A haunting story

Julie, the legend goes, was the octoroon mistress of a wealthy white man. They loved each other, but social conventions being what they were, they couldn’t be together beyond him setting her up in a nice house and spending lots of time with her. Keep a mistress? Sure, everyone did it. Leave your wife for her? Nope, that would be socially ruinous. (in some tellings of the story he wasn’t married, the barrier to their love was strictly a race thing–octoroon means ⅛ black.)

One way or the other though, it was love, but somewhat thwarted love. She wanted more, and would pester him about it.

One night, while he was gaming she asked him to make their love public, and distracted by the game he offered her a deal–wait for him naked on the roof and he would consent to her wishes.

It was a cold night in December and he didn’t think she’d do it. He was distracted by his game. Maybe the door locked behind her and she couldn’t get back in. A lot of reasons have been given for why she stayed exposed for so long, but one way or another he found her frozen the next morning. (or very late the same night)

In all the versions I’ve heard he was distraught, and in some he died of a broken heart not long after. Many versions say he joins her in haunting.

A nice little story and on every ghost tour of the Quarter. One funny thing about it though–the house is at 734 Royal St., which for many years was home of the Bottom of the Cup tea room. The Tea room moved, and some say the ghost followed. Others still place the ghost at the original location–but once or twice I’m pretty sure I’ve seen tour guides tell the story about a building a block or two away; I guess because it’s less crowded there, and while tourists will remember the story, how likely are they to remember the address?

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