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(Back to Wyoming Haunted Index)

The Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone –
HauntedHouses.com

Haunted Place: The Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone

Address:

Old Faithful Inn,
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190

Location:

The Old Faithful Inn is located in Yellowstone National Park,in the lower Geyser Basin, with a terrific view of the Old Faithful Geyser. The Park is off Highway 20.

Description:

Tom and I visited the Old Faithful Inn in the summer of 2015. The Old Faithful Inn was built using local natural resources, including lodgepole pine and rhyolite stone. Nice touches of METAL-WORK, and steamed heating were wonderful perks. What a grand old, vintage log lodge it is, being the largest of its type in the world!

As the visitor walks into the lobby, it is an astounding 85 ft high, with a massive stand alone stone fireplace and chimney in one corner of the lobby. there are two more open floors that can be seen from the lobby floor, with tables to sit at in the common areas, where people can look down at the floor of the lobby. Stair cases go all the way to The area called the Crow's Nest.

The crows nest area is directly above these floors; an area where musicians used to play for guests. The stairs continue to the roof, where a viewing platform of the Old Faithful Geyser has traditionally been available for tourists and guests alike to witness eruptions.

Both the front porch, and the large porch built on the third floor offer a splendid view of the Old Faithful Geyser, that erupts without fail on a time table, much to the delight of guests and staff. The best place though to watch the Old Faithful Geyser is the porch off the second floor, according to some trip advisor reviews.

Each of the three floors has a wing of guest rooms found off the common areas of all three floors. The second floor rooms are conveniently located to major areas, but the rooms on the third floor are quieter.

The rooms on the first floor are much smaller, but have their traditional decor. Some do not have a dresser. The shower facilities are up a floor, and the bathroom for the first floor rooms is shared with tourists who come to use the facilities.

The rooms in the wings on the second and third floors are bigger yet simpler and more modern in decor. Most have some sort of private bath. There are rooms that overlook the old Faithful Geyser, while others overlook the parking lot.

The rooms have an upscale price, ranging from 250.00 and up because of the location of the inn. Some People who normally pay that kind of price expect certain amenities and conditions in their rooms, and are gravely disappointed at the simple decor and lack of the upper level of amenities. Some feel the rooms need some TLC and improvements.

However, the spirit people who reside or visit here have no complaints, and like it the way it is!

hotel-old-faithful-inn

HISTORY:

The Old Faithful Inn is made up of two hotels. The original lodge is known as the "Old House." The Old Faithful Inn was constructed on the site of the destroyed Fountain Hotel and replaced the Upper Geyser Basin Hotel that burned down as well. This grand effort was started during the winter of 1903-1904. Built in the "Golden Age of rustic resort architecture," its design creator was architect Robert Reamer, who was hired by Harry W. Child, President of the Yellowstone Park Company, owned by the Northern Pacific Railroad. It's architecture is also called National Park Service Rustic style.

Reamer designed the glorious, multi-storied lobby, that made such lobbies a popular concept in the mid-20th century, urban hotels. He also designed beginning phase of guest rooms, and other common areas; that were known as the Old House in 1902. The Old House was built in 1903-1904, during the cold winter months. The cost of the construction was 140,000 dollars; quite a chunk of change back in 1902! The furnishings cost another 25,000 dollars. The dining room, called the Bear Pit Lounge, featured carved and inlaid wood panels, with humorous pictures of bears in the act of mischief, suggested by Reamer. When the Old Faithful Inn with its original 120 rooms opened in 1904, it had both electric lights and steamed heat!

Several American Presidents have visited or stayed at The Old Faithful Inn: Theodore Roosevelt;(1903), Warren Harding;(1923), Calvin Coolidge;(1927) and Franklin D. Roosevelt;(fall of 1937).

The newer sections of the lodge and its wings were added in the 1910s' and 1920s'. In 1913, to be exact, the East Wing was extended on all three floors. In 1927, The West Wing was built, an addition to the dining room was added, and the front of the Inn was extended. In 1936, the original Bear Pit Lounge became a coffee shop, and the lounge was moved to the dining room addition. The humorous bear pictures were etched in glass and added to the new Bear Pit Lounge location in 1988.

In 1940, the bark was pealed from the logs, revealing interesting patterns made by bark beetles. In 1966, the logs were cleaned and varnished.

During World War 2, Yellowstone Park was closed, and so was The Old Faithful Inn. In 1946, the inn was not prepared for the high number of visitors! In 1948, fire sprinklers were added to the interior.

