12 Real Ghosts That Are More Friendly Than Scary

When we think of ghost stories, we generally think of spooky, haunting, and terrifying tales told at night around a campfire. But not all ghosts are out for revenge and scares, and a few of them could even be called friendly ghosts. We're not talking about Casper here or anything, but the fact is that sometimes ghosts just want to be helpful. Maybe they want to be kind to children or even save lives. Either way, there are plenty of stories about ghosts that aren't terrifying at all.

Hauntings tend to consist of loud noises, strange shapes, moving objects, or even ghostly apparitions. What if, instead, you just noticed that your room was a little tidier? What if you were prevented from hurting yourself by an invisible force? If that kept happening to you, you might actually start enjoying having a ghostly roommate. 

Between ghosts that helped people and ghosts that are part of the family, there are a few stories that might leave you with a warm heart rather than cold chills. These are tales that you're welcome to read with the lights off, without fear.

  • A Friendly Butler In Cold Ashton Will Always Show You The Way

    A Friendly Butler In Cold Ashton Will Always Show You The Way
    Photo: michaelday_bath / flickr / CC-BY-NC 2.0

    The Manor House in Cold Ashton has stood empty for decades, but it wasn't always this way. The house, once grand, was full of wealthy tenants and competent staff. In fact, some believe that there are a few spirits who still call the manor home. 

    There are stories of motorists who, lost in the area, have stopped near the friendly-looking house to ask for directions. Upon knocking on the front door, a butler answers and will assist them with figuring out which way to go. The odd thing here is not only that no one lives in the hose, especially not a kindly butler, but also that the house will appear fixed up and in-use when it is first approached. Only later, if you return, will you find the house in shambles as it truly is today.

  • Moss Beach Distillery's Blue Lady Guards The Cliffs

    Moss Beach Distillery's Blue Lady Guards The Cliffs
    Photo: WelshMcSpicy / flickr / CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

    There are several versions of The Blue Lady's tale, but all of them end in tragedy. A popular version of the story goes that a beautiful, young woman (who always wore blue) once fell in love with a handsome, but dangerous, ladies man who was a piano player at The Moss Beach Distillery in a Northern California beach town. The young woman was already married to another, but visited her lover at the restaurant whenever she could get away.

    Either she died on the beach below the Northern California restaurant some time in the early 1900s, or she leapt from the cliffs to her death. Whatever the means of her death, she is always known for wearing a long blue dress and appearing somewhat melancholy. 

    With such a sad backstory, you'd think that she'd be a frightening sight! Instead, The Blue Lady is a bit of a protector. She'll play her little pranks here and there but, for the most part, she's seen by children. The cliffs the restaurant perches atop offer a great view, but can be dangerous, and she can be seen by children keeping them away so that they don't fall. 

  • Olive Thomas Still Makes the Gentlemen Blush

    Olive Thomas Still Makes the Gentlemen Blush
    Photo: The Library of Congress / flickr / No known copyright restrictions

    Broadway is hardly dead, but it certainly has its fair share of ghosts. One such ghost is Olive Thomas. Once a chorus girl, Olive was strikingly beautiful and caught the eye of many gentlemen who saw her perform. Not only that, she was definitely a party girl. She won beauty contests, became a model, and had quite a successful career in life, until she died in Paris in 1920.

    So, what would a lovely lady such as this do for her afterlife after-party? Why, flirt with men, of course! Gentlemen who visit the New Amsterdam theater might spy a beautiful woman dressed in period show costume, and may even converse with her if the girl really takes a shine to them. This is a ghost who has no interest in frightening you away, though she may try to steal the show when it comes to particular male audience members.

  • The Nutt Family Owes Their Riches To A Friendly Ghost

    The Nutt Family Owes Their Riches To A Friendly Ghost
    Photo: inyucho / flickr / CC-BY 2.0

    Plenty of people have tried to get rich off of ghost sightings, but rarely does it happen that a ghost goes out of their way to make someone rich. One such case concerns the Nutt family in Uppingham, England. The oldest daughter of the family, 18-year-old Ann began seeing a strange ghost who was saying that something was hidden in their house. They searched, but initially found nothing.

    Still, Ann and her helpful ghost friend were persistent. The ghost at last indicated one particular flagstone, and when it was overturned, a black pot was found beneath it. Inside the pot was almost two hundred silver coins. It only goes to show that on occasion, living in a haunted house can really pay off. 

  • Martha The Nurse Will Get You Through A Rough Night

    Martha The Nurse Will Get You Through A Rough Night
    Photo: Australian National Maritime Museum on The Commons / flickr / No known copyright restrictions

    The life of a nurse can be very hard, especially when you're new on the job. Fortunately for the nurse in this story, there was a veteran on staff to show her the ropes... sort of. 

    One night, while working in a hospital and completely overwhelmed with her new job, Ruby had an older nurse come warn her to check on room eight. When she did, she found the patient was in trouble, but was able to help her in time. This helpful nurse warned her several more times throughout the evening about other patients, and in turn the patients reported that they'd been checked on by another nurse.

    When Ruby asked her fellow nurses about this strange helpful woman, she found that there were stories of Martha, a nurse who helped recent nursing grads and who still made rounds on her patients thirty years after her own death. Alive or dead, anyone who helps out nurses when they're overwhelmed is definitely worth having around.

  • James L. Chaffin Refused To Let His Family Go Hungry

    Some people are so devoted to their families that their love carries over, even after death. James Lewis Chaffin had a nasty fall and died in 1921, leaving behind a wife and four sons. When it came time to read the will, the family found to their shock that everything was left to the third son, with nothing for the rest of them. That could have been the unfortunate end of it, if it wasn't for the appearance of a ghost a few years later, in 1925. 

    The ghost of James began to appear to one of his other sons, assuring him that the will was a fake. It turns out that he left everything to the family instead of just the one son. What followed was a sort of treasure hunt, leading from one clue to the next, until a new will was at last discovered, hidden in an old family bible. This will said that everything should be split between the four sons, as the ghost had foretold.