Independence Ghost Town – Colorado

Hey guys! I’m super sorry for the lack of updates. I was asked to be a part of a really cool podcast so I was focusing on getting my first episode out. https://open.spotify.com/episode/648WeBLJspsHracy3CpXgI)

Last weekend I spent 4 days camping with some of my favorite people, and it turns out that we were staying right by Independence Ghost Town. I’d heard of it, but always thought it was too far for a day trip. I was pretty dang excited to say the least. Ghost towns have a special place in my heart. Not so much because I believe they’re haunted, but they are filled with the spirits of Colorado’s past. It sounds cheesy, but you can close your eyes and really picture how it was to live there a hundred years ago.

The town of Independence was founded as a mining town in 1879…supposedly on July 4th! Obviously, this is where the name comes from.  Eventually the town came to life, but was very short lived, as many mining towns were. Boom or bust!!!

According to the Aspen History website “During the winter of 1899 the worst storm in Colorado’s history cut off the supply routes to Independence. The miners, who were running out of food, proceeded to dismantle their homes to make 75 pairs of skis and to escape en masse to Aspen. They made light of their adventure by making it a race of the Hunter’s Pass Ski Club—entry fee: one ham sandwich.”

Can you imagine this place during the winter??

Being there and seeing the vast canyon area with the remnants of a small town was breathtaking…but this is in August. How in the world did people manage to live there during the winter? As it stands now, the pass is closed down for a good portion of the year, and that’s with plows and salt. The people were probably stuck there for many months, dealing with elements.

I’m happy to say that there are still buildings standing that have been well preserved, minus the absolute IDIOTS who carve their initials or Twitter handles into things. Nobody cares, Mike from 2006!

It was interesting walking around because there is so much broken glass on the ground everywhere! One of the ladies who works there said some of it is from when the town was populated, but also during the 1970’s people from Aspen used to go and party there. I’m assuming this was before the town was really being preserved. There were a lot of other artifacts found, though.

Colorado is such a wonderful place to live, and there is just so much history here. The ghost town of Independence was like stepping into a time machine and if you ever have the chance to visit, I would highly recommend it.

Inside what was once the general store! It’s been rebuilt but using the same wood from the original building.
In front of one of the miners cabins


https://aspenhistory.org/tours-sites/independence-ghost-town/

The Lady in White

Thinking about trying something a little different for my next entry (this whole blogging thing is kind of new and I want to keep it fun)…so while I’m working on some other things, I wanted to discuss a common theme I hear in ghost stories. 

WHY IS IT ALWAYS A WOMAN IN A WHITE DRESS?!


thefoxandtheraven.deviantart.com

Watching my favorite ghost shows or exploring local legends, it seems that there is always a lady in white.  The story is always different, but she’s always there. Sometimes she’s a widow waiting for her husband, other times she’s a young girl who’s life was taken too soon…or sometimes she is the murderer herself!  So, is it the same spirit who is constantly manifesting all over the world at different times? Doubtful. I’d be willing to say that this legend has carried on over the years and found its way into different cultures, as stories seem to do. Maybe people aren’t really seeing her as much as the stories lead you to believe and it’s more of a  “Mary heard it from Mark whose parents are friends with someone who saw the lady in white in the window!” type sighting.  

Now, I’ve been doing a little digging to try and figure out where this particular legend may have started but it is nearly impossible to pinpoint. Here are a few examples I could find:

  • Frederick I of Prussia’s death was reportedly predicted by the appearance of a lady in white, and that was all the way back in 1713.  
  • The Hohenzollerns of Germany were said to be haunted by a “lady in white”. Some thought it was Countess Kunigunde von Orlamonde who died in 1382 and had killed her all of her children.
  • There is white lady of Haapsalu Castle who went in disguise as a man to be with her lover and was eventually found out and killed. In Estonia there is now even a “White Lady Days” festival!
  • The Netherlands have the “white maidens” which are often associated with witches and faeries.
  • In the United States there are countless stories of the Lady in the Lake, who seems to always have befallen some sort of tragedy and who is dressed in white.
  • These USA stories are much more modern and often involve murder, suicide & betrayal. Maybe that’s why she’s in white? Some sort of symbolism that she is “pure” and innocent and didn’t deserve the events that happened?

