Since time is tight today, I'm going to relate a few final tales from Sean Joiner's "Haunted Augusta and Local Legends." I swear, if Mr. Joiner ever reads this website he's going to demand compensation. On the other hand, I'm certain the little book he wrote is out-of-print and impossible to find, despite being published in 2002. It's a shame not to get these tales out there, so, Sean, thanks for your understanding! And I do put my own spin on 'em, y'know, adding additional info when I can. This first story is the companion piece to The Belle, Her Soldier, and Their Ghosts, and also takes place on what is now the campus of Augusta State University (ASU). Remember that prior to the Civil War the Augusta Arsenal was moved from near the river to the Hill so that soldiers could escape the rampant malaria? Well, it's said that, very shortly after the Civil War, the commander at the Arsenal hired his nephew on for the princely sum of $2 a day. None of the other soldiers at the Arsenal were making that much money and they were not happy at such an open display of nepotism. As if that wasn't bad enough, one day the nephew left work to get a piece of APPLE PIE! This was too much for poor, malnourished soldiers to bear, and so, as the nephew came down the steps of the Benet Mansion (now the ASU admissions office), belly full of delicious apple pie, he was gunned down by a jealous fellow-soldier. The assassin, it seems, was never caught, probably protected by others that hated this pie-eating nephew. At night, employees and students working late have reported hearing noises coming from the kitchen of the Benet House as the commander's nephew rummages around, desperately looking for one last piece of pie. Below is a shot of a trough in a very dark barn, suitable for the ghosts of horses to visit for one last feed.
Gradison Harris left the Medical Institute of Georgia, as it was called by then, following abolition. However, he returned later to take a position as a porter. He died in 1911 at the age of 95 and is now buried in, fittingly enough, Cedar Grove Cemetery. During renovation of the College in 1989, the remains of 154 bodies, including vats filled with bones and jars of preserved body parts, were found under the old building. These remains were re-buried in Cedar Grove Cemetery on November 7, 1998. If, in City of Dust's absence over the next couple of weeks, you find yourself bored (as you no doubt will!) I recommend checking out PostSecret, where people send handmade postcards to an anonymous blog, each inscribed with a secret. Some of these secrets are funny, some heartbreaking, some just weird. Nothing like finding comfort in blatant voyeurism. Isn't that the new American way? Seriously, though, PostSecret is pretty amazing and lots of people write in to say they've received some real relief from getting their secrets published. If you don't like to read other people's secrets (what, do you have standards?), then have I mentioned City of Dust's extensive archives?! Yes, I have.