O.C. Answer Man: Is the Old Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana haunted?


Photo by Adrián Cerón

I’ve worked there for 15 years and never experienced anything strange. But there’s a story. The county’s first courthouse (1901) now houses the Old Courthouse Museum and the first courtroom, which is restored to its original appearance. Descendants of those who worked there have donated original furniture. Almost 25 years ago, museum staff noticed that the night janitors weren’t cleaning the courtroom. When questioned, the crew said they wouldn’t work in the room because it was haunted by the ghost of a judge who’d hanged himself there. The Old Courthouse’s history is probably better documented than any other building in O.C., and no judge has ever died in that room. But the janitors had seen a small dedication plaque under an old clock, which read, “Judge Morrison Clock/Hung in courtroom/1985.”

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