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Walker House –
Haunted Place: The
Walker House and Cornish Pub.
1 Water Street
Mineral Point, Wisconsin 53565
The Walker House at Mineral Point
The Walker House can be found in the
southern part of town, right in front of the bluff where minerals
were mined. It is also right across from where the old railroad
station was located, on Commerce St., near the corner of
Darlington on Water Street.
This handsome, imposing, long rectangular 3
story stone structure has lovely wood beams and woodwork on the
inside. A central staircase takes the visitor up to the other two
floors. The current owners have stabilized and restored the
first and second floors, and will soon have the rooms on the third
floor ready to offer its future guests.
The left side of the first floor is now a work room/storage area,
as the well has been filled in and cemented over.
The first floor pub, located on the right
side of the first floor is the oldest part of the inn. It is
interesting, because of the two little side rooms that have been
carved out of the bluff, by the miner who built this original stone
house. These unique side rooms offer places to sit and enjoy a brew
or other beverage.
The second floor is where two large dining rooms and the kitchen
are located, a great place for fine dining and/or events,
receptions and celebrations.
In the early 1800s, mining for minerals was
profitable here, and the railroad made Mineral Point the end of the
line. An upscale inn, which included a fine dining restaurant
and pub was established in 1836, by building onto a
pre-existing miner's former stone house, which proved to be a
financial success. The right side of the first floor, which was the
older stone house, became the inn's pub, while the left side of the
first floor was where the well was located, and also a place for
storage. The kitchen was located between the right and left side of
the first floor. It was moved to the second floor in the late 20th
century, when a former owner dug into the cliff and set up the
kitchen in the addition on the back of the house.
The second floor had two dining rooms and the third floor offered
the guests lovely guest rooms.
This Inn served a variety of people throughout the years:
Miners, gamblers, locals, tourists, patrons and employee’s of
the railroad. The dining room has also been the setting for
community meetings, events and other activities. The inn was
in continuous use until 1957, when it closed its doors for 7 years,
standing vacant and forlorn.
However, a building that handsome was an irresistible fixer-upper
opportunity, and sure enough, it was bought by Ted Landon, and his
partners, who reclaimed it from the vandals, and spent 10
years stabilizing, repairing, and restoring it. The
Cornish Pub Inn was open again, ready for business, in
1974. After only 4 years, in 1978, Ted Landon and his
partners sold this business to Dr. David Ruf, who hired a good
manager, Walker Calvert to oversee and run the inn and pub.
The Inn was then called, The Walker House.
One or two more owners came along. When the Grubers owned the
building, the inn was known as The Walker-Gruber House. By
2002, the inn wasn't open to the public, and was once again a grand
fixer-upper opportunity. In 2003, historical enthusiasts were
greatly concerned, and the Walker House had the dubious honor
of being one of the most endangered properties in Wisconsin.
After some stabilizing work had been done on the property yet
again, it was upgraded a little to be just one of the top 10
historical structures put on the endangered list, still in need of
a lot of TLC!
Luckily, Joseph and Susan Dickinson came
along and saw the possibilities of rehabilitating this still
handsome structure, dripping with historical value. They bought it
in November, 2005, and have been dedicated ever since to bringing the
inn back to life and opening it as a restaurant, pub and inn.
The Cornish Pub was the first thing to open. The second floor was
the next project. When they finished, there were two restored
and renovated dining rooms and a kitchen for civilized dining and
events. Their last project, which was almost done when Tom
and I visited, was the restoration of the rooms for future guests
on the third floor.
HISTORY OF MANIFESTATIONS:
A common stimulus for paranormal activity in a structure is
renovation and restoration projects.
Mansion * Heceta
Staff hear disembodied voices, which are always a thrill and
Sometimes an entity who built a special home or building will come
back and keep an eye on the living, either on a visitation schedule
or in a grounded haunting.
House * Hearthstone
House * The Olde
Pink House * Belmont
An unpleasant individual, William Cafe, who was not known for
his agreeable countenance, but had a hot temper and a feisty
temperament, shot another man at the climax of an argument. William
was found guilty of murder and sentenced to die by hanging by his
neck until he was dead. Wearing a gray suit to be buried in,
the story goes that William sat upon his coffin in the horse-drawn
wagon, banging a funeral dirge with two beer bottles, as they
took him to be hanged in front of this Inn, on the make-shift
gallows, annoying and aggravating to his end.
If a person is cantankerous while alive, being dead doesn't
improve his or her personality.
James Hotel *
Collingwood Art Center)
Perhaps William lost his head in this hanging: It doesn't say
how the hanging went, but if the fall was too jarring, the executed
person's head just popped off, which I guess is better than not
having enough of a fall to break the neck, and then wind up
strangling to death. People who suffer a bad hanging have
been known to become restless entities, and haunt the nearest
County Jailhouse * Wyoming
Frontier Prison * MacArthur
Two known entities have been seen and heard
since the first renovation and restoration started in 1964, though
other entities may be here as well.
A male entity dressed in a minor's attire of the 1800s -
He has been seen puttering around the pub
area on the first floor.
The male entity of William Cafe -
Does his best to annoy and tease
the living for chuckles, though he hasn't harmed anyone.
On the second floor -
Appears to the living, wearing his wrinkled
gray suit, both headless and with his head, in the dining
Also in the dining rooms, he is blamed for the poltergeist
paranormal activity; (probably flying glasses, plates, silverware,
moving chairs, and anything else this entity can move to get some
chuckles at the expense of the living.)
He shuffles up and down the second floor, breathing heavily, making
He appeared on the back porch, sitting on a bench without his
He turns door handles but doesn't open the
Other entities may be here as well.
Staff hear disembodied voices, which are always a thrill and
It seems to be, according to eye witnesses.
I couldn't find any paranormal investigation that had been
conducted at this inn, that may be a good spot for ghost hunters to
visit, if the owners would allow it.
Haunted Places: The National Directory,
by Dennis William Hauk
http://www.prairieghosts.com/walker.html - (out-dated)