George, the Ghost of Walt Disney World’s Pirates of the Caribbean

Does a spirit haunt the classic attraction?

I’ve only been on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disney’s Magic Kingdom maybe one or three hundred times, but I don’t remember seeing any ghosts.

Pirate skeletons, sure, but ghosts? Not so much.

But just because I’ve never seen him, doesn’t mean George isn’t there.

The story goes like this: In the early 1970s, when Pirates of the Caribbean was first under construction, a welder named George tragically died.

Some say he was crushed by a falling beam, others that he fell to his death from atop the ride’s “burning city.” Ever since, the ride has been haunted by ghostly apparitions and strange occurrences.

Mysterious footsteps when no one else is around. Phone calls from the control room. The occasional ghostly manifestation.

George isn’t “officially” recognized by Disney, and perhaps it’s just an urban legend, but every morning, and at the end of every day, Disney World cast members are sure to tell George good morning or good night. Otherwise, the ride has been known to malfunction for unexplained reasons.

George Awaits On Stranger Tides

In a thread over at, many posters have shared their own experiences with George, as well as some photos.

On April 1, 2013, poster marlyng shared her story. She’d been on the ride with her family, and as their boat passed through a veil of mist (which nowadays has faces from the movies projected onto it), she took a photograph of herself and her brother. A vague figure appears to sit behind them.

Another poster, jque, believes he or she may have also captured a spirit orb on camera.

Are these pictures evidence of real ghosts, or are these ghostly figures  just our imaginations?

I happen to have my own horror story regarding Pirates of the Caribbean. The ride broke down, and we were stuck for about a half hour listening to A Pirate’s Life For Me endlessly loop. Yo ho, yo ho, yo ho, yo ho…that sort of thing seems to happen to me quite often.

Was it George? I don’t know, but you never forget something like that.

// This legend also appears over at You’ll have to scroll down a ways, but there are tons of other interesting Florida anomalies listed here that are worth a look. Check it out.


Rob Schwarz

Rob Schwarz is a writer, blogger, and part-time peddler of mysterious tales. For nearly 10 years, he's managed Stranger Dimensions, providing a unique perspective on all matters involving time travel, parallel universes, and whether or not robots might one day take over the world.

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One Comment

  1. Dear Rob. Take it from an ex-employee who is also a medium.George is very real. He is one of the sweetest spirits you will ever meet…most of the time. He likes to spook those who “ask for it” , will watch over those who are scared and is very perticular about HIS ride and how maintence takes care of it. If maintenance ignores the smallest thing that should not affect ride performance he will drive them crazy by setting off sensors that stop the ride until they fix it. Say hi to him the next time you are on the ride and he might be kind enough to say hi back. But know that he is not the only spirit at Pirates. Nor is he the only spirit in the park. He’s just the funny guy that makes himself the most well known. He’ll always be the senior employee there after all and has to make sure the rest of them know that.

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