Seeing how long legends of the lady in white have been around is truly fascinating.  There has to be a grain of truth to these somewhere, doesn’t there? Part of me wonders of some of these stories tie in with the Bean Sídhe (Banshee), a type of faery that brings the omen of death to families when they hear her wailing. As a faery witch I have read a great deal about Banshees, and that was my first thought when browsing through the older legends.

As for many of the more modern “lady in white” stories, I tend to believe they are mostly urban legends. Every town has a haunted bridge, or a school bus crash where the ghosts of children will move your car…and of course the lady in white.  These stories are always fun, and get people spooked but I can for sure say as soon as someone tells me “There’s been sightings of a lady in white…..” I usually become a lot more skeptical.

Who knows, maybe someday I’ll run into the lady in white. Maybe she can tell me why she is so sad. 

xo

Dearwood Ghost Town

This is just a short entry about a really neat little ghost town my mom and I went to visit last weekend! There are a lot of great ones in Colorado but many of them require a half a day to get to, so we found this little gem that was a little closer to Denver.

As I searched and searched for a fun place, I came across Dearwood, CO. It came to life in 1910 thanks to Oliver T. Jackson and was a thriving African American community! It grew into a sustainable place with churches, a gas station & homes. Unfortunately during the Dustbowl & Great Depression in the 1930’s, the town was mostly abandoned.

Here is a neat snippet from an article I found (link at the end). George Junne is a professor of Africana Studies at the University of Northern Colorado,

“While Jackson spent his time marketing the community and working in Denver, his wife, Minerva, acted as the town’s “judge, jury and executioner,” according to Junne. She ran the town’s day-to-day operations, and ran them tightly. “When she snapped her fingers you jumped,” Junne says.

In promotional pamphlets, Jackson touted the community’s rich soil and view of the mountains. Always on the lookout for newcomers to town, he made clear they were looking to grow. He never stopped thinking up new ways to make Dearfield succeed and fill its coffers, Junne says. Even Prohibition offered Jackson an opportunity.

“For a while this town was known as ‘Beerfield’ because he was bootlegging here,” Junne says. “He needed to make money to keep things going. The people all around here knew about it and they gave the nickname.”

It makes me sad to think about how quickly this town came and went, but it’s also really cool that this wonderful piece of African American history still stands for people to visit and hopefully educate themselves. Imagining what it was like 100 years ago is always fun and I hope the spirit of Dearwood can continue to live on!

I will say that it most definitely didn’t feel haunted. It almost had a light and happy feel to it. I guess I always thought ghost towns were supposed to be spooky and all, but most definitely not Dearwood! It sounds like during it’s brief history that it was a happy place of empowerment and success. Who knows, your neighborhood may someday be a decrepit ghost town that people come and visit.


https://www.harvestpublicmedia.org/post/forgotten-piece-african-american-history-great-plains

E-mail me anytime at paranormalprincess7@gmail.com!

xo

Satan And The Hellfire Club

History is absolutely fascinating…especially Irish history! When I was in Ireland last year I had the most incredible 10 days of my life. During my solo journey I spent a couple days in Dublin and of course had to hop on a tour of the Hellfire Club! (No, this was not the same one that Ghost Adventures investigated).  The double decker bus was super spooky and a ton of fun. The bus ride was about 45 minutes but the guide kept us entertained with much of the & legends.

The building from the outside!!
  • The club was founded in 1735 by Richard Parsons, a known dabbler in black magic.
  • Dublin’s Hellfire Club was a place for wealthy young gentlemen to drink, gamble, hire prostitutes, even, allegedly, engage in Satanic worship.
  • The best-known Hellfire club story is the one in which the Devil himself appears. A stranger had joined the members at a game of cards. At some point one of the card players dropped a card on the floor. As he bent down to retrieve it he noticed that the stranger had cloven hooves instead of feet.
  • Another tale concerns a young farmer, curious to find out what went on at the meetings. Climbing up Montpelier Hill one night, he was invited in by the members of the club and allowed to witness the night’s activities. He was found the next morning trembling and terrified. Tradition says he spent the rest of his life unable to speak; unable even to remember his name.

