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Uptown Charlotte’s Spookiest Spots

Charlotte was officially incorporated as Charlotte Town in 1768. Businesses and residences were built near the town center at Trade and Tryon streets in Uptown, and the city grew out from there. With the growth came many buildings, people and stories that make Charlotte what it is today, but some of those stories have a dark side and some of those residents may have never left. Visit these spooky spots in Uptown to discover Charlotte’s haunted history first-hand. 

Image courtesy of Axios Charlotte

Alexander Michael’s

This beloved neighborhood tavern originally opened in 1897 as a grocery store for local residents with an apartment above. It changed ownership several times from William Crowell to Ernest Berryhill among others and became known as the Crowell-Berryhill Store. While the historic home has operated as an eatery for the past 30-plus years, it’s been around for more than 120 years with numerous residents and patrons having spent time within its four walls, one or a couple of which have apparently stayed around. Former workers and customers have reported hearing their name called faintly or feeling a tap on the shoulder when no one was there.    

Image courtesy of McNinch House Restaurant

McNinch House Restaurant

This 1892 Queen Anne-style home on North Church Street is hard to miss with its purple paint and historic charm. It’s the former home of Victorian-era Mayor Sam McNinch and was even visited by President William Howard Taft in 1909. It now serves as a fine dining restaurant and one of the only four diamond restaurants in Charlotte. It also has a private residence on the second floor. The home has been in the McNinch family for most of its history and was the home of McNinch’s daughter Mattie McNinch until 1978, when it was purchased by a private citizen committed to its ongoing restoration. According to local legend, the shadow of the former lady of the house can be seen in one of the upstairs windows.

Image courtesy of Ri Ra Irish Pub

Rí Rá Irish Pub

This popular Irish pub in Uptown opened in 1997 featuring a more than 200-year-old meticulously restored bar along with authentic furniture and artifacts that were salvaged from old pubs in Ireland. Some of the old books behind the bar are hand written from the 18th century, and the lobby floors and staircase leading up to the second floor were donated by an Irish Catholic church. In 2009, the pub survived a major fire and reopened after expert tradespeople restored the damaged pieces once again. There are a few theories about why the pub is haunted, including that spirits from Ireland came here with the artifacts and that the building itself was haunted long before it became a pub. Either way, customers and staff have experienced unexplainable activity such as cold spots throughout the building and sightings of potential residents ghosts, including a man (possibly a former Irish bartender) in a 1920s outfit and a girl in Victorian-era clothing who’s believed to be the source of the alphabet appearing in chalk on the upper brick wall in the entryway.  

Image courtesy of Kip Dawkins

The Dunhill Hotel

The oldest hotel in Uptown, The Dunhill originally opened in 1929 as The Mayfield Manor, an apartment-hotel hybrid designed by well-known architect Louis Asbury, Sr. (the namesake of the attached restaurant The Asbury). Registered as a Historic Hotel of America, the 10-story hotel was one of the tallest buildings in Uptown when it was constructed. With thousands of guests and residents passing through the doors of the building, there are bound to be a few who never left. According to reports, there have been guests who jumped to their death from the rooftop and a human skull was found during renovations. Guests and staff have reported hearing footsteps or laughing when no one is there, lights flickering and more. Room 906 has been reported as the most haunted by former guests.

Image courtesy of Charlotte Observer

Carolina Theatre

The historic Carolina Theatre originally opened in Uptown Charlotte in 1927 before closing to the public in the 1970s. It’s currently being restored to become a five-story performing arts and event space with a 250-room InterContinental Hotel built on top of it. It’s rumored to be haunted by a resident ghost nicknamed Fred, who former staff members reported turned lights on and off and appeared as a pale white apparition in the balcony. While Fred hasn’t caused much trouble in the past, could the renovations be stirring up some activity from Fred? 

Hear more stories of haunted happenings and spooky spaces in Uptown Charlotte on a ghost tour with Carolina History & Haunts, Charlotte NC Tours, Charlotte Center City Carriage Tours, Nightly Spirits or Queen City Ghosts.

Do you know of other haunted spots in Uptown or have you experienced paranormal activity in the city? Share your stories and pictures with us on social media by tagging @uptown.clt on Instagram and using the hashtag #uptownclt. And don't forget to check the Uptown Event Calendar for more Uptown happenings!