Issue: 2015-10-29 PHOTO: Frank Flavin
The Historic Anchorage Hotel, where many ghostly sightings have been reported
Wherever your travels take you, there is bound to be a place that has a ghost living in the shadows. England has the ghastly Tower of London, Romania has the mysterious Hoia Baciu forest, Japan has the eerie Hanging Ruins...
Just over the border in Alaksa, our American neighbours have their fair share of haunting. There are several hotels, abandoned ship yards, and cemeteries that the locals and tourists alike say are haunted. I decided to do a bit of research to see how true this is. Much to my surprise, many locals didn’t want to talk about the spooky activity that is rumored to take place.
I did, however, find one Alaska resident, located in Anchorage who was happy to share his experiences with the spirit world.
Ryan Nolan is a front desk agent at the Historic Anchorage Hotel. He has been working there for more than three years, and has first-hand experience with the spirits that dwell within this place.
“I was working the night shift, and all of a sudden I felt my tie tug,” Nolan says. “Then there was a constant tapping noise on the bell cart.”
Another encounter Nolan had was in the basement of the hotel. At the top of the stairs there is a long pipe that would lean against the railing. One evening Nolan needed to go down there.
“I could feel some sort of presence was around,” he says.
When he went back up the stairs, the pipe fell.
“This was so strange because for three years the pipe never moved.”
Nolan is not the only one who has experienced the ghostly residents of the hotel. Many guests have come to Nolan and relayed their unusual encounters.
“There are a lot of guests who say they hear the sound of children playing in the hallways on the third floor," Nolan says. “When they open their door, nobody is there.”
Other guests say they hear the echo of gun shots coming from behind the hotel. Once again, no one is there. But, in the early 1900's there was a police shooting that took place in the same spot. Chief John Sturgis was the officer who died. Apparently he died by getting shot in the back with his own gun.
In addition to gunshots, some people hear the sounds of heavy running or boots kicking on a door. There are some guests who say they feel as if they were being watched the entire time they spent in the room.
At one point a psychic medium was brought in to survey the place for spirit activity. Nolan accompanied her.
“She was able to identify spirit activity in each hotel room," he says.
In one room, she said she felt the presence of a female ghost, who hung herself because she was jilted at the altar. In another room she sensed an angry old man who felt the room belonged to him and did not like visitors.
When Nolan tried to look at security tapes to see if any ghosts could be spotted, the strangest thing happened.
“The camera footage went fuzzy and black and had weird lines. It did this for a few days.”
Seems the only way to get check out the ghosts is to check in to the hotel.