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colonial williamsburg halloween

Halloween And Colonial Williamsburg

October 1st, 2018 Posted by ghost history, ghost tour, ghosts, halloween, tours, williamsburg, Williamsburg No Comment yet

Halloween, though highly commercialized, does have roots that can be traced back to Colonial America, Europe and Colonial Williamsburg.

One thing that stands out is the Colonial Halloween traditions were primarily in the American South, in places like Colonial Williamsburg. You would not see something with non Christian roots in the Northern colonies, who were under the guises of a puritanical culture. Even in the South, Halloween was nothing like the commercialized exposition that it is today.

Colonial Williamsburg Halloween, Revolutionary America Ghost Stories, And Beyond

ghosts williamsburg

Even without rampant commercialism, the Halloween of Colonial Williamsburg and Colonial America was not without flavor. Some of the activities at a harvest or Halloween gathering might include:

  • Ghost Stories
  • Fortune Telling
  • Singing
  • Dancing
  • Pranks

While nothing like today you can see the deep origins of one thing Americans gravitate Set against the backdrop of a harvest festival, it was an entertaining experience. This is very indicative of harvest festivals. It definitely would become the backdrop of modern Halloween, as waves of immigrants, customs, and commercialism shaped it into what it is today. But, like back then, it is all about fun today.

But What About Pumpkins?

Pumpkins, as a commercial instrument for creating ghastly images of ghouls and goblins was not the case. The pumpkin, a popular indigenous Native American gourd, was a fabric of the local diet and used in a number of purposes. A jack o lantern was not one of them.

pumpkins halloween williamsburg

Haunting Ghost Origins Of Colonial Williamsburg

But there is another angle to Halloween, the supernatural and ghosts. It is hard to think about American or Colonial Williamsburg without addressing ghost stories and documented hauntings. We cannot ignore these disturbances that have witnessed in Williamsburg. These beg the question.. how did these come about? Why are they linked to this era in history? These ghost stories of today are like portals to this time Revolutionary period. Not as cutesy as Jack O Lanterns, they are part of the tradition. To sum it up I will mention something I have mentioned before..

Not all history is history

Maybe a better saying would be that not all history STAYS history. Take one of our ghost tours and learn about the restless past of this bygone Colonial World that is overflowing into ours.

Link to our ghost tour

More about our ghost tours

ghost tours in williamsburg

The Best Ghost Tour In Williamsburg

Check out this link to a clip and see why our ghost story is the best. It certainly will leave the hair on your arms standing up.

Williamsburg Hauntings

Where did all the craziness begin? Check out this short article asking the origin of such restless beings

Origins And Fascination With Ghosts

Check out why we are fascinated with these stories of sadness, pain, and the macabre at this link

Our Ghost Tour And Trip Advisor

Check out some reviews we have received on our tour from Trip Advisor

Happy Halloween



Happy Colonial Halloween! (n.d.). Retrieved from

Some Pumpkins! (n.d.). Retrieved from

Remembering African American History In June: The 54th Massachusetts Infantry

June 5th, 2018 Posted by 54th Massachussettes, African American History, African American History, Black History, black history, jackie robinson, williamsburg No Comment yet

Williamsburg is a crossroad point of America. It is a physical location that encompasses a historic journey of freedom that memorialized a young Colonial nation breaking away from their dominating origin country. This theme is played out throughout the entire United States, encompassing battlefields, museums, books, personal accounts, and the struggle of many people, especially the African American population.

Understanding American history or African American history will take you on many twists and turns down roads that were forgotten, overlooked, or even just more significant than you may have realized. June is the historical month that the 54th Massachusetts African American Infantry was commissioned and created to fight in the Civil War.

The story was brought into the public forefront more than a century after the war with the movie Glory. It is a great story of the struggle of individuals on a bigger stage against the backdrop of a divided racist nation, battling over the moral and political direction of thousands.

One thing black history in Williamsburg, or the United States can attest to is:

Freedom is not free

There is always a fight. The 54th Massachusetts African American Infantry embodied this both historically and symbolically. As the regiment was populated by many freed slaves as well as led by those whose views were heavily abolitionist, the fight for freedom was an active struggle both

African American Historical Photo

On the battlefields of the Civil War and in the society that would have to accept the African American population as legal citizens and contributors to the society

Taking up the call to fight in a war for your country is one of the purest and most visceral responsibilities of citizenship. The 54th answered the call as harbingers of a people who would become new citizens of a hostile nation. The battlefield for African American citizenship would end victoriously in 1865. The battle for total acceptance into American society had just started…

Williamsburg black history

African American History Tour Of Williamsburg

Come learn about this struggle in Colonial Williamsburg and America on our African American History Tour.

