Video: America's Haunted South

Take a video tour of four of the American South's most haunted sites.
AnkiHoglund / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Where Things Go Bump in the Night

If you love horror movies, Ouija boards and supernatural trickery, a trip to a haunted destination could be a real treat. Make a trip of it at an entirely terrifying town or sneak in a single scary attraction on your usual sightseeing tour.

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One of the world's most haunted ships is the USS Hornet, an aircraft carrier at Alameda Naval Base near San Francisco. 960 1280

  

Starting in 1864, the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in Weston, WV, was home to thousands of mentally ill patients. 960 1280

  

Peter Shield's Inn 960 1280

Peter Shield's Inn  

Some patrons of Savannah's Moon River Brewery say they've seen bottles mysteriously fly through the air. 960 1280

  

Ghosts are a given in the theater world, and some dramatic spirits are known to lurk about the Boise Little Theater. 960 1280

J. Koeppl; Boise Little Theater  

West Virginia's Moundsville Penitentiary was one of America's most violent correctional facilities. 960 1280

  

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris
Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Perhaps the most well-known gargoyles in the world hover on Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Technically known as grotesques (true gargoyles have waterspouts as mouths), these monstrous creatures glare ominously down on the City of Light. 960 1280

Moyan Breen, flickr  

Ulmer Munster, Ulm, Germany

Ulmer Munster, Ulm, Germany

Ulmer Munster’s steeple is the highest church steeple in the world, soaring 530 feet high. Dominating the skyline in Ulm, Germany, the church’s steeple is adorned with Gothic-inspired gargoyles, designed to ward off evil spirits. 960 1280

zemistor, flickr  

Duomo di Milano, Milan

Duomo di Milano, Milan

The largest Gothic cathedral in the world, Duomo di Milano is one of Europe’s most impressive architectural wonders. For the hale and hearty, climb the 170 stairs to the roof for a closer look at the Gothic gargoyles. 960 1280

Getty Images  

National Cathedral, Washington, DC

National Cathedral, Washington, DC

Washington National Cathedral’s English Gothic architecture is adorned with gargoyles. More modern in look, these gargoyles (including one famous Darth Vader!) were carved over the last 50 years, with designs determined by their donors and artists. 960 1280

dctim1, flickr  

Eastern State Penitentiary, PA

Eastern State Penitentiary, PA

Two gargoyles, Frank and Carson, are perched atop Eastern State Penitentiary in Pennsylvania. The 2 were added in 2005 to ward off the evil spirits of some of the world’s most notorious criminals who are believed to still roam the crumbling cellblocks. 960 1280

Vincet Brown, flickr  

Merton Chapel College, Oxford

Merton Chapel College, Oxford

Gargoyles peer down from the chapel roof of Merton College, one of the oldest colleges in Oxford, England. 960 1280

bronndave, flickr   

Dragon Bridge, Slovenia

Dragon Bridge, Slovenia

Dragon statues guard Ljubljana’s Dragon Bridge, known by locals as the "mother-in-law" bridge due its forbidding and fiery guard. Dragons are seen throughout the capital city, as its patron saint St. George slayed dragons, according to Catholic legend. 960 1280

Michael Daines, flickr  

Chrysler Building, NYC

Chrysler Building, NYC

Manhattan’s iconic skyscraper, Chrysler Building, was originally designed as the automobile maker’s headquarters in the late 1920s. Architectural details, such as the building's gargoyles, were modeled after Chrysler automobile products, such as the Plymouth hood ornaments. 960 1280

Chibcha, flickr  

Westminster Abbey, London

Westminster Abbey, London

The grotesques that hover on London’s Westminster Abbey are true gargoyles, with waterspouts for mouths. They’re also a creepy counterpoint to the statues of saints also on the church’s exterior. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Puente del Reino, Valencia

Puente del Reino, Valencia

Four gruesome, Gothic-inspired gargoyles stand guard at the Bridge of the Kingdom in Valencia, Spain. 960 1280

Eduardo Ales, flickr  

Eikan-do, Japan

Eikan-do, Japan

The highly ornate Japanese architectural ornament “onigawara” literally means “demon tiles.” Like Western stone grotesques, they were traditionally believed to ward off evil 960 1280