In 1959, Old Faithful Inn was shaken by the notorious Hebgen Lake earthquake. The dining room fireplace chimney was demolished, and both the fireplaces in the dining room and lobby were damaged. More seriously, the whole inn structure was partially shaken loose from its foundation. The structure was fixed, and the fireplaces were repaired and fortified in 1985.

On July 23rd, 1973, The Old Faithful Inn was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Luckily, in 1987, roof sprinklers were added, because the next year in 1988, the inn was threatened by the North Fork Fire. With the help of the new sprinklers, firefighters were able to save the inn from the fire.

Also, in 1987, The Old Faithful Inn was added to the Designated National Historic Landmark register.

 

History of Manifestations:

Building structures on top of graves, unmarked or marked usually can be the cause of hauntings of this new structure.

(Topeka High School * Cincinnati Music Hall * Maumi Bay Brewing Company * Belcourt Castle * Poughkeepsie Church * Knight Hall-University of Laramie)

One of the newer additions, known as the West Wing, was inadvertently built over some unmarked graves. Ooops!

Children or adults who die from accidents or illness like to stay in the place where they died or in a place that they knew, were comfortable and enjoyed being at while alive in this world.
(Ashley's of Rockledge * Stranahan House * New River Inn * Copper Queen Hotel * Meade Hotel * Robert E. Lee Mansion * Saint James Hotel)
A lot of people of all ages drowned in boating and swimming accidents in the Yellowstone Lake.

In 1927, A park ranger, Charles Phillips, accidentally ate poisonous hemlock, mistaking it for wild parsnip; a fatal mistake.

If spirits bond with the land itself, they often decide to stay in any new buildings that are built on their land.
(Willard Library * Capitol Records building * Kolb Ridge Court)
A Fountain Hotel guest, L.R. Piper, a tourist on holiday from Ohio, stepped out to enjoy his after dinner cigar, and stumbled into a hot springs on the property.

Brides, or hopeful brides-to-be who are emotionally devastated and deeply disappointed for whatever reason, often are restless after they die, and are still in mourning over what they feel is a loss of or a profound betrayal from a loved one or beloved.
(Plains Hotel * Hassayampa Inn * Hotel Adolphus * The Gerber House * Chapel of the Cross * Magnolia's Vineyard Restaurant Building)
Women who have been murdered by someone they thought loved them, often can't get over this betrayal and remain restless in this world.
(Bobby Mackey's * Langston's Western Wear Store * O'Henry's Roadhouse building * Ashley's of Rockledge)

People who have died because of beheading, and are buried without their heads, sometimes are restless because of this, either still looking for their head, or carry it around with them.

(Bobby Mackey's * Ocracoke Island: Teach's Hole * Bannack - Henry Powell * Gettysburg Battlefield: Little Round Top General)
The assistant manager, for the entertainment of the guests, tells this tale of a daughter's rebellion that leads to her violent death in 1915. He added a few embellishments. The story goes that in a well-to-do family on the East coast, a daughter fell in love with a servant and accepted his offer of marriage, which upset her parents greatly. At first her father forbid it, but the daughter insisted, threatening to elope. So, the father paid for a wedding, gave them some money to live on until the now new son-in-law could establish himself in Wyoming, on the condition that they would never return to New York. She was disinherited somewhat.

On the way to the Old Faithful Inn for their honeymoon, the new husband proved to be irresponsible went out gambling and lost all of their start-up money. There was barely enough money left to cover their honeymoon stay in room 127. Uh Oh! He loved her money to feed his gambling addiction, but not her.

The young bride wired her father for more money. The father instead sent her a train ticket to come back home, and leave this looser. Her husband's true character appeared, that of a twisted, self-centered narcissist with a cold, murderous heart. The new husband was furious, and the couple had a huge fight, which made it clear to the distraught bride that her beloved loved her money and not her; seeing her as a cash cow. Oh dear! Probably when she was going for the door to go home, the husband killed her and cut off her head, taking it with him; probably to get back at the father. He left in an angry huff. After not hearing from the bride in a few days, housekeeping opened their room to find the headless body in the bathtub.

