WITH A PAST - TEXAS HOTELS BUILT BEFORE 1950 |
Water Hotel and Crazy Water Crystals|
Postcard courtesy of Byran Black
It is quite possible
that some of residents of the "good times" may not have gone on. In the early
1990's, reconstruction of the kitchen area on the first floor took place. Since
that time the figure of a small child has been seen on many occasions.
Amy Harris, an employee of the Crazy Water reported that one morning in 1994,
she was in the kitchen panning bacon for the residents at breakfast when suddenly,
just to her left, stood a little girl in an old fashioned pink frilly dress with
white stockings standing with her hands perched on the side of the table watching
Amy at work. Amy said she was there for just a few seconds and suddenly disappeared.
Then at Christmas, 1999, Amy was entering the kitchen area from the dining room
when she was suddenly overcome with a cold chill as if something "passed right
Isabel Hernandez, another Crazy Water employee stated
that a little girl's spirit, who has called her "Dizzy", a nickname that only
her family knows, frequently follows her around in the kitchen. On another occasion
she felt someone touch her while she was serving food in the serving line. She
said at first the little ghost scared her but over the years she has gotten use
Another employee by the name of Walter has reported hearing the
little girl sobbing in the basement and then upon investigating the cries felt
a cold spot in the area where he heard the sounds originating from.
Landon, another Crazy Water employee, claims she too has seen a little girl playing
in the kitchen area, as has Linda Ruiz who reported in April 2000 saw a man in
the kitchen wearing a long trench coat as if he walked out of the 1930' or 1940's.
He too was there for just a short time and then vanished.
the employees have heard the sounds of voices and of the little girl in the basement
area located just under the kitchen. Curtis, the maintenance man reported seeing
the little girl near the elevators in the basement. The basement area is part
of the old Crazy Water Hotel that burned down in 1925 and the old brick walls
still bear the charred remains of the original building.
could these spirits be? No one seems to know. The building has been here for 75
years and it is almost impossible to know all the stories that took place here
but one thing is for sure, these "ghosts" have been seen by several witnesses
and didn't seem to be here before the reconstruction of the kitchen area. Whatever
the cause or who ever the people are it is for sure that something strange is
going on in the kitchen of the historic Crazy Water Hotel in downtown Mineral
Wells Hotels > Book Your Hotel Here &
Crazy Water Hotel (c. 1927) in Mineral Wells|
TE Postcard Archives
Water Hotel - Background
By 1873, the Indian depredations had all but ended throughout north
central Texas opening the door for many settlers to move westward. Most of
those that came were people who had nothing left back east and believed the new
lands in Texas could provide their families with
opportunities never before offered.
One of these brave folks was a man
by the name of James A. Lynch who moved his family into a valley nestled between
the beautiful hills of Palo Pinto County about 45 miles west of Fort
One day Mr. Lynch was digging a well on his property to provide
badly needed water to his family, crops, and livestock. Upon completion of the
well the Lynch's discovered the water to be too foul smelling to be drinkable.
After some time; however, Mrs. Lynch began to taste the smelly water and claimed
that it cured her arthritis.
The Lynch's discovered the water to be
enriched with minerals, lending it prime medicinal value for the time. It didn't
take long for the word to get out among the few locals that the waters had "healing"
By 1888, a third well was dug. It was from this well that a
demented woman would sometimes drink. Those who knew her claimed she had regained
her sanity from drinking the miraculous water. It was at this time that a few
of the local children began to call well No. 3 "the Crazy Water Well". After time
the word "Well" was dropped and the named "Crazy Water" was coined and
the official town of "Ednaville" was established but later changed its
name to "Mineral Wells".
By the early 1900's Mineral
on its way to becoming a national health resort as bath houses and spas popped
up all over the valley. People were coming by the hundreds every week to bath
in or drink the healing waters.
Many accommodations such as hotels and
boarding houses were springing up everywhere. In 1912 the city saw the need for
a luxury hotel and decided to build one on the sight of old well No. 3, hence;
the "Crazy Water Hotel" was born. The four-story structure was completed
in 1914 and operated until March 1925 when a tragic fire completely destroyed
Two Years later, two Dallas businessman, Carr and Hal Collins,
rebuilt a new seven story structure on the sight of the old one, keeping the same
name, the new structure had two complete bathhouses located in the basement, electric
elevators, a huge and lavish lobby, 200 rooms, and a spacious enclosed pavilion
of semi Moorish design.
