There’s no denying that the city of New Orleans has its fair share of historic buildings and monuments available for tour, but not many compare to Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop, a well-known, haunted location of the infamous Bourbon Street.
According to legend, the building was once run and operated by a privateer named Jean Lafitte, who used it for many illegal activities commonly performed by pirates in the early 19th century. In this building, for a period, Lafitte helped his brother and their allies smuggle contraband in and out of New Orleans. However, his life wasn’t spent solely on immoral deeds. In 1814, he assisted General Jackson against the British and became one of the sole reasons that the War of 1812, and more specifically, the Battle of New Orleans, was a success.
In the present day, Lafitte’s Shop is now a very well-known bar, which sees a plethora of ghost tours and visitors excited at the prospect of spotting one of the many spirits located there, most importantly, the ghost of Jean Lafitte himself. Commonly, Lafitte is seen as a full-bodied apparition, lurking silently and watchfully in the dark corners of the first floor until he is detected by a patron, at which time he quietly fades away, only to be spotted again days or weeks later by another lucky visitor.
Although Lafitte stays on the first floor, near the fireplace he was once so fond of, just one level up another less frequent, but more chilling sighting occurs. It is the sighting of a woman, of which no one knows her name. She roams the rooms of the second floor, hunting for an easy target to spook, and once they’ve let their guard down, she’ll toy with them, whether it be by whispering their name into their ear, making her presence known with a laugh or a scream, or tapping an unexpecting shoulder.
Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar is one of the oldest buildings in New Orleans, and in its three-hundred years of history in New Orleans, it has amassed its fair share of the paranormal and haunting disturbances that draw the adventurous to its doors. Although its primary purpose now is to serve its many customers, those lucky enough to experience a ghost tour of the building may just receive a fright worthy of writing home to for many years to come. Perhaps you will be the next fortunate passerby to lock eyes with the legendary Jean Lafitte, staring back at you with the cold gaze of the dead.