Sunday, August 21, 2011
The Devil Lived In New Orleans
The devil built this house for his mistress, Madeline Freneau, whom he kept in lavish luxury. Sadly, Ms. Freneau was not a very smart young woman and her fate was sealed by her utter stupidity. The devil was a busy demon and Ms. Freneau found herself lonely and bored. She took another lover, Alcide Cancienne. Ms. Freneau wasn't smart enough to consider the diabolical nature of her first lover nor to even bother to trying to keep her affair that secret. Alcide dined openly with Ms. Frenau in the beautiful dining room and when a strange man in a cape asked him if he knew Ms Freneau, Alcide told the stranger he was Ms. Freneau's lover. That night at dinner, Alcide told his lovely mistress that the devil had told him he could have Ms. Freneau and 1000 dollars if they would take the name Mr. and Mrs. L. Ms. Freneau was delighted and told Alcide they should be together forever. Alcide laughed at the beautiful young woman and told her he was bored with her and wouldn't keep her even for 1000 dollars. Madeline was furious and lept across the table and killed Alcide. The devil came in laughing. He delighted in the horrific scene and promptly ate both Alcide and Madeline.
For many years after this, the house on St. Charles Avenue sat empty, but eventually a few intrepid families dared to occupy the mansion. The reports of the haunting there were terrifying. Apparently, the fateful dinner would replay over and over again in front of residents in phantom form and both Alcide and Madeline's ghosts haunted the house. Some say that the image of the devil himself was imbedded on the outside of the house and that blood would drip from his open mouth. The house on St. Charles Avenue was demolished years ago, but it is still unsettling to think that the devil lived in New Orleans.
I found this wonderful ghost story in Haunted America, a collection of American ghost stories. I have been unable to find any other sources for this story, but I'm still looking because this is a fabulous piece of folklore. I also have to wonder if the lovely hotel that now sits at this address wouldn't have a few lingering affects if this story were true.