A Seemingly Light-Hearted City Built on the Back of Tragedy, Murder, and Revenge
The “City of the Violet Crown” is famous for its vibrant and eclectic atmosphere. One that attracts people by the thousands, each looking for that old-town America idealization. However, this city that protects the small, unique, and local colors from being overrun is a city that preserves its own spirits as well as a gruesome past that welcomes the restless spirits of its dead.
Over the years, the city has seen a growth in population and there are some that have never left centuries after shedding their mortal remains. The liveliness of Austin is part of its appeal but it’s what masks the tragedy and anguish that attract the dead of the past to the present and the land of the living. Intertwined with its reputation for the strange is an underworld of wandering souls and woeful spirits.
Discover out how the area’s past, present, and apparitions help this Travis Country enclave maintain its unique, often otherworldly mystique. Let the haunted history of Texas’ most outlandish city uncoil itself before you and uncover why the stories of the restless dead are just as outrageous as the city itself. Learn of the unforeseen tragedies, untimely deaths, vicious murders, and broken dreams that make up the foundation of Texas’ state capitol.
WHAT WILL I SEE?
An Experience Laced with Stories of Pain and Violence at Austin’s Most Haunted Historic Buildings
Experience the city in a way unlike any other, with a true ghost tour as authentic as Austin itself and one that will sweep you into the undercurrent of the bizarre. This gripping excursion into the past will introduce you to some of the city’s most harrowing tales of revenge, despair, and untimely ends. From historic landmarks to the unlikeliest of buildings, you’ll be taken to the spots that residents who’ve long been dead still call home.
Prime examples are the haunted Austin State Capitol and the haunted Handlebar pub. Both are featured stops on the Austin Ghosts tour where you will:
- Explore the original location of the first Texas State Capitol buildings, which also happens to be the hub of a menacing tale that haunts the area to this day. Following a drunken night, a man named Nathan Elgin brutally murdered a woman and continued his crime spree after his death. The agonizing sounds of the dead women’s screams can still be heard late at night, and their deaths are considered the birth of America’s first serial killings.
- Discover the eerie origins of The Handlebar, the city’s only mustache-themed bar that happened to be a funeral parlor a century prior and receives visitors from all over, including the beyond. Unearth the tragic tale of a former employee whose apparition is forever trapped at the Texas State Capitol building.
The “Awesome”, or the Ozzie as some folks nicknamed the area, is filled to the rafters with odd tales, nasty surprises, and head-scraping hauntings. This unique ghost tour of Austin aims to start you into that whirlwind of strangeness and take you on a rollercoaster ride you’ll never forget:
- Visit the nooks of this eerie enclave and unearth a historical adventure filled with tragedies, atypical stories, and outlandish true tales of woes, murders, and just plain offbeat reveries.
- Hear fact-based stories that created the city you now see before you. Stories of such specters as Jack of the Omni Hotel, Samantha at The Driskill, Sidney Porter, and Walter Norris Jr. at the Paramount Theater – and dozens more.
Each of its historic sites reeks of some outlandish tale or unusual occurrence — many of them with more than a dash of the dark, disturbing, and the dead. Visit haunted hotels, historic buildings, and theaters where apparitions love to make surprise appearances.
Built in 1915, on the same land that once stood Sam Houston’s war office, The Paramount Theater has managed to withstand the test of time through determined owners… and a deal made with the devil. Today, the venue serves as a live theater/movie cinema that is regularly frequented by tourists, Austinites, and the supernatural, including “The Man With the Cigar”, “The Lady in White”, and even a former employee.
WHY IS AUSTIN HAUNTED?
True Tales of Things Stranger Than Fiction
Before Austin gained notoriety for its diverse cultural jamboree, it was an up-and-coming Texas town with a dark history that dates back to the late Pleistocene Era. To the massacres of the Clovis Culture of around 9200 BC to Gault Sites caught midway between Georgetown and Fort Hood. Before settlers arrived from Europe, Austin was a land mired in constant tribal war. The Tonkawa tribe fought off raiding Comanches and Apaches in tooth-and-nail skirmishes that left areas utterly desolate and drenched in native blood.
