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Park City Walking Ghost Tour

September 24, 2014

One way to learn local history about an area you are visiting is to take a ghost tour. My wife and I have been on several, including a nighttime jaunt in one of the most haunted locations in the United States—Savannah, Georgia. If you would like to read about that, here’s the link: https://erniepeters.wordpress.com/2013/05/14/savannah-walking-ghost-tour

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At 8:00 p.m. every night, the Park City Walking Ghost Tour begins…

I believe that our guide was supposed to be a man named Rob, but a lovely, young German woman named Sandra stepped in and did the honors. She was dressed in period clothes that included a big, ornate hat and a black cape draped over her shoulders. She was armed with notes, enthusiasm, and a flair for the dramatic.

Our Victorian-clad guide led us up and down Main Street, regaling us with tales about Park City’s past. The town was originally established because of a silver strike. Miners, businessmen, and prostitutes moved in and became the fodder for many stories that had less than happy endings.

I’ll touch lightly on only a few of the tales we heard last night:

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The Imperial Hotel

• The Imperial Hotel is a proud, strong-looking structure, yet it’s shut down. Could it be due to the presence of a former resident named Lizzy, who was cut in half by a shotgun blast by her jealous husband? Who knows? There is, however, one workman, who while working on a remodel in what used to be in Lizzy’s room, will not only say “yes” to that question, he will never again go inside the building.

• Long ago, a man was thrown in jail for being exceptionally drunk. On a street that boasted over twenty bars, he must have been really something to stand out from the crowd. He languished in a stupor for three days before the authorities thought to get him medical attention. The man did not survive. Where the jail was, a museum now stands. They say the man’s moans can still be heard in the basement.

• There is the story of the man in the yellow slicker. They say he’s a benevolent spirit, but there’s an ex-cop who would beg to differ. After his experience at the top of the hill, near the Daily Mine (where the worst mining accident in Park City’s history took place, causing the death of 38 men), he never went near the area again.

• Wails and moans can sometimes be heard coming from the creek that runs along part of Main Street. In utter darkness, with the gurgling creek water rushing by us, we were told the tale of why those forlorn sounds can be heard, and the reasons are tragic indeed.

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My wife holding the plumb-bob.

In an alleyway off Main Street, Sandra removed a plumb-bob (a metal teardrop-shaped hunk of metal that hangs from a string) from her shoulder bag. She explained that there was a ghost who sometimes communicated by moving it while it hung in the night air. She held it steady, and we all looked on. Nothing. She offered the plumb-bob to one of he men who had similar results. Then it was offered to my wife, who dutifully took it. She held it out with her rock-steady right hand. We all watched as the metal teardrop slowly started to rotate. Then the rotation turned into a back and forth movement. Then the plumb-bob started rotating again, but this time in the opposite direction. There was no breeze in the alleyway, or anything atmospheric that might cause the hunk of metal to behave in that manner.

In an hour and fifteen minutes, the tour was concluded, we said good-bye to our guide and walked back up Main Street to where our car was parked. My wife and I talked about the tour and made our comparisons to the other tours we’ve taken. She wondered why the others didn’t react to the behavior of the plumb-bob, as she felt it was completely odd and unexplainable. I said that as far as dramatic, unexplained phenomenon goes, the movements of a small metal object suspended in mid air has to rate slightly higher than socks that disappear from the dryer.

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2 Comments
  1. We love ghost towns too. They are so fascinating and full of great history.

  2. Yes, they are. After a little investigating of our own, we think our guide played a little fast and loose with the “facts,” and we have no idea how much we heard was “true.” But we still had a good time, and got some exercise too. Thank you very much for stopping by and commenting. It’s appreciated.

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