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Theodosia Burr, Ghost of Two Cities


One of the most intriguing stories in Charleston, South Carolina is the mysterious disappearance of Theodosia Burr Alston, daughter of former Vice President of the United States Aaron Burr. She was married to Governor Joseph Alston, one of the most wealthy and powerful men in South Carolina in his day. The deed in her name to 94 Church Street still hangs in the hall in that house. In 1812 Theodosia decided to visit her father to receive comfort from the recent loss of a child.  She was on a ship that went down off the coast of North Carolina. The bodies of all the others lost at sea washed up, but hers was never found. Many years later when the estate of an old woman who lived on the North Carolina coast was sold, a portrait of her as a young woman turned out to look exactly like Theodosia. Charlestonians have their own theory of what happened to Theodosia. Was she kidnapped by an enemy of her father or an enemy of her husband? Did she walk the plank when captured by pirates? Did she have amnesia? Did she run away? What do you think?

Or did she become a ghost at One if by Land, Two if by Sea Restaurant at 17 Barrow Street in Greenwich Village?  It has appeared that Theodosia has joined her father Aaron Burr who smashes dishes and moves chairs at his carriage house, which is now a restaurant.   The ghost of Aaron Burr, vice president of the United States who is famous for killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel, haunts this restaurant located in what was once his carriage house.  Many visitors and restaurant employees have observed flying dishes and chairs being pulled out from under patrons. Burr’s daughter, Theodosia Burr Alston, is also rumored to haunt the carriage house.  Female patrons at the bar are rumored to have had their earrings removed by Theodosia.  Apparitions of Theodosia and various other spirits have actually been seen and several women sitting at the bar have had their earrings popped off by an enamored Theodosia.  She’s been seen descending the dining-room staircase.  One female witness recalled, “When my foot touched that first step it felt like I was walking on ice—it knocked the wind out of me.”

Ghosts of NYC Blog 23 Theodosia Burr, Ghost of Two Cities © 2019 By Dr. Philip Ernest Schoenberg, Ghost with a Blog #Ghost

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