When you read the word Washington, you probably didn’t think of the White House being the ghostly destination that will be discussed in this article. Washington is known for the White House because this is where one of the most powerful people in the world lives – the president of the United States.
Although it is where the president of the U.S. lives, what’s more interesting about the White House is the fact that it’s one of the most haunted spots in Washington. Actually, a lot of past presidents who resided there also believe that the White House is haunted.
The facade of the White House. (Link: https://washington.org/dc-faqs-for-visitors/how-can-i-tour-white-house)
History of the White House
The first ever president of the United States, George Washington, was the one who selected the site where the White House has been built back in 1791. It took eight years to complete the building but before it was completed President John Adams and his wife moved in.
President John Adams. (Link: https://www.politico.com/story/2016/10/john-adams-is-born-in-massachusetts-oct-30-1735-230306)
Sometime in 1814, a war broke out and the British set the White House on fire. It was rebuilt later and by 187, President James Monroe moved in. During the administration of Monroe, the South Portico of the white House was built. In 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt introduced major renovations to the White House by adding the West Wing. President William Howard Taft, on the other hand, was responsible for adding the Oval Office.
The White House has a total of 132 rooms and six levels. In the past, the White House was referred to as the “President’s Palace,” “President’s House,” and “Executive Mansion.” President Theodore Roosevelt was the one who formally called it the White House.
The Ghosts At The White House
There are a lot of ghosts spotted in the White House by past presidents, first ladies, and staff. Here are some of them:
Winston Churchill’s And Eleanor Roosevelt’s Encounter With Abraham Lincoln
The most famous is the ghost of Abraham Lincoln. Accordingly, he is usually seen at the Lincoln Bedroom and the Yellow Oval Room. First Lady Grace Coolidge and Prime Minister Winston Churchill claimed that they saw the ghosts of Lincoln. According to Churchill, he just finished taking a bath and when he was smoking a cigar after the bath, he saw Lincoln leaning against the fireplace. Churchill then spoke and said, “Good evening, Mr. President. You seem to have me at a disadvantage.” Lincoln allegedly looked over, smiled, and disappeared. Churchill never wanted to sleep in that room again.
Abraham Lincoln. (Link: https://www.businessinsider.com/abraham-lincoln-daily-routine-2018-2)
First lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s study was the Lincoln Bedroom. Whenever she was working late at night, she said that she could feel the presence of Lincoln. A woman who worked for Eleanor also said that she saw the ghost of Lincoln putting on his boots.
The Son of Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln
Willie Lincoln, the son of Abraham, died in the White House and he was reportedly seen by the staff members in the 1870s. Willie is said to have died due to typhoid fever at 11 years old. Abraham himself saw the ghost of his son and his wife reported that she saw her son’s ghost at the foot of her bed.
Who Does The Laundry?
The wife of President John Adams, Abigail, is seen most of the time in the East Room. In the past, because it was the driest place in the White House, this was where Abigail hung the laundry. Whenever she haunts the White House, she is seen apparently hanging some laundry. The smell of wet laundry and the scent of lavender is also a notable paranormal happening. President William Taft himself saw the ghost of Abigail. During that time, Taft said that he saw Abigail float through the doors on the second floor and had her arms stretched out as if she was carrying laundry to the East Room.
Abigail Adams. (Link: https://www.biography.com/people/abigail-adams-9175670)
A Woman Who Loves Her Garden Even After Death?
One of the first ladies, Dolley Madison, loved maintaining the White House especially the garden. She loved it so much that even after death, she protects her garden. According to reports, Woodrow Wilson’s wife, Edith, wanted to transform the garden that was maintained by Dolley in the past. She then ordered the groundskeepers to dig the plants out but when they tried, the spirit of Madison allegedly appeared from nowhere and chased them away.
Harry S. Truman’s Other Letter To His Wife
Indeed, Harry S. Truman was fond of writing letters about what happened at the White House. In one of his letters to his wife, he said that he went to bed at around 9 P.M. Six hours later, he heard someone knocking at his bedroom door and it was so loud that he jumped up and put on his bathrobe. When he opened the door, no one was there. He then checked his wife’s and his daughter’s rooms but no one was also there. He went back to bed and, “there were footsteps in your room whose door I’d left open. Jumped and looked and no one there! The damned place is haunted sure as shootin’. Secret Service said not even a watchman was up here at that hour.”
Harry S. Truman. (Link: https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_S._Truman)
More on Truman, he and his wife also reportedly heard the cries of Frances Cleveland. She is the only First Lady to have given birth in the White House.
The Ghost Of A White-Haired Old Man
Ulysses S. Grant and Chester Arthur saw the same ghosts, a white-haired old man. A writer for The Washington Critic wrote about the ghost and said that the ghost usually haunted the second floor bedrooms. The ghost was described as an aged man with a long and white beard and hair. He also had bright and glaring eyes and his fingers were long and scrawny. When he walked, it was noiseless but his presence was “indicated by a peculiar electric sensation which pervades the surrounding air.”
Other Ghosts At The White House
President Andrew Jackson, on the other hand, does not show himself but allegedly lets out a laugh that is heard somewhere in the White House. Mary Todd claimed that she also heard Jackson stomping and swearing. Also, Harry S. Truman shared in a letter that he often listened to the ghosts of Jackson and Teddy Roosevelt walking up and down the hallway. He added that also in his study, the “floors pop and the drapes move back and forth — I can just imagine old Andy [Jackson] and Teddy [Roosevelt] having an argument over Franklin [Roosevelt].”
The third U.S. president, Thomas Jefferson, also haunts the White House by playing his violin at the Yellow Oval Room. Mary Todd was also one of those who heard the violin playing. Mary Todd possibly seeing and hearing these paranormal events could be attributed to her being fond of occult and holding séances in the White House because she wanted to talk to the spirit of her dead son.
Another president, John Tyler, haunts the Blue Room at the White House. As for the first president to die in the White House, William Henry Harrison, he reportedly haunts the attic.
The owner of the land where the White House was built, David Burnes, is said to be heard or seen at the Yellow Oval Room. An unnamed British soldier, who died in the White House during the War of 1812, is seen roaming around the ground of the White House while holding a torch.
President Donald Trump Allegedly Spooked By Ghost At The White House
Current president Donald Trump allegedly does not like staying at the White House because he is too spooked of the ghosts at the White House.
A Republican activist claimed that Trump thinks the ghosts at the White House visited him on his first night there. It is also reportedly the reason why he always take vacations. This has not been confirmed by the White House.
Donald Trump at the White House. (Link: https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/anonymous-official-says-trump-staff-working-against-amoral-221655371.html?.tsrc=jtc_news_article)