Tag Archives: ghost story

“Gore Orphanage.”

F is a 36-year-old Croatian Male originally from Vermillion, Ohio. F currently works as a background detective in Phoenix, Arizona.

F performed this folklore while I visited him at his workplace with the intent to collect folklore from police officers. During his lunch break, I asked F if he had any folklore he would be willing to share with me.

F: My story is about a place called “Gore Orphanage.” It’s G-O-R-E. Um, it’s in Vermillion Ohio, so I grew up kinda close to Gore Orphanage in Loraino area, Ohio. And there was always a, story a local story about Gore Orphanage, so it was an orphanage back in the 1800s, and apparently there was a fire dozens of children died in it, and um, I, I guess the building was destroyed during the fire so.. The rumor was there were people over the years who went there to like worship the devil and do all kinds of weird occult stuff. And if you go there at night, you’re supposed to hear kids screaming, see ghosts, all kinds of stuff so uh. Oh! There was also a rumor that there was a crazy guy who lived near there who would chase people off with a shot gun so, of course as a curious teenager me and all my friends went one night, and its on this really dark road it’s, it’s pretty creepy just getting there but we got there we saw the driveway marker, um we saw some stones just kinda, laying around there and we heard a noise, saw a guy in the distance which we assumed was the guy who would chase people off with a shotgun so we got scared and run off, but, we didn’t see any ghosts we didn’t see any balls of light, uh, didn’t hear any kids screaming just uh, a guy whose probably the crazy guy with a shotgun.

Reflection: F’s account of his visit to the supposedly haunted Gore Orphanage was intriguing for me to hear, as he was the only person I interviewed to actually visit the haunted location in his story. For me, this provided insight into the ostensive act of ”legend tripping,” which entails traveling to the location of a legend to determine its veracity. In the case of F’s experience with ”legend tripping,” it appears that he determined the truth value of the legend to be mostly false. With the exception of the mysterious man watching and the destroyed orphanage, all other aspects of the story including the supernatural, were disproven.

The ”Crying Lady.”

A is a 59-year-old Hispanic American female originally from La Junta, a small town in Southeastern Colorado. A currently works as a background detective in Phoenix Arizona.

A informed me of this folklore over a dinner discussion. I asked A if she had any folklore, specifically legends or ghost stories she would be willing to share with me.

A: So this is the story I heard as a little girl of La Llorona, the “Crying Lady.” She lost her babies somehow, and wandered through the waterways, rivers, creeks, anything where there was a bridge overhead.. So as a kid we were always told “don’t cross the bridges at night” because La Llorona would be out there trying to steal children because she doesn’t have babies of her own.. So, even as a teenager, I would not walk over a bridge at night, I would walk extra, blocks to get away from the waterways just because it was too creepy to try to walk over it.

Reflection: The rendition of the La Llorona legend that A was told as child is consistent with the American Hispanic South-West understanding of La Llorona as a scare-tactic for children to discourage them from misbehaving or wandering away from home. I believe A’s story demonstrates how impressionable children are in relation to folklore, as La Llorona was still having a direct effect on A’s life well after childhood. Stories also tend to be more impactful when told by family members, as there is often an underlying sense of trust between blood ties that will lend immediate credibility to a story whether it is true or not.

 “For another version, see Schlosser, S. E., and Paul G. Hoffman. 2017, Spooky Southwest: Tales of Hauntings, Strange Happenings, and Other Local Lore., Page #85

Bunny Man Bridge.

K is a 63-year-old Caucasian male originally from Fairfax, Virginia. K is a retired highway patrolman and current polygraph examiner in Phoenix, Arizona.

K performed this folklore while I visited him at his workplace with the intent to collect folklore from police officers. In his office, I asked K if he had any folklore he would be willing to share with me.

