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  • Writer's pictureAbby Brenker

The Haunted and Historic Buildings of Friday Harbor

Friday Harbor is a small coastal community located on the San Juan Islands, off the coast of Washington State. It's a truly charming and quaint community. Most of the historic buildings on the island were constructed in the late 1800s. Sadly, one of the historic landmarks burned down earlier this year and I wasn't able to see it when I visited. But let's talk about some of the spots I was able to visit, here are the haunted buildings on Friday Harbor.

Serendipity Books

This is Serendipity Books located on Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands. It’s one of the older buildings on the island dating back to 1892 and is believed by some to be haunted. According to one of the owners actually saw a woman sitting in the window, as she approached and unlocked the shop one morning. She noticed that the woman was wearing a 1950s style black coat, but when she entered the shop no one was there. Word spread quickly through the town and soon the family that owned the shop in the 1950s came by with a photo album. After looking through pages and pages of photos, the shop owner recognized the woman in a snapshot. The family identified her as a previous owner of the building who had died in 1957.

Odd Fellows Hall

Before this building housed Friday Harbor’s Whale Museum, it was known as Odd Fellows Hall. The building was constructed in 1892 and has a dark history, despite its cheery demeanor today.

In 1895 a murder trial was held here because the crowd wouldn’t fit in the nearby courthouse. The accused was hanged around the corner. Now, people report paranormal activity, mainly in the second floor of the museum. Staffers have seen a tall man on this floor after the museum has closed for the day. Though it’s been pointed out that this activity, including disembodied footsteps, only seems to happen at night.

The Courthouse

This is the San Juan County Courthouse opened in 1906, and said to be haunted by those who work here. One spirit, referred to as Mary the teacher, has been spotted in the second floor women’s restroom. And it’s said that the ghost of a judge haunts the more historic sections of the building.

The Bird Box Hotel

This is the Bird Box Hotel in Friday Harbor on the San Juan islands. It was built in 1891. This was the first hotel on the island with indoor plumbing. When it opened, women weren’t allowed in the main bar, so there was a separate reception room for ladies to hang out in. This hotel also hosted the local dentist from time to time, who would render his services in the lobby.

Jackson Beach

Just a shout out for Jackson Beach, a stunning beach a few miles down the road from Friday Harbor. It's filled with drift wood and beautiful plants.

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