New Mexico’s protected history and well-preserved historic sites come with some paranormal territory. Here you will find eight of the most haunted locations in New Mexico.
1. St. James Hotel
St. James Hotel in Cimarron has been operating for over a century. Many famous western figures like Billy the Kid, Annie Oakley, and Black Jack Ketchum have stayed at this hotel. It was originally known as the Lambert Inn and was considered one of the finest inns on the Santa Fe Trail during the time of the Wild West. The inn’s saloon flourished with business, but it attracted some violent characters. Thus, 26 people were murdered in the hotel, and it is thought that some of their spirits are still haunting the place today.Some modern-day visitors of the hotel attest to its spookiness as they have felt the presence of spirits. Other visitors have claimed to see ghostly figures during their stay. According to one of the former owners, she witnessed a cowboy reflected in the bar mirror behind her, even though no one was there.
Many speculate that one of the spirits is that of Thomas James Wright. During a poker game, Thomas won the entire inn. As he was walking back to his room, he was shot in the back. He died in his room, and some say he never left. Thomas’ former room, number 18 to be exact, is padlocked and guests cannot stay there. Staff members, in fact, rarely go into the room after a previous owner experienced paranormal activity in it. She said she was pushed down to the floor by a spirit and, during a separate occurrence, she saw a strange orange light floating through the room.
Though frightening, the St. James Hotel is teeming with Old West charm and is a thrilling place to stay. The walls in the hotel are adorned with interesting historic pictures and artifacts for visitors to learn from and the saloon downstairs has been converted to a restaurant for guests to enjoy. Visit the St. James Hotel website for more information on this spooky place.
2. KiMo Theatre
The KiMo Theatre in Albuquerque was founded by Oreste Bachechi in 1927. Oreste’s sons took over the theatre shortly after it opened, and all seemed well until a tragedy occurred.
A 6-year-old boy, Bobby Darnell, was killed when the boiler in the basement exploded. The little boy is said to have haunted the theatre from that point forward. Performers claim that Bobby’s ghost tries to play tricks on them while they’re performing and some have seen him playing on the steps of the lobby. Another ghostly figure is often seen peacefully walking through the halls of the theatre.
3. Hotel Parq Central
Hotel Parq Central in Albuquerque was once a hospital before being transformed into a chic hotel. It was originally Santa Fe Hospital and was later renamed Memorial Hospital after a group of psychiatrists acquired the building. People were treated at the hospital until it was turned into a hotel in 2010.
Before the hospital was converted, employees would often hear strange voices and see floating objects. More than ten years later, guests at Hotel Parq Central have had similar frightening experiences.
The hotel’s haunted reputation brought Ghost Hunters to investigate the mysterious building. The Ghost Hunters show hosts claims they were able to have a former patient communicate with a spirit via flashlight.
If you’re looking for a spooky adventure, check out the hotel’s website.
4. County Courthouse
Clayton, New Mexico, is notorious for being haunted, including the Union County Courthouse. While the courthouse deals with its jurisdictive responsibilities, it also deals with ongoing hauntings.
Outlaw Tom Ketchum, better known as Black Jack, was hung outside the courthouse for robbing trains. His hanging was executed incorrectly, resulting in his decapitation. Some speculate that his spirit is angry with how his hanging was carried out and still haunts the courthouse, despite it being rebuilt in 1909.
Employees report seeing apparition-like figures in the halls of the courthouse and have even felt Black Jack’s spirit follow them through the building. In addition, the jail cell where he was kept until his execution is said to be exceptionally cold.
Clayton’s other haunted locations also include Hotel Eklund and the Herzstein Museum. It’s no wonder Clayton has a haunted reputation.
5. The Old Doña Ana County Courthouse and Jail
The abandoned Doña Ana County Courthouse and jail was built in 1937. Since its abandonment, it has become quite an attraction in Las Cruces. Part of its appeal lies in its eerie halls.
The old courthouse is said to be haunted by various spirits, some of which are considered to be malevolent. People say that the building is mysterious and most experience strange things while visiting. Unknown voices, walking sounds, and slamming jail cell doors have been heard.
This haunted site has garnered the attention of several paranormal investigators including the television show Ghost Adventures. If you are interested in conducting your own paranormal investigation, contact Southwest Expeditions.
6. La Fonda Hotel
On the Plaza in Santa Fe, you can find La Fonda Hotel. La Fonda Hotel was built in 1922 and before that, other inns existed in the same location. Before La Fonda was built, several people had already died at the site. The first reported death was that of an unknown person who was hung outside by a lynch mob. Later, John Slough, a former chief justice of New Mexico territory, was shot and killed in the hotel lobby. Guests at La Fonda have often heard mysterious footsteps during the quiet hours of the night, believed to be John’s spirit.
Other guests have reported seeing an apparition disappear into the floor. Some think this spirit is that of a businessman who committed suicide after losing all his company’s money in a card game. He fell to his death in the hotel’s well which might explain why some see a ghostly figure disappear into the floor.
Check out the La Fonda website to learn more about its fascinating history!
7. Double Eagle Hotel
In the center of historic Old Mesilla, just south of Las Cruces, is The Double Eagle Restaurant. Rumors of its haunting is just one of the many reasons for its popularity. Double Eagle’s reputation for being haunted led paranormal investigators from the television show Ghost Hunters to visit the hotel in 2017.
Before being transformed into the fine dining experience it is today, it was a home belonging to a prominent family. It is said that the mother killed her eldest son and their family servant after becoming aware of their forbidden romantic entanglement. Their spirits are thought to roam the halls together to this day.
The spookiest representation of their presence can be seen on two chairs. The chairs are in the Carlotta Salon, the son’s old bedroom, and they appear to be worn from human bodies though they are sparingly used. Many guests have described the salon to be very cold, perhaps because the teenagers’ spirits never left. Some visitors report having nightmares after sitting the chairs. You can request the Carlotta Salon when making dinner reservations but just remember that a few extra guests might be joining you! To access more information about this iconic haunted location, visit the Double Eagle website.
8. The Old State Penitentiary
The Old State Penitentiary in Santa Fe County is yet another haunted location in New Mexico. One of the worst prison riots in American history occurred at this very location in 1980 and it’s presumed to be the reason behind its haunting. Several inmates initiated the riot and gained control over the prison for a day and a half. They tortured 12 prison guards and brutally murdered 33 inmates. On the concrete floor are some hash marks where inmates were decapitated during the riot.
As if that is not creepy enough, the prison is also rumored to host a plethora of spirits. Dark ghostly shadows, unexplainable slamming of cell doors, and strange noises can all be experienced in this building.
Written by Azalea Hughes
Posted by LasCruces.com