Some History and Ghost Stories about Wilmington

Trusst Builder Group > Blog > Uncategorized > Some History and Ghost Stories about Wilmington

October 13, 2020 / By Trusst Builder Group

Wilmington is located on the southeastern coast of North Carolina and has a rich history. Naturally, we have a lot of stories centered around the paranormal. Here are a few that are very familiar to our home builders in New Hanover County.


-The Latimer House

The house belonged to railroad and dry goods enterpriser, Zebulon Latimer. He married Elizabeth Savage in 1852 and had his 10,000-square foot house built out of wood, iron and stone. They had nine children but five didn’t make it past the age of four.

Employees have reported missing items, a levitating Emily Dickinson poetry collection book and a putrid smell in the basement area.


-Orton Hotel

In 1949, a huge fire destroyed everything but the basement in the Orton. Most of the guests got out through the front door though a few were rescued by ladder.

Later on, however, investigators discovered that two unregistered guests had not been so lucky. One of the unregistered guests was apparently near death and had decided to use the hotel at random without checking in. The other man who was with him was reportedly his brother. Guests later reported seeing him walking, apparently disoriented, through the smoke-filled hallway during the fire. When they tried to talk to him, he’d run in the opposite direction.

The Orton was renovated into two basement pubs in the 1980’s. Most of the hauntings are typical stuff, such as disembodied voices, toilets flushing and sinks turning on at random. However, a man claiming that his name is Bill, has been known to chat patrons up and then excuse himself to go do “some business on the fourth floor.” The current pub establishment is a one story building.


-St. James Church

A man named Samuel Jocelyn was born into wealth in the late 1700’s. Before marrying socialite Mary Sampson, he spent much of his time with his best friend, Sandy Hostier. Both shared an interest in mediumship and they promised each other that whoever passed on first would contact the other.

A spat with Mary sent Samuel out riding into the night. He never returned and was found half-submerged in a swamp. They buried Samuel’s body in the Saint James churchyard. Afterward, Samuel appeared to Sandy in flickering candlelight to convince him to dig up his body. Eventually they did and found that his coffin had been mauled, his face was in a permanent scream and his fingertips were shredded down to the bone. It was also later found that he had suffered a blow to the head.

People have often reported hearing muffled cries near Samuel’s grave and kids have dared each other to lie on top of it for an hour. Reportedly, none of them have been able to stand it that long.


Contact Us

If you would like to have a home or property built in the rich history of Wilmington, please contact Trusst Builder Group, home builders in New Hanover County, today.