History

Haunted Hill Country: San Antonio

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Haunted Hill Country: San Antonio

By Janet Kilgore

The Texas Hill Country is one of the most haunted parts of the state. From martyred freedom fighters to hotel guests who check in but never check out, the next time you want to commune with the Great Beyond, visit San Antonio.

The Alamo

Haunted Hill Country: San Antonio

Photo: Wikipedia

Mission San Antonio de Valero is world-famous as the Alamo. It was established in 1718 by a Spanish monk, so by the time it became a focal point in the Texas War of Independence from Mexico, it was in a state of disrepair. After a 13-day siege and massacre of all 189 defenders, and at least 1200 Mexican soldiers, the Alamo entered legend and the hauntings began. Before the Mexican army moved on, soldiers were prevented from destroying the church building by six ghostly figures holding flaming swords. In 1871, construction stirred up trouble. Guests at the adjacent Menger Hotel claimed to see spectral soldiers marching around the perimeter, as if trying to protect the site. Cold spots and a sense of melancholy abound in the area of the fort.

Menger Hotel

Haunted Hill Country: San Antonio

Photo: Wikipedia

The Menger Hotel is in downtown San Antonio, next door to the Alamo. It is haunted by at least 38 ghosts, ranging from cattle barons to murdered chambermaids. In 1876, an African-American chambermaid was murdered by her jealous husband, left shot in the street a few blocks from the hotel. When she later died of her wounds, the hotel footed the bill for her coffin and cemetery plot. (They display the receipt in the Lobby.) Her spirit is seen, forever going about her chores, especially on the second floor. Captain Richard, of the great King Ranch and creator of Santa Gertrudis cattle, died in his suite in 1885. His ghost never left, and he is seen frequently. His funeral was held in the lobby, and guests who rent the King Room have awakened to see him staring at them from the foot of his bed. Teddy Roosevelt stayed at the Menger Hotel in 1898. He recruited Rough Riders in the bar, and he and his men can still be seen in their old hangout.

University of the Incarnate Word

Haunted Hill Country: San Antonio
Photo: Wikipedia

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