The Good Doctor at the Carolina Inn

The Carolina Inn, located on the University of Chappell Hill campus in Chappell Hill, North Carolina, is an extravagantly detailed bed and breakfast with a few more guests than the register displays. The Carolina Inn is said to be haunted by as many as 20 ghosts, most notably that of 17-year past resident Dr. William Jacocks.

Built in 1924 by university trustee John Sprunt Hill, along with alumnus and local businessmen, the Carolina Inn was constructed to be a first-rate establishment accommodating visitors and graduates of the institution. The design was most interesting, combining classic elegance with Georgian style that was meant to mirror the facade of the George Washington’s home at Mt. Vernon.

John Hill, the proprietor of the Carolina Inn, donated the bed and breakfast to the University of Chappell Hill, stipulating that once the inn broke even, all profits were to be used to sustain and advance the university’s library.

In 1948, the Carolina Inn’s most memorable guest arrived – Dr. William Jacocks – memorable because after more than 60 years, the good doctor still takes up residence at the Carolina Inn, even though his soul past on over 40 years ago. Other past guests of the inn are said to continue their stay at the establishment as well, supported by a multitude of evidence theorizing extensive paranormal activity within Carolina Inn.

After retirement, Dr. Jacocks made the bed and breakfast his permanent home. He stayed in room 252 for a total of 17 years before his passing. William Jacocks is said to have been a kind, gentle man with a great sense of humor. It seems he brought his wits to the other side as he now enjoys locking guests out of room 252, his former home.

Guests that have stayed in his old room have claimed such oddities as the bath mat being rumpled, as if someone had gotten out of the shower recently, and the curtains being pulled wide open after having been closed the night before. The distinct aroma of flowers has been said to arise in the room, especially in the morning. A strange, loud ‘whizzing’ sound was heard, not coming from anywhere near a ventilation shaft. Another guest reported his feet suddenly becoming enigmatically icy.

Guests, as well as the staff, have witnessed a finely attired, portly man walking the halls. He is said to be wearing a knit hat with a long blue coat over a black suit. He wanders the halls apparently seeking an unlocked door. He tries the knobs, rattles them to see if they are locked, then moves onto the next door. When guests from within the rooms open the door, he often gets scared and runs away.

In 1990, the Carolina Inn was renovated and Dr. Jacocks room 252 became what is now portions of 4 separate rooms. Electronic doors were put in place to eliminate the mysterious locking of room 252, a ghostly prank that went so far as to require a maintenance man to use a ladder to break into the room. The electronic door locks didn’t help. Jacocks still manages to jam the locks now and again.

While most are thoroughly convinced that Carolina Inn is indeed haunted, none seem to feel any type of threat among the presence. A benevolent man in life, the good doctor is just as harmless now as he was then and rather seems to enjoy playing with the guests in his Carolina Inn room 252.

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