous of all of the hauntings of the University of the South is the headless gownsman who roams the halls during finals or homecoming. He is either seen as just a floating head or just a body, but they are never attached. The headless gownsman was a former student who was decapitated during a horrific wreck. Also an infamous tale of this college, Tuckaway Dorm is said to be haunted in a room on the third floor. The three ghosts of former and suicidal students seem to cause a great amount of mayhem in the room.
Baumgartner House – South Pittsburg
Being the oldest house in South Pittsburg and also across the street from an old church and cemetery, it has to be haunted! It was home of the first undertaker in South Pittsburg and his wife and two children. The house is now haunted by their ghostly figures. It is said that they are seen looking through windows or walking through the house. They aren’t harmful, but they are clearly visible.
Chicamauga Battlefield – Chattanooga
The Battle of Chicamauga was the second bloodiest battle in the Civil War, right after Gettysburg. Almost every battlefield is said to be haunted, but this one is supposedly more haunted than others, with many soldiers and apparitions roaming the entire grounds. The most famous of all of the ghosts isn’t even human! “Old Green Eyes,” is described as being a large creature with fang-like teeth, a hairy body, and bright green eyes. It is said that this ghost was first spotted roaming about right after the battle. Legend says that he was a soldier whose head was blown off during battle, and his body destroyed. Along with ghosts, one can hear sounds of the battle, such as gun shots or marching.