The story I am about to tell you is by far the scariest
(and most exhilarating) experience I have ever had. I have
been a fan of ghost stories for a long time, but never
thought I'd have a chance to stay in one of the most
haunted places in the U.S.
The Baker Hotel is pretty well known by local ghost
hunters. It is a 13-story hotel that was built in the
early 1900's in the now small town of Mineral Wells, TX.
The hotel was built as a spa-resort, due to the supposed
healing mineral water in the area, and at times housed
everybody from Bonnie and Clyde to Judy Garland and Clarke
Gable. The Three Stooges even had their own suite there
they visited so much. JFK and Marilyn Monroe were rumored
to have had a tryst there as well. Keep in mind, though,
that the waters were supposed to be healing, and were
heavily prescribed by doctors--so many very ill people
flowed through the doors of the Baker to get well--and many
Anyway, the as medical science began to disprove the worth
of mineral water, the hotel went out of business in the
1970's, and has recently been condemned. For a while, a
local historical group was leading "ghost" tours through
the abandoned and severely neglected hotel, which involved
a tour from basement to top floor and a unchaperoned sleep-
over in hotel office. My boyfriend and some other friends
(about nine in all) all decided to take this tour. We were
the last group of tourists to ever go through the building
(the town is fighting right now to save the building and
making it a historical attraction, city officials are
wanting to level it and make it a parking garage.)
When we first entered the hotel (through a side door, the
huge, heavy wooden front doors were kept firmly locked--
important) we were immediately greeted by a 20 degree
temperature drop. The large front foyer, with huge marble
archways and peeling gilded trim immediately brought to
mind the hotel in "The Shining." The whole place was
engulfed in an incredibly eerie feeling that none of us
could shake. We almost didn't want to talk.
To make a long story short, we toured the building from top
to bottom (with only flashlights lighting the way, there
was no electricity.) Every floor of the place had a
different smell, temperature, or vibe; every floor had a
story. I could tell you about all the ghosts the tour guide
had herself witnessed, all the stories that had taken place
there, but that would be too long (and you can find these
stories on the web). I will only tell you what happened to
me and my group.
The first thing happened while we were on the tour. I was
already on edge, because the place was just so eerie, the
vibe of the place's history reverberated off of
everything. I could just feel it, could cut it with a
knife. We went in the kitchen area, and I really didn't
want to go in. Something was holding me back, and when I
finally entered (I wasn't going to be left behind by
myself!), I was terrified. Huge prep tables still
remained, cob-webbed and covered with dust. Huge
refrigerators, rusty from age. There was an old bread
warmer, and the tour guide showed us the dents on the top
that looked as if someone had been locked inside and was
banging to get out. There was a bullet hole directly
through the top of the warmer,as if someone wanted the
person entrapped inside to shut up.
The guide then told us a story of the kitchen. Apparently,
a cook had been having an affair with one of the maids.
She confronted him there, and threatened to tell his wife
about the affair. They had a huge argument, and he had
stabbed her many times with a butcher knife. I thought,
maybe that explained the bad vibe. The guide led us to the
pantry that was nearby and we walked in. Once again, I
felt this urge to not go in. Once inside, the guide was
telling us about the pantry, when I heard something. I
sounded like something between a whisper and a vocalization,
a female voice..."Leave!" The message was clear. I
interrupted the tour guide...
"Did you guys hear that?"
Another girl turned to me wide-eyed, "You heard it too?
Something said leave?"
The tour guide was now wide-eyed too. She said that she
had heard the same thing there before.
"This is where the cook is said to have finished her off."
We quickly left.
The next story happened late that night. The group was now
alone, huddled up in sleeping bags, afraid to actually go
to sleep. Since there was no electricity, we had lit
candles all over the room. The room we stayed in was
actually the hotel office. It was located on the second
floor. One side had french doors that looked down upon a
large ballroom. The other side was open, and looked down
upon the front foyer and entrance. It was about four in the
morning, and finally, everybody was beginning to sleep. My
boyfriend and I were whispering drowsily to each other,
when we heard voices downstairs from either the ballroom or
foyer. They seemed to come out of nowhere, softly at
first, then building. It was a man and a woman having an
argument. The man sounded old and had a "cigarette"
voice. He coughed and moaned, "Margaret!" The woman began
to cry at the top of her lungs. Both voices sounded old
fashioned, out of our time. The woman was actually almost
My boyfriend and I were startled at first, we clutched each
other, terrified. Then he bolted up, me calling him to
come back. He started to tell everybody to wake up, wake
"We have visitors!"
Everybody raised up, sleepy at first, but then wide awake
when they heard what was happening. My boyfriend, brave as
he is (or probably stupid) ran outside to look down into
the foyer, then the ballroom. He came back saying he didn't
see anything. Finally, after about five minutes, we heard
two very loud bangs from the foyer, like the heavy front
doors had been slammed shut (they were locked tightly,
remember?) The voices were gone. It was tough to get to
sleep after that.
The next morning, we looked, but nothing downstairs was out
of place, most certainly not the front doors. Others in my
group said that they had heard doors slamming throughout
the building all night long. So, that was my experience
staying the night in a haunted hotel. I didn't see
anything, but I most certainly heard it!
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