Getty Images  

Batalh, Portugal

Batalh, Portugal

The Monastery of Batalha in Portugal is an impressive work of Gothic architecture, adorned with monstrous gargoyles and other elaborate carvings. 960 1280

Tintazul, flickr  

St. Vitus Cathedral, Prague

St. Vitus Cathedral, Prague

Located within the Prague Castle complex, Saint Vitus' Cathedral is an imposing Gothic church that holds the tombs of Bohemian kings and Holy Roman emperors. Beyond being utterly monstrous, the gargoyles nestled on this cathedral have a functional purpose -- they spew rainwater from the building's roof at an angle that keeps it from running down the walls. 960 1280

Aconcagua, flickr  

Tower of London
Tower of London

Tower of London

London’s castles crawl with spirits. The most haunted of them all? The Tower of London — where "off with her head" wasn't just a saying, it was reality. In 1536, Queen Anne Boleyn was arrested and beheaded at the Tower Green, a green space within the Tower of London. Other royal ghosts lurk in the castle, too. Arbella Stuart, cousin of King James I, was allegedly murdered in the Tower of London. While you’re there, be sure to check out the Bloody Tower, where two young princes, Edward V and Richard, were believed to be murdered by the Duke of Gloucester. These young boys’ voices and screams are heard throughout the tower. 960 1280

The Image Bank/Getty Images  

Hampton Court

Hampton Court

Located just outside London, Hampton Court Palace swarms with royal ghosts. Catherine Howard, the adulterous wife of Henry VIII, supposedly loiters around at night. In 2003, CCTV cameras at the palace reported a strange sighting: The alleyway doors at Hampton Court burst open in the middle of the night. If you’re not too scared, visit the place yourself and check out the great hall, royal chapel, maze and gardens. You’ll feel the haunted vibes all around you. 960 1280

Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images  

The Grenadier

The Grenadier

This traditional British pub has a very spooky past. In the 1800s, a young man known as Cedric cheated at cards at the Grenadier and was beaten to death on-site. As a way to pay off the young man’s debts, modern-day visitors can attach money to the ceiling of the pub, which is covered with currency from all over the globe. Even if you’re not a believer of the supernatural, you’ll love the patriotic look of this place. 960 1280

  

The Grenadier

The Grenadier

The front bar at the Grenadier may be covered with British military memorabilia, but a small crucifix hangs in the cellar to protect the pub from harmful spirits. Strange occurrences still happen here to this day. Guests report objects moving or disappearing without any explanation, and occasionally, visitors will also report rattling bar stools and moaning from ghosts. Grab a pint at this haunted pub to see if the rumors are true. 960 1280

  

Farringdon Station

Farringdon Station

Located in the borough of Islington, this London Underground station has a haunted reputation. In 1758, Anne Naylor, a young girl, was allegedly murdered by a hatmaker and his wife in a building that was torn down in the 19th century to make room for the new train station. From the station’s opening in 1863 to the present day, travelers on the Tube claim to hear Anne’s cries and screams in the train’s haunted tunnels. 960 1280

  

Bank Station

Bank Station

The London Underground’s Bank station gets its name from the nearby Bank of London, an architectural sight to see on your trip to the city. At Bank station, one ghost repeatedly stalks the underground. Sarah Whitehead, who is known as the Black Nun and was the sister of Philip Whitehead (a fraudulent banker at the Bank of London), searches for her convicted brother in an all-black outfit. Travelers at Bank claim to see Sarah’s ghost on platforms and passageways in the station. Some visitors also complain of an unexplainable stench coming from the station’s tunnels. 960 1280

Getty Images News  

Covent Garden Station

Covent Garden Station

The Covent Garden Tube station is a must-see. This London Underground stop places you smack dab in a great shopping area and one of London’s best theater districts. Before heading up the elevators of the station, channel ghosts at this spooky destination. Allegedly, an actor named William Terriss haunts the station occasionally. Staff members at Covent Garden claim that they have seen Terriss walk across the platforms in a gray suit. Other employees have heard bizarre noises on the platforms when no travelers are there. 960 1280

