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STRANGE STORIES & MYSTERIES OF TEXAS

Texas is home to a number of very strange tales, from ghosts to headless horsemen that haunt State Highway 16 near Bandera Pass at night, there are plenty of good tales to share...


If you're road tripping Texas highways, there's a few things you probably need to know. Some people call Texas strange...strange people, strange language, strange traditions, strange stories. Well, maybe so. None-the-less, Texas is a rare and wonderful place to visit, eve if a little "mysterious."

Every one enjoys a good ghost story or spooky tale. Below are a few reader submitted stories of ghosts and hauntings, of strange tales and eerie happenings. Much of it is born on the wings of folklore, of course. Other stories are, no doubt, created and authored by Texans with a flair for "tall tales".

But for whatever the reason, Texas is the capital of strange, so -- here we go.

The Lost National Treasure of France and the Texas Connection
The problem with any strange tale is that it is hard to know where truth ends and legend begins. None-the-less, a good tale has few boundaries, and even the most speculative twists and turns of a well told story have great merit when it comes to uncovering lost possibilities - or, at least, as entertaining fiction. Be it fact or fiction, or most probably a mix of the two, this tale of historical adventure and mystery offers a glimpse into what once was, or could have been, whichever fancies the disposition of the reader. Could Napoleon Bonaparte have contracted Jean Lafitte to smuggle a large French Treasure from France and bury it in Texas? There seems to be some evidence, but you decide the truth for yourself! MORE

The Haunted Yacht Club Hotel
It was the late 1920s and prohibition was in full swing. The new Yacht Club Hotel in Port Isabel had just opened, a high society, high roller facility that offered pleasures on the remote Texas frontier. Guests came from all over the country to enjoy freedom from social censorship and enjoyed the pursuits of the Texas tropics. But at least two of those early guests who checked in, never checked out