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The Haunted History of The Myrtles Plantation: Exploring the Dark Secrets of the Antebellum South

The Myrtles Plantation is a historic antebellum mansion located in St. Francisville, Louisiana. It is known for its beauty and charm, as well as its dark history of slavery, murder, and haunting. The plantation is believed to be one of the most haunted places in the United States, and has been the subject of numerous books, documentaries, and paranormal investigations.

History of The Myrtles Plantation

The Myrtles Plantation was built in 1796 by General David Bradford, who was a wealthy lawyer and planter from Pennsylvania. He fled to Louisiana to escape prosecution for his role in the Whiskey Rebellion, and purchased the land where The Myrtles now stands. He named the plantation after the crepe myrtle trees that surrounded the house.

After Bradford's death in 1808, The Myrtles was sold to Ruffin Gray Stirling, who was a wealthy cotton planter. He expanded the plantation by purchasing additional land and slaves, and made The Myrtles one of the largest and most prosperous plantations in the area. Stirling died in 1854, and The Myrtles was inherited by his daughter, Sarah Mathilda Stirling.

Sarah Mathilda Stirling married her cousin, William Drew Winter, in 1852, and they lived at The Myrtles with their children. Winter was a successful lawyer and politician, and was elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives in 1858. However, his political career was cut short when he was shot and killed on the front porch of The Myrtles in 1871.

The identity of Winter's killer is unknown, but it is believed that he was a member of a political rival's gang. Winter's wife, Sarah, was grief-stricken by his death and became reclusive, rarely leaving the house. She died in 1878, and The Myrtles was sold at auction to settle her estate.

The plantation changed hands several times over the next few decades, and was used as a boarding house, a girls' school, and a private residence. In 1970, it was purchased by James and Frances Kermeen Myers, who restored the house to its former glory and opened it as a bed and breakfast.

Hauntings at The Myrtles Plantation

The Myrtles Plantation is known for its many hauntings, which are believed to be the result of its dark history. Some of the most famous ghosts at The Myrtles include:

Chloe - Chloe was a slave at The Myrtles who was said to be the mistress of Ruffin Stirling. She was caught eavesdropping on a private conversation between Stirling and his wife, and as punishment, he cut off her ear. Chloe was said to have sought revenge by poisoning a birthday cake that was served to Sarah Stirling and her family. The poisoning allegedly killed Sarah and two of her children. Chloe was hanged by the other slaves for her crime, and her ghost is said to haunt The Myrtles to this day.

The Children - The ghosts of two young girls are often seen and heard at The Myrtles. They are believed to be the daughters of Sarah and William Winter, who died of yellow fever in the mid-19th century.

William Drew Winter - The ghost of William Drew Winter is said to haunt The Myrtles, and is often seen sitting in a chair on the front porch. He is believed to be seeking revenge for his untimely death.

The Lady in Green - The ghost of a woman in a green dress has been seen wandering the halls of The Myrtles. She is believed to be a former owner of the plantation.

The Mirror - The mirror in the foyer of The Myrtles is also said to be haunted. Legend has it that the mirror holds the spirits of Sarah Stirling and her children, who were allegedly poisoned by Chloe. It is said that if you look into the mirror at night, you can see the ghosts of the children reflected in the glass.

In addition to these famous hauntings, there have been numerous reports of other strange occurrences at The Myrtles. Guests have reported hearing footsteps, doors opening and closing by themselves, and feeling a cold presence in certain parts of the house. Many believe that The Myrtles is one of the most haunted places in the United States.

Visiting The Myrtles Plantation

Today, The Myrtles is open to the public as a bed and breakfast and museum. Visitors can tour the mansion and learn about its fascinating history and hauntings. The plantation also offers overnight stays in its luxurious guest rooms, where guests can experience the unique charm and beauty of the antebellum South.

If you are interested in the paranormal, The Myrtles is a must-visit destination. The plantation has been the subject of numerous paranormal investigations, and has been featured on many TV shows and documentaries about ghosts and hauntings. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, The Myrtles is sure to leave a lasting impression on anyone who visits.


The Myrtles Plantation is a unique and fascinating destination that offers a glimpse into the dark history of the antebellum South. Its hauntings have captured the imaginations of people all over the world, and it is widely regarded as one of the most haunted places in the United States. Whether you are a history buff or a ghost enthusiast, The Myrtles is a destination that is not to be missed. So if you are ever in St. Francisville, Louisiana, be sure to pay a visit to The Myrtles and experience its eerie charm for yourself.

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