Jenna Bush Hager says the White House is haunted

"They were friendly ghosts," says former president George W. Bush's daughter.

Gael Cooper
CNET editor Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." She's been a journalist since 1989, working at Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Sidewalk, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and NBC News Digital. She's Gen X in birthdate, word and deed. If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
Expertise Breaking news, entertainment, lifestyle, travel, food, shopping and deals, product reviews, money and finance, video games, pets, history, books, technology history, and generational studies Credentials
  • Co-author of two Gen X pop-culture encyclopedia for Penguin Books. Won "Headline Writer of the Year"​ award for 2017, 2014 and 2013 from the American Copy Editors Society. Won first place in headline writing from the 2013 Society for Features Journalism.
Gael Cooper

Hoda Kotb listens as former First Daughter Jenna Bush Hager relates a spooky White House story on the Today Show.

Video screenshot by Gael Fashingbauer Cooper/CNET

We're a couple weeks out from Halloween, so who's ready for an all-American ghost story?

Jenna Bush Hager, daughter of former president George W. Bush, said on NBC's Today Show on Monday that she and her twin sister, Barbara, experienced some unexplainable incidents while living in the White House.

Once, Barbara's phone rang late at night in their shared bedroom, and things got weirder from there.

"It woke us up in the middle of the night," Bush Hager told Today anchor Hoda Kotb. "We had a fireplace in our room, and all a sudden we started hearing, like, 1920s piano music as clear as day coming out of the fireplace."

Don't write it off as a one-time happening, because Bush Hager said it happened again the next week, but with opera music instead. The girls talked themselves out of it being anything supernatural, but a White House staffer disagreed.

But Bush Hager doesn't think the ghosts, or whatever was prowling 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, were evil.

"They were friendly ghosts," she told Kotb.

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