Maybe those blood sacrifices served to pique something’s hunger and all of those deaths were further enhanced by the desperate nature of most Texan towns after the Civil War. Full of outlaws, hoodlums, vagrants, and gun-slingers with a “shoot first, ask questions later” mentality, the notorious historical cowboys and criminals of The Lone Star State christened the land with blood and violence that might have attracted more mayhem, more otherworldly specters, and more insanity than even the wildest of Texas towns.
Or maybe, when a city proclaims to be the “weirdest city in the states,” it does its best to honor that promise and opens the door for the unexplained and authentic accounts of real hauntings that are stranger than fiction.
Wraiths of the Weird, Wild, and Wacky Underworld Are Dancing to the Devil’s Tune
Underneath its wild veneer, behind its unofficial city slogan as “the live music Capital of the world,” and under the neon glow of “Silicon Hill” hides the horrific and the terrifying past of Austin that seemed to attract the powerful, the greedy, and the ambitious whose quest for success trampled countless victims over the last few centuries as the battle for Texas between the North and South raged on.
From the Mexican invasion in 1842 to disputes between Mexican soldiers and Texas cowboys to the destruction in the wake of the Civil War, Austin was at the center of development and disaster. After the flood of 1900 destroyed the bridge over the Colorado River, the spirits of Austin’s bloody past stayed in step with the development of the city and the restless souls of its victims became a part of its population and foundation, waiting to torment local residents and prospectors alike.
Hidden in the shades of some of its most notable companies– Facebook, IBM, Oracle, Tesla, Intel, Google, Amazon, etc, – the ghosts of the past became an inseparable part of its present and future.
Take a ghost tour in 21st century Austin and despite being amongst eclectic crowds and continuously raging live music, experience a real-life encounter with the ghosts of Austin and you’ll realize the phantoms that plague this one-of-a-kind Texas city dance to their own creepy soundtrack and are anything but welcoming, even to the weird and wild.
Austin’s music festivals, its interactive media festivals, and its huge student body – Austin has the largest university in the US with over 50,000 students – serve to divert attention from its otherworldly, and ludicrous nature. It’s a city of oddballs, of the far-out, the freakish, the outré, and the offbeat.
WHAT’S SO SPECIAL ABOUT THE AUSTIN GHOSTS TOUR?
Learn Firsthand What Gives Austin Its Light, and Its Darkness
Free and fun-loving are some of the first words that come to mind at the mere mention of the city of Austin. The fact is though, it didn’t always emit that same vibe and for a time, “fun-loving” wasn’t exactly the best way to describe it. While the city has undergone quite a transformation, the past still makes itself present in the form of strange occurrences, unexplained sounds, and the occasional apparition.
What makes these haunting tales so fantastic is their locations. From popular hotels to historical monuments and even the state capitol, there are various places in Austin where there’s more than meets the eye. Experience for yourself what gives this city its light, and why it can’t escape its darkness.
A city with a colorful personality where the people and the surroundings aren’t the only things that give the place its intrigue.
See a Different, Darker Side of a Historic Destination
Come with expert local guides and travel through scorching streets, and stand under vintage buildings that have seen the rise and fall of the wild west. You will encounter all manner of tales, hear, and experience something otherworldly, and unforgettable. Encounter the wraiths and ghosts and the restless dead that still call Austin their home.
No two stops are the same. From revenge-filled tales to off-the-walls interludes that boggle the mind. Get ready for some nightmare fuel, and for some sleepless nights.
Be Part of A Growing Ghostly Community
Journey with us through Austin’s haunted past — a chronology of ghostly tales exposed on every site. Explore one of our country’s oldest locations. Book this once-in-a-lifetime experience, and be part of a growing community of investigators of the afterlife and of those who hunt ghosts.
If you’d like to walk the haunted avenues of Austin and see the “Ostrich: in a new light, book your tour with US Ghost Adventures today.
Experience the unexplained — many of our guests bear witness to the unknown. Become one of them tonight.