GHOSTS OF THE PRAIRIE
American History & Hauntings

HAUNTED NORTH CAROLINA

The Ghosts of Gold Hill
Near Concord, North Carolina

The old Randolph Mine on Gold Hill is located about 25 miles outside of Charlotte. It was near this area in 1799 that the very first gold rush in America took place. A young boy named Reed found on a nugget on his father’s farm that would begin the American quest for gold. The Randolph mine was one of the mines that came about after this discovery and like many of the others from that same period, this one also boasts a ghost... or two!

One of the spirits said to haunt this place is Aaron Klein, who was murdered in the mine in 1842. Klein was often tormented with anti-Semitic pranks and cruel jokes during his time at the mine, but one night, a fellow worker who was jealous of Klein’s affections for a young woman in town, killed him. He lured the man into the mine and then pushed him down an 850-foot deep shaft. Klein’s body was never found, but shortly after he disappeared, a shimmering yellow light began to be reported near the mouth of the mine. Dozens of people reporting seeing, but assuming that there was a logical explanation for it, were never really bothered by it.

Except for one miner, a man named Stan Cukla, who had murdered Aaron Klein in the mine. Cukla seemed to be very bothered by the strange light and was overheard mumbling about ghosts and Aaron Klein, who the other miners just assumed had left town. Cukla began acting very strangely and was sometimes seen at night digging through the rubble at the bottom of the mine pit. He was last seen doing this the night before his body was found there, lifeless and smashed beyond recognition.

Could it have been the ghost of Aaron Klein, seeking revenge?

The second ghost at the Randolph Mine would not appear until more than a century later. It was January of 1954 and two witnesses reported a strange, and rather frightening, sight near the old mine. The spirit, or apparition, appeared to be pieces of a body, floating in the air. A disembodied head, arms , legs and feet seemed to be suspended somehow and were said to be glowing with some sort of unearthly light. Suddenly, the terrifying sight began moving toward them, then with a sound like a cracking whip, the ghost vanished.

According to the witnesses, the head had belonged to a man named Joe Newman, the brother of wealthy mine owner, Walter George Newman. Joe had died several years before in a terrible explosion that had destroyed both he and his home. The explosion had been deemed mysterious by the locals and by the authorities, who were unable to prove foul play. The local people knew differently though... because it was believed that Walter had killed his brother in an attempt to take over control of the mine, a plan which succeeded. After Walter died in 1918, his ghost was said to be haunting the mine and was also reported walking the streets of Gold Hill at night. Many wondered what the two brothers had to say to one another when they met again.... in the next world.

Gold Hill is located near the town of Concord, which is about 25 miles northeast of Charlotte. Gold Hill is a small community of its own, not far from Concord.

Copyright 1998 by Troy Taylor. All Rights Reserved.

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