March 15th, 2005


My adventure in Goldfield: Part 2

As I mentioned in part one of this adventure, the main attraction in Goldfield is is the old Goldfield Hotel.

I also mentioned that it was considered to be the finest hotel between Denver and the California coast whenit was built in 1908.  Celebrities and politicians were known to frequent the hotel.  President Teddy Roosevelt gave a speech from one of the wrought-iron balconies.  Wyatt Earp supposedly worked at the hotel after the gunfight at the OK Corral. It is certainly a fantastic, old building.  Supposedly, it has been built over an old mine.

It apprently has many ghost stories attached to it, as well.  Among them are gruesome tales of suicide and shootings by patrons but the most fantastic story goes that the owner of the Hotel had a long running affair with one of the town prostitues who became pregnant with his child.  For fear of what it would do to his reputation he chained the woman to a radiator in room 209 until she bore the child.  Some accounts claim she died during child-birth, other say he murdered her.  The end of the story though is always the same.  He threw the infant into a shaft opening of the mine beneath the hotel, so supposedly there is an infant spirit which haunts the premises.

The front steps, with its brick columns are littered with debris, however, and the windows have grown dull with the build-up of dust and dirt.

It was tightly locked-up, so no entrance was possible.  There was, however, a notice stating that it was in the possession of Esmerelda County and was for sale, with a listing price of $364,000.  It went on to say that inquiries should be made at the clerk's office.  I walked back up to the courthouse and inquired about gaining access to the hotel.  I figured I couldn't pass myself off as a man with over $350,000 to squander on an old hotel in a ghost town, so I positioned myself as a photographer with my fancy camera in hand.  I found out that the Hotel had been purchased already by a lawyer from Carson City by the name of Red Roberts.  I was also informed that he was supposed to begin some remodeling work on the Hotel in April or May.  I obtained Mr. Roberts' address from the clerk.  I intend to write him and see if I might arrange to meet him there one weekend when he's there.  I don't have much to offer, I suppose except maybe allowing him to use any photos I take.  I could invision someone wanting to display photos of such a historic place on the premises after a major renovation.  I figure it can't hurt to ask.

A tad dejected but still hopeful as my mind raced with these possibilities, I walked back down to the Hotel.  I discovered two things upon my return: 1) that I could get some fairly decent shots of the interior through the dusty windows and 2) there were some interesting inhabitants on the premises of the Goldfield Hotel.

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