Visit London Images/Britain On View/Pawel Libera  

Theatre Royal, Drury Lane

Theatre Royal, Drury Lane

London’s renowned Theatre Royal, Drury Lane has had countless haunted sightings over the years. Both actors and staff members have claimed that they saw Joseph Grimaldi, inventor of the modern clown, and the so-called “Man in Grey.” The latter was allegedly stabbed in the Theatre Royal, and his bones were discovered in a side passage in 1848. The theater isn’t too spooky, though: Rumor has it that an appearance by one of these ghosts is good luck for performances. 960 1280

  

Bruce Castle

Bruce Castle

Bruce Castle, which is located near Tottenham Cemetery in London, was the site of a gruesome suicide. It’s said that in the latter half of the 1600s, a woman named Lady Constantia Coleraine jumped from an upstairs balcony of the castle and died instantaneously. Folklore has it that every November, around the time of the lady’s death, a figure can be seen jumping from the same balcony. If you dare, take a trip to the castle and nearby cemetery. 960 1280

Herry Lawford   

Old Bailey

Old Bailey

The Central Criminal Court, otherwise known as the Old Bailey, has a disturbing past. The court sits on the former site of Newgate Prison. Ghosts seem to wander the area surrounding the Old Bailey. If you’re looking for a ghost-filled pub, sit down for a drink at the Viaduct Tavern on Newgate Street. One ghost, Fred, apparently pours out guests’ drinks and flickers the lights at this spooky pub. 960 1280

Getty Images News  

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey is an inevitably haunted destination, considering that it houses more than 3,000 buried bodies. The most common spirit that haunts Westminster Abbey is Father Benedictus, a former Benedictine monk of the abbey. In 1900, a woman reported a vivid sighting of him. After about 25 seconds, Father Benedictus vanished into the walls of the church. In 1932, two visitors reported talking to him. He’s typically thought to appear between 5 and 6 p.m. 960 1280

Visit London Images/Britain On View/Pawel Libera  

St. Paul's Cathedral

St. Paul's Cathedral

St. Paul’s Cathedral is definitely an eerie place to visit. Its most well-known ghost is a whistling clergyman, who haunts the west end of the chapel. In Ghosts of London, author Elliott O’Donnell recalls meeting an American couple who witnessed a black cloud suddenly appearing in the chapel. Regardless of the legitimacy of the folklore, St. Paul’s Cathedral is a wonderful place to visit. Cross the nearby Millennium Bridge for pedestrians and visit the Tate Modern museum for a culture-filled afternoon. 960 1280

Visit London Images/Britain On View  

Highgate Cemetery

Highgate Cemetery

This creepy cemetery opened in 1839 and was the go-to burial spot for Victorian socialites. But by the 1960s, Highgate Cemetery fell into a state of disrepair and decay. On Swain’s Lane, a street that cuts through the cemetery, several paranormal incidences have been reported. Some Londoners even claim to have seen a vampire lurking in the darkness. If you’re brave enough, check out Hampstead Heath, a large London park close to Highgate Cemetery that is also reportedly haunted. 960 1280

Britain On View/Getty Images  

Haunted London  13 Photos

Capuchin Catacombs of Palermo
Capuchin Catacombs

Capuchin Catacombs

Down in the cold, dry basement of the Capuchin Monastery, on the outskirts of Palermo, Italy, are the remains of 8,000 people. When the monastery outgrew its original cemetery in 1599, catacombs were excavated beneath the building. In addition to friars interred here, well-known locals chose the crypts as their final resting place. The catacombs are open to the public; iron grills prevent visitors from touching or posing with those laid to rest here. 960 1280

Reuters  

Catacombs of Paris

Catacombs of Paris

A series of manholes and ladders lead visitors to the creepy catacombs of Paris. In 1786, the cemeteries of Paris churches were filled to overflowing. The government saw a solution in long-abandoned stone quarries in and around the capital. The resulting catacombs eventually became the final resting place of some 6 million people. Following a vandalism incident, the catacombs were closed to the public in September 2009, but reopened a few months later. 960 1280

