It’s Halloween weekend and for those of us who are too old to trick-or-treat, we’re probably going to binge-watch horror movies, go on haunted pub crawls, or if we’re daring enough, take a trip to the spookiest roads and places in our state.
If you want to visit some of the most haunted roads and places in Tennessee, look no further. Whether it’s ghosts and grave robbers or cult ceremonies and cryptic messages, your primal terrors are sure to be awakened. Just remember to have gas in the engine, check your tires, and have these essential car items when you go… if you dare.
5 Haunted Roads and Places in Tennessee
Take a scary tour of Tennessee’s most haunted roads and places. Thanks to Civil War burial sites and rich folklore from Irish and Scottish immigrants, there are plenty of scary stories and settings to experience this Halloween. Ironically, many of the following haunted places can be both creepy and serene at the same time. You may get goosebumps from the fright or the beautiful sight.
Filled with Civil War battlefields, historic graveyards, and old-fashioned Southern lore, Tennessee is home to some of the scariest roads in the world.
Roaring Fork Motor Trail (Great Smoky Mountains National Park)
Source: TripAdvisor (by cbfinn_99)
Considered by many to be Tennessee’s most haunted road, Roaring Fork Motor Trail won’t disappoint. To get there, head into the Smoky Mountains National Park via the Cherokee Orchard Entrance (off the main street in Gatlinburg at traffic light #8) and you will see the cars-only Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail after you pass the Rainbow Falls trailhead.
Drive on this 5.5-mile trail located in the Smoky Mountains for a spooky but scenic drive filled with old cabins and mills, beautiful waterfalls and wildlife, and maybe young Lucy — an alluring ghost who wanders around the park looking for help.
According to legend, Lucy and the rest of her family died in a tragic cabin fire at the beginning of the 20th century. There are lots of places to pull off, but don’t wander for too long. The mountain mist might just swallow you up.
Even if you don’t run into a ghostly emissary, you can still hear whispers and murmurs from the popular roaring waterfalls. As Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes stories, once said, “Where there is no imagination there is no horror.”
Drummond’s Bridge/Trestle (Briceville, TN)
In Briceville, there is a scary bridge that is made even scarier by local lore. There are many different accounts of the Drummond legend, however, it seems the real story is that a 25-year-old miner was hanged in retaliation for the murder of William Laugherty during the Coal Creek War (Karin Shapiro, A New South Rebellion).
The Coal Creek War was an armed labor uprising that started after the Coal Creek Mining and Manufacturing Co. started sending prisoners from the Tennessee state prison system to work in the mines (the Tennessee State Prison is a haunted spot in its own right — watch this drone film for a virtual tour). This saved the company money but left many Briceville men unemployed. On October 31, 1891, coal miners took up arms and revolted. The war resulted in many deaths, and although the revolt was squashed, the convict labor system was eventually abolished.
Dick Drummond was one of the many laborers who were killed by militiamen sent by the Governor John P. Buchanan. Legend has it that the ghost of Dick Drummond still wanders the area looking for revenge against the soldiers who dragged him to the railroad trestle and hanged him. If you are one to connect with the spirits, you may be able to see a shadowy figure hanging from the bridge’s trestlework or walking the tracks.
As part of a spooky game, kids dare each other to walk across the bridge at midnight. Apparently, at this witching hour Drummond walks across the bridge and then vanishes into thin air. Whether it’s a local trickster or the ghost of Drummond himself, the trip will surely scare the wits out of you. Bring your camera, you may just be able to capture it.
If you don’t think that’s scary enough, try driving through Circle Cemetery Road, up the hill on Circle Road, which causes the chills even during daylight. Also be sure to check out Red Ash Cemetery (official name is Turley Cemetery), around 10 minutes away from the bridge, located off Old Tennessee 63 in Caryville, TN (GPS Coordinates: Latitude: 36.365900, Longitude: -84.271475).
The entire Red Ash area is suspected of being haunted, including reports of giant goat-men and hell-hounds. From Satanic rituals to murder, stories and hauntings abound. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
Sensabaugh Hollow Road/ Sensabaugh Tunnel (Kingsport, TN)
Source: Flickr (posted by DM)
Located in a beautiful hamlet in Kingsport, Tennessee, Sensabaugh Tunnel and Sensabaugh Hollow Road are surrounded by primitive forests and valleys.
Since Sensabaugh Tunnel was first built in the early 1900s, people have been reporting screams, baby cries, and other phantom sounds coming from the tunnel. According to legend, a homeless man broke into the Sensabaugh family home and kidnapped their child. Ed Sensabaugh chased the man into the tunnel, but he was too late. The kidnapper drowned the baby in the tunnel before Ed had the chance to stop the thief.
Another version of the story claims that Ed was the murderer. Ask some Tennessee locals about the tale and you might hear a story of Ed the Madman, who went crazy and murdered is wife and child. He took their lifeless bodies and hid them in the tunnel.
Other folklore says there was a woman who was driving through the tunnel when her car stalled and she went searching for help. As you might expect, she was never found again. Another story tells of a young pregnant woman who was chased into the tunnel. She gave birth to her child before dying soon afterward. The baby’s cries can still be heard today.
If you are too afraid to go walking around, don’t assume you are safe inside your car. Tennessee folklore also warns of a ghostly woman who will appear in your backseat if you try driving through. Others claim that if you drive into the tunnel and turn your car off when in the middle, you won’t be able to turn it back on again until you have manually pushed the vehicle out of the tunnel first.
