MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — There have been multiple reports through the years about hauntings at the Oakleigh House Museum. It’s one of Mobile’s oldest homes, and it’s full of history! The museum’s collection contains more than 1,000 artifacts that shed light on life in Mobile between the early 1830s to 1900s. Some of them are said to contain something more than meets the eye.
There are several things inside the Oakleigh House Museum that grab your attention and send chills down your spine the moment you walk through the halls. There are portraits of historical Mobile figures that line the walls, and their eyes seem to follow every move you make. There’s also a wreath made of human hair.
“Making wreaths out of human hair was a way to kind of feel close to the deceased when they died. They’d create these really intricate designs by boiling the hair and casing it in wax,” said Marye Newman, Oakleigh Manager.
Oakleigh was built by cotton broker James W. Roper in 1833. The Irwin family moved into the home in 1852.
Newman said, “The Irwins lived here for three generations from 1852-1960. And at the very least we know for a fact that Margaret Irwin, Corrine Irwin, Alfred Irwin, as well as T.K. Irwin died in this house.”
And some believe their spirits still remain. Newman is one of them. She told Cherish Lombard that her first ghostly encounter was a woman watching her from an upstairs window.
She said, “I remember thinking it was kind of weird clothing because she was like really conservatively dressed and her skirt was real poofy. But I just said nothing of it. Until I got to the back door and our alarm was still on and all of our security was still in place, meaning no one could have possibly been in the building.”
Oakleigh Belle Cassie Taylor says she’s had similar experiences.
“I see people in the windows all the time, all the time. I’ll be walking up to Oakleigh and I’ll see someone,” Taylor said.
She says she’s also felt things she can’t explain.
“I get a lot of cold breezes passed by me, kind of like a fall breeze but inside,” she explained.
People claim they’ve even heard things that just aren’t possible.
“We do have several guests as well as former staff and people who’ve stayed here overnight claim that when they’re trying to sleep that this piano music keeps playing all throughout the night,” Newman said.
There are also tales of a mysterious music box.
“At the very end of the night we’re going to close up and there was a music box we have in our collection. It has been broken the entire time I’ve been here. There’s a spring that does not work. Well, this music box is playing,” said Newman.
And stories of dishes flying off of tables, shadow figures on the staircase, and an old deck of playing cards, that seems to play itself.
“I’ll leave the house one day then the next day I come open up, no one has been here in between, but the cards are in a different position,” Newman told News 5.
There is a public ghost hunt at Oakleigh on Friday, November 1st from 7:00 – 11:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 General Admission, $20 at the door. You can purchase tickets online at https://www.historicmobile.org/events?fbclid=IwAR1leKkpug9wwzK_v7iG2zx4hcmSxQ7EFQ_35z2skjuIyTDKI06NF-08-GY