Dave Shea, flickr  

Brno Ossuary

Brno Ossuary

The Brno Ossuary in the Czech Republic is estimated to hold the remains of more than 50,000 people, making it the second-largest site of its kind in Europe (behind the Paris Catacombs). The ossuary was established in the 17th century, partially under the Church of St. James. The ossuary was later forgotten, until its rediscovery in 2001. It has been open to public tours since June 2012. 960 1280

Kirk, Wikimedia Commons  

Monastery of San Francisco

Monastery of San Francisco

Below the monastery of San Francisco, in the historic center of Lima, Peru, creepy catacombs are filled with skulls and bones. The catacombs were established following the monastery’s construction (in 1774), and remained in use until 1808, when a city cemetery was founded outside of Lima. The catacombs were soon forgotten, until their discovery in 1943. An estimated 70,000 individuals’ remains fill the catacombs' narrow hallways and deep holes. 960 1280

Ray_from_LA, flickr  

St. Stephen’s Cathedral

St. Stephen’s Cathedral

Light peeks through the darkness at St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna. Following its consecration in 1147 A.D., the cathedral's grounds gave way to cemeteries – a result of the high honor that believers placed on being buried near a church. Interments began in 1735 and continued until 1783, when a new law forbade most burials within the city. Today, the cathedral’s catacombs house the remains of more than 11,000 persons. 960 1280

Neil Girling, flickr  

St. Paul’s Catacombs

St. Paul’s Catacombs

St. Paul’s Catacombs, outside of Mdina, Malta, are a series of underground galleries and tombs that date from the fourth to the ninth centuries A.D. Intriguingly, the 24 catacombs, which cradle the tombs of more than 1,000 dead, show evidence of pagan, Jewish and Christian burials side-by-side, with no clear divisions. The excavation of the catacombs began in the late 1800s, under the guidance of a Maltese archaeologist and author. The site is now managed by a national agency, with 2 catacombs open to the public. 960 1280

Ian Lloyd, flickr   

Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa

Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa

The Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa (“Mound of Shards”) are a series of tombs in Alexandria, Egypt, that reach a depth of 100 feet. In the 2nd century A.D., they were built for a wealthy family … then forgotten until 1900, when a donkey fell into the access shaft. Human and animal remains have since been found, along with 3 sarcophagi. The catacombs’ name derives from visitors who used to visit the tombs and bring food in terra cotta jars to eat while there. They didn’t wish to bring the containers back home from this place of death, so they would break them … leaving shards behind. 960 1280

thecrawfordsphotos, flickr  

Sedlec Ossuary

Sedlec Ossuary

The Sedlec Ossuary is a small chapel in the Czech Republic that happens to have a whole lot of skeletons -- between 40,000 and 70,000, in fact. Some bones are arranged to form decorations in the chapel, including this chandelier of bones. The ghoulish designs are the handiwork of a 19th-century woodcarver who had been hired by an aristocratic family to arrange the bones, which had been interred in the ossuary since 1511. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Hallstatt Bone House

Hallstatt Bone House

Some visitors find the Bone House in Hallstatt, Austria, unexpectedly beautiful. We just find it creepy. The small chapel is home to a ghoulish display of 1,200 skulls. It came about in the 12th century, when the neighboring cemetery became filled to capacity. Cremation was forbidden, so bodies would be buried for about 15 years, then exhumed and placed in the chapel. Here, skulls are painted with a floral crown – a practice that began around 1720, in a gesture akin to placing flowers on a grave. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Skull Chapel

Skull Chapel

The Skull Chapel in Czerma, Poland, was built in 1776 by a local priest. The chapel serves as the mass grave for nearly 25,000 people who died during the Thirty Years War, 3 Silesian Wars (between Prussia and Austria), as well as from cholera outbreaks and hunger. The priest led the effort to collect the remains and put them in the chapel. The walls and basement are filled with skulls and bones; the remains of those who built the chapel are placed in the center of the church and on the altar. 960 1280

