Millions of people visit Lake Lanier every year to swim in its waters and to enjoy the scenery surrounding the lake. However, a quick TikTok visit will have you rethink your planned excursion to Lake Lanier. TikTok will convince you that Lake Lanier is haunted and that you should stay away at all costs.
Perhaps the ghost stories will strengthen your resolve to visit the man-made Georgia lake. Before you go or decide not to, let’s explore the tales surrounding this mystery lake while trying to decipher fact from fiction.
TikTokers claim that Lake Lanier is haunted because it was built over a cemetery
In late August 2020, TikToker Jc. Dombrowski posted a video titled 5 reasons not to swim in Lake Lanier. The first reason was that it is built over flooded graves. The claim is partially true. To create the man-made lake, the Army Corps of Engineers responsible for the projects had to evacuate a town that would get submerged by the waters.
They removed everything they could, including marked graves. However, there is a possibility that the Corps did inadvertently leave behind some unmarked graves. “The technological capability to identify and verify unmarked burial sites through subsurface scanning or other means was far less robust 70 years ago,” Cesar Yabor, a spokesman for the Corps told CNN.
“The limited capabilities of the time make it probable that unanticipated finds of human remains are possible.” Dombrowski used a photo of marked graves to demonstrate that there are flooded graves at the bottom of the lake. While it might be true, it is unlikely that there are any marked graves on the lake bed.
Dombrowski’s claim that the lake submerges a town is also partially true. The Corps demolished or relocated most buildings during the evacuation. Yabor dispelled the claim that people hear a church bell from a sunken church.
Jc. further said that the lake is filled with corpses. More than 200 people have died in drownings since 1994. Drownings are not a rare phenomenon in lakes, however. Dombrowski further added that Lake Lanier has alligators and leeches. According to historian Lisa Russell, however, the greatest tragedy brought by Lake Lanier is its damage to the ecosystem and not stories of submerged ghost towns.
“The real haunting in this story is how history has made it impossible to ignore what was done to the land in North Georgia,” Lisa said (Per CNN). “Once a land of wild rivers, North Georgia is now broken with dams and human-made bodies of water that changed the ecosystem. Once a land that belong to indigenous people, it is now buried under water, making recovery of lost culture impossible.”
Tiktokers regularly post videos of strange sightings in Lake Lanier
The Lake Lanier hashtag on TikTok has attracted over 100 million views. Most of the videos about the Lake tell stories of ghosts and strange sightings. A viral video by oldsouthwife posted in late May 2021 appears to show a pair of feet sticking out of the surface of the lake.
The ‘feet’ are most likely plant roots, but the video is, nevertheless, chilling. Lake Lanier’s most popular haunted story involves a car wreck that reportedly happened in 1958. The legend claims that the car harbored two women who died after the car went off a bridge and into the lake. One of the women, referred to as Lady of the Lake, allegedly haunts the bridge at night in a blue dress.