The Haunted Mercer Williams House
One of the most mysterious homes here in Savannah Georgia is the Mercer-Williams House. The Mercer Williams House is reportedly haunted by many of the people who were affected by the tragedies which have occurred at the house over the years.
Located on Bull Street, on Monterey Square, the Mercer-Williams House is a very impressive building. Nowadays it is a museum, but for years, it was a private residence. The home’s most famous resident, Jim Williams, was the main character in the famous book, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Williams was an antique dealer who was described as being very eccentric. He spent a number of years inside of the house. Many of Savannah’s best parties were held inside of the Mercer-Williams House. Staff who work inside of the house after hours have reported seeing the ghost of Jim Williams walking the halls of the house. We cannot say for sure that the ghost of Jim Williams is haunting the Mercer-Williams House, but it would make sense, considering how much the house meant to him.
The biggest single event in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil was the murder of Danny Hansford. It was in this house that Jim Williams killed Danny Hansford. Williams was eventually acquitted of murder. However, Danny’s ghost is supposedly seen wandering around inside of the Mercer Williams House. In addition to the ghost of Jim Williams, it is said that the staff of the Mercer-Williams House, working late in the evening, have reported seeing the ghost of a young man walking through the halls. Is this the ghost of Danny Hansford? I guess we will have to try and find out
Another story which is told about the Mercer-Williams House is that of a young boy, who fell to his death from the roof of the house. As the story goes, a young boy was playing on the roof of the Mercer Williams House, hunting pigeons. He took a fall from the roof and landed on the wrought iron fence which surrounds the house, killing him. His ghost is reportedly seen re-enacting the final moments of his life. While this story is believable, part of the story doesn’t make sense to me. Some people will tell you that when he fell, he was impaled by the fence, breaking off one of the tips of the fence. That doesn’t seem like it could happen, in my opinion. The fence is very strong, and metal. I doubt that a car falling off of the roof would break the tip of the fence post off like that, let a lone a small boy.
Since initially writing this article, I had the chance to interview the sister of the young boy who died from that fall. She told me that the metal spike did not break off because of him falling on it. It was actually cut off by the medics who rushed to help him. They had to cut the fence in order to free him. No less grisly, for sure, but the stories about the spike breaking off in the unfortunate child's head need to disappear.
The Mercer-Williams house is a great historic home in Savannah, reportedly one of the most haunted houses in the entire city of Savannah. On our Savannah ghost tours, we do go past the Mercer-Williams House. Only with a guide can you get the whole story about the hauntings and the ghosts of the Mercer-Williams House.
Visiting the Mercer Williams House
The Mercer Williams House is located at the southern end of the Historic District on Monterey Square. The owner does offer daytime tours of this historic home, but don’t think you’ll be hearing any ghost stories. We have had guests tell us that they were asked to leave the tour for asking about ghosts or Jim Williams…very strange indeed.