Haunted locations around the Big Country

(KTAB/KRBC) - Ghosts and ghouls are rumored to haunt several locations around the Big Country.

The following list, including descriptions of the hauntings, has been provided by HauntedPlaces.org:

Abilene 

The Grace Museum (102 Cypress Street)

The old Grace Hotel was built in 1909 and was in disrepair by the 1960s and 1970s. It closed when its boiler went, and vandals took over the building. Since then it has been restored, but the ghosts from its past never left. Folks say the 3rd and 4th floors are especially haunted as well as the ballroom and basement. Reports say footsteps and other noises are heard in the night, and doorknobs turn by themselves.

Wooten Hotel (302 Cypress Street)

The 1930’s hotel is now closed to the general public, and has been converted to apartments. However, no one told the ghosts that haunt the historic building, as a string of recurring strange events have troubled residents for over a decade. The apparition of a woman in an old-fashioned dress and a bellhop have been seen throughout various parts of the complex, while ghostly laughter and ballroom music have been heard when there is no one around.

Paramount Theater (352 Cypress Street)

Orbs have been known to show up in photographs at this historic theatre, and footsteps have been heard ascending the main staircase when no one is around.

Weather Bureau Building (1482 North 1st Street)

Built in 1909, the town weather bureau used to own the historic building, until services were relocated to the local airport. The building is allegedly haunted by the former chief meteorologist, who fell down the staircase on a particularly stormy night whilst going to retrieve a chart from the basement. Employees of the current firm have reported hearing someone falling down the stairs, but upon investigation, no one is there. Legend has it that the paranormal activity increases during unusual weather events.

Minter Mansion (340 Beech Street)

This historic mansion is now an architectural firm. In recent times, employees began reporting paranormal activity, including a ghostly shade, faces peering out of the second floor of the building and a ghostly woman known as ‘Annie’. The owner dug a little deeper into these reports, and found that these reports originated back in the 1970’s, when a pair of workmen guarding the building fled in fright after a heavy oak door slammed shut of its own accord.

Whitten Inn (840 E Hwy 80)

Strange things are afoot at this inn. Witnesses say bathroom lights turn on and off by themselves, objects disappear and then reappear underneath the bed, and there are sudden malodorous smells in the early mornings. The culprit may be an apparition of a red-bearded man in green clothing, who has been seen in the office.

The Swenson House (1726 Swenson Street)

A grey lady haunts this 1910 mansion. Witnesses have seen the figure descending the grand staircase before vanishing as suddenly as it appears.

Travel Inn (2202 West Overland Trail)

The reasons for the haunting at this motel are unknown, but lights continually go and off late at night, and strange noises are heard, as well as objects being moved around. The apparition of a man in a green coat has been seen wandering the hallways and moving around the office in the early hours of morning.

Fort Phantom Hill (10818 FM 600)

Fort Phantom Hill, built in the mid-1800s, was given such a spooky moniker simply because it didn’t have a legal name. Interestingly, it was built in the wrong place: Instead of being built on Pecan Bayou as originally ordered, the general in charge mistakenly had it constructed in this barren land. Now a historical landmark with legends of hauntings attached, the fort has been seen on TV’s Unsolved Mysteries. Native American ghosts have been seen on the grounds, and other apparitions, footsteps and feelings of being watched have been reported by visitors and employees. Phantom Lake has its own stories as well. One legend surrounds the apparition of a Native American woman. According to legend, she is Nadassa, who drowned herself in Phantom Lake after her warrior lover was lost in a flash flood. Another legend tells of an apparition of a woman in a tattered dress, said to be an officer’s wife who set out to find her missing husband, but she drowned when a storm capsized the boat. However, some dispute the stories because Phantom Lake is a manmade reservoir not created until 1938.

Anson

Anson Lights (Intersection of 387 and 376)

The Anson Ghost Lights are found by turning right at Alsupps toward the graveyard just outside of town. Turn right down a dirt road that travels along the cemetery. Then, at the crossroads, turn the car around so it faces the main road, turn off the engine, and flash the headlights three times. In a few minutes, the white light slowly begins to travel down the road toward you. It sometimes sways, dances, or changes size or color. The phenomenon only happens on clear nights in warm weather. Legend has it that the lights are a ghost of an 1800s woman who lived nearby with her three boys. She sent them out to chop wood, telling them to flash the lantern three times if they had any trouble. When she saw the three flashes, she ran out, but was too late–the boys had been murdered. Now, the flashing of the headlights three times is believed to bring the spirit, hoping to find her boys.

Anson Opera House (1120 Eleventh Street)

The 1907 opera house is haunted by a spirit that frequents the back dressing room. Actors claim to have heard ghostly footsteps in the vicinity of the room, and objects have been known to missing from the area and turn up later in inexplicable locations.

Ballinger 

Olde Park Hotel and Antiques (107 South Sixth Street) 

This 1880’s hotel and antiques shop has been determined by a visiting psychic to be one of the most haunted in the state. Formerly a schoolhouse and a saloon, upwards of thirty spirits haunt the old building, including an older gentleman who frequents an armchair on the second floor, a cowboy who appears on the main staircase, a young boy in overalls and a woman in an old-fashioned dress who was once mistaken for an employee by a visitor. On an interesting note, a doll kept in the main store room is not for sale. This is due to the fact that the porcelain piece belonged to the current owners mother, and she once witnessed it levitate between two shelves of its own accord.

Texas Grill - Gonzalez Restaurant (700 Hutchings Avenue)

The bar and grill is famously haunted by the ghost of an outlaw known as ‘Norton’, who was gunned down by law enforcement officials. Objects have been known to move around of their own accord, cold spots are felt and a male apparition in a cowboy outfit has been seen on the staircase. Rumor has it that he once saved the place from a fire after the cook left the oven on overnight, and appeared to him at a later date reminding him not to make the same mistake ever again.

Brownwood 

Flatwood Park - Lake Brownwood 

The lake is said to be haunted: Folks often have troubles with their boats, or have had their boats damaged by an unseen source, when trying to use the ramp. Also, several swimmers in this area have drowned. Locals blame a ghost who drowned in the Pecan Bayou before Lake Brownwood has built. The ghostly little girl as been heard laughing here at night, and at least one witness has seen her running down the dock and jumping into the water.

Colorado City

Baker Hotel (Walnut Street and West Main Street)

In the basement of this hotel lurk some unfortunate souls, apparitions, witnesses say, of the many employees who were killed when the location suffered a fire in the early 1900s. Reports say that although the hotel is no longer in operation, the building still stands.

Stamford 

The Old Stamford Inn

The structure burned down and took the lives of five people within. It was rebuild and served a while as a nursing home at the end of it’s days before it was abandoned in 1980. It is said that a man haunts the basement of the structure.

Sweetwater

Mulberry Manor (1400 Sam Houston Street)

This establishment is reported to no longer be in the bed-and-breakfast business; it is uncertain at this time what sort of business is here now. The place was a hospital during the Civil War and a mental institution in the early 1900s. Witnesses say a Civil War general’s apparition has been seen as a reflection all through the house, and the shoes of a nurse have been heard walking down the concrete stairways, although the actual stairs have been carpeted for many years. Visitors feel an eerie presence, and items go missing only to be found hidden in the back of various cabinets.

 


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