Do you like ghost stories? Unexplained, strange mysteries? Be honest. We all do. We love things that make us shiver in the dark - ghost sightings, true ghost stories, and haunted places. Things that go bump in the night make us pull the covers over our heads and keep one wide eye on the closet door.
In the light of day it's easy to laugh off thoughts of paranormal ghosts. We know deep down there are no real life ghosts.
Or are there?
We go on vacation to get away from the everyday world, escape our fears and phobias for some island time. We don't expect to encounter spooky ghosts or haunted hotels.
But on Jekyll Island, some folks claim there are haunted places.
Let me introduce you to the haunted hotels and famous ghosts of Jekyll Island's Millionaire's Village.
Strange Mysteries Haunt the Jekyll Island Club Hotel -
Looking at the timeless beauty of the Jekyll Island Club Hotel , you wouldn't think that it was one of Georgia's most famous haunted places - not-so-final resting place for not just one but three distinct paranormal ghosts.
Sightings include the specter of one of the historic club's past presidents, the leader of the Southern Railroad - and a bell-hop.
Lloyd Aspinwall -
Elected president of the newly-minted Jekyll Island Club (by the likes of such men as Vanderbilt, Morgan and Pulitzer), Lloyd Aspinwall was liked and respected by millionaire and common-man employee alike. In 1886, he had worked hard on the club, and eagerly awaited it's grand opening.
But then, suddenly, he died.
Rich and poor were shocked and dismayed at Aspinwall's passing - but even more shocked when his ghost was sighted walking, hands clasped behind his back, along the Riverfront Veranda, which had been his favorite place for relaxing and sneaking naps when he was alive and kicking.
When the hotel was renovated in 1985, the Riverfront Veranda was glassed in, and re-named the Aspinwall Room.
Aspinwall has been seen periodically over the last century, continuing to visit and enjoy the beauty and comfort of the club he loved so much.
So watch where you sit in the Aspinwall Room. Lloyd Aspinwall may just be enjoying a ghostly nap in the very chair you sit down in.
Samuel Spencer -
Samuel Spencer loved his Southern Railroad, in fact was the railroad's president. One of only a few Southerners invited to join the club, Spencer came to Jekyll Island like we all do, to escape the pressures of everyday business, and revel in the natural beauty of the island.
Spencer had a luxurious 2nd floor apartment in the Annex building. Every morning, he had the Wall Street Journal delivered to him, and he'd lounge about sipping fresh coffee and reading the paper.
In 1906, however, it all ended. He was accidentally struck and killed by one of his own trains. His time on this earth - and Jekyll Island - was over.
Or was it? Old habits, it appears, die slowly.
Apartment 8 has now been renovated into one large room, but weird stuff and strange mysteries seem to occur there.
Many guests staying in Spencer's old digs claim that newspapers and other reading material, left unattended, have been disturbed - opened up, pages rearranged, scattered about. Some have reported that their coffee mugs had less coffee in them than they remembered. They seemed to have been sipped from.
Is the ghost of Samuel Spencer still enjoying his java while keeping up with the news?
Strange Mysteries Surround The Bell-hop Apparition -
No one seems to remember his name, but one bell-hop employed at the Jekyll Island Club in the 1920's must have taken his job real seriously. He keeps doing it - years after he died.
Present day employees have reported that this ghost story is true. They claim there have been times when they've returned dry-cleaning to wedding party guests, knocked on the room door, and, when no one answered their knock, left the cloths outside and went on down the hall.
When they returned, the cloths were missing. After inquiring with the guests, they were told that a figure in an old-fashioned bell-hop uniform had knocked on their door, handed them their dry cleaning - and then vanished.
This figure has purportedly been glimpsed by other guests, walking the halls in his out-dated pill-box hat and striped pants.
For that kind of dedicated service, leave a big tip...
As well as the Jekyll Island Club Hotel, surrounding cottages seem to have remained popular with the members - even after they had passed on. Strange mysteries and unexplained happenings still seem to permeate the Historic District.
Were these really ghost sightings, or just reflections of the photographer captured in glass and flash?
I've visited Hollybourne, and it's a pretty spooky place. I didn't see ghosts, but if there were any seeking a place to haunt, Hollybourne would easily fit the bill.
Another thing - I didn't visit after dark...
So...are you convinced? Are there real life ghosts residing in Jekyll Island's Historic District? If so, consider this - Jekyll Island must be the perfect place for family adventures if dead folk keep coming back to visit!
But it might be a good idea to sleep with the lights on at the Jekyll Island Club Hotel, the Annex or San Souci - and see to your own dry cleaning...