Even though the Sensabaughs and the women in the tunnel are long gone, their spirits are said to be lurking, scaring off anyone who dares to enter. Needless to say, Sensabaugh Hollow Road and Sensabaugh Tunnel are terrifying places to visit, especially on a dark autumn night.
Franklin on Foot (Downtown Franklin, TN)
Source: TripAdvisor (submitted by RangerNate)
If you want to step out of your car and experience history and folklore told by master storytellers, consider Franklin on Foot, an in-depth ghost tour founded by Margie Thessin. According to her interview with Williamson Source, the most haunted street in Franklin is 3rd Avenue.
Located just south of Nashville, downtown Franklin is home to some great cemeteries and Civil War sites. You can choose among the many tours available, including the Classic Franklin, Civil War in Franklin, Grave Matters in the Cemetery, and Ghosts of the Battlefield at the Lotz House. Just remember to make reservations in advance on the website (available Monday through Saturday).
Watch this video from Williamson Source to learn more:
Meeman-Shelby Forest (Germantown, TN) and Pigman Bridge (Millington, TN)
Meeman-Shelby Forest is a beautiful state park sitting on over 13,000 acres and bordering the Mississippi River just north of Memphis. Full of camping spots, hiking trails, reflective lakes, and surrounded by the Chickasaw Bluffs, the park is home to many magnificent plants and animals. In addition to bald eagles, songbirds, foxes, bobcats, and other endangered species, there’s a different sort of creature that is said to stalk the grounds.
According to legend, a man was horribly disfigured after an accident at an underground powder and explosives production plant during WWII (Millington Ordnance Works/Plant). Shunned by his coworker and the local residents and known simply as Pigman, the popular Tennessee tale says that a man with the face of a pig haunts the Shelby forests looking for his next victim.
He is most spotted at night near the “Pigman Bridge” in the nearby town of Millington, but has also been spotted at the state park. Just look for the smoke stacks near the Chicakasaw Ordnance Works. For the best chance at seeing the Pigman, wait for the full moon and park your car in the middle of the bridge at midnight. Turn your lights and engine off and roll down your windows. Then, flash your lights three times while calling “Pigman, Pigman, Pigman” at each flash and wait. Don’t worry, he’ll come to you. Oink!
For more information on Meeman-Shelby Forest, click here. Don’t forget your flashlight!
Haunted Cemeteries in Tennessee:
- Arney Hill Cemetery – Elizebethton, TN
- Bethel Cumberland Presbyterian Church Cemetery – Atoka, TN
- Elmwood Cemetery – Memphis, TN
- Pegram Family Cemetery – Pegram, TN
- Salem Presbyterian Church Cemetary – Atoka, TN
Haunted Bridges in Tennessee:
- Burnt Mill Bridge – Scott County, TN
- Crazy George’s Bridge – Dry Hollow, TN
- Drummond’s Bridge – Briceville, TN
- Hanniwal Bridge – Elkton, TN
- Scarce Creek Road Bridge – Lexington, TN
- Watauga River Bridge – Elizabethton, TN
Haunted Houses in Tennessee:
- Bell Witch Cave – Adams, TN
- Bell Witch Cave and Tavern – Adams, TN
- Bellwood Mansion – Dover, TN
- Bijou Theatre – Knoxville, TN
- Blackwell House – Bartlett, TN
- Brister Library – Memphis, TN
- Carnton Plantation – Franklin, TN
- Earnestine and Hazel’s – Memphis, TN
- Hales Bar Marina & Dam – Guild, TN
- Ornamental Metal Museum – Memphis, TN
- Orpheum Theatre – Memphis, TN
- Resthaven Memorial Gardens – Clarksville, TN
- Rotherwood Mansion – Kingsport, TN
- St. Paul’s Spiritual Temple – Memphis, TN
- Tennessee State Prison – Nashville, TN
- The Delta Queen – Chattanooga, TN
- The Old Stone House – Alcoa, TN
- The Read House Hotel – Chattanooga, TN
- The Thomas House Hotel – Red Boiling Springs, TN
- Wheatlands Plantation – Sevierville, TN
- Woodruff-Fontaine Mansion – Memphis, TN
More Tennessee haunted places can be found here.
Warning: Many of the areas require permission to visit. Check with the local authorities to make sure you are allowed to go. Trespassers will be prosecuted.
Avoid the Real Horror This Halloween! Learn Car Safety
The worst horrors are the real-life ones. While you are extremely unlikely to experience any kind of physical injury or death from the paranormal, the odds aren’t so good when it comes to getting behind the wheel.
According to NHTSA data, Halloween is the 3rd deadliest day of the year for pedestrians, and the 2nd most dangerous day for motorists.
Car crashes are the leading cause of teen deaths. In the United States alone, there are around 38,000 deaths on the roads every year, an average of approximately 102 deaths per day.
Learn essential driving safety tips to stay safe on the roads:
- Pay extra attention to pedestrians and kids darting into the road.
- Don’t drink and drive! Designate a sober driver.
- Stay off your cell phone! The text/call can wait.
- Use your lights and mirrors properly.
- Headlights, Laws, and Road Safety
- Winter Driving Tips | How to Handle Skids
- How to Winterize Your Car
- How to Properly Use & Position Car Mirrors
- 10 Bad Driving Habits
- How to Tie Things to a Car Roof
Looking for a safe vehicle for your ghost huntings? We carry a large inventory of Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles, each of which go through a comprehensive 180-Point Quality Inspection before they are listed.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to speak with one of our Online Specialists or give us a call:
Chattanooga, TN – (423) 551-3600
Cleveland, TN – (423) 472-2000
Dayton, TN – (423) 775-4600
Dalton, GA – (706) 217-2277