‘Possessed’ doll to haunt Keys History & Discovery Center

He’s back. Robert the Doll will return to the Keys History & Discovery Center on Thursday, Oct. 26. In collaboration with the Key West Art and Historical Society and Key West author and ghost hunter David Sloan, the center welcomes back the Keys’ most haunted artifact. The doors are set to open at 5 p.m., with the presentation beginning at 6 p.m.

Sloan is an expert on all things spooky in Key West, and has written a book about the doll titled, Robert the Doll. Sloan also penned “Ghosts of Key West” and started Key West Ghost Tours.

In the early 1900s, Robert Eugene Otto was given the doll on his fourth birthday by a Bahamian girl, who some speculate may have put a voodoo curse on the doll. The boy gave the doll his first name, Robert, and decided to go by the name Gene. The two would be inseparable for the rest of Gene’s life. After Gene passed away, the doll remained in the attic of the Otto residence, until tenants began to report eerie sounds, unexplained voices and footsteps coming from the attic.

From the Otto home, Robert the Doll would make Fort East Martello Museum in Key West his new home. The haunted civil war garrison is a fitting home for the creepiest artifact in the Keys.

Tickets for non-Discovery Center members are $25. Tickets include admission to the museum and appetizers. A cash bar will be available. For reservations call 305-922-2237 or email [email protected].

CAROL TEDESCO/Contributed

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