K: Well I’m going to tell about you a.. Story that comes out of Fairfax county Virginia where I’m from. Where I actually patrolled as a patrolman. Uh, years ago. Funny thing is, I didn’t learn about this story until I came out to Arizona, uh, twenty five hundred miles from where the story originated from. And I heard about it because it showed up on a documentary on TV about haunted places that uh, would be pretty scary to visit. Uh, and this haunted place in Fairfax Country Virginia is called Bunny Man Bridge. And its actually a railroad bridge, uh, near uh, a place called Clifton Virginia, which is a little tiny sleepy town that is down in a.. quiet area of Fairfax county. And uh, this sleepy little town has this legend of Bunny Man Bridge which is this railroad bridge, and when you go under the bridge it’s cement on the sides but it’s barely wide enough for a car to fit through going one direction, and on the opposite side of the bridge is a dead end road so theres nowhere to go when you go underneath the Bunny Man Bridge but uh, its really quite dark there. There isn’t any street lights, theres uh, lots of trees around, I mean even in a full moon its pretty pretty dark down there around Bunny Man Bridge. I’m familiar with it because, as a patrolman, because its uh, apparently a haunted location a lot of uh, the younger high school uh groups like to go down there and party on the uh, side that there’s no escape from. Uh, in other words, side that’s on where the dead end is at. But, what I learned about Bunny Man Bridge is that this place called Clifton.. uh.. years ago like in the early, like very early 1900s, there was a uh, insane asylum in Clifton. And, I dont know exactly how many prisoners that this insane asylum had housed, but, uh. When.. Fairfax country began to grow up and get larger, they moved this insane asylum to another place called Lorton which is probably, I’m guessing, about, a twenty minute drive away from Clifton and Lorton is far more build up in fact there’s a uh, prison there now from the District of Columbia in Lorton, but uh, the decision was made to transport all the, uh, people in this insane Asylum from Clifton down to Lorton, so they loaded ‘em all on a bus, and started driving away to, uh, Lorton. Well, unfortunately as, uh, the legend has it, the bus ran off the side of the road and crashed and uh all the prisoners, the maniacs escaped and ran into the woods and, the uh, authorities came out and worked really hard trying to round up all these people and they ultimately, uh, were able to round em all up with the exception of two people. Um, and they kept searching the woods searching the woods and they kept finding all these bunny carcasses in the woods. Um, so they expected that these two escapees were actually uh surviving on bunny meat and this went on for a while and they never were able to actually track down these two. But the legend has it that after they searched the entire area for days and days they came to a time where uh they found one of these escapees, hanging from Bunny Man Bridge. And uh, the other one was nowhere to be found and the assumption was that.. uh, apparently they had a dispute or a fight over who was gonna get.. the, the, the bunny leg or the bunny breast or whatever. And uh.. the other one hung his companion from Bunny Man Bridge. And uh, now the legend is if you go to Bunny Man Bridge on uh.. like Halloween or something, uh you can see uh.. this uh, this deceased prisoner hanging from the bridge on Halloween. They never found uh the other escaped individual… Uh, but, periodically they say you can also see bunny carcasses hanging from, Bun-from Bunny Man Bridge. Uh, so they, they believe notwithstanding all of that, that even though this is a hundred and ten years later. Uh, he’s still out there. Uh, uh, eating bunnies and hanging em’ from the bridge on Halloween along with his deceased companion.

Reflection: Despite never visiting Bunny Man Bridge himself, K was extremely knowledgeable about the subject, as evidenced by the length and detail of his performance of the urban legend. The vague version of the Bunny man I am familiar with is of an axe-wielding lunatic wearing a bunny suit, so I was surprised to hear that neither of these two appearance traits were mentioned in K’s telling. The popularity of both the “Bunny Man” and the “Hook Man” urban legends in the American South suggests that the region has a preference for escaped convict stories. Considering the American South has the largest collective prison population in the U.S., it is not hard to make a prediction why this may be the case.

Graffiti Ghost Story


J is an 18 year old from Canada who has parents from the Philippines. 

This conversation took place over a zoom call after I asked her if she had any ghost stories that she knew of. The story is from her cousin and was told to her at a family party. 


J: I remember parts of it, but there’s not a lot of details.

Me: That’s okay!

J: Let me think from the start, I first heard this story like a couple of years ago, when I was younger cause my uncle was like do you wanna go visit a haunted park. And it’s not like a forestry park it like by the, because they have lakes, it’s this nice park area around a lake. And um… I was curious because I had never heard of this. And he was like Oh, here I’ll tell you the story um, it’s from one of my Kuya’s friends, and my Kuya is my cousin. They go driving places, so obviously his friend was with his other friend and their girlfriends. So they were like, it was like late night, probably in the summer time, around the time I heard it. What happened was, they were just there for the evening but obviously it got dark really quickly and the girlfriend, the main guy’s girlfriend had been picking flowers so she had like a few in her hand and she was sitting passenger seat. And they were about to go. But like, it was really weird because their cards weren’t starting. And obviously you know when you get that vibe that something feels really off… but you can’t really tell what’s up?

Me: Yeah.

J: It’s- it’s summer, it’s warm and foggy and for some reason the car headlights are on but the car isn’t starting. So they’re on a call with the people in the car beside them, trying to start, and theirs isn’t starting either. And then um, what made this even weirder is that before they had been going to their cars, there’s like this warehouse for like government supplies or something by the lake. And this is like the most important part of the- the second most important part of the story because on the outside there’s graffiti on those walls of like… you know like… a stencil?

Me: yeah!

J: It was graffiti stencils of like, there was an AR gun, like a rifle type, and at the end there’s a flower symbol beside it. And then, so there’s just a flower and the gun. That’s what they saw the time before. And while they were starting up, their lights flicker from one of their cars and then, apparently they said they saw a figure. Like someone standing there. They didn’t really describe if it was like, in heavy details, but like I think it was a woman like type. But all they said was they saw someone vaguely shaped like a person in those shadows.. Which is kinda like.. Sus. 

