Pawleys Island Folklore

pawleys island folklore gray man


The Gray Man


The Gray Man is Pawleys Island most famous ghost. He warns residents to leave the Island before a hurricane hits. People still claim they see the Gray Man. In 1954 a grandmother on vacation with her family saw a man dressed completely in gray fade to a blur before fading away. The next day tornadoes ripped through the area. One person tried to chase the Gray Man only to have him disappear in front of their eyes.

So in you are on Pawleys Island in late September or October, keep an eye turned to the beach. And if you do see the Gray Man, heed his warning. and take shelter.


It is unclear the origin of the Gray Man. Some believe he is: 

• Spirit of someone who lived on the Island

• Original owner Pelican Inn

• Rejected lover

• Someone who met untimely death during a tropical hurricane

• Blackbeard the pirate

• Man who died in quicksand trying to get to his lover


The Gray Man was last seen in 1989 before Hurricane Hugo…..


The Tragic Story of Alice Flagg


Alice Flagg was born into South Carolina aristocracy in the mid 1800’s. Falling in love with a man believed to be beneath her station, her controlling family forbade her to see her true love. Going against her family’s wishes, Alice became betrothed to the commoner, wearing the engagement ring on a necklace hidden by high collars. Her secret was eventually unveiled, which prompted her family to send her away to school in Charleston, SC. Separated from her soul mate, Alice quickly became ill and soon died, from what some call a broken heart. Furious at the events which led to his sister’s untimely death, her brother, Dr. Allard Flagg snatched the ring from Alice’s neck and gave it a great throw into the Murrells Inlet marshland. Legend built around this incident has Alice’s ghost still searching the coastal low country looking for her lost ring.

Alice Flagg was buried in All Saints Church cemetery on Kings River Road. The gate at All Saints Church is usually open, and you can walk among the grave markers of the rice planters, the people who lost their lives during the terrible hurricane of October 13, 1893. Find the gravesite marked ALICE. 

NOTE: It is also said upon visiting the resting place of Alice. If you start and the right bottom of her gravestone and walk around it six times counterclockwise and then six times clockwise. Stopping at the letter "A" on her marker and placing a token of recognition upon the resting place. You make a wish and it will be granted. If this ritual is done at the stroke of midnight not only will your wish be granted but the ghost of Alice herself will appear before you.