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Explorin’ With Loren: Spooky tales from the Grand Strand

Scary stories of the Grand Strand
Published: Oct. 28, 2021 at 6:11 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - We cozied up around the campfire this month to explore the scary stories of the Grand Strand.

The first one is about the Lucas Bay Light. It’s a road in Conway that some say is haunted.

“I grew up not far from Lucas Bay Road,” said Marian Calder, Public Education Specialist for Horry County Museum.

“The story that I’ve always heard is that during the civil war, Sherman was coming through South Carolina, and people were afraid. This woman takes her baby for some reason and hides it under a bridge and a flood washes it away.”

Legend has it, the mother appears only at night and wanders around with a lantern in hand to search for her lost baby.

“I’ve heard different versions too that you can see lights or that even you can hear a baby cry. I’ve never seen it but other people that I know said they have seen it,” said Calder.

The museum doesn’t have any records about the nameless woman but Calder said families have lived and farmed in that area since before the Revolutionary War.

“There are people that still use that road today and if you’re going out there when it’s dark, you do want to be mindful that people do still live out there. It’s still very rural.”

The next story is about a ghost called, The Gray Man.

You can take a stroll along the beach in Pawley’s Island if you want to see The Gray Man and visit the Gray Man Gallery if you dare to learn about him.

Vida Miller is the owner of the gallery and said, while the gallery isn’t named after the ghost, she knows the tale all too well. She showed pictures of the ghost that’s donning a hat and trench coat. He only appears when a hurricane is about to roll through.

“He is known as a benevolent spirit who warns people of impending danger at Pawleys and Litchfield, DeBordieu coast,” said Miller.

Miller said there are several versions of the story that date back to the 1800s, but here’s the one that’s told the most.

“He’d been off fighting the war, came home to ask for his girlfriend’s hand in marriage. As he was crossing the marsh with his horse, the horse bogged down and he fell and he died,” said Miller. “She was so distraught over his death that she walked the beach. She told her mom and dad, that she saw him and they were so upset over her condition that they left the beach house and moved back to the plantation. Sure enough, in a day or so, the storm came and destroyed the beaches.”

The gallery owner said he’s famously known for warning folks about Hurricane Hugo in 1989 and Hurricane Florence in 2018.

“I think you know we’ll leave the weather predictions up to the weatherman, but he does give a warning that danger is near and that you need to leave,” she said.

The last story is about the ghost of Alice Flagg. She’s a young woman whose family lived at The Hermitage in the 1800s. Some say she died of malaria while others believe she died of a broken heart. She returns from the dead looking for a very special piece of jewelry.

The Hermitage was built in 1848. It’s not only a beautiful home in Murrells Inlet, it’s also a haunted one. Tom Hora’s great grandfather bought the house from Alice’s father, Dr. Allard Flag.

Hora’s family later picked up the house and moved it to another property, all while keeping its charm and the ghost that comes along with it. Hora would listen to ghost stories on the porch and learn more about The Lady in White.

“Alice had met her true love and he wanted to marry her. He had given her a ring and she had to hide the ring. Not present it before he father. Her father was not really happy with her suitor,” said Hora.

Alice wore the ring around her neck until her father found it. He snatched the necklace and threw it into the yard.

“Supposedly, that’s what she’s hunting for. She died of malaria. She would return to look for that ring. She would wander through the house or the gardens,” said Hora.

Hora said he’s never seen Alice but his mother did.

“She was upstairs and brushing her hair and apparently Alice’s apparition appeared to her and my mother screamed and threw her hairbrush through her.”

While some believe she still lingers around The Hermitage, others believe she’s buried at the All Saints’ Church Waccamaw Cemetery. The legend goes that if you place a ring on her grave and walk around 13 times with your eyes closed, she will take your ring.

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