CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee(WDEF) At times, the Chattanooga we all know can be a bustling city that almost never sleeps but there is another Chattanooga that is dark and creepy and said to have ghosts.
WDEF caught up with ghost expert Hope Holloway who is also a member of Chattanooga Ghost Tours
. The objective was to learn about the ghosts that are rumored to exist beneath the city. But instead of doing the interview in an area that is on the ghost tour, the interview was conducted on 3rd Street; the old 3rd Street from the 1800's.
The managers of the Sports Barn
allowed WDEF access to a tunnel that leads from the basement of the Sports Barn to underground Chattanooga. It was also Holloway's first time being in that section of the old city.
"You can just feel feel that there's something different here. You can feel that something is off," Holloway said.
Underground Chattanooga is a dark city that time forgot; a city where the only life you find is roaches, rats and mold. According to stories from frightened public works employees whose jobs take them underground, something else thrives down here; Ghosts!
"And they've told us that there have been the kind of ghosts down there that you don't want to encounter." The kind you might hear about from horror movies. They can get into your head and make you lost or confused," Holloway said.
The origins of Chattanooga's underground ghosts are said to date back to March of 1867 when four days of non-stop rain caused the Tennessee River to crest 28-feet above flood stage; leaving downtown Chattanooga underwater. Residents who could retreat to higher ground survived. Others drowned. The city suffered more devastating floods in 1875, 1886 and 1917. Holloway believes the underground ghosts are the result of those deadly floods.
"Anytime you have an amount of death you tend to have some supernatural activity associated with it," Halloway said.
Parts of Chattanooga were rebuilt 20 feet above the old city. A Sports Barn employee who's never been into the Chattanooga underground entered into the tunnel to watch the interview and noticed something foreboding.
"I can't explain it. I don't know. I walk right there it's cold. I walk right here it's hot. I walk back there it's freezing cold. It's unexplainable." said Paige Roberts.
Roberts was referring to the rapid temperature change every ten feet once she came out of the tunnel and walked onto old 3rd Street.
Halloway told WDEF that it's not just about what you feel but also what you don't see.
"There's always more than what meets the eye. Our underground here in Chattanooga is not something that people have always known about or talked about but it's there. There's this entire hidden aspect to the city and it's ripe with the supernatural activity," she said.
And whether if you believe in underground ghosts or not, there's one truth that can't be denied.
"You never know what's out there," Halloway said.