Commercial Ghost Tours, New Age Shops and Readers in your area => Places of Paranormal Interest => Topic started by: KANACKI on October 31, 2014, 09:33:14 PM

Title: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on October 31, 2014, 09:33:14 PM
Ah Halloween my favorite time of year....

So whats Halloween without a good awesome ghost story???? Well this following story is almost lost to history.... As if all knowledge of the event was almost wiped from history.

I did some research on this following tale and did find the main person involved did exist and the prison or holding cells did once existed... But sadly not much more. But gather round for I have a very strange tale to tell dating back to the late 1870's in New Orleans in the united States.

The following event is attributed to the New Orleans Times of November 1872. Tells the strange story of a series of suicides.

The 4th precient Police station in New Orleans had one cell which over the years had 22 prisoners. One night Police brought in Crazy Mary Murphy a destitute vagrant. She was the 23rd inmate to be confined in that cell.

The following morning inmate 23 was found hanged by the neck from the window of her cell. She had used a strip of skirt as a rope. She had prided loose a a brick, the 5th brick from the floor which, used as a jump off, served to break her neck like a gallows trap. She hung so that she faced the south wall of the cell. All these details were recorded by the inspecting officers. The cell was tited and the loose brick replaced, it was ready for service again.

Inmate 24:
A petty thief, he was found after one nights imprisonment hanged by the neck from the cell window bar. He'd used a strip torn from his shirt as a rope, and had loosened the 5th brick as a jump off in death facing the south wall.

Inmate 25:
He was a horse thief. All forgoing circumstances prevailed. When he was discovered dead after one night in the cell. There were the shirt strip rope. The 5th brick used as a platform. And a body facing the south wall.

This was an arson suspect. Everyone of the details were the same. Death occurred the night of his incarceration.

A street brawler experienced the identical events. Length of stay over night, discovered dead.

A pickpocket had the same experience without variation. After one night in the cell he was found dead in the same position.

A drunkard was incarcerated over night. Shortly after midnight he was found as his predecessors but was cut down not quite dead. He was hopelessly incoherent and remanded to an asylum.

This was a woman accused of poisoning her husband. After one night in the cell she was found dead under the same circumstances.

A drunkard. He underwent the same in every detail: Overnight dead.

A burglar, he was found underwent the same conditions, death over night!

A woman shoplifter after one night in the police cell was found not quite dead. the heel of her shoe had caught on the 5th brick from the floor. She was released hysterical in the custody of her parish priest.

A drunkard died after one night in the cell under the same circumstances.

A gambler accused of cheating suffered the same fate in exactly the same way- very dead.

this pickpocket cut down by guards while still alive was screaming about someone in his cell about midnight. He was released after fruitless questioning.

A street woman was charged with robbing her customers. Hearing screams at dawn, her warders cut her down. Every detail down to the 5th brick was the same. Her description of a nocturnal visitor who urged her to hang her self fitted the description of crazy Mary Murphy the 23rd inmate.

They set 2 reliable observers into a position where they could watch the cell into which they installed a vagrant from another parish as he could know nothing of the cells history.

The same thing occurred. they watched with astonishment as the man tore a strip from his shirt, loosened the 5th brick, and attempted to hang himself!

After his rescue, he reported quite firmly that an old woman had entered his cell, and urged him to hang himself. He was unable to resist. As if in a trance, he followed her instructions. The woman he described was Crazy Mary Murphy!

Thereafter the somewhat baffled police decided there after to use the cell only for storage. And after that there was no other suicides recorded.

It seems in mate 23 the vagrant Crazy Mary Murphy finally got a room all to herself after all...........

The photo is of the the 4th precinct police station where these events happened. The holding cells was in the basement. The present 4th precinct police Station is relocated elsewhere today. I wonder if the old building survived???

Happy Halloween

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on November 01, 2014, 03:02:39 PM
Hello again and yes the old 4th precinct police station is still in existence. All be it not a police station anymore and changed much since then. However some of the original Egyptian style of the building remains.

Here is a picture of what the building looks like today.

In the late 1800's, the Egyptian Revival style of architecture became popular.
It was then that this building on Rousseau Street, in the Uptown section, was
remodeled and its distinctive facade added.  The photo above was taken in
1897, when it served as the 4th District Police station.  Constructed in 1836,
this unique building has served many functions in its long history:  jail, court,
police station, and used by the National Youth Administration, the Salvation
Army, the Department of Streets and more.

the building today - close to 180 years old and still standing.  As you
can see, it's undergone more remodeling and its appearance has been
drastically altered.  It's currently being used as a den for a carnival krewe,
the Knights of Babylon, who uses it to build and store Mardi Gras floats.

