602 West University
beautiful and haunted 1928 Southern Pacific Railroad Station, now the Edinburg
Visitor Information Center, is one of the best buildings in Edinburg. You heard
right, we said haunted. |
This is one
of the four SP stations in the Valley built in Spanish Colonial Revival style
in the late 1920s. The others were McAllen
(now a law office), Brownsville
(the Historic Museum on Elizabeth St.), and Harlingen
Showcasing (literally) the inter-agency cooperation that makes
Edinburg work, a railroad memorabilia exhibit is on semi-permanent loan
from the Hidalgo County Historical Society whose offices and Museum are
just down the street "on the square". This exhibit by the museum curator, includes
among other things a "Golden Spike" (figurative and plated) driven when the SP
reached Edinburg. But it seems one local youth took the "Golden Spike" description
literally, because he stole it and sawed it in half. Not only was he disappointed,
he was caught with the spike after it was sawn, which explains its present condition.
Before you call him stupid, let us say; he at least didn't saw it length-wise.
You can rest assured that when he graduated to felonies and entered the Big House
in Huntsville, his nickname was "Spike."
Southern Pacific Station|
Photo courtesy Edinburg Chamber of Commerce
Why do you think it's called a "Terminal"
Aida R., President of the Chamber, who magnanimously allows her name to be
mispronounced by nearly everyone, told us of a few of the strange occurrences
at the Chamber. Aida R. is involved in the haunting in a way, since it is her
music box (touch-activated) that has been known to go off when it hasn't been
This is a tactile spirit and could very well be a lost conductor
punching passenger's one-way tickets on a phantom hell-bound train. It could also
be a defective music box. But before you dismiss this music box, there's more!
There are sightings! People walking quickly (and quietly) past the reception desk.
A black man in what was the segregated side of the depot. Voices! Indistinct and
muffled, and sometimes clear and interrogative. And then there was the note!
Now in police hands, it demanded help in finding the spirit's body. The spirit
claims to have been killed by two black-hearted coworkers who killed him after
he overheard their plans to hijack a train. We personally doubt the letter's authenticity,
since hijacking a train had a well-known high rate of failure. The note also mentioned
a deadline, which is definitely not ghostlike since spooks are extremely patient
(eternity and all that).
© John Troesser
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Our special thanks to Aida, who is now President of the Chamber. An exceptional
effort was made to provide us with the image of the station that opens this page.
Aida and Marco Bazan were given a TE award for efficiency in our 1999 Awards,
and they remain the most cooperative Chamber Staff we've worked with to date.-