Other African American History Articles

Jackie Robinson

Williamsburg Black History




haunted williamsburg tour

Williamsburg Ghost Walk

October 11th, 2017 Posted by ghost history, ghost tour, ghosts, tours, williamsburg No Comment yet

creepy williamsburgMention going to the Williamsburg Ghost Walk or Ghost walk tour to anyone and you will get a mixed response. On the one hand it seems unnatural to pay to be scared while walking the cobblestone streets of Colonial Williamsburg. On the other hand, we, as a human species WANT TO KNOW. We have a deep need for truth. And I mean all types of truth. Whether that history is monumental, sad, terrifying, or part of the realm of the unexplained, curiosity can overrule fear, at least for a while.

Colonial Williamsburg Ghost Tour

Which brings us back to the ghost tour. Every year hoards of people come to hear about the unexplained paranormal past(and present) of Colonial Williamsburg. It is unexplained history. Emotional history of restless people and events that apparently, due to many accounts, are occurring around you with some interval of frequency.

haunted williamsburg tourAnd they cause you to feel fear

Some ghost stories are so over the top that most people probably dismiss them as not even in the realm of possibility. Some ghost style experiences are more caricature and drama shock like haunted houses and haunted theme parks like Howl O Scream (which is a ton of fun). But these scare you and you move on. REAL ghost stories of Williamsburg Virginia’s Colonial era send a chill down your spine. They make you think and they stay with you long after the tour is over.

Real People, Real Lives

These ghost stories aren’t about fictional Halloween characters like Dracula or shredded zombie Europeans. These are REAL people who had issues and problems just like you and I face. Many are unresolved conflicts and emotions, spilling into our time from centuries ago. This is another type of history, real history…or at least really distressing history.

You won’t see this kind of honesty about historical ghost hauntings in the Peanuts version of history either…

By Peanuts version of history I mean the marked up marketed and elegantly packaged version of history that we read about. You never see Charlie Brown look at Snoopy in traditional television specials turning to Snoopy and asking about apparitions in the night. This is just not good for public relations. This is a world where normal people live normal lives in a normal timeline. They are happy stories and nothing is bizarre or out of place.

So bite the bullet and register for OUR ghost tour

We promise to give you the real stories, no matter how eerie and unsettling they are.

Our Contact Information For Williamsburg Ghost Tours

Contact Phone Number: 757-634-2452

Contact Form 

Our Service Area

trip advisor reviews tours williamsburg

Trip Advisor Tour Reviews

September 12th, 2017 Posted by Christmas, ghost history, ghost tour, ghosts, thanksgiving, tours, traditions, trip advisor reviews, williamsburg No Comment yet

trip advisor reviews tours williamsburg Trip Advisor Reviews of Williamsburg Walking Tours

Millions of people go to Trip Advisor to choose the right food, attractions, and places to stay. And there is a reason they do it. That reason is there is no hiding boring attractions, marginal food, or subhuman accommodations from the vigilant hands of people who have tried them. No fancy ad firms, phony slogans, or jingles. If you really have a good place to visit, Trip Advisor reviews will say so.

5 Stars on Trip Advisor

Getting 5 stars on Trip Advisor is the highest rating you can get. So the fact that we have a 5 star rating is incredible. Our very adherence to truth over historical marketing has struck a nerve with visitors who want history, not alternate history if things were as perfect as some would want you to believe.

Williamsburg Walking Tours offers historical, painfully unbiased and truthful, tours of Colonial Williamsburg,. And the popularity of the truth is shocking. People do not want phony history of how great things were that include omissions of horrible truths that occurred. A good tour is about knowing the truth.

This goal of Williamsburg Walking Tours to give you truthful historical tours has proven very popular. And no place is this more evident, than on our Trip Advisor Reviews. We have placed some of these heretrip advisor tour reviews in the form of screenshots of reviews we pulled from this site.

Please look around Trip Advisor and review our ratings. You will see that the vast majority rated our tours excellent. This includes our Ghost tour, our African History tour, and our General History Tour. All three are designed to take you into the deep visceral details of what really happened here, not what you see on sugar coated promotional campaign.

Links to Trip Advisor review page



An Ancient Ghost Story..Documented

October 7th, 2016 Posted by ancient rome, Athenodorus, ghost history, ghost tour, tours, williamsburg No Comment yet

athenodorus_-_the_greek_The Ancient Standard has decided to offer up something a little different this Halloween – we’ve decided that in honor of this infamous “holiday”, we’ll let one of the ancient writers give you a bit of history in his own words… namely, an ancient Roman ghost story which he recounted sometime around 100 AD. Ghost stories are anything but a modern phenomenon – as proven by the tale below, written by Roman writer Pliny the Younger, they’ve been around for at least two thousand years. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the harmonies of an ancient ghost storybrought back to life once more…

An Ancient Roman Ghost Story (in translation from the original Latin)

