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Columbus, Texas has so many haunted locations, it’s like a theme park for ghost hunters. Really.
Columbus is an easy day trip from Austin, San Antonio or Houston. If you’re in the area and enjoy haunted places, it’s a must-see.
On July 15th, 2006, over 40 ghost hunters met at Jerry Mikeska’s Bar-B-Q restaurant (just off I-10 at Columbus). We were all members of Texas Paranormal Researchers, which used to be a Meetup Group. (Organized by Elmo Johnson.)
Mikeska’s is a great, affordable place for lunch, and it has an eerie display of… well, more hunting trophies than you’ve ever seen in one place.
It definitely sets the mood.
From there, we went to the Turner-Chapman Gallery, where artist Ken Turner explained about his famous “ghost paintings” and the history of the gallery. (Larkin Hope died there after being shot during the Colorado County feud.)
After that, we visited Hometown Hall Antiques and saw the elevator that was used to transport bodies during the site’s years as a mortuary. The energy is very strong at the back of the store, and we could also detect its history as a “saloon” and gambling hall.
From there, we were invited to a private residence that has a very haunted history. I had a chance to try dowsing rods, and I went from skeptic to believer in a hurry.
I’d seen dowsing rods used successfully to find water when drilling teams had failed but… for ghost hunting? I figured that people were subconsciously influencing the swing of the rods.
Well, even when I tried to twist the rods so that they wouldn’t cross, they pulled so hard that I couldn’t move them. It was very weird.
NOTE: I no longer recommend using dowsing rods, except to rule out underground springs and other potential sources of infrasound.
Next, we dashed back to the Stafford Opera House which features several ghosts. Most of them are connected with the auditorium upstairs.
Finally, after a dinner break, we were given a fabulous tour of Columbus City Cemetery by historian Bill Stein. (We recommend the ‘Live Oaks and Dead Folks’ event that he’s part of, each year. Ask about it at the Columbus visitor center or at the Columbus public library.)
This was an amazing tour in a great Texas town.
If you have a chance to ghost hunt in Columbus, Texas, it’s well worth exploring. Bring your dowsing rods!