The story goes that there is a hidden city underneath Chattanooga. This city was discovered quite by accident by utility company workmen who were looking for a unexplained leak. The infrastructure the workers found was very interesting, so they called archaeologists and other experts to study it. Historians also got into the act, uncovering newspaper articles and other references to widespread flooding in the 1800s. The city that was uncovered piece by piece confirmed a theory that the new city of Chattanooga had been built on top of the old city.
It is interesting to note that the architecture of building on the 700 and 800 block of Market street proves that there was some sort of upheaval. In recent years excavations of old abandoned doorways and bricked up archways have heightened the sense that the founders of the town decided collectively to rebuild on top of the old town. This has created a cottage industry in discovering the ghosts underground.
Only certain sections of what is now known as Underground Chattanooga are open to the public. These are the basements of the Big River Grille, Bijou Cinema, Radisson Read House and the Sports Barn. The Chattanooga Ghost tour takes visitors to these accessible sites and tells stories about the old times before the floods. Most of what has been uncovered thus far collaborates what the historical documents report. There is still more to discover.
Explorers of lost cities and ghost hunters will enjoy the ghost tour. Stories and rumors of hauntings have been noted, and it is often good to get close up and personal. Don't expect to be able to roam freely as most of the underground areas are still relatively unsafe. It is however a good reflection of the architecture of the late 1800s.