NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — How about a ghost hunt in one of New York City’s most historic neighborhoods this Halloween weekend?
History and horror meet as a secret underworld of ghosts and ghouls reveal themselves during a guided tour around Greenwich Village.
CBS2’s Alex Denis met up with Professor Mortimer, of Haunted Manhattan Tours, to visit some of the sights.
First stop — a once-forgotten Potter’s Field by what is now known as Washington Square Park. According to Mortimer, an outbreak of Yellow Fever in the 1700s lefts many New Yorkers dead. Their bodies — an estimated 20,000 of them — were buried in the mass grave.
Reports of shadows that seem to appear and disappear have shrouded the site in mystery.
Another common sign is former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s black dog. Roosevelt had an apartment off Washington Square North in the 1930s, when husband Franklin Delano Roosevelt was in office.
In 1917, a group of artists staged an insurrection, calling to make Greenwich Village its own sovereign state. At night, you may hear them reading aloud their declaration of independence.
Around the corner, at West 3rd Street and MacDougal, you’ll find the D’Agostino New York University residency hall.
“Back in the late 1700 early 1800s, Aaron Burr kept his stables on this side of the street,” Mortimer said. “There have been reports of students, walking back to the building and seeing a horse drawn carriage parked out front with a strange man — a very tall thin man…then, gone.”
Then, walk up to the Church of the Ascension, which is rumored to be haunted by the ghost of an artist. Legend has it that the artist’s over-sized painting, which hangs above the altar, fell at the exact moment of his death — without any damage.
More stories await — but only if you dare. Ninety-minute tours are also offered in the east and west villages.
Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for children.
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