The St. James Hotel opened first as a saloon in 1872 and then expanded into a hotel in 1880. Built by Frenchman Henry Lambert, the elegant St. James was a popular stop between Denver, Colorado, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, attracting the likes of Buffalo Bill Cody, Annie Oakley, Black Jack Ketchum, Jesse James, and Wyatt Earp. At least 26 people died violently, most of them in the gambling hall and saloon. During a 1901 reroofing, more than 400 bullet holes were discovered in the ceiling, and some of the scars remain today as silent evidence in the original pressed tin ceiling of what is now the Lambert Dining Room. Several well-known ghosts call the hotel home. The first floor is home to the mischievous “Little Imp,” a glass-breaking, object-moving trickster often described as a small wizened man. Upstairs, room 18 holds a notoriously rough ghost said to be fond of throwing people across the room. The hotel keeps the room locked and never rents it. I even offered to sign a waiver in order to see into the room, but was refused. The employees appeared to genuinely fear the room. Instead, I spent the night in room 17, home of the benign ghost of Mary, Henry Lambert’s young wife. The room is often reported to be filled with her perfume. I didn’t experience that, but as the evening wore on, the number of small cold spots manifesting throughout the room became so annoying I went downstairs and played pool for a couple hours, hoping to deprive the phenomena of energy. However, when I returned they were still extant. The “heart” of the haunt seemed to be the bathroom, where a very large cold area formed. I took a photo of the area and saw, through the lens, a bright white area surrounded with red. Though striking, I would have assumed it was the glare of the flash, but my roommate, standing behind me, screamed. She described the same phenomenon. I took the film to a photo shop for hand development. There was absolutely nothing there but a blank wall and towels, not even a reflection from the flash on the pane. I’m impressed, but I still want a chance to be tossed across room 18.
Written by — Tamara Thorne Author Independent Paranormal Investigator
THE ST. JAMES HOTEL
ROUTE 1 (HIGHWAY 21)
CIMARRON, NEW MEXICO 87714
TEL: 1 (505) 376-2664