Mizpah Hotel, Tonopah, Nevada eerie experience

Mizpah Hotel, Tonopah, Nevada

Situated in Tonopah, Nevada, the Mizpah Hotel is a Historic Hotels of America member. The Mizpah and the nearby Belvada Building used to be the tallest building in Nevada until 1927. They’re each only five stories tall. The hotel was named after the Mizpah Mine and was the social hub of Mizpah back in those days. It was a hotspot of celebrities and wealthy investors during the silver boom in Tonopah and was the first luxury hotels in the state. Nowadays, it’s a mix of modern and antique and is considered one of America’s most haunted places. The Hotel is one of the oldest structures in the area; it was predated by the Mizpah Saloon, which opened its doors in 1907. The Hotel was financed by George Wingfield, Cal Brougher, George Nixon, and Bob Govan, a few of Nevada’s top financiers. The designer of the Hotel is George Holesworth of Reno. The people who financed the hotel owned other Tonopah businesses and mining companies as well.

The Mizpah experienced a list of different owners throughout the years until Frank Scott of Las Vegas purchased it in 1979. He updated the hotel to include modern conveniences, all while preserving the antiquated romance that first drew him and his guests to the hotel in the first place. The hotel’s renovation cost was over $4 million, and the work took more than two and a half years to complete.

Between1999 to 2010, the hotel was shuttered — shut down and quiet, frequented only by the spirits in The Mizpah as their home. In early 2011, the hotel was purchased by Fred and Nancy Cline of Cline Cellars in Sonoma; they renovated and reopened the building to the public in August 2011. The hotel now boasts forty-seven rooms, a bar, and two restaurants. And an added casino in the property!

These days, the hotel hosts guests from all over Nevada visiting the area, ghost hunters looking to experience the strangeness of the Clown Motel and Tonopah Cemetery. More importantly, the hotel is home to the Lady in Red. The “Lady in Red” is believed to be the ghost of a woman named Rose, who was a former prostitute. She supposedly had a tragic love affair with one of the miners and met her untimely end at the Mizpah Hotel. Her spirit is said to linger in the hallways and rooms of the hotel, dressed in a red gown and other unexplained entities. Let’s meet them.

According to USA Today’s “10 Best Reader’s Choice Awards”, the Mizpah Hotel is the nation’s number one haunted hotel. The building is rumored to be completely infested with ghosts, and legends of strange occurrences have been coming out of the hotel since its inception. One especially horrifying story tells of U.S. Senator Key Pittman dying in the hotel in 1940 and being kept on ice in one of the hotel bathtubs.

With one-hundred-and-eleven years of tough Nevada history, the Mizpah’s ghosts have made a reputation for themselves. The current owners of the hotel, the Clines, welcome the spirits of the hotel and state that the ghosts delight in interacting with guests.

There’s also a pair of ghostly children who haunt the third floor. They’re known to play pranks on the guests and are most often seen in hotel rooms and hallways. Multiple guests have reported hearing giggling and hearing their doors open and shut on their own.

You thought that was all? Not quite. There are also two bank robbers who were murdered during a heist by their co-conspirator. Their ghosts are said to haunt the basement, giving cold chills and strange sensations to visitors and staff who happen to find themselves there.

Pretty much right down the street from the Mizpah Hotel lines the Tonopah Cemetery and Clown Motel. There’s even a so-called curse that sits over Tonopah.

The ‘curse’ of Tonopah started with the Tonopah-Belmont Mine Fire. On February 23rd, 1911, the mine fire killed 17 miners. With the way the mine was constructed, there lie two shafts — one up cast and another downcast.

The fire was noted around 5:50 am, and after about an hour of searching for it, they noticed a fire burning some timber that had been piled near the bottom of the shaft. A small, lit candle was thought to be to blame for the fire. When it was first discovered, the superintendent of the time told everyone to ignore it and to go to work since the fire was in a separate location. Most of the miners protested, but the threat of being fired was enough to push them deep into the mines that day.

After a few hours, the superintendent noticed that the flames were spreading quickly, and men were told to withdraw everyone from the mines except those actively fighting the fire. Men were scattered all over, untrained, and disobeyed orders. This resulted in many of them being trapped within the mine and in the midst of the smoke and flames. Due to the mine’s setup, a reversal of air currents through the mine spread the blaze faster that the miners were able to escape. Fourteen of those men that died are now buried at the Tonopah Cemetery.

Visitors to the cemetery report seeing strange orbs and disembodied voices… but the motel next door is the real haunted hotspot.

Named ‘America’s Scariest Motel, The Clown Motel is built a stone’s throw away from an old graveyard filled with bodies of tragedies of the past. Midway between Vegas and Reno, the Clown Motel has a battalion of glassy-eyed circus clowns, its owners swearing to guests who stumble in that it’s a fun and safe place to rest for the night.

Visitors to the Clown Motel swear that it’s haunted. Legend states that the clown statues act as vessels for the miner’s ghosts; they possess the dolls and come to life. Apparitions have been seen walking to and from the graveyard, and disembodied voices have been heard saying, ‘we mined’ and ‘we died that day.’

If you go back far enough in history, the Pueblo Native Americans dressed in clown-like costumes, releasing their own personalities and welcoming possessions of nearby spirits. With their identities ever-changing, perhaps clowns allow for portals into the spirit world. Even the motel’s owner says that he hears footsteps and knocking from unoccupied rooms of the motel.

Apparitions of a man have been reported leaving the cemetery and walking around the property at all hours of the day. When one of the previous owners attempted to contact the spirit, he froze and promptly vanished. Even more, clowns themselves have been seen leaving the cemetery, balloons and all.





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