|Spencer Residence Hall|
Legend has it that Annabelle is the spirit of a student who hanged herself many years ago in one of the building’s bell towers; however, no such suicide has ever been documented. A member of the residence hall staff reported that Annabelle had “appeared as a blue shadow on two occasions in the Spencer’s main parlor and when the building was closed for the Summer in 1976, the same staff member heard the ghost “dragging something on the floor out in the lobby.”There have been other reports of a blue haze passing by a second-floor laundry room and of objects being flung across rooms.
In South Spencer in the early 1980s, an apparition reportedly awakened two different staff member on two separate occasions by walking into their rooms. The building had been closed for vacations both times. It is not known whether this was Annabelle or another ghost or ghosts.
|Mary Foust Residence Hall|
The campus’ most well documented ghost reportedly inhabits Aycock Auditorium, which opened in 1927. An interview with Raymond Taylor who taught drama and play presentation and was the director of dramatic activities on campus from 1921 until his retirement in 1960, reveals that Taylor not only believed in the ghost of Aycock Auditorium, but recounts his personal experiences with the ghost.
Taylor goes on to tell the story of an incident that occurred one afternoon when he and the Aycock janitor were working on the set for a play. The whole building was locked up, and since it had been an extremely hot afternoon, he and the janitor undressed down to their briefs to work. Taylor had left his clothes neatly in a pile. During the afternoon, a storm came up that raged and roared for quite a while and after the storm was over, Taylor went upstairs to dress and found that his clothes had been disarranged. He had been wearing a vest with a watch chain across it, and his watch chain had been arranged on the table in the form of a cross. His other clothes were “helter skelter all over the place.” Taylor just knew this was the work of the ghost of Aycock Auditorium.
Many nights, while working in the auditorium, Taylor would hear all sorts of strange noises. He tried to explain some of them by saying that they were the echoes of passing cars or the reverberations of the passing trains shaking the building, but one night he and a colleague, Jimmy Hogue, were sitting in his officer around midnight talking. Hogue was sitting with his back to the door. All of a sudden the door opened, and a cold air came in, and they heard the receding clank of chains. They got up and turned on the lights in the hallway and looked all over, but could never find an explanation for that occurrence.
According to an article in the Winston-Salem Journal in 1977, written when Aycock Auditorium was 50 years old and was getting ready to reopen after renovations, the drama majors were so attached to the specter that it became something of a tradition to introduce her to new students. “An unsuspecting freshman would be handed a lighted candle and shown the stairway leading to the attic, reportedly the ghost’s favorite turf. Then the drama majors… would solemnly watch as the flickering flame floated away into the gloom. They knew there was a certain spot in the attic where a draft always blew out the candle. It would take a few minutes for the novice spook chaser’s eyes to adjust to the darkness. Then, the victim would see a shape – a human shape – shimmering in the inky blackness. The drama majors always got a kick out of hearing the screams that usually followed. It’s surprising what a coat of luminescent paint can do for a manikin borrowed from the theater’s prop shop.”