For as long as there have been campfires, people have gathered around to swap scary stories. Some of the most popular ones are, of course, ghost stories. There’s just something perfect about snuggling up with your friends and family and trying to scare the wits out of each other!

While every ghost story has its own charm, there is something particularly haunting about those starring children. The tragedy of these young people forced to remain on Earth trying to resolve their unfinished business adds even more sadness to these anecdotes. If you love ghost stories, you need to read these 15 totally eerie tales!

1. Ghostly children of New Orleans: The city of New Orleans is known for being exceptionally haunted, and the Andrew Jackson hotel at the city’s center is no exception. In the 19th century, a major fire swept through the building, taking the lives of many—including the children who lived there…

While the hotel was completely renovated after the fire and still welcomes guests today, many have reported seeing the ghosts of children, lost and crying, roaming the halls of the hotel by night. Spooky!

2. San Antonio’s railroad children: Texas is a state with more than its fair share of local legends. One of the most haunting is what is said to happen if you sprinkle flour on the bumper of your car and idle on the train tracks in San Antonio.

The legend goes that a group of children playing on the tracks were struck and killed by a train. If you park your car on the tracks nowadays, the ghostly children will roll you to safety. They even leave fingerprints in the flour on your bumper!

3. The sobbing child of Little Moreton Hall: The English countryside is dotted with old castles and manor homes that have been converted into museums, hotels, and other attractions over the years. Naturally, this makes it a hotbed of supernatural activity.

Some of those buildings are a little scarier than others. In Cheshire, England, at Little Moreton Hall, overnight visitors can bank on a visit from a child specter who is known to wail and sob throughout the night in the hall’s chapel.

4. Crybaby Bridge: Strangely enough, there are bridges all over America that share this name. They earn it because they’re home to the sound of ghostly infant weeping. The story behind this legend is quite dark, too…

Perhaps the most frightening of these bridges is located in Alderson, Oklahoma. The tale goes that a young woman was repeatedly raped by her father and would throw their unwanted offspring off this bridge under cover of night.

5. The radiant boy: The phenomenon of “radiant boys” is truly haunting. This is the title given to any spirit that appears in the form of a naked, glowing male ghost. A radiant boy materializes out of nowhere and disappears just as quickly.

What makes radiant boys particularly frightening is that they are said to be portents of doom. When one English lord was visited by a radiant boy, he was so terrified that he allegedly slit his own throat!

6. Ghost children caught on camera: Pen-Y-Lan Hall in England’s North Wales is a popular spot for amateur ghost hunters. This old mansion is said to contain the ghosts of a boy and a girl who frequently make appearances in the windows. They’ve even been caught on tape!

7. The Victorian ghost child: A mother in England just wanted to photograph her two sons playing. Instead, she captured an image of a child from the Victorian age. “I couldn’t believe it when I looked closer at the picture and there was a child, standing with a wheel or a hoop in their hand. It has really freaked me out,” she said.

8. The invisible children of the Old Stone House: Washington, D.C., is a city rumored to be filled with countless ghosts. If you visit the Old Stone House you might even hear the sounds of ghost children laughing as they play!

9. The Niles Canyon ghost: This story is extra spooky. Apparently, if you drive alone at night down Niles Canyon in California, you will spot a girl wearing a prom dress on the side of the road. Those who have offered her a ride report that she vanishes from the car just minutes later.

10. The face in the TV: A family living in Duarte, Pennsylvania, was reported to be haunted by not one, but two child ghosts! The first would pace back and forth and call for its mother. The second would gaze out at them from the TV like he was trying to capture their very souls.

11. Ghostly child orbs: According to a woman named Penny, she and her father repeatedly spotted bright, moving orbs of light in their homes at night. One of the orbs grew large and briefly took the shape of a child before vanishing. Creepy!

12. Black-eyed ghosts: In the early 19th century in rural England, there was a devastating outbreak of diphtheria. Countless children lost their lives—and their ghosts, distinguished by their wide black eyes, are said to still haunt the places where they died.

13. The Spy House: Built in the 17th century by Thomas Whitlock, this building is rumored to be one of the most haunted in the country. Visitors to the house often report seeing children playing on the lawn…. children clearly wearing clothing from another era.

14. The begging boy: In the ruins of Castlelyons in Cork, Ireland, there is a young boy ghost who is known to haunt the grounds. He runs around begging for change, allegedly reliving his final moments as a living person.

15. Yeats’s ghost: The famous poet W.B. Yeats loved to hold seances. At one, he contacted the ghost of a young boy who would only make himself visible to Yeats’s wife, Georgia. She described him as having “the solemn pallor of a tragedy beyond the endurance of a child.”

Stories about adult ghosts are scary enough, but there’s something even more haunting when the ghost in question is that of a child. Just plain spooky!

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