Ironic is it not that place used to so much to help people was scene of multiple suicides when used as a police station.

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: Christine on November 01, 2014, 09:31:03 PM
Did you know I am flying to New Orleans tomorrow?? LOL!!!
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on November 01, 2014, 10:27:53 PM
Wow! talk about coincidence!

Well Have a lovely trip to New Orleans. If you get the chance I would love to hear your impressions of the building if you ever get a chance to visit it. Even just from standing from the outside. For me the building was built in Egyptian Style....

You might find interesting the surviving feature of the original building is the outstretched wings of Isis....

Isis was worshipped as the ideal mother and wife as well as the patroness of nature and magic. She was the friend of slaves, sinners, artisans and the downtrodden, but she also listened to the prayers of the wealthy, maidens, aristocrats and rulers.

Isis is often depicted as the mother of Horus, the falcon-headed deity associated with king and kingship (although in some traditions Horus's mother was Hathor). Isis is also known as protector of the dead and goddess of children.

What better place for a ghost of Mary Murphy to haunt is a building dedicated to Isis protector of the dead.

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: deka on November 02, 2014, 01:37:28 PM
Wow KANACKI, what a great story! The building looks great today, glad to see it's being cared for. It certainly is an interesting design for a police station too.

Christine, have a great trip! What an amazing place New Orleans must be to visit. :)
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on November 03, 2014, 01:46:04 PM
Hello Deka thanks or the compliment its my pleasure.

Yes it is great story but a sad one at that.

I was lucky to come across it by chance years ago. It is only later in life I had the liberty to research into the story....Which for me appeared to be legend more than anything.... But when I started researching it......WOW! Indeed these events happened I was able piece together some of Mary Murphy's life.

She was born around 1823 and both her parents died in her first year of life,. She was an orphan with her sister and a brother grew up in alms house in Cork Ireland. By 1847  Mary had married a John Murphy. they fled the an Gorta Mór (The great famine ) commonly known as the potato famine for a new life in America via New Orleans. To find they had been sold into indentured servitude a little short of slavery.

Mary had two children by John before he deserted her and fled to Boston. Now alone with two kids poorest of the poor, a deserted wife with children with life did not get much better. She took up a relationship, a stormy relationship at that with John Hearn where she gave birth to 3 children out of wedlock herself. The relationship was fueled by violence and the slow spiral into alcoholism. 

As the 1872 newspaper gave the story that she was and old lady in fact she was not as old as one would imagine. In fact she was 37 years old when she hanged herself. She by then was chronic alcoholic which perhaps gave the impression she was older.

Probably through sexual abuse, chronic alcoholic induced dementia she was a drunken vagrant at the bottom of society. Her American dream had become a nightmare.... one could imagine her breaking point after she had even became estranged from her own 5 children...

Thus the tragedy of Mary Murphy Inmate 23 who just had nearly 13 years in America killed herself by hanging. How she must of hated life....

The 1872 newspaper story never gave the exact date of these events. It was just before the Civil war she died in 1861. I can confirm that Because I found her headstone in St Patrick's no2 cemetery in New Orleans.

Ironically her 5 children in due course are buried with her.... But does her life hating spirit live on in the building?

Care to spend the night there?

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: Simon2 on November 06, 2014, 09:34:14 AM
A great story KANACKI and well researched.

On reading the Post I got feelings of suffering, sadness and above all Mary felt there was no way out for her except suicide.

If her spirit still inhabits the building it would be kind to try and find her spirit and help move her on to a much happier existence in the spirit world, after being cleansed of all her negative emotions and experiences.
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: violet on November 07, 2014, 04:42:38 PM
The link with Egypt is interesting!
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on November 07, 2014, 10:11:46 PM
Hello Violet

It is indeed most strange and rather ironic a modern new world building dedicated to ISIS protector of dead.

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on September 25, 2015, 01:13:32 AM
Here is an 1873 newspaper story.

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: violet on October 21, 2015, 06:29:27 PM
You're an amazing researcher Kanacki!
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: KANACKI on October 24, 2015, 12:27:53 PM
Hello Violet

Thank you it much appreciated. The story above was an amazing story to tell. Maybe one day we watch a documentary on it?

Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: violet on October 30, 2015, 07:42:51 PM
Love a good documentary :)
Title: Re: The Ghost of inmate 23
Post by: Simon2 on November 30, 2015, 10:40:48 AM
Kanacki, was very glad and impressed at the additional research you undertook.

Once again, thank you.
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