Look around the Chesapeake Bay watershed this time of year, and you’ll find ghost tours all over the place: Annapolis, Gettysburg and Richmond, to name a few. And why wouldn’t there be ghosts here? The Chesapeake region was among the first areas in the United States settled by English colonists. Since that time, the Bay has experienced land-altering and life-taking hurricanes, mysterious shipwrecks, and bloody battles during the nation’s early wars. Just in time for Halloween, we’ve compiled an eclectic list of hauntings, sightings and purely strange spooks from throughout the Bay watershed. Many of these places would make a perfect outdoor escape this weekend – if you’re brave enough, that is!

Bloody fingers of the not quite dead: White Marsh Episcopal Church graveyard (Trappe, Maryland)

“This is a thin place, where the veil between this world and the next is transparent.” – Mindie Buroyne, author ofHaunted Eastern Shore: Ghostly Tales from East of the Chesapeake

1665. That is the year the Old White Marsh Episcopal Church in Talbot County, Maryland first opened. In the 1720s, the church’s Reverend Daniel Maynadier’s wife, Hanna, died. Upon her request, she was buried with her favorite ring on her finger. But the graverobbers, or “ringrobbers,” were ready. When they couldn’t get the ring off her finger, they began to slice away…

And Hanna arose.

Image courtesy Sarah Stierch/Flickr

The Reverend’s wife was not dead, but in a coma. She gathered her shroud around her and walked home to greet her grieving husband.

Hanna went on to have several children, but the bloodmarks on her hand would never wash away. Rumor has it that she can still be seen walking home from the cemetery, her shroud around her and her hand leaving a trail of blood.’

Chesapeake Bay Program

by Caitlin Finnerty