Buckner Mansion – New Orleans, Louisiana - Atlas Obscura

Buckner Mansion

The coven living in the old mansion might be fictional, but the ghost is allegedly real. 


This New Orleans mansion is hauntingly beautiful… in more ways than one.

Built in 1856 by cotton magnate Henry Sullivan Buckner, this Lower Garden District mansion was intended to be bigger and grander than the most opulent manor at the time, which was Stanton Hall in Natchez, MS - the home to Buckner’s former business partner and arch-rival. Buckner commissioned architect Lewis E. Reynolds, who delivered a magnificent example of southern antebellum architecture that has been called “a landmark amongst landmarks” with 48 monumental Ionic and Corinthian fluted cypress columns, numerous verandas and a unique, ornate cast-iron fence, not to mention three separate ballrooms.

Buckner and his family lived in the 20,000+ sq. ft. home until 1923. Following the Buckner family, the prestigious Soule Business School moved in and occupied the property for the next 60 years before closing its doors in 1983.

Today the mansion is a private residence available as a vacation rental (if you’re willing to shell out roughly $4,700 a night). Keep in mind though, you might be sharing the property with Miss Josephine, who is seen from time to time on the stairs or sweeping the halls, often accompanied by the strong scent of lemon. Don’t be alarmed though or try to remove her – apparently she’s been there haunting the home since her death after the Civil War.

More recently, the mansion had a supernatural rebirth of sorts as Miss Robicheaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies – the setting for American Horror Story: Coven, where young witches mastered their arts.