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University of North Alabama - Real Haunts in Florence AL

  • 1 Harrison Plaza
  • Florence, AL
  • 1-800-TALK-UNA
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The University of North Alabama was originally founded as LaGrange College in 1830 and has undergone many changes in the time since. It was reestablished as a teachers college in 1872, and just one year later become one of the earliest coeducational institutes in the US. One of the school's buildings, the Robert M. Guillot University Center (also referred to as the GUC) is rumored to be haunted by the spirit of a woman long dead. Allegedly the woman hanged herself in the building when the school was still a teaching college, and now the sound of her body swaying back and forth can be heard on the second floor. Norton Auditorium is said to be haunted by the ghost of a construction worker named George, who fell from a scaffolding while working at the university and died.

Wesleyan Hall, which was built in 1856, has a haunted history dating back to the Civil War. At different points during the war, the building was occupied by both Confederate and Union forces, including Confederate General John Bell and the Union's General Sherman. At one point during the occupations the son of an officer, who had been traveling with his father a drummer boy, drowned in a nearby lake; conflicting accounts claim that he either simply fell in and drowned or that he had been kidnapped for ransom, then tossed in by his captors. Whatever the case, the boy's spirit has been seen wandering the halls of Wesleyan Hall ever since. Some have seen his spirit late at night, while others have heard footsteps and the sound of rhythmic banging.

Locals have also reported seeing the spirit of a young girl looking down from the upstairs window of the Off Campus Book Store. The girl, named Molly, allegedly lived in the building during the 1930s or '40s, but died of rabies shortly after being bit by her puppy.
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  • George Lindsey Theatre Experience - Apparition

    I am the person that shared the "Norton Auditorium Experience." This is my only other major paranormal experience at UNA. I saw an apparition at the George Lindsey Theatre. The theatre is a black box theatre, and has a balcony that wraps around half of it. Most plays are here. The balcony is not for the public; the tech people are up there. I was an actor in that semester’s show, and while we had paused for a moment, I saw a misty gray figure on the balcony. It started on the balcony I was facing (where the stage manager was at the time) and moved to the other end of the balcony to my right before disappearing. While moving, it would almost flicker. We had stage lights on but I could still see it over them. It had no features. This was fall 2021. I've heard people say that the George Lindsey is haunted by its namesake, but I don't remember any legends beyond that. Norton is said to be haunted by a spirit nicknamed "George" (coincidentally) who supposedly died during the construction of Norton in the 1960s.

    Posted 11/15/23

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  • Norton Auditorium Experience

    I was a theatre major here so I spent a lot of time in Norton Auditorium and the George Lindsey Theatre. Norton is the main event center at UNA. The basement of Norton is where props, costumes, and furniture are stored, and where there are dressing rooms. There are two stairwells on either side of the basement; there’s several flights that go up to the balconies of Norton. I was in the basement looking for props. I heard what sounded like something metal (maybe a tool) falling down the stairwell to my right. Maybe something was thrown. I walked up a few flights to see if anyone was working in the stairwell, and could find no one. When I returned to what I was doing, I heard what sounded like a woman laughing, and it echoed throughout the room. It was almost as if someone was laughing while teleporting away. The voice started behind me. The voice was also low for a woman, but definitely female, and not elderly. I’d say the laughter had a condescending, sarcastic tone. I was alone. I've experienced rooms that were cold for no reason, sudden random cold spots, and sudden feelings of being watched. Many classmates have similar experiences. This would've been 2021 - 2022, I don't remember the exact date.

    Posted 11/15/23

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  • Woman in black, walking around town square

    If anyone can shed light here I would greatly appreciate it. Years ago I dated a guy that did roofing and he traveled for the job. I went with him this time and it was in Florence, AL. I remember he worked on the roof of a bank right across from the town square. I remember how beautiful and timeless the place looked. I sat in the truck while he worked. Listening to music and writing to pass the time. It was late afternoon in the fall. I looked up and saw a young woman, dressed in all black. Her clothing looked from mid to late 1800’s. She even had a black parasol. She just walked around the square and eventually away. To this day I regret not running up and asking her who she was and why she was dressed that way. I mean I didn’t know if it was do to a historical tour or if I was seeing something paranormal. To this day I still see her in my mind clearly, and I would like to know more about her. If anyone had info I would GREATLY appreciate it. Thank you.

    Posted 9/11/20

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  • Haunted house tour

    A local author takes groups on a haunted house tour just before Halloween in the downtown/University of N AL area of Florence where there are a bunch of nice old homes. A friend and I went on one of her tours several years ago. On that tour, while we were standing behind Pope's Tavern (very surprised it's not on your list - it was used as a hospital during the Civil War.) She told a story about an occurrence that happened on a prior tour. She had her then-young daughter with her. While she was speaking to the attendees, her daughter disappeared for a short time. When she showed back up, her mother, who had realized she wasn't with the group, asked where she'd been. Her daughter told her that she had seen a young girl wandering around by herself, apparently looking for something. The daughter approached her and asked what she was doing, since it was after sundown and she was by herself. The little girl told her she was looking for her missing puppy so the daughter helped her look for a short while. The daughter described the little girl as being dressed "funny". She described her clothes in such a way that told her mother she was wearing an old fashioned dress. This piqued her mother's interest, so they looked for the little girl where the daughter said she'd found her. No little girl or puppy was ever found. I was reminded of this event when I read your mention of the little girl, Molly, that died of rabies after being bitten by her puppy. Coincidence, much?

    Posted 8/24/19

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    2 out of 2 found this review helpful

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