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There’s more to explore behind the curtain at The Paramount Theatre. Check out the US Ghost Adventures Tour of Haunted Austin for more of its ghost lore.
Since Spanish missionaries founded it in the early 18th century, Austin has built a name as a cultural hub and center of all things intellectual and eccentric. Later, with the development of one of the country’s oldest and most prestigious public universities, Austin only increased its renown as a dynamic and bohemian city.
Today, Austin still prides itself on its artistic roots, proven by its endearingly “weird” aesthetic. As home to many internationally acclaimed film and music festivals, the city certainly lives up to its reputation.
For generations, the Paramount Theatre has played a considerable role in this. The architecturally stunning site has been home to thousands of shows of all sorts throughout the years and is a highly sought-after destination for tourists and professional performers alike.
That’s not all it’s home to, though. Many ghostly inhabitants are also rumored to inhabit its historic halls.
When money and glamor came to the shores of the Colorado River in the 19th and 20th centuries with the oil boom, so did a thriving cultural scene of music, art, and theater.
The Paramount Theatre came to prominence in this vibrant mecca for artists and performers. Built in 1915, The Paramount Theatre was an instant attraction in downtown Austin. Initially designed as a space for Vaudeville performance, its classical revivalist exterior (which has since gone through an Art Deco renovation) stands out as strikingly luxurious along Congress Avenue.
The opening performance was a comic rendition of Oliver Twist, which sold out 1,000 seats at 25 cents a ticket. An instant hit, the theater has since hosted countless famous acts, such as Harry Houdini, Greta Garbo, Katharine Hepburn, Duke Ellington, and more.
Truth is stranger than fiction, especially when it comes to ghost lore.
Between performances from these greats, many have also reported seeing a ghostly appearance or two. Most famously is Emily, the wife of a soldier killed on the battlefield. Where the Paramount stands was allegedly the site of this blood-soaked ground, and the desolate widow still looks for her husband to this day.
A more recent addition to the ghost crew is Walter, a cinematographer. He tragically passed away in the theater in 2000 and is said to eat candy while playing with the camera equipment.
The Paramount Theatre is more than just an eye-catching site for Austin’s movie buffs and cultural elite. It’s also a connection to the city’s rich and ghostly history, which is restless with more tales than even the most imaginative screenwriter could ever dream up.
Of course, there’s plenty to see at the Paramount Theatre already with the many musical performances and movie showings there regularly. But if you want some insight into Austin’s more unseen past, the Paramount’s ghostly history is a great place to start.
If you’re up for more showings of this old western town’s ghostly yet glamorous past, join US Ghost Adventures on a haunted tour of Austin. The Paramount Theatre is just one of many iconic stops on a journey through the city’s dramatic and deadly past.
Since 2013, US Ghost Adventures has offered entertaining, historical, and authentic ghost tours of America’s most haunted cities. We deliver fun yet honest accounts of hauntings across the nation for curious people of all ages. Our ghost stories are based on historical research, but that doesn’t mean they won’t send a chill down your spine.
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