St. Johns College

St. John's College in Annapolis Maryland

Another historical piece of property in downtown Annapolis is St. John’s College. The college is the third oldest college in the United States. It is a popular school for liberal arts students. St. John’s is also known for a few spooky stories.

St. John’s College was originally built in 1696 as King Williams School. It was established as St. John’s College in 1784 and opened to students in 1789. The property was originally only 4 acres. During the Civil War the school closed due to most students fighting in the war. The union used the college as housing for their soldiers and later it was used by the Army Medical Corps, calling the campus College Green Hospital. After the Civil War the school was reopened in 1866 and remained an all male military campus until 1937. The campus has since then expanded to 36 acres and has added many buildings. With its history, of course St. John’s College has some great paranormal stories.

The French Monument and College Creek

The French Monument was created as a memorial for unknown French soldiers who were buried in the meadow. In 1781 the area near College Creek was where French soldiers camped during the Revolutionary War. After the war, the bodies that were buried there would wash up when College Creek would flood. The wooded crosses that marked the graves were also ruined. The monument was dedicated to these graves April 18, 1911.

The area has also experienced paranormal activity. Visitors to the monument would report of cold spots and hearing voices speaking French. Sensitives have experienced feelings of anxiety and would have visions of how the area looked in the 1700s. Re-enactors also have reported seeing men in old French uniforms that do not match their costumes.

Paca Carroll House

Paca Carroll House, part of St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland

The Paca Carroll House had its brief paranormal reports in the 1970’s. A student was living on the 3rd floor of the building and heard a knock on his door and two women talking. He was half asleep and unable to open his eyes but he could hear them asking him incoherent questions. Another student also heard knocking at their door but no one was there each time they would answer

McDowell Hall

McDowell Hall, part of St. John's College in Annapolis Maryland

McDowell Hall began being constructed in 1742 as a house for the governor. It was completed in 1784 when politicians changed their agenda for the building and it became King Williams School. It was the only building on the campus, named the Great Hall, and was used as a library, dorm and classroom until 1835. During the Civil War the building was used as a camp for the union soldiers. In 1909 and 1952 the building was almost destroyed by fire.

The building has had various amounts of paranormal activity. One of the most popular reports is the Whistler. Security reported of hearing someone whistling throughout the building, giving this phantom his name. He has been heard throughout the library, gym and on the elevator. It has even been heard in different locations at the same time. Security guards have had other experiences as well such as: window shades being pulled up by unseen force, footsteps, tower bell ringing at wrong times, lights on and off, hearing children’s voices, doors opening and closing, furniture being moved, and civil war soldiers seen. People have had experiences relating to the fire in the building such as a strong smell of burning wood and doors being hot. The strangest by far is of when a student entered a second floor classroom and the entire room was changed back into the 1800s with a strange man sitting in a chair reading. She closed the door and reopened it for the classroom to return to normal.

Greenfield Library

Greenfield Library, part of St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland

The campus library, Greenfield Library, is home to a spirit that loves the elevator. The library was the Maryland State Archives Building prior to becoming the campus library. One night a security guard claimed that the elevator would operate by itself when the library is closed. The elevator stopped on the floor he was on and opened to reveal no one in it. This particular guard refuses to stay in the library too long.

Carroll Barrister House

The Carroll Barrister House did not start out as part of the college, or even on the college campus. The building was built in 1727 by Dr. Charles Carroll.  In 1955 the building was facing demolishment and was moved to the campus for restoration.

The paranormal activity in the house is believed to be Dr. Carroll’s maid. People have been reporting footsteps on the stairs, cold spots and hearing female voices. Electronics also seem to like to power on and off by themselves.

Resources

Carter, M. & Dray, J. (2012) Haunted Annapolis: Ghosts of the Capital City. Haunted America. Charleston, SC.

Okonowicz, E. (2010). The Big Book of Maryland Ghost Stories. Stackpole Books. Mechanicsburg, PA.

Rasmussen,F. (2007). The Creepier Side of the State’s Capital. The Baltimore Sun [electronic version] retrieved from http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2007-07-21/news/0707210016_1_annapolis-dome-simmons

St. Johns College (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.sjc.edu/about/history