Me: uugh.

J: So like obviously, you’re really scared. And like apparently the girlfriend’s flowers had wilted like.. A lot when they saw the figure. And they were freaking the heck out. But they managed to start the cars and they left-they left. They’re fine. But obviously you have a scare if you see a person at night.

Me: is this in Canada?

J: yea, this is in Canada, sorry my bad.

Me: it’s okay

J: I don’t remember the specific park name because I don’t really go there. It gets worse, cause like, see I wish I could show you the picture but I can’t find it. But it was kinda black, and kinda smudged. And creepy vibes. In an abandoned warehouse. And apparently, I was talking, we were talking to the same friend recently, like the guy, like this year at my cousin’s party and um, he said that you know, there was graffiti beside it when they went back, and you know what it said?

Me: uuuuhhhhh

J: It said- it said, have you seen him. 


J: In big fucking like jagged letters, it’s like UGH.

Me: I would never go back.

J: I would go back at night.. Just to like.. See it. 


Like many, this informant was more likely to trust the ghost story because it came from a familial source and because it came with a recent follow-up that was accompanied by a photo. Photographic evidence as well as something being persistent or consistent across multiple occasions makes ghost stories much more believable. This may be due to the fact that it appears to be less likely to be an isolated incidence but rather one that may have a common source to a couple of incidents. Graffiti and abandoned locations tend to have a reputation of being haunted, possibly because people are expecting that other people are inside of the location. After its abandoned, your mind and your senses are hyperaware of the fact that it used to be inhabited and may use this against you to cause you to think that you see someone or a shadowy figure. The wilting flower was also an interesting piece of symbolism towards a ghost, something that is no longer alive much like a wilted flower. I also think that it was very interesting that my initial response was that I would no longer visit that park, while my informant seems intrigued and wanted to find more proof for themself of the ghost. 


Context: C.O. learned about this story on a ghost tour in Old Williamsburg, Virginia.

C.O. : And then the ghost story I heard when I was, oh gosh, eleven?
P.Z. : Eleven?
C.O. : And I was in Old Williamsburg in, just outside DC.
P.Z. : Okay
C.O. : On a trip with my parents and we went on a walking ghost tour of the town, uh, at night and one of the stories they told us outside the old inn was about two sisters who I guess back in the early eighteen hundreds were staying there and it was late at night they were asleep in their beds and one of the sisters woke up because she heard something outside the window
P.Z. : Okay
C.O. : That sounded like bootprints, or footprints. Or, I can’t, footprints. Boot noises. And she went to go look at the window, pulled back the curtains and there was nothing there so she went back to bed
P.Z. : Okay
C.O. : And then she heard it again so he went back to the window, opened the window, looked outside the window, still can’t see anything, asked your sister if she heard it, she didn’t, so both of them went back to bed. And then about five minutes later she heard the, the bootstomps outside her door. And there was light but she couldn’t see any shadows, so she opens the door and nobody’s out there. So now she’s freaking out. She doesn’t know where the noise is coming from, if someone’s messing with her so she goes back to bed. And then a little whiles later, maybe about an hour, she hears the bootprints or footprints even closer. In the room. So she throws the light on, there’s nobody standing there, so she goes to sleep again, turns the light out and like not 10 seconds later she starts feeling someone pushing up on the side of her bed for her feet
P.Z. : Ohh
C.O. : Slowly pushing up. And she feels like the indentation of someone sitting like right next to her head on her bed and she freaks out turns the light on and there’s nobody there
P.Z. : No, I hate that
C.O. : And that is the last time it happens that night and that’s the end of the story. And they called it Boots. And that scared the shit out of me as a kid, I didn’t sleep for two days
P.Z. : Oh yeah I can imagine that
C.O. : But the kicker is like a week later when we got home and I was in my bedroom, going to sleep. And I felt the same thing on my bed like at the foot of my bed as if someone had sat on the edge of it and I turned the light on and there was nothing there. My cat wasn’t in the room, my pillow didn’t fall off my bed, my parents and my brother were both asleep, and it was just, and my door was closed, and it was the weirdest feeling and it was just too much of a coincidence for me.
P.Z. : I hate that
C.O. : Yeah. So that’s my one ghost story.

Thoughts: This seemed a fairly standard ghost story or legend. I’ve heard many ghost stories that similarly focus on past tragedies, colonial-era ghosts, and unexplained footsteps. I thought that the truly interesting part of this story was the personal story. As a child, I also would be terrified by these sort of stories that people told me, so I understood the concept. I thought that it was interesting to hear the first hand experience of an otherwise general story.