Merlin, Wikimedia Commons  

Capela dos Ossos

Capela dos Ossos

The Capela dos Ossos, or Chapel of Bones, in Évora, Portugal, gets its name from the human skulls and bones that cover its interior walls. The chapel was built in the 1500s by a Franciscan monk, who wanted his fellow monks to meditate hard on life’s transient nature. That message is driven home by some 5,000 skeletons, collected from nearby churches, as well as the words by the chapel’s entrance: “We, the bones that are here, await yours.” 960 1280

ceg, flickr  

Skull Tower

Skull Tower

In the early 1800s, Serbian rebels stood up to the Ottoman Empire. The Skull Tower was later built using the skulls of Serbs killed during a battle in 1809. In all, 952 skulls were collected and mounted on a tower as a warning to whoever opposed the empire. The tower stood in the open air until liberation of the area in southern Serbia in 1878. By then, much of the tower had eroded. In 1892, donations from all over Serbia led to the construction of a chapel, built around 58 skulls that still remained. 960 1280

Magalie L'Abbe, flickr  

Boothill Cemetery
Boothill Cemetery

Boothill Cemetery

Boothill Cemetery, and the entire town of Tombstone, AZ, is considered to be one of the most haunted places in the US. Tombstone is the town where the infamous O.K. Corral gunfight happened, between the Clantons, the Earps and Doc Holliday. Three members of the Clanton gang were killed, but apparently their spirits, along with a few outlaws buried in the cemetery, are still seen roaming the around the graveyard, hoping to avenge their death. 960 1280

Ken Lund, Flickr  

St. Louis Cemetery No. 1

St. Louis Cemetery No. 1

Locals, visitors and paranormal investigators believe St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is the most haunted cemetery in the world. Many ghosts haunt this famous graveyard in New Orleans, including Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau. Because most of the city is submerged in water, the dead are buried on top of the ground. Some visitors have heard eerie screams from inside the tombs and have been eyewitnesses to the ghosts of animals, including cats and dogs. Take a picture here and a strange orb or ghost may make an appearance in your photo. 960 1280

Cliff, Flickr  

Highgate Cemetery

Highgate Cemetery

Highgate Cemetery in London is perhaps one of the most actively haunted cemeteries in the UK. With 50,000 graves on site, it’s not a surprise why ghosts still roam this spooky spot and its underground catacombs. Ghost stories about the cemetery include tales of vampires who some claim drain the blood from dead animals found in the graveyard. And rumors continue to spread about seeing an imp-like creature, a ghostly bicycle rider and a mysterious man in a top hat. 960 1280

Loretahur, Flickr  

Salem Cemetery

Salem Cemetery

Locals, who visit Salem Cemetery in Hendrysberg, OH, have seen the ghost of Louiza Fox, the first murdered citizen of Kirkwood Township. She has been seen crying at her grave and at the site of her murder. Hounds from hell are believed to roam and growl their way through this cemetery. Some people believe the ghost dogs exist to keep ghosts from escaping. 960 1280

Leslie Johnson, Flickr  

Bachelors Grove Cemetery

Bachelors Grove Cemetery

Located in Midlothian, IL, Bachelors Grove Cemetery is rumored to be the scariest haunted cemetery in the Chicago area. This area was once a dumping ground for Chicago gangsters during the 1920s. For a number of years, witnesses have claimed to see ghosts and a phantom car that disappears along the turnpike near the graveyard. Not even daylight is safe. Violent cries of a small child are often heard in the evening. 960 1280

Christine Zenino, Flickr  

Gettysburg Cemetery

Gettysburg Cemetery

Phantom figures in both Union and Confederate uniforms still pace Gettysburg’s battlefield and cemetery -- the site of one of the deadliest battles in American history. A man, seen wearing a black hat with a star, often tries to converse with tourists and pose with families for photos. For the ultimate haunted experience, stay at the Farnsworth House Inn, where Confederate snipers hid during the battle and their ghosts still roam today. 960 1280

