There is an old saying: “to understand the future we must study the past.” But, as author Christopher K. Coleman can attest, sometimes that past comes back to haunt us. In his book Dixie Spirits, Coleman explores the realm of the Old South’s most haunted locales. From Alabama east to Georgia and upward to the Virginias, he includes 62 spine-chilling vignettes from the historically turbulent South.
Included are popular tales such as North Carolina’s Brown Mountain Lights and the story of New Orleans’ most famous voodoo queen as well as the Mothman of West Virginia. There are also lesser-known anomalies, like the Sloss Furnaces in Alabama or the ghostly portrait of Virginia’s Martha Hill. And what would a book about Southern haints be without the lore of the ghostly apparitions who make regular appearances in the prior dwellings of General Robert E. Lee?
At the end of each chapter, Coleman includes information regarding sites and locations of the legends mentioned and the surrounding areas. The only thing missing here are photos, which could only enhance the experience. In fact, in some instances photos are actually mentioned, but without their inclusion the point is moot. Even so, if you’re looking for a truly harrowing interpretation of Southern history, Dixie Spirits is a fun but unnerving indulgence. Be forewarned: this book is not a work of fiction.