Southwest Georgia city boasts haunts along with history: It's closing in on midnight at the Historic Windsor Hotel in Americus; the lights are on outside, guests are asleep, and the lobby is quiet. But…is it empty?
"We have had people take photos, and there will be reflections in the [lobby] mirror that wren't there when they took the photo," says Steve Short, of Americus-Sumter County Tourism.
Turns out, some guests at the glamorous hotel — first opened in 1892 — may have overstayed their welcome. And that's just one small part of the haunted history of this historic Southwest Georgia town.
Americus-Sumter County Tourism recently began offering haunted history tours of the city, which boasts nearly 200 years of fascinating stories. Those tours take brave visitors to sites including the oldest cemetery in town, a haunted intersection, and architecturally-significant buildings dating back to the turn of the century. But the highlight of the tour is the Windsor Hotel, which many consider the most haunted place in town.
"The weirdest stuff happens on the third floor," says Short.
In fact, paranormal activity is so widely reported at the hotel that there's a book available at the front desk documenting it. Page after page details previous investigations into the Americus landmark, which closed its doors in the 1970s, only to re-open nearly twenty years later after a $6.5 million dollar renovation. The hotel was renovated again in 2010, when it joined the Best Western hotel group.
Today, there are 53 guest rooms at the Windsor Hotel, including a Bridal Suite and the Carter Presidential Suite, named after the area's most famous resident, President Jimmy Carter. But here's a tip — if you're looking to do a little ghost-busting while you're in town, we hear Room 333 is a good place to start.
Just be sure to take a good look at your vacation photos when you get home. You might just spot some faces you've never seen before…
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