Vampires of the Ursuline Convent - New Orleans, LA
N 29° 57.647 W 090° 03.656
15R E 783640 N 3318074
Quick Description: This historic building is a regular stop for tours of the New Orleans French Quarter where guides share tales of legendary vampires rumored to live in the third-floor attic.
Location: Louisiana, United States
Date Posted: 4/6/2010 1:46:42 PM
Waymark Code: WM8HV9
Nightly in New Orleans, macabre gatherings of tourists roam the streets exploring tales of the paranormal and other-worldly. For hundreds of years, the Big Easy has passed down these mysterious twilight stories of New Orleans nightlife - legends of ghosts, zombies, and vampires.
Tales of vampires have been circulating around New Orleans for hundreds of years. One of the most repeated stories is that of the Casket Girls at the Old Ursuline Convent. The Sisters of Ursuline established a Catholic School for girls and set up the first orphanage in Louisiana and the Mississippi Valley.
Today the Ursuline Convent stores local Catholic records dating back to 1718. In the 1700’s, the Catholic Diocese sent young girls from the French convents to New Orleans to spread Christian values and find respectable men to marry. They each carried a coffin shaped chest packed with their belongings. The chest was called a “casket” and the young women were mockingly called the Casket Girls by the locals. However, the plan backfired. A good number of the girls were raped and forced into prostitution. Ships sailed back to New Orleans to rescue the fair maidens and returned them to France. Some of the girls still carried the small caskets with them and the contents were never revealed. Legend says with the contents still unknown, the Sisters of the Ursuline placed them on the third floor of the convent. The doors and windows were sealed shut for all eternity. When the chests were finally opened many years later, they were found empty. Superstitious citizens claimed the girls had smuggled vampires into New Orleans in the chests instead of clothing and such. The sealed attic of the convent has shuttered windows. The heavy shutters are of an unique style not seen anywhere else within the French Quarter. The shutters are always closed, but they say late at night the shutters open and the vampires come out into New Orleans seeking their prey. The Ursuline Convent claims there is nothing stored in the third floor attic, while local legend holds that all of the attic windows are sealed by nails and screws blessed by the pope.
Type: Local Legend or Lore
Website Reference: [Web Link]
Referenced in (list books, websites and other media): Not listed
Additional Coordinates: Not Listed