Now, it’s hard to say if some of the old tradition is accurate, but during times of strong religious rule there were most certainly rebels that practiced Satanic magick, and/or other extremes. It’s also interesting to note that there are stories from many different traditions that talk about “someone” showing up with hoofed feet or chicken legs. It seems to be a telltale sign of the Devil, so who knows, maybe there is a grain of truth to the stories out there. I like to think there is ;). A friend of my grandmother swears she saw a man with chicken legs when she was out dancing one night and spent much of her life in fear that he would return to find her since she laid eyes on him.

The hike up to the structure was absolutely stunning, green & perfectly warm. I didn’t feel strange or any sense of dread, but I was also just happy to be in the place I always felt was my home. Ireland is just so incredible! During my actual time in the structure I did feel a little off, though. Unfortunately over time people have graffitied it and caused damage. There was definitely an eerie vibe that wasn’t just due to the building’s age. We were allowed to walk around and explore, so of course I did! A couple of areas caused me to become overwhelmed with unexplained anxiety…I wish more than anything I’d been able to sit down and center myself to see what I could feel around there as I do believe the place to be haunted…by what, I do not know.

Who was wandering these halls 200 years ago??

May I add the absolute scariest part of the place was the giant spiders.

Some friends I’ve made in the paranormal community recently did an investigation there! I’ve included a link to their Facebook below.

https://www.facebook.com/eire19/
https://dublin.ie/living/articles/the-hell-fire-club/

xo

Haunted Vegas! Part 2: The Pioneer Saloon

I was only in Vegas for a short while so I didn’t get to visit as many places as I would have liked, but the second place on my list was the Pioneer Saloon!
Thursday, before I had to go to the airport, I made the 45 minute drive from Summerlin to Goodsprings, NV. It’s crazy how you go from the city to gorgeous desert views so quickly!

The Pioneer Saloon has been featured in one of the Ghost Adventures episodes, so of course I was excited to go and spend some time there.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the history of this place this is from their website:

“Many movies have been filmed here but the genuine stories of the Pioneer Saloon do not live in the lines of a movie script but in the echoes of the past. The famous screen legend, Clark Gable, waited for three days at the bar for word on his wife of less than two years Carole Lombard. She was lost in a plane crash near Mount Potosi. You will be able to read this tragic story on an original newspaper and see a piece of the actual wreckage. At one time the saloon was next to a hotel that not only served as a comfortable rest place for the many prospectors and miners in the west… it also served as a place where street girls would frequent with their clients. The hotel is gone now after a severe fire left only ashes to remember.The many tales from the bar along with bullet holes, the pot bellied stove and the paper clippings are just a few of the things that will keep you immersed in the exciting era of the old Wild West.”

My view when I arrived!

Also here are a few more ghostly facts:

  • It’s possible that multiple people died in the old mineshaft that runs beneath the bar.
  • Supposedly remnants of the plane that killed Carole Lombard can still be found around the desert.
  • There is also the story of a drunk miner named of Paul Coski who was shot after he was caught cheating at a card game in 1915.
  • Rumors that there may be spirits of the “ladies of the night.”
The Memorial Room

I decided to stop in and have one drink (which was the best Gin & and Tonic I’ve ever had!).  The bartender & who I’m assuming was the manager were both very friendly. I asked them about their own experiences at the place and they said they always work during the day, so they haven’t had many. They said that plenty of other employees do, though!  I was also told that Zak Bagans was pretty overcome with intense emotions, off camera, while the crew was there.

It was hard for me to pick up on any energies because they were fairly busy and I was exhausted, but I love the atmosphere, the people & can’t wait to come back one day!!!

Out back. Would love to sit out here at night with the fire!

http://www.pioneersaloon.info/