1. The Martha Washington Inn is in Abingdon, Virginia
According to Wikipedia:
Originally built in 1832 by General Francis Preston, hero of the War of 1812, for his family of nine children, over the course of the last 174 years, the building has served as an upscale women’s college, a Civil War hospital and barracks, and as a residence for visiting actors of the Barter Theatre. In addition to hotel services, the inn now offers spa treatments.
6. Here’s Martha herself, in younger days.
7. 1. The Yankee Sweetheart
During the Civil War, the hotel — then a women’s college — was transformed into a hospital, and many of the students opted to stay on as nurses. One day a young Yankee captain named John Stoves was injured and captured during a nearby skirmish, and was brought to room 403 of the hospital and placed in the care of a volunteer named Beth.
The two quickly fell in love, with Beth playing her violin to soothe Soves as he lay slowly dying. She was by his side when he died, and shortly afterwards a Confederate soldier arrived — unaware Stoves was gone — to say he was transferring the prisoner, and Beth told him, “He has been pardoned by an officer higher than General Lee. Captain Stoves is dead.”
Beth died soon after from typhoid fever. But the echos of her violin are often heard throughout the hotel, and guests staying in room 403 have reported seeing her there.
9. 2. The Reappearing Bloodstain
The second most famous story about the hotel has to do with the unfortunate death of a young Confederate soldier who’d fallen in love with one of the women at the school.
As Union troops advanced on the town, he made one desperate last attempt to say goodbye to his love, using the tunnels beneath the hotel to get in without being seen.
As he ran up the stairs to find her, Union soldiers entered the hotel.
He was fast, but not fast enough. The soldiers gave chase…
…and shot him as he reached her door (outside what is now know as the Governor’s room).
Ever since, there have been inexplicable stains and holes appearing in any carpeting put down there. As you can see, the hotel has now opted to leave the wooden floor uncarpeted.
14. 3. The Trail Of Mud
A third story has to do with the many sightings of the ghost of an injured soldier wandering down this hallway of the hotel, tracking mud on the carpets.
We didn’t see any evidence of the mud, but this hallway was a major cold spot in the hotel.
15. Our ghost hunting attempt.
Despite major, inexplicable technical difficulties, we tried to live stream our ghost hunting at the hotel. We heard many strange noises and tried to capture what we experienced scientifically, all we could prove was the sound of violin music playing at one point.
FYI, we’re on a road trip to Bonnaroo. See all the stuff we’ve stopped at a long the way here!