By: Dawne Gee, WAVE 3 News
The Louisville Palace opened in September 1928, and from the first moment patrons stepped into the venue’s lobby they were being watched.
The faces that are looking back down at you are a bunch of different artist, philosophers, poets,” Louisville Palace Marketing Manager Mallory Kramer said. “We have Socrates, Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, Caesar, Shakespeare.”
The brilliant men of the past stare down from the ceiling with peering eyes, along with noted architect and designer of the palace, John Eberson, and John Siegel, who restored the palace in 1994.
But according to staff and some patrons, they are not the only ones watching you.
After 25 years of working at the Palace and walking its hallways, Palace employee Scobie said seeing is believing.
“We go walking through the front door and clear as day there is a woman waking up the staircase,” Scobie said. “She’s got a grey dress and shoulder pads. She’s walking up the staircase, got about 3/4 of the way up and she faded out.”
This female phantom on the stairs is not alone.
“The gray lady is our most frequently seen ghost,” Kramer explained. “She is a young woman. Her hair is up in a bun. She’s wearing a white gown with a high collar. She has gloves on and is usually caring something that looks like a playbill or some type of book.”
The Gray lady can be found in the auditorium of the Palace, usually making her way down the first aisle. She is best described as a residual haunting.
“She’s always seen doing the exact same thing – walking about ten paces and then she disappears,” Kramer said.
The Louisville Palace is a spirited place. The sound of children in the upstairs bar is a common phenomena.
Late one night as Scobie prepared to lock the palace doors, Scobie heard two little kids giggle behind him.
“I say goodnight to them,” Scobie said.
There’s one ghost at the Palace that literally loves the spotlight.
“The story is his name was Bernard,” Scobie recalled. “He was the projectionist. He had a heart attack.”
As staff tried to get Bernard down the projection room stairs for care, Bernie, as they affectionately call him, fell to his death.
“You’ll be running a spot light and something walks through the light,” Scobie said.
Photographs taken by visitors have been said to include orbs of light or shadows of people who were not there.
One example is a picture taken during a tour. There’s no memory of a man standing on the balcony when the picture was taken. However when it was developed, the dark figure of a man can be seen. The figure even appears to have a shadow.
“They’re part of the building,” Scobie said. “You gotta spend your life somewhere, and the Palace isn’t a bad place. I’m gonna be here someday.”
The Louisville Palace offers haunted tours during its Halloween Movie Series each October.