Five Most Mysterious Monsters, Haunts, and Urban Legends of New Orleans


The haunted enigma of New Orleans casts an enduring spell on curious minds. A city steeped in a tumultuous history of colonization, slavery, wars, and natural disasters fosters peculiar events and many myths and urban legends. New Orleans’ nickname, “Cities of the Dead,” sets the tone for the entities within its confines. Haunted buildings, labyrinths of cemeteries, vampire lore, and Voodoo rituals await those brave enough to explore them.

The Rougarou of South Louisiana

Alligators and snakes aren’t the only creepy creatures that call the swamps of the Greater New Orleans area home. One of Louisiana’s scariest legends, the rougarou, has roamed Louisana’s bayous since the French first inhabited the area in the 1600s.

First called the loup-garou by the French, the rougarou is a large wolf-like creature with white skin and dark, patchy fur. The tale goes that the rougarou is a cursed person who transforms into a wolf-like creature under the full moon. Anyone, adult or child, who acts out is said to be subject to its wrath.

The Count of Saint Germain

There is no shortage of vampire legends in New Orleans. Even today, many wannabe nightwalkers roam the streets as New Orleans Vampire Association members. The first and most infamous vampire legend was born in the 1600s, and his name is Jacques de St. Germain. To blend into society, he claimed he was a descendant of the first Count of Saint Germain.

After being accused by police of attacking a young woman one night, Germain became a feared character in New Orleans. The fearful incident and intense questioning caused Germain to disappear without a trace. Many still believe Germain roams the streets of the French Quarter under the guise of a man named Jack.

The Casket Girls of the Ursuline Convent

In 1728, when the Casket Girls arrived in New Orleans, neither they nor the locals could predict the forthcoming mysterious events. Their nickname came from the odd casket-shaped chests they brought from France. The pale-skinned girls were supposed to stay at the Ursuline Convent until they could be married.

Like many vampire legends, the Casket Girls were outcasts. After a few cruel instances, the Sisters of the Ursuline Convent decided they should return to France. The Casket girls were gone before the Sisters could help them pack their chests — leaving behind their coffin-shaped chests and the vampire accusations. Many believe they still lurk around the old Ursuline Convent on foggy nights.

The Haunted Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar

New Orleans is home to the infamous spirit of the French-American pirate Jean Lafitte. In the early 1700s, Lafitte opened his French Quarter bar to mask his smuggling business. His ghost still lives in Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar, the oldest on Bourbon Street.

Employees and visitors of the bar have seen apparitions dressed in clothes from the 1700s. Daunting red eyes also peek at those who dare to look about the dark corners too closely. Lafitte and his cronies aren’t the only ghosts to haunt the bar. A young woman, whose history is unclear, wanders the top floor.

Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau

Although she died in 1881, Marie Laveau, the voodoo queen of New Orleans, still haunts the graves of the French Quarter. Many have claimed to see Laveau’s spirit at St. Louis Cemetery No. 1., where her tomb lives, making her an eternal resident.

Many believe that if they leave an offering and a wish at Laveau’s resting place, she will conspire to make their wishes come true. Even from the afterlife, Laveau works her Voodoo magic.

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