Thursday, October 28, 2010

Colorado Chronicles: A Haunted Mine Story

I have written many stories about Colorado on this blog, and there's a recurring theme to most of them - something to do with mines. On two other posts today, I wrote about a haunted hotel in Texas and a haunted lighthouse in Maine. I think each of those topics are appropriate for the state they are located in - Texas, Wild West, Hotel and Maine, Lots of coastline and a lighthouse. So what could be more fitting as we near Halloween, than a haunted mine in Colorado? The best way to tell this story is to let the old time newspaper articles speak for themselves.
  • Here's an excerpt to a newspaper article dated October 13, 1840. Read it the click on the orange "McDygut Journal" link at the bottom left of the story.
  • The "McDygut Journal" link above takes you to a new page with a replica of the journal in question. When you get to this point, the bottom right hand corner of each page of the journal is "dog-eared". Click on the "dog ear" and turn the page by dragging the dog ear to the left. The journal features the original writing of Mr. McDygut on the right hand page, and a transcription on the left hand page. 
This is real stuff and it's real good. let me know what you think in the comments.  :)

Maine Minutiae: A Haunted Lighthouse

Haunted? Wood Island Lighthouse c.1858*
With Halloween only days away, I thought I'd get to posting some spooky stuff. Like they say, the early bat gets the blood. Or something like that. A ghostly story that has been around for more than a century continues to haunt the residents of Wood Island , Maine. This tale begins in 1896 with a murder-suicide near the lighthouse at Wood Island where a drunk lobster fisherman (imagine that! a drunk fisherman!) , Howard Hobbs, and a buddy (also a drunk) were renting a chicken coop from one Frederick Milliken, who just happened to be a part-time Sheriff at Wood Island. After a night on the mainland getting FUBAR'ed Milliken invited the two drunks to his home to discuss some overdue rent on the chicken coop. Hobbs took a rifle to the meeting and you can guess, nothing good was gonna come from that. Hobbs shot and killed Milliken and then ran to the nearby lighthouse where he proceeded to blow his own brians out. But! The story does not end there. It is said that ghosts, presumably Milliken and Hobbs, haunt the lighthouse to this very day. As a matter of fact, one lighthouse keeper was so distraught by the hauntings, that he, too, commited hari kari. has the story in great detail. It's pretty spooky and just in time for Halloween.

 **Photo courtesy of**

Texas Tidbits: Haunted Texas - The Menger Hotel in San Antonio

The Menger Hotel - Does It Have Ghostly Guests?
We are just three days away from Halloween, so I thought it would be kind of cool to post some ghost stories and what have you for the next few days.

I did a little reading to find out some things about the haunted history of Texas. I was surprised to learn that Texas is one of the most haunted states in the nation. I guess I shouldn't be so surprised considering that all my exes live in Texas. I'm just sayin'. That said, it doesn't surprise me that a place as large as Texas would have over 200 ghost towns within its borders and a large number of haunted hotels as well.

The World Famous Menger Hotel in San Antonio has been a part of Texas almost since Texas was granted statehood. located adjacent to the Alamo and built in 1859, the Menger has hosted Presidents, Buffalo Bill, Geronimo, Babe Ruth, Robert E. Lee and more than one ghostly apparition. In fact, the Menger is considered to be one of the most haunted hotels on the globe and is believe by many to house at least thirty-two spirits from beyond.

One of these alleged spirits is a man who is dressed in a military uniform who is suspected of being Teddy Roosevelt, who as Secretary of Navy in 1898, recruited some his famous Rough Riders in the hotel bar. Bully!
Another suspected ghost is that of Captain Richard King, founder of the historic King Ranch. captain King fell ill while staying at the Menger and spent his final months there. He is said to be frequently seen standing in the doorway to the King Ranch Room. Of the many alleged spirits roaming the halls of the Menger, the most-seen is a lady named Sallie White. Sallie was a chambermaid at the hotel and was murdered there by her husband in 1876. Sallie is seen wearing an old gray skirt and a bandana, carrying towels that she never delivers. Her footsteps are reportedly heard in the hallways of the Menger, to the delight of many of the hotel's guests.

The Menger would be a great place to spend Halloween, in search of the spirits of  the long departed. and if you fail in your quest to see these ghosts, a few shots of tequila from the Menger Bar and you'll have all the spirits you need.

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All Original Material © Toby Shoemaker