White Witch of Rose Hall
The White Witch is a legendary story of a haunting in Jamaica.
According to the legend, the spirit of "Annie Palmer" haunts the grounds of Rose Hall Plantation near Montego Bay. The story states that she was born in England to an English mother and Irish father and spent most of her life in Haiti. When her parents died of yellow fever, she was adopted by a nanny who taught her witchcraft and voodoo. She moved to Jamaica and married John Palmer, owner of Rose Hall Plantation. Annie supposedly murdered Palmer along with two subsequent husbands and numerous male plantation slaves, later being murdered herself by a slave named "Takoo". A song about the legend called "The Ballad of Annie Palmer" was recorded by Johnny Cash.
An investigation of the legend in 2007 by Benjamin Radford concluded that the story was fictionalized, modeled on the title character in a famous Jamaican novel, The White Witch of Rosehall by Herbert G. de Lisser, published in 1929. An Annie Palmer unrelated to Rose Hall did exist, and by all accounts had no tendencies toward sadism or lechery. Rough Guide To Jamaica author Polly Thomas writes that the name of Annie Palmer may have become confused with Rosa Palmer, the original mistress of Rose Hall who did have four husbands but was said to be unwaveringly virtuous.
Rose Hall is a Georgian mansion built in the 1770s and restored in the 1960s. It is decorated with silk wallpaper printed with palms and birds, ornamented with chandeliers, furnished with mostly European antiques, and features a downstairs bar and restaurant. It is currently owned by former Miss World USA Michele Rollins and her entrepreneur husband John Rollins.
- Ghost Adventures featured an episode at Rose Hall.
- The novel Voyager by Diana Gabaldon features Rose Hall as a setting while the main characters are in Jamaica.
- Coven featured the song "The White Witch of Rose Hall" on their first album, Witchcraft Destroys Minds & Reaps Souls (1969).
- The nineteenth-season finale of America's Next Top Model featured its final runway show taking place at Rose Hall.
- Scariest Places on Earth featured Rose Hall in Season 2 Episode 3, "White Witch"
- Johnny Cash; Don Cusic (25 August 2004). Johnny Cash: The Songs. Da Capo Press. pp. 226–. ISBN 978-1-56025-629-8. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
- Radford, Benjamin (September 2008), "The White Witch of Rose Hall", Fortean Times (239), ISSN 0308-5899
- Jim Stefko, "The White Witch of Rose Hall", Suite101.com (site blocked)
- "Heeding (Or Ignoring) Skeptical Investigation". Center for Inquiry. 2011-10-22. Retrieved 2011-11-14.
- Polly Thomas (2 August 2010). The Rough Guide to Jamaica. Penguin. pp. 185–. ISBN 978-1-4053-8205-2. Retrieved 31 May 2012.
- "Rose Hall : Ghost Adventures". Travel Channel. Retrieved 2013-02-07.
- Description and photo of the house as a modern tourist site
- History of the house and modern tourist site