Wednesday, October 26, 2011

St. James Hotel - Cimarron, New Mexico

When Abraham Lincoln was President of the United States, Henry Lambert served as his personal chef.  When Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, Henry found himself out of a job.  He eventually decided he would travel out west and try his luck at finding some of the gold that there was so much talk about.  After not having much luck with striking it rich, Henry decided to try what he knew best and opened up a hotel featuring a restaurant and saloon in Cimarron, New Mexico.  Henry of course would never know that his place would become one of the most haunted places in New Mexico.
Haunted St. James Hotel in Cimarron, New Mexico

Henry's place was known as the Lambert Inn and grew to 43 rooms over the years which saw the likes of Jesse James, Buffalo Bill Cody, Annie Oakley, Kit Carson, Doc Holliday, Black Jack Ketchum, Bat Masterson, Clay Allison as well as numerous other well known names of the wild west.  Cimarron is located along the Sante Fe Trail and The Lambert Inn soon became a favorite place for travelers to stay and given the lawless nature of the west back then, also became a favorite place for killing.  The Lambert saw over 25 murders take place within it's walls. 

Henry Lambert passed away in 1913. His wife, Mary Elizabeth, kept the hotel going, but in 1926 she too passed away in one of the hotel's rooms that she stayed in, room 17. The Lambert's sons assumed management of the place for a while.  Fred Lambert was also the town's sheriff for a good number of years.  He was actually taught to use a gun by Buffalo Bill.  It is said that Buffalo Bill met Annie Oakley in The Lambert Inn and would eventually run Bill's wild west show together.  Over the years the hotel passed from owner to owner, sitting vacant a good portion of the time and slowly falling into disrepair.  Eventually the hotel was restored to it's original state and opened as the St. James Hotel in 1985.

Over the years there have been many reports of paranormal activity in the St. James Hotel.  In addition to cold spots, orange glowing balls of light and strange feelings especially when upstairs, some have claimed to the the reflection of cowboys in the bar mirror only to turn and find no one there.  There is also the occasional sound and sometimes sights of a poker game played by ghosts going on in the poker room.  Although the hotel is a smoke-free hotel, occasionally the aroma of cigar smoke can be smelled in the building.

Some of the ghosts who haunt the St. James have taken up residence, or have never left in the case of Mary Elizabeth Lambert.  Tapping noises can be heard coming from room 17 where Mary lived and died.  There have been sightings of a full bodied apparition of a woman just outside of room 17 in the hallway. Folks staying in the room have reported eerie feelings as if they were not alone and some have smelled rose scented perfume which was Mary's favorite.

Room 17 at the St. James Hotel in Cimarron, New Mexico is said to be haunted by Mary Elizabeth Lambert, the wife of a former owner.

And then there is room 18 said to be haunted by Thomas James Wright.  In the late 1800s, Wright was in a poker game and apparently won the rights to the hotel.  After he went up to room 18, the room he was staying in at the time, he was shot in the back.  He died right there on the spot. Many have said his spirit is so restless that the hotel owners have locked the door to room 18, barring anyone from entering let alone stay there overnight.

Room 18 of the St. James Hotel in Cimarron, New Mexico is locked.  Not to keep you out, but to keep whatever is inside in!

If you are in the mood for a good game of phantom poker, have a stay at The St. James and relive history.  One thing is for sure however, you won't be staying in room 18!

St. James Hotel in Cimarron, New Mexico

1 comment:

  1. This sounds very scary! Don't think I would ever want to stay here but a day visit to see the place would be OK.