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Confessions to Ghost Tour Guides of The 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa

As Southern Living Magazine recently boasted, “The 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa is Known to Have Ghostly Guests”.  Many of these ghostly guests have become well-known thanks to nearly 20 nationally and internationally syndicated paranormal television programs that have produced and broadcast episodes on “America’s Most Haunted Hotel”.   However, here are a few new tales, as told to the hotel’s ghost tour guides; stories that even the paranormally savvy might not know but will enjoy, nonetheless.


Paranormal Report 1: Last week I met a couple that was staying here at the Crescent on the first floor near the Governor’s Suite. They said the first night of their multi-night stay nothing happened; explaining that they had heard that you need to be in the hotel at least a couple of nights before anything strange happens. They said on their second night, when they were going to bed, they folded the blanket and comforter back onto the foot of the bed and just slept with only the sheet covering them.  The husband awoke in the middle of the night sweating, turned on the bedside lamp, and woke up his wife in dismay. The blanket and comforter were not only pulled up over them but someone or something had tightly tucked them in.  He said that happened three times that same night.  Whoever or whatever was in the room,  he said, wanted them tucked in and tucked in tightly.  After that, during the rest of their stay, they would discover upon awakening or returning to their room that things would had been moved around in the room from where they were before going to sleep or departing from the room.  They said that items moved were just small insignificant things but enough to let them know someone or something was or had been there. They concluded by stating that they really enjoyed their stay and that they would indeed be returning to the Crescent.

Paranormal Report 2: Room 419 is the room said to still be inhabited by the spirit of Theodora, a prim and proper woman.  She is believed to have been a live-in member of Norman Baker’s “Cancer Curable Hospital” staff during the late 1930s and Room 419 was her room.  Records show that Room 419 is the Crescent Hotel’s second most requested room because of Theodora’s rumored “housekeeping service”, tidying up after guests who stay in that room but only if she enjoys their company.  I have been told by guests staying in Room 419 that they conduct experiments in that room, purposely leaving messes in hopes that Theodora will make her presence known by folding their clothes, organizing their closet and/or attractively arranging personal items that had been scattered around the room.  All told me that, evidently, Theodora must not have given them the ghostly nod of approval.  Then, just recently, a couple told me they had purposefully scattered their loose change around the room on tabletops, nightstand, etc., shortly before leaving for dinner downstairs in the Crystal Dining Room.  Upon their return, they were overjoyed to find their coins neatly reorganized in stacks of quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies and all placed together atop their dresser.  No one knows how Theodora determines whom she favors but this couple, it appears, had managed to make a good impression which they said was “quite cents-able”!

Paranormal Report 3:  Guests who revisited our hotel recently and retook the ghost tour took delight in recounting a story that had happened to them at the Crescent some 10 years earlier.  They said that they had arrived around two o’clock one spring afternoon for an early check-in.  They got their one key to Room 221 and proceeded to take the elevator to the second floor.  When the elevator door opened, standing there, seemingly waiting for them, was a man in an all-black Victorian-style outfit.    The man asked if he could show the couple to their room.  Thinking he was a hotel employee; they told the man they were in Room 221 and handed him their key.  Upon arriving at Room 221, the helpful man unlocked the door and pushed it open. The man remained just outside the doorway, smiling and tilting his head side to side repeatedly.  The guest quietly turned to her husband and suggested that perhaps the man wanted a tip.  In the nanosecond that it took the husband to turn to hand the man a tip, the man had disappeared, nowhere to be seen down the long hallway.  Puzzled, but not concerned, the couple relaxed in their room until they left for their scheduled evening ghost tour.  Following the tour, they returned to their room only to discover that their key would not unlock their door.  They went down to the front desk where the clerk apologized that, by mistake, he had given them the key to Room 321 at check-in.  The couple explained that the key worked for the employee who let them into their room, describing the helpful man and his attire.  The front desk clerk informed them that they had no employee who fit that description and no employees wear that kind of attire.  The couple never saw that “helpful man” again.