The daughter's remains were shipped back home, and she was buried without her head. Her family forgot about her, and never mentioned her again. The head was eventually found in the crow's nest of the hotel, with a horrified look on the face, but was not sent back to her father to be buried. The daughter's husband and killer had fled and was never caught and punished for this awful murder in this world. What the assistant manager did was to spin a plausible tale of what might have transpired, that explains the murder. The gambling, the father's actions and the daughter's and her killer's reactions could be a reasonable rendition, but it isn't known as the truth.
Another version of this story that hasn't been embellished tells the tale of the newly weds enjoying the sights of Yellowstone Park, and the Old Faithful Inn. When cleaning the room for the next guest, they found the bride's headless body on the bed. The head was found later in the crow's nest. The husband did flee, suggesting that he killed her.

If you look at old newspaper records, it is true that there was a murder, and the housekeeping staff did indeed find the headless body of the bride, and eventually her head in the crow's nest as well. The husband did kill his new bride for ulterior motives, and he disappeared; never paying for his crime.

People who have done financial, emotional or physical harm intentionally or unintentionally to their significant other or family member, sometimes try to find this person in this world after they die, trying to make amends.
(Myrtles Plantation * DuPont Mansion and Park * Abraham Curry House * John Paul Jones House)
Though her brutal killer husband was never seen again, as a spirit, he is paying the price for his evil deed on the other side of the spirit world, and has been grounded at the scene of his crime, to try to make amends.

manifestations:

Male Entity; Dressed as a Frontiersman. Perhaps he was one of the persons in an unmarked grave that the West Wing was built upon.

Some unseen presence gets its chuckles by picking up and turning the fire extinguisher around in a 90 degree circle before putting it back in the holder. This was done right in front of an official inspector. Doors open and close by themselves as well on the West Wing.

His presence is probably seen in the West Wing hallways and rooms, and perhaps the main lodge. A detailed description of this spirit means that guests and staff have seen him enjoying the lodge.
Male Entity - Perhaps the spirit of L.R. Piper
Was seen by a child, trying to climb out of a steam hole. His ghostly hand and arm was trying to pull the rest of the body up. He might have actually come all the way out, but the child ran away before he could do so.
Female Entity - in Room 2
She appears in an 1890s' outfit, and for chuckles likes to float at the end of the bed, watching people sleep until startled guests wake up to see her.
Little entity of an unhappy boy.
He appears as a solid person, runs up to guests and staff in tears, and asks where his parents are before disappearing.
Female entity of the headless bride - Wears a white, frilly wedding dress.
She has been seen coming down the widow's walk staircase, carrying her head, looking very forlorn; still waiting and hoping that her husband would come back and be the person she thought he was. Perhaps she blames herself for arguing with him. She is probably full of regret, for not listening to her father's advice, and very sad that her family forgot about her.

She also makes her presence felt in her old honeymoon room.

Male entity - Older man dressed in a merchant marine uniform. He is thought to be the bride's killer husband.
He is seen looking into windows, into rooms, trying to find his bride. He too visits the old honeymoon room, the crow's nest; trying to find the woman that he so cruelly murdered.

Paranormal Findings:

Many guests have experienced the manifestations listed above.

There is a recent eye-witness account by a staff member who saw the bride dressed in a white, flowing bridal gown, coming down the stairway from the catwalk, with her head under her arm. she made her way down the hallway to her room in the wee hours of the morning; not wanting to disturb the other guests.

She has also been spotted, looking down from the second floor common area over the railing to see the grand old lobby.

The National Paranormal Society lists the Old Faithful Inn as a haunted location, but hasn't made any public display of any of their findings as an investigation group, or linked any other hard evidence gathered by other groups. This is probably because the people who run this wonderful inn don't want to attract ghost hunters, and want their guests, both alive and in spirit form to not be scared or bothered.

still haunted?

Most Probably.

Despite the claims of some inn personnel that the Old Faithful Inn is not haunted, many guests and staff members would tell the opposite conclusion as personal experiences make believers out of people who are lucky enough to be eye-witnesses to paranormal activity.

Sources Include:

Yellowstone Ghost Stories: Spooky tales from the world's first national park
by Shellie Larios
Riverbend Publishing
2006

The Ghost Hunter's Field Guide
by Rich Newman
Llewellyn Publications
2011

"The Ghosts Of Yellowstone National Park," by Kurt Repanshek, for National Parks Traveler.

Old Faithful Inn page on Wikipedia

Old Faithful Inn page on Ghost In My Suitcase

Ghost Stories Give the Old Faithful Inn a Haunted Reputation, Deseret News, Published: Thursday, July 4 1991.

"Yellowstone Ghost Stories" on American Folklore web site

"Ghosts of Yellowstone" at yellowstonepark.com

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