Britt Reints, Flickr  

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Most people know LA’s Hollywood Forever Cemetery as the burial place for Hollywood legends, including Rudoph Valentino, Douglas Fairbanks, Nelson Eddy, Norma Talmadge, Victor Fleming, Darla Hood and James Garner. Previously known as Hollywood Memorial Park, the ghosts of Virginia Rappe, Clifton Webb and a lady in black is usually scene lurking around Valentino’s crypt. 960 1280

Alan Light, Flickr  

Père Lachaise Cemetery

Père Lachaise Cemetery

Père Lachaise Cemetery has 300,000 graves, making it the largest cemetery in Paris. Opened in 1804, it’s a beautiful place for visitors to take a stroll along the cobblestone paths to see the gravesites of Napoleonic-era generals, famous composers and other luminaries, including author Oscar Wilde and Doors lead singer, Jim Morrison. Visitors to the cemetery have claimed that they’ve seen Morrison’s ghost and the ghosts of Marcel Proust and Maurice Ravel, a loving couple who rise from their graves by night in search of one another. 960 1280

Oh Paris, Flickr  

Westminster Burial Ground

Westminster Burial Ground

In Baltimore, MD, Western Burial Ground is where the remains of famous people reside, including Edgar Allan Poe, Francis Scott Key, US President James Buchanan and soldiers from the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. The catacombs under Westminster Hall have been the source of many ghostly tales. One old ghost story refers to a skull of a murdered minister that screams all day and night. Rumors are that the skull was bound and gagged in a block of cement, but apparently that hasn’t stopped the blood-curdling screams. 960 1280

Natalie Maynor, Wikimedia Commons  

Chase Vault

Chase Vault

If you’re near Christ Church, Barbados, we suggest you check out the Chase Vault, best known for a widespread legend of mysterious moving coffins. According to the creepy tale, each time the heavily-sealed vault was opened in the early 19th century for the burial of a family member -- all of the lead coffins had changed position. Visit the infamous gravesite and determine if the tale is fact or fiction. 960 1280

CaptSpaulding, Flickr  

Resurrection Cemetery

Resurrection Cemetery

On the way to the Chicago’s Resurrection Cemetery, don’t be surprised to see a phantom hitchhiker named Bloody Mary, who asks for a ride to the graveyard, but mysteriously vanishes into thin air. Travelers may spot Thomas Milners and his sister Marlene on the side of the road covered in blood. The two were struck and killed by a car in 1959 while going home from a family burial. And if that’s not bizarre enough, locals and visitors have claimed that they saw a vampire bride searching for her head in the cemetery. So be prepared for a few extraordinary paranormal experiences here. 960 1280

Ross Griff, Flickr  

Andy Gertler and pumpkin
Andy Gertler and pumpkin

Andy Gertler and pumpkin

Andy not only sculpts sand, he creates masterpieces with ice and pumpkins too! In celebration of Halloween, he shared some of his creations with us. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Andy's Self Portrait

Andy's Self Portrait

A self-portrait pumpkin. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Candy Pumpkin

Candy Pumpkin

We know why this pumpkin is smiling -- candy, candy, candy! 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Axe in head jackolantern

Axe in head jackolantern

Someone is going to have a splitting headache. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Fish Jack o Lanterns

Fish Jack o Lanterns

This huge pumpkin became a freaky fishy masterpiece. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

jack o lantern and bat

jack o lantern and bat

That has got to hurt. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Pumpkin with braces

Pumpkin with braces

Braces and Halloween candy may not make a good combo, but this jack-o-lantern is lookin' pretty good in them. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Sword through the eye pumpkin

Sword through the eye pumpkin

RIP Mr. Jack-o-Lantern. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Frankenstein pumpkin

Frankenstein pumpkin

What is it that's got Frankenstein so scared? 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Mean Pumpkin

Mean Pumpkin

This is one pissed-off pumpkin. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Wolfman pumpkin

Wolfman pumpkin

Wolfman is giving a howl to wish everyone a happy Halloween. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Mouth Pumpkin

Mouth Pumpkin

No one will ever guess my diabolical plan! 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Hand Pumpkin

Hand Pumpkin

This guy is trying to pull his own face off. 960 1280

Andy Gertler  

Pumpkins  13 Photos


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