Bill Ott, the hotel’s director of marketing and communications, said, “Guest experiences such as these are quite varied and numerous, and guests seem thrilled to share them with hotel employees.  What makes them believable, unbeknownst to them, is that many of their individual experiences are often identical to a story that was shared two weeks, two months, two years ago by someone they never knew who stayed in the same room or visited the same locale in the hotel.

“And oh, and by the way, the most requested ‘active’ room in the hotel is Room 218, Michael the Irish stonemason’s room.  He is said to have died in the footprint of that room into which he fell while helping build the Crescent Hotel back in 1885… but you’ll have to take our ghost tour to get the full story.”

Unexplained Happenings at America’s MOST HAUNTED Hotel

(EUREKA SPRINGS, AR) –  When Marty and Elise Roenigk purchased the Crescent Hotel in 1997 they inherited a confused association with the paranormal and what seemed to be a hundred years’ worth of ghost stories. At that time, before Ghost Hunters, many hotel owners might have hesitated to publicize the fact that their establishment was haunted, but the Roegniks were interested and decided to take a different approach.  That path was to restore the hotel as a destination spa resort but also pursue what many had claimed; that the Crescent Hotel was America’s Most Haunted Hotel.  A key part of that early pursuit included Mr. Roenigk pursuing and hiring two certified mediums, Ken Fugate and Carroll Heath, to “read” the building. Their findings, plus the startling number of repeated sightings that had been recorded over the decades, became the basis of what has become The Crescent Hotel Ghost Tour. It is only now that one of the most compelling discoveries on that initial reading has become clear.

Jack Moyer, Hotel General Manager for the Roenigk Era recounted “I clearly remember Carroll Heath stating that he had discovered a portal to the other side for those who are on the same frequency.”  Moyer, at the time a skeptic laughed “I remember asking myself what we were thinking trying to explore this unexplained world,  but now I recognize how many people truly connect to the spirits here at the Crescent.”  Fast forward eighteen years and enter the coincidence that resurfaced the original portal discovery.  It started with dialogue involving Moyer and current day ghost tour manager Keith Scales. “Keith came to me to share a concern about a phenomenon that had been re-occurring on his nightly tours.  That phenomenon included multiple guests whom had grown faint, with a few passing out briefly at the same tour stop and he didn’t have a reasonable explanation.  It was then that Scales described the exact location of the portal identified nearly a decade early by Heath.  “What made it one of those chilling moments came next as both Keith and I realized that that portal was directly over the Morgue and just a couple of floors up.”

Now in its 17th year, the ghost tour at the Crescent Hotel continues to increase in popularity, and evidence in the form of personal experiences, orb and other anomalous photography keeps coming in – often on the tours themselves. Now, The Legend Continues as another phenomenon that occurs with uncanny frequency and that seems to rise from the notorious Norman Baker’s morgue as every couple of weeks or so outside the “annex” entrance (identified by Carroll Heath as a Portal), has guests suddenly turn pale and sliding down the wall in a faint. Though the loss of consciousness does not last long and recovery is immediate, the hotel’s supernatural connection to the paranormal remains.

Keith Scales, Ghost Tour Manager explained, “here at the Crescent Hotel we are super-cautious about accepting events as “supernatural.” We believe that 95% of reported paranormal phenomena can be explained by normal means. But there is always a residue, maybe 5% of experiences, that defies explanation. We don’t know why some people have a tendency to faint at this particular place – we only know they do, that this is a place where activity of various kinds has been reported over decades, and that the people who drop out of this world for a few moments tend to be those with psychic abilities of their own.  The curious fact is that this event has never been known to occur anywhere else on the tour except at this location – directly above the morgue.


Portals to other realities, located in the Crescent Hotel? Who can confirm, or deny, the possibility?  It is an unexplained happening at America’s Most Haunted Hotel.