There are 4 common types of ghosts found in haunted graveyards — if you find them at all. Then, there’s the special case of the guardian spirit. Let’s take a look at them.
The 4 most common graveyard ghosts include:
- Grieving ghosts
- Desecration ghosts
- Ghosts in denial
- Attached ghosts
A grieving ghost is a spirit who remains to comfort a loved one during her mourning period. A person may feel its presence when they go the cemetery. This is only short-term because this spirit knows its body has died. Once the living person acknowledges the loved one’s death as final, this spirit is very, very likely to move on to the ‘Otherworld.’
You can also call them angry ghosts (not to be confused with the Buddhist concept). These spirits had moved on but vandalism or destruction of their graves called them back. You are likely to get a lot of ghostly activities with these ghosts. They are known to generate orbs, EVP and apparitions. However, they’re just as likely to follow the vandals home and give them some hell. Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery in suburban Chicago is a good example of desecration ghosts at work.
Ghosts in Denial
These spirits can’t acknowledge they’ve died. It’s a classic case of denial: They just can’t face the facts of death. In time, their energy should weaken and they’ll be forced to move on.
In this case, it’s the living person that’s haunted. Attached ghosts refuse to end their bond with a living person. They stay in contact with their loved ones for years after their deaths. In time, their energy will weaken and they’ll have to transition from our plane of existence.
A quick note: If you read our post on haunted graveyards created by the living, not all spirits’ energies will weaken. Living people can charge the area and continue a haunting. We don’t think this is a good idea. It’s better to let the deceased move on.
Guardians may or may not be human. In some cultures, the first person buried in a cemetery becomes a protector. Their job is to prevent vandalism or desecration of the site. Unfortunately, some of these people were buried alive to make sure the trauma created the ghost.
In other cases, a dog or other animal was buried alive. This can create a phantom dog. Phantom dogs can be larger than a Great Dane – a really big dog! Most of them are black with glowing eyes. You may hear them growling in the dead of night or barking in the background. Phantom dogs generally manifest as a semi-transparent figure. You won’t be sure if it’s blending into the night. It will be apparent when you look at your pictures taken during an investigation. They’re not aggressive, but they will try to scare you out of the cemetery. There are no reported cases of a phantom dog following anyone home. Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery has a phantom dog that guards the site.
“Chasing Graveyard Ghosts” by Melba Goodwyn
“The Ghost Files” by Jeff Belanger
“Ghost Hunting in Haunted Cemeteries” by Fiona Broome
“The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits” by Rosemary Guilley