The Crazy Water Hotel was a beautiful sight
during the 1920's and 1930's as over 100,000 people a year visited the city for
the mineral waters. At the end of the 1940's the days of the mineral waters were
numbered and Mineral
never enjoy the fabulous times that it saw earlier in the century. By the 1980's
many of the old hotels and boarding houses had either burned down, fallen down,
or were simply tore down but the old Crazy Water survived and was converted into
a retirement center and remains so to this day.
Bob Hopkins, Weatherford
Wells Hotels > Book Your Hotel Here &
am a professional Firefighter with a degree in Fire science and a certified Fire
Investigator, therefore, I believe just about everything can be explained if one
looks hard enough. That was before I began to research a few north Texas ghost
stories that are difficult to explain. |
I have researched about 30 north
Texas haunts, many of which have never before been documented or researched. They
range from the hauntings of the old Baker and Crazy Water hotels in Mineral Wells
to a haunted plantation near Tyler. I have researched each as to the best of my
ability for authenticity and historical accuracy. I would be more than happy to
share some of my research with (your readers). Thank you very much. - Bob Hopkins,
Water Hotel Forum
Crazy Water Hotel Ghosts
I came across this site while searching for pictures of Mineral Wells, Texas,
in the 1930s and 1940s, and I love all the information I came across.
My family is from Mineral Wells, and my great-grandmother lived there up until
her death in 2002. She was a resident of the Crazy Water Hotel for several years,
and I loved the feeling of the old building. Every time I would visit, there would
always be a bit of playtime downstairs in the enormous lobby, and then a trip
to the roof to explore.
Downstairs, taped to the windows of a room off
the main lobby, are photographs of the "Crazy Gang" and a few celebrities who
had visited the hotel. I loved the old photos, and always spent a few minutes
looking at them. Once or twice, while standing in the area, though on different
occasions, I felt a sudden surge of cold air hit me. I remember feeling as if
something had passed right through me, but brushed the thought aside.
During one trip to the roof, I was looking out a window, down onto the street.
I am not absolutely certain, but as far as I can tell, this area had been the
hotel's ballroom. As I stood at the window, I thought I saw the figure of a woman
in a long red, 1930s style dress. I turned, but the figure was gone. The rest
of my family was outside, on the rooftop terrace at the time, ruling all of them
out as the image I saw. Also, the elevators had not opened since I had been upstairs.
I was certain that my mind was playing tricks on me. But who knows? Perhaps it
was a ghost.
I'm a bit of a skeptic, but with all the excitement that
the Crazy once possessed, why wouldn't the building hold that spirit today? It
seems reasonable. After all the past never fades completely; some how a memory
of it will always linger. Perhaps a few hotel guests are just a part of the fabulous
memory of the Crazy Water Hotel. - (Name withheld by request, September 22,
have never seen the little girl in the story. But once a few months ago, while
working in the basement, I thought I saw something red pass by the doorway down
the hall. I am not prepared to call it a ghost, but I was the only one there and
upon checking the elevator was on an upper floor, so no one else could have been
there. - Sincerely, Richard Curtis, Lead Maintenance
to come across your website. I googled you up when I became curious about the
background of a framed postcard I had hanging on the office door in Jakarta, where
I've lived since 1988 (UT Class of '62, Linguistics). It shows the 7-story building
with a sign on the roof reading, sure enough, "Crazy Water Hotel". The "Crazy"
has a cursive style like the original Coca-Cola logo. Floating in the sky above
the hotel is a sinister green and white box reading "Crazy Water Crystals". I
tend to doubt they are on the market any longer, alas. Great job you guys are
doing. I'll be rooting around your sites some more. Would you also be kind enough
to forward this note to Bob Hopkins, as an appreciation? Thanks. - Byron Black
Copywriter, Media Producer & Teacher, Jakarta, Indonesia, September 12, 2002
Wells Hotels > Book Your Hotel Here &
were glad to receive a letter from Bob Hopkins of Weatherford since we consider
Mineral Wells to be one of the more under-appreciated cities in Texas. Mr. Hopkins'
article provides an excellent historical backdrop for his reports on the sightings/
visitations at the Crazy Water Hotel.|
The original Crazy Water Well gave
birth to a variety of businesses in Mineral Wells. There was the Crazy Drugstore,
the Crazy Laundry, the Crazy Theater and the Crazy Beauty Shop (there's a joke
there somewhere). Return with us now to an era of rooftop dancing and rooms that
were "scientifically air-conditioned."
Further information on Mineral
Wells is found in Gene Fowler's excellent 1990 book: Crazy Water: The Story of
Mineral Wells and Other Texas Health Resorts (TCU Press) -