On Edisto Island in South Carolina, near an old Presbyterian Church, there is a graveyard that is said to be haunted by the ghost of a little girl named Julia Legare. She died in 1852 while visiting her family’s plantation… or did she?
The legend of Julia Legare is one of the most popular ghost stories in South Carolina. She came to Edisto Island in 1852 to visit her family’s plantation. The young girl was having a good time on holiday, but it was tragically cut short when she came down with a mysterious illness.
As the days went on, Julia’s sickness became worse and worse, until finally, she slipped into a coma. Her family tried to care for her as best they could, but in those days there were a lot of things medicine couldnt cure. They anxiously waited for the day when the young girl to recover, but that day never came.
The family physician came to examine the young girl and it was with a heavy heart that he broke the sad news to the family. Julia Legare was dead. The child was lovingly dressed in her best clothes for the funeral, where her loved ones would have the chance to say one last goodbye… or so they thought.
At that time, when people passed away, they were not treated with embalming fluids to preserve the body before burial. Instead, the dead were buried quickly to avoid spreading disease and young Julia Legare was buried on the day she died, after her loved ones had a chance to pay their respects.
After the funeral, her body was taken from the church and sealed up in the family’s mausoleum. They placed her in the tomb, then sealed up the marble door and locked it behind them.
That night, members of the church thought they could hear faint screams and the sound of crying coming from the direction of the old graveyard, but no one ever investigated the strange noises.
After 15 years had gone by, another death in the family required the mausoleum to be opened. It was then that the family realized what a tragic error they had made.
Some 15 years later, there was another death in the Legare family member. After the funeral, the mausoleum was reopened so that the dead person could be interred.
However, when they unsealed the heavy marble door and looked inside, they were shocked to see a small skeleton lying crumpled on the ground. It was huddled by the door and the hands were outstretched as if it had been trying to claw its way out.
To their horror, they realized that it was Julia. She had still been alive when they sealed her in the tomb all those years ago. The doctor must have been wrong. She wasn’t dead, she was just in a coma. When she awoke in the mausoleum, she was probably terrified and tried to escape by scratching on the door.
The poor girl’s remains were entombed once again, as were those of the relative whose death led to the grim discovery, and the door was securely closed.
Still reeling from the horrible discovery, the girl’s family members visited cemetery the next day, to pay their respects. When they did, they found the door of the mausoleum was standing open. Thinking that someone must have forgotten to lock it, they shut the door again and walked away.
A few weeks later, the door was open again. This happened over and over throughout the decades. Chains and unbreakable locks were used to keep it sealed tight, but they would always break and the door would be found standing open. It seemed that the ghost of Julia Legare would not allow it to remain closed.
Visitors still head out to the Edisto Island every year, just to explore the cemetery and take a look at the famous mausoleum. Walking inside the tomb is just fine, but don’t ever think about shutting the door.
A few years ago my friends and I decided to go out to Edisto Island and explore the old Presbyterian Church. We had all heard the legend of Julia Legare and we wanted to find out if the place was really haunted.
While I was in the mausoleum, taking a look around, my friends thought it would be funny to play a prank on me. They shut the giant stone door behind me and left me trapped inside.
As I stood in the darkness, I heard them laughing outside and I thought they would let me out after a while. Instead, I heard them say they would come back and pick me up in the morning. They left me there. I couldn’t believe it.
I began to get creeped out and started pushing against the door, with all my strength, but it just wouldn’t budge. It had taken all four of my friends to shut it in the first place.
I couldn’t see anything in the pitch black. Nervously, I sat down and resigned myself to spending the night trapped in the mausoleum. Normally, I’m not the kind of person who frightens easily, but sitting there in that cramped tomb, surrounded by the darkness and the gloom, I began to panic. It felt like there was a weight pressing down on my chest, making it hard to breathe.
I sat there trembling in the dark for what seemed like hours. Then, all of a sudden, I heard a faint scratching sound. At first, I thought it was just my imagination, but as time went on, the scratching became more and more frantic. I huddled in one of the corners and tried to cover my ears, but I couldn’t block out the unnerving sound. It kept growing louder and louder.
Then, just as I thought I was about to lose my mind, a terrible scream echoed through the darkness. It chilled me to the bone. It was a long and mournful wail that was filled with unbearable pain and fear. In the silence that followed, I could make out the sound of a young girl sobbing quietly to herself. It was the pitiful crying of someone who had been left without a shred of hope.
In that moment, I felt such sorrow and pain, that I think I forgot my fear. Her suffering seemed to resonate and inexplicably, I found myself wanting to reach out and comfort her. However, I couldn’t bring myself to do it for fear of what I might touch in the darkness.
Just then, I heard a loud creak and the door of the mausoleum slowly opened. With a huge amount of relief, I realized that I was free. I ran outside into the light and saw my friends standing over by the old church.
When they laid eyes on me, they came running over and they had a look of shock on their faces. They clustered around me and then they looked at the tomb. The inside of the mausoleum door was covered in bloody scratches.
They checked my hands, but my fingers were unhurt. Then, they nervously glanced at one another. I gave them hell for locking me inside and told them I wanted to go home.
As we walked back to the car, one of my friends turned to me and said, “Look at your face.”
When I got to the car and looked in the rear-view mirror, I saw that my face was streaked with blood. There were five dark red lines on my cheek, as if someone had gently caressed my face with bloody fingers as I sat in the darkness, just to feel the warmth of another human being for the first time in over a hundred years…