  – as originally recorded by Pliny the Younger
There was in Athens a house, large and spacious, which had a bad reputation as though it was filled with pestilence. In the dead of night, a noise was frequently heard resembling the clashing of iron which, if you listened carefully, sounded like the rattling of chains. The noise would seem to be a distance away, but it would start coming closer… and closer… and closer. Immediately after this, a specter would appear in the form of an old man, emaciated and squalid, with bristling hair and a long beard, and rattling the chains on his hands and feet as he moved.
The unfortunate inhabitants of the house went sleepless at night due to unimaginable and dismal terrors. Without sleep, as it had happened to others, their health was ruined and they were struck with some kind of madness – as the horrors in their minds increased, they were led on a path toward death. Eventually even during the daytime, when the ghost did not appear, the memory of their nightmares was so strong that it still passed before their eyes, every waking moment. Their terror was constant, even when the source of fear was gone.
Because of this, the house was eventually deserted and damned as uninhabitable, abandoned entirely to the ghost. In hope that some tenant might eventually be found who was ignorant of the house’s malevolence, a bill was still posted for its sale. As it happened, a philosopher by the name of Athenodorus came to Athens at that time. Reading the bill for the house, he easily discovered the price – and being an intelligent man, he was suspicious at its extremely low cost. Someone did tell him the whole story, and yet he wasn’t dissuaded, but was instead eager to make the purchase. Thus, he did.
When evening drew near, Athenodorus asked for couch to be readied for him at the front of the house. He asked for his writing materials and a lamp, and then asked his retainers to retire for the night. In order to ensure that his mind stayed focused and away from distractions of stories about imaginary noises and apparitions, he poured all his energy into his writing.

Related Topics


Haunted Williamsburg Gardens Tour

Williamsburg Halloween And The Ghost Tour

September 13th, 2016 Posted by ghost tour, tours, williamsburg No Comment yet

Halloween is coming. And it’s a subtle reminder that not all ghosts and goblins are fictional. Well the characters that we see at the amusement parks during the Halloween season are more sensationalized fantasy, then supernatural possibility. This is not the case when taking the Williamsburg Ghost Tour. The Williamsburg ghost walk tour will take you to mysterious sites where their have been documented ghosts and hauntings. Also it’s never a bad idea when visiting these kind of sites on this tour to be in a group. Nobody wants to be alone when confronted with the paranormal. Thus  a walking tour group is a great idea, especially if you do it on Halloween.

Halloween is a fun holiday in Williamsburg Virginia. Spurred on by such spirited Halloween events like Busch Gardens hollow scream or various homemade pop up haunted houses, the makeshift holiday is a lot of fun. Much of Halloween is heart pounding costume style fun with comic book style demons, ghosts,goblins and other characters that are really more science fiction than history.

But On The Williamsburg Ghost Tours..not all history IS historyhalloween-williamsburg

But not all history is actually history, Williamsburg is an older city. Halloween is often a reminder that not all history stays quiet or completely goes away. Much of the past is still with us very vividly and has left passengers in the spirit realm behind. Basically historic Colonial Williamsburg has hauntings.

The Colonial Past

Stretching back to the colonial era many people have passed through Williamsburg as soldiers, settlers, wives, mothers and slaves. Strife, war, oppression, and attachment are just some of the possible reasons these ghosts live in this town which resembles the Colonial era. This rich historical tapestry is ladened with sightings of these visitors in our world today.

According To Ghost Hunters…

Ghost hunters will tell you that trauma gets translated into spiritual activity especially in historic places. Human tragedy, confusion, or other motivations cause spirits to stay for one reason or the other. I would also put forth that the landscape of Colonial Williamsburg is very close to its Colonial roots with restored buildings and Georgian brick architecture everywhere. Hauntings often occur in older homes or buildings, making this Colonial oasis a prime candidate for ghosts.

Come learn about history that started hundreds of years ago and seems to have carried into the 21st-century. These are documented hauntings. Our walking tour will show you these places where the activity has been the greatest.


Colonial Beginnings And The Spirit World

Colonial beginnings

It’s natural that Haunted America would find its roots here in Colonial Williamsburg. The Colonial era sparks a time when the area comes alive with new settlers and a country is formed. Williamsburg is a key part of this formation. Ghost activity is set against the backdrop of this Colonial world.

A great resource

I saw a blog that goes into some detail about Haunted Williamsburg. ( It is listed at the bottom of the page)The blog mentions historical places where hauntings have occurred and the details surrounding them. Some of the Williamsburg locations with ghost activity are:

Brafferton Building
College of William & Mary Campus

Wren Building
College of William & Mary Campus

Public Records Office
Duke of Gloucester Street

Raleigh Tavern
Duke of Gloucester Street

Peyton Randolph House
Corner of North England and Nicholson Streets

Orrell House
East Francis Street

And if you like history and supernatural activity, Williamsburg Virginia is the place for you.

Naturally there a lot of special things ghost hunters do with equipment and training that we, as normal people, won’t have. That really does not matter. There are many documented cases of tourists and locals encountering ghosts.

Now It Is Your Turn

Come learn about history that started hundreds of years ago and seems to have carried into our modern world. Learn the history behind this “living” history. Our walking tour will show you the places where the activity has been the greatest.

We also offer other types of Williamsburg tours including:

Christmas Tours
History Tours
African American History Tours

Call to schedule!