Nevermore – The Long-Gone Haunts of Georgia: Hopewell Elementary

“7 kids died of food poisoning here in the 70’s!!! OMGZORZ!!! So ghost-y!!!!”

That pretty much sums up every online description of the once-abandoned, now-demolished Hopewell Elementary School in Alpharetta,  GA.

This place had stories that, if inserted into a modern-day horror movie, would make you cringe in embarrassment.  Nevertheless, teens, thrill-seekers, ghost-hunters, and no-goodniks of all varieties flocked to the site hoping to add their own personal experience to the long and cheesy list.

For those who made a trip to the school before it was torn down in 2008-ish, your chances of experiencing anything supernatural were largely diminished by your chances of a run-in with The Law, capitalized after an incident in which a close photographer friend on mine was pinned to a wall at gunpoint by one of Alpharetta’s finest.  Of course, there were visitors to the school who weren’t arrested or questioned, and they had left behind their own legacy of Natural Ice-fueled parties, pseudo-Satanic candle formations, and adolescent fornication.

But was Hopewell even haunted?

No paranormal investigations ever took place on the property, nor has anyone ever been able to corroborate the poisoning story.  In fact, there are a great number of people who have come forward to refute that ever-popular claim, to try to quell interest in trespassing at the school.  Sure, the spirit of a former student or teacher could visit, or there could be residual-type hauntings, but it’s doubtful given the nature of the claims.

Hopewell Elementary was nothing more than a catch-all for the youth of the area’s collective attention.  Mix in the eerie allure of a run-down building, and you’ve got a recipe for urban legend.

About the author

Adam W.

Adam has been picking apart his own paranormal experiences for the better part of 2 decades. As an author and investigator, he has worked with, The Paulding Paranormal Society, and various other supernatural outfits.


  • Hopewell school was closed at the end of the 1983-1984 school year. I have friends and family that went there in the 70’s and until it closed. The lady that ran the lunch room was a friend of my mothers. There were no deaths from poisonings. It was closed because a middle school was opening in Alpharetta the following school year. Hopewell’s attendence would have been too low without 6,7,8 grade to keep it open. K-5 was moved to Alpharetta Elementry and 6-8 to the new Haynes Bridge Middle.

    • In the early 90s I worked for a plumbing contractor out of Alpharetta GA. Most of the men I worked with at that time went to Hopewell Elementary school during the 1970s and 1980s and none of them had never heard of these ghost stories or death by food poisoning.

  • I have been trying to find someone who lived in the area of the school or close by, 55 yrs ago. I know someone has to still remember three little girls abused by foster parents there. This school finally after 2 yrs. reported us coming to school starved and dirty. Thanks to them we made it out alive!!

  • I went to this school, Hopewell Elementary, Alpharetta, GA in the 70’s and 80’s and there was never any word of any kids dying of food poisoning! The lunches I ate there was some of the best food I ever ate. We had wonderful lunch ladies, amazing cooks, delicious food. I remember always wanting seconds but never got! I did have an experience there about 10-15 years ago…will share in another comment later for lack of time right now.

  • I attended Hopewell Elementary. It remains one of my favorite places on Earth. There has never been any “paranormal” or other-worldly activity at that location. It was as great of an Elementary School experience as a child could have. It was truly the perfect vision of what an Elementary School in Mayberry, USA would have been.

  • I grew up right by there and the story was always kids dying of cancer from asbestos not food poisoning

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