Where Happy Haunts Go To Rest
Disneyland, in Anaheim, CA is the original Disney Theme Park. It has been around since July 17, 1955. Since then, over 600 million people have walked through the gates. But legend has it that some visitors never left. You see, Disneyland is said to be haunted. It is probably one of the most haunted properties in California.
Guests and Cast Members (Disneyland employees) alike have come forward with stories of the supernatural inside the berm of the Happiest Place on Earth. I worked at Disneyland as an Attractions Hostess, or ride operator, in Fantasyland for six years in the early 1990s. And yes, I did experience some pretty creepy moments along with the many happy memories I have of "The Park." Here I will introduce you to some of Disneyland's most famous ghosts and the things they do.
Creepy Disneyland Stories
Just to get you in the mood, here's a video chronicling some of the deaths that have happened at The Happiest Place on Earth.
Main Street Fire Station
When you enter Disneyland, you walk under the train tracks. Just after this, on the left side of the street, next to the City Hall restrooms, is the Firehouse. When Walt Disney was alive, he had an apartment on the second floor of this building. He used it as a home base of sorts while the Park was being built and stayed there often after Disneyland opened. He also hosted celebrities and VIPs in his apartment. Whenever Walt was in the Park, he would light a lamp in the Fire Station window to let people know he was there.
Apparently, Walt never left. According to Disney legend, soon after Uncle Walt's death, a cleaning woman was cleaning the apartment and noticed that the lamp was lit. She turned it off and left, only to see it lit in the window when she got outside. She then did what anyone would do in that situation. She went back into the apartment and turned the lamp back off. When she went back outside, the lamp had been relit. She went back again and turned it off, only this time she didn't leave the apartment. The lamp turned itself back on right in front of her. Nobody has tried to turn the lamp off since. It is left burning to symbolize Walt Disney's presence in his beloved Disneyland. To this day, Cast Members report footsteps and knocking coming from the Fire Station Apartment, especially at night.
Shops Throughout the Park
Many of the stores are supposedly haunted. The 4th floor stockroom of the Star Trader (at the exit of Star Tours in Tomorrowland) supposedly has cold spots and a really creepy feeling to it. There are also stories of the merchandise being rearranged on the shelves after the shop is locked up for the night when nobody is around.
I also heard that the Hatmosphere, the hat booth between America Sings and the Tomorrowland Autopia is haunted. Supposedly, the sewing machine they use to embroider names on hats never gets warm, even after being used all day long. And once someone saw a face in it. That's what I heard anyway.
One of the ice cream carts is also supposedly haunted. People have reported hearing a woman's voice even though there is no woman around.
On Main Street, there have been sightings of a "Lady in White". She appears in and around the stores on Main Street and is dressed in clothing from the turn of the 20th Century. Legend says that she died on the property in the early 1900s but never moved on.
In 1966, a 19-year-old boy tried to sneak into Disneyland for a Grad Night (Every June Disneyland is open overnight for high school graduates). Anyway, Thomas Cleveland snuck over a perimeter fence and onto the Monorail track. A security guard saw him and tried to warn him to get down, as this was a very dangerous place to be. Poor Thomas didn't listen, he just ran away so he wouldn't get in trouble. He should have listened because just then he was hit by a monorail train and was dragged 30-40 feet before the train stopped.
When I worked at Disneyland, I heard rumors that sometimes, late at night, Cast Members driving the Monorail would see a young man running along the Monorail tracks at the back of The Park, in the spot where Thomas died. One minute the figure was there and the next he was gone. I heard it was very creepy.
Guests and Cast Members have reported seeing Disco Debbie. Debbie is a glowing green ghost inside the ride, who is reported to be a Cast Member who died of an aneurysm behind the Space Mountain building.
Also, people have reported seeing a man with reddish hair and a red face. He usually gets into a seat next to a single rider. By the time the ride ends, the man has disappeared. Supposedly, this is the ghost of a man who died on the ride in the 1970s. They call him "Mr. One Way" and he is also sometimes seen in the Cast Member locker rooms in the Space Mountain building.
This is the big, round, rotating building at the east end of Tomorrowland. Originally it was the Carousel of Progress, showcasing predictions of products for the near and not-so-near future. It closed in the early 1970s and reopened in the summer of 1974 as America Sings, a show highlighting the musical history of the first 200 years of the United States.
Two weeks after the new attraction opened, a new ride operator, 18-year-old Deborah Stone was killed when she was crushed between the wall of the moving audience section of the building and the stationary stage. Ever since, Cast Members working the ride have reported hearing a voice tell them to "be careful."
The America Sings Building is also said to be haunted by the ghost of a teenage boy who died in the Speed Tunnel section of the People Mover, which is on the outer edge of the building. The boy died while trying to jump from one car to another and was dragged along the track before the ride came to a stop.
In 1984, Dolly Young was riding on the Matterhorn, on the Tomorrowland side (there are two tracks that go through the ride, one near Tomorrowland and one near Fantasyland). Dolly was alone in the back seat and a child was alone in the front seat. In the middle of the ride, Dolly unbuckled herself, supposedly to assist the child in the seat in front of her. She stood up just before the dip where the other track crosses over the track she was riding on. She hit her head on the bridge and fell onto the track. When the next sled came along, Dolly got run over. The story is that they had to dismantle the track to dislodge her body.
Dolly now haunts the Matterhorn. Some people say they have seen Dolly. I worked on that ride for several years, and I never saw her. But I sure did feel her. After the ride closes for the day, two people have to "walk the track", one on each side of the mountain. You have to walk the ride, starting at the bottom and working your way to the top. It is done to look for lost and found items. Every time I was (un)lucky enough to get a track walking shift I had an uneasy feeling, like someone was watching me. I was always convinced that it was Dolly and so I would often say "hi" to her. The feeling was always the worst in the big cavern in the middle of the ride, and at Dolly's Dip (the spot where she died). In fact, the work lights in the tunnel near Dolly's Dip always seemed to be burned out. In six years, I don't think I ever saw those lights working. I hated running the track at the end of my shift and I usually tried to get someone else to do it for me.
It's A Small World
The story is that several Cast Members who worked on It's A Small World loved the ride so much that they came back to reside there after they died. The legend is that lights will turn on and off and that the dolls will keep on dancing and singing after hours when the electricity has been turned off.
I worked on that ride for six years (it was the very first ride I learned way back in 1989). I remember having fun on my breaks walking through the ride. I walked behind the sets, under the sets, and even through the wall in the middle of the attraction. Yep, there's a door that goes from the Antarctic region at the beginning of the ride to the finale scene at the end. It was a bit creepy in the darker portions, but not bad.
There are several ghosts that haunt the Haunted Mansion. The first ghost story happened when the Mansion was still being built back in the 1960s. One of the sound designers was in the Séance Room and heard music coming from behind a wall. He thought it was a radio, but there was never any talking or commercials, just music. He kept hearing the music for days. Finally, he decided to just put a speaker near the spot the music was coming from to mask it.
When I worked at Disneyland, I heard a rumor that the spell book in Séance Circle was a real spell book and that Madame Leota was reciting a spell from that book. Rumor had it that each morning when Cast Members would arrive at the attraction to open the ride, they would find the book in a different place than it was the previous night.
There is also a story about a woman who came to the Haunted Mansion to sprinkle her young son's ashes in the ride since his dying wish was to be one of the Haunted Mansion ghosts. She was told she couldn't spread the ashes there, but apparently she snuck back and scattered her son's ashes anyway. After that, people reported seeing the ghost of a small boy, crying, near the exit. I guess he didn't want to be a Haunted Mansion Ghost after all.
Disneyland Ghost Web Pages
A whole site dedicated to the Haunted Mansion. Has a whole page of ghost stories.
- Above the Norm blog
A brief overview of some of Disneyland's ghosts.
Pirates of the Caribbean
Supposedly, there is a boy ghost who is seen in the video monitors. He can be seen in the Control Tower, caught on surveillance cameras. He always seems to be happy and enjoying himself. But when the boat comes back into the station, the boat is empty.
It has also been said that Walt Disney's ghost and a couple of other ghosts sometimes haunt the Disney Gallery above Pirates. The Gallery was originally designed to be Walt's personal apartment, as the one above the Main Street Fire Station was kind of small.
Disneyland Ghosts: Caught on Tape
Tell me your Disney ghost stories, or what you think of ghosts in general.
Gino Lorello on June 28, 2020:
check out this podcast guys ..Rachael fisher and mate on deaths in Disney land ..enjoy .. https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/hollywood-cr...
Andres sierra on June 02, 2020:
I've heard of this ghost it kinda like a friendly ghost like casper, she has a white dress and she helps kids that are lost she will bring the child to the lost and found I think I want to experience this the next time I go to Walt Disney world
Charlotte on December 03, 2019:
I have seen one way before and I thought it was very creepy and it flowed greem
Carson on December 03, 2019:
My friends and l saw Mr.One way also I was on the haunted mansion in the ride broke down and I saw a ghost myself.
M. Uncamino on October 03, 2019:
Now that's just silly. There's no ghosts on Space Mountain. In the 40+ years I've been going on the ride solo and being loaded next to strangers, I've never seen anything like that. I'm pretty sure I'd remember another redheaded guy.
unknown on July 17, 2019:
this is a scary thing but i think it is not real a mother spreading her sons ashes no fake FAKE FAKE all of it is FAKE
blackskull on May 02, 2019:
this is the scariest thing ever
Isaac on December 29, 2018:
I have had a ghost experience at the pirates of the Caribbean. Ok so you know the swamp scene at the beginning of the ride and near a restaurant well when I was in the swamp scene near where the old man sits I look to my left and I thought I saw a face in one of the fake trees I looked again and the face was gone.
Jynx Blackwood on December 10, 2018:
I've met the little boy he scratched me and my family thought I was mad
skull trooper on September 23, 2018:
i have had a ghost expeiriece i saw mr.one way
Jay Hunter on September 21, 2018:
There is another goast that haunts Pirates Of The Caribbean. It was a pregnant mother then she fell out of the boat and her head was smashed
Alex Mikolasko on August 28, 2018:
The only ghost I believe in is my mother who died from cancer, she is me and my family's angel...
Leigh Wilkinson on May 30, 2018:
Disneyland opened in July of my year of birth...1955.
ghost hunters on March 26, 2018:
we have been around the world looking for ghost should we go to disney land next????
vane vaz on March 21, 2018:
i had a dream of Debbie stone she is asking for help to get to the ther side
Maddy Silva on October 06, 2017:
oh sorry, i forgot to read on... but it has been around for over 60 years :)
Maddy Silva on October 06, 2017:
disney was not opened in 1955.... its been open for over 60 years...
Ariel Martin on June 24, 2017:
In my opinion I think that Disneyland is haunted because of all these stories.
Jacob.E.Robinson on March 19, 2017:
I went to Disney and I actually saw mr. one way
Bibs A on September 13, 2016:
I worked at Disneyland in 2003/04 and definitely had a ghostly experience! I worked at Autopia and one night after closing, i was at station 3 (i think is what it was called) which wasn't allowed to be unoccupied at any moment due to security. I was waiting for the last car to come by and pick me up to finish closing the ride and I felt a distinct tug on my pants. I turned around and saw nothing but heard what sounded like giggling. There were no trees for me to get caught on or anything, I was standing in between the two tracks on a little sidewalk. I never saw anything but I felt that tug so clearly that I got pretty scared and radioed in to the closing manager that they better hurry up and get me, security protocol or not I was ready to just run out of there! It was an experience I'll never forget! I was told that the land where Autopia was built used to be an Orange grove and the caretaker of the land lived on or around where Autopia is today. His home burned down with his children inside it who perished. I'm told that others have had experiences there and people theorise its the caretakers children having a laugh. Well they definitely had a good laugh at my expense!
Cha Sae Ron on July 16, 2016:
I think the ghost and hunted strories really exist
Becky from Az. on February 07, 2016:
My family and I recently took a trip to Disneyland and stayed in one of the hotels. It was fabulous, relaxing and enjoying the California weather and being part of a magical, beautiful exciting park. One night after enjoying the fireworks final and parade we, decided to walk to the holtel. Our room had jointing rooms and my sons and husband shared one room as me and my daughter shared the other one. My son stayed up listening to his music when all of a suddent he said he saw their door opend thinking it was his mom or someone else. to make it story short no evidence or anything was found of a person going in to the room. I had a reason to bring holy water and it stayed in the room with us..scary
leslemonauthor on May 21, 2015:
Nice article, well put-together, on an interesting topic.
Finn McCool on March 01, 2015:
Cool article! Are all your haunting stories more or less personally verified from the time you worked there, or are some of them based on hearsay? The only reason I ask is because I've read up a bit on the deaths at Disneyland over the years, and I can't recall ever reading about a death happening at the Haunted Mansion, or on Space Mountain. Are cast members aware of certain fatalities that the public isn't?
tahirmahmood on October 20, 2013:
Great minds think alike.
CaztyBon on September 26, 2013:
I really enjoyed reading about the different ghosts. I knew about the rumors of Disney but I didn't know about the rest. Thanks!!
Nathan M from Tucson on May 06, 2013:
Fascinating reading about all the haunted areas of Disneyland. I'm guessing the enclosed "dark rides" would be more habitable to haunts than for instance the jungle cruise. Great article.
mmwoodward on April 13, 2013:
Wow, awesome lens. I had never heard ghost stories about Disneyland before!
Rose Jones on March 11, 2013:
What an interesting lens. I have no idea about all the deaths in Disneyland, and possible ghosts. Pinned.
Carpenter76 on March 11, 2013:
Thank you for this great lens! I really enjoyed reading it :) Didn't know so many people died in Disneyland.
anonymous on February 07, 2013:
Ghosts are real. They do exist and they come in all forms of shapes and sizes, they can be kind , they can be mean, they can take great interest in you or simply want to haunt you.
When they attach themselves to you, do not try to be free of them, respect them and make sure you sleep with you eyes open. O o
Tony Bonura from Tickfaw, Louisiana on September 18, 2012:
I do believe in spooks! Some of the stories made goosebumps go up and down my neck and upper back. Great lens.
JoshK47 on August 30, 2012:
Popping in the sprinkle some Angel Dust on this wonderful lens!
fastpass2disney on August 22, 2012:
I don't believe in ghosts but I really enjoyed reading your lens. Thanks :)
Joan Haines on August 22, 2012:
If you were a ghost, of course you'd want to hang out at Disneyland, right? I would!
NightMagic on July 13, 2012:
I;m going to be watching for these ghosts too when I go back to Disney Land. I love Ghost Stories. Nice Lens
agoofyidea on July 13, 2012:
Okay I am totally creeped out. This was a great lens, and I'll be thinking about all the ghosts outside of the Haunted Mansion the next time I visit Disneyland.
Lynda Makara from California on May 09, 2012:
This was fascinating. I really enjoyed reading it!
jlshernandez on April 27, 2012:
It would not be surprising that there are spirits lurking around the places where they died--and DIsneyland is no exception. Thanks for a walk down memory lane. I used to live near Disneyland. Blessed*****
Elyn MacInnis from Shanghai, China on April 13, 2012:
Ghosts are reported in all countries of the world. There are plenty of reports here in China.
WriterJanis2 on November 04, 2011:
I knew about ghosts in the Haunted Mansion, but not all of the other places. Thanks for the info. This is a great lens.
JoshK47 on October 27, 2011:
Super-spooky - and I have quite the weakness for anything involving Disney, to boot. Absolutely fantastic lens!
fefe42 on October 22, 2011:
Oh my! I thought that the only thing haunted about Disneyland was the Haunted Mansion 'ride' I will feature this on my ghost lens, and I also gave it a blessing.
JoyfulReviewer on October 15, 2011:
Congratulations on your lens being included on the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" monsterboard!
Tony Payne from Southampton, UK on September 03, 2011:
Excellent lens. I can definitely believe that Disneyland is haunted, but I love it there. The last time I went (2002?) they had taken down the People Mover and the Cablecar. I wonder if they replaced them. Blessed by an angel.
Heather Burns from Wexford, Ireland on August 31, 2011:
Wow, I never heard that Disneyland was haunted and have been there at least 25 times since I lived in Orange,Ca the whole time my kids were growing up. But I swear I have seen the green ghost in Space Mountain, and always thought it was part of the ride but it felt weird, you know? And one time in the Haunted Mansion I was riding with my son who was only 5 and it seemed like we could feel something and then he almost fell out of the car. I grabbed him and held on and have never been back inside the place since! So yeah, I would have to say there are ghosts there.
Grandma-Marilyn on August 29, 2011:
I completely believe that they exist. I can feel and hear things that aren't there and there are no explanations. Others have experienced it also.
Brandi from Maryland on August 28, 2011:
I grew up right outside of Gettysburg...I have no doubt that ghosts exist! Fun lens. :)
Coreena Jolene on August 23, 2011:
Really interesting. I have been there a few times over the years. I haven't seen anything weird, but it sounds like you miss that stuff with all the activities of people there. Sounds like a great place to visit but not to work at if you don't like creepy ghosts.
ellagis on August 22, 2011:
totalhealth on August 22, 2011:
very interesting stories, who would have though that such a happy and crowded place can be haunted.
WindyWintersHubs from Vancouver Island, BC on August 20, 2011:
Hi, there. I enjoyed reading the ghost stories but this is the first time I've heard it was haunted. We have visited a few times and didn't notice anything unusual. The only haunted place I've heard about in SoCal is the Queen Mary. Congrats on your Purple Star!
Lisa from Rhode Island on August 19, 2011:
Jennifer Einstein from New York City on August 19, 2011:
Kristin (author) from Long Beach, CA on August 19, 2011:
@HealthfulMD: Yes, I used to work at Disneyland. I was a ride operator in Fantasyland from 1989 to 1995. You're so welcome for including your Catacombs lens. I thought it was really interesting.
Kirsti A. Dyer from Northern California on August 19, 2011:
I've looked up the deaths at Disneyland (since I am interested in death and dying) in the past. You have done an amazing job pulling the lens together for the SquidHauntings. Did you used to work at Disneyland? P.S. Thank you for including my Catacombs lens.