From haunted houses and graveyards to wild stories of curses and witches, Mississippi urban legends are truly one of a kind. Creepy Mississippi's distinctly Southern flair really comes through in some of its tall tales, which run the full range from the ridiculous to the seemingly believable. Ghost stories from Mississippi include brides, murderers, bridges, mermaids, witches, and even the Devil himself.
It's no wonder that Mississippi is home to so much dark folklore. It was in the thick of the bloody Civil War. Countless slaves worked and died there. It was the place where Robert Johnson went to make his pact with the Devil. And it was allegedly the site of a massive disease outbreak and government cover up. If you want to learn more about the tragic, the weird, the haunting, and the strange lurking in the deep South, take a gander at this spooky list.
An old grave sits in the middle of the historic section of Glenwood Cemetery in Yazoo City, surrounded by chain links. This plot is known as The Witch's Grave. According to legend, it is the burial site of an old woman who, at the end of the 1800s, got caught luring fisherman off of the Yazoo River and torturing them to death. The sheriff chased her through the swamp, where she was swallowed by quicksand. As the woman sank, she cursed the town of Yazoo, and promised to return in 20 years to burn it to the ground.
No one thought much of her curse - until the Fire of 1904 destroyed over 300 buildings in the town of Yazoo. Witnesses say that the flames leapt through the air as if on high winds, despite weather reports for the area on that day not mentioning any gusts. Some said it was the work of the witch. Why else would the chains around her grave be discovered broken open the day after the fire?
If you believe the stories, blues musician Robert Johnson became incredibly talented overnight - after selling his soul to the Devil at a crossroads in Mississippi.
Little is known for certain about the life of this near-mythic music figure, who inspired blues musicians and rock 'n' rollers for decades. Johnson was born in 1911 and died in 1938, but inconsistent record keeping and conflicting accounts of his life make it hard to know anything else for sure. His legacy comes from the tragically small collection of his haunting music, which famously speaks of his deals with the Devil.
The McRaven House in Vicksburg, MS, is the oldest standing structure in the county. It might also be the most haunted place in the entire state. The house has been standing since the days of George Washington's presidency, and plenty of stories relate its strange history.
One of its many rumored ghosts is the spirit of a young bride who passed away after giving birth to her first child. She has often been seen walking the property in a brown dress, with her hair tied up.
Other spirits may be tied to the Civil War. The McRaven House served as a Confederate hospital during the conflict, and saw its share of violence and death. There are about a dozen bodies buried on the property, and primitive surgical techniques led to gory amputations and deaths; severed arms and leg bones have been found on the property. It's no wonder that people claim the house is incredibly haunted.
In the 1950s, a strange disease called Mercritis supposedly swept through Mississippi. But there's no official record of the outbreak; according to locals, the illness was covered up and ignored by the government and medical community.
Reports differ on where exactly Mercritis came from. Some people say that it came from Europe, while others claim it can only be contracted by consuming large quantities of paint. But the end results were rumored to be the same: it made men omit an odor which, when inhaled by a beautiful woman, would make them violently homicidal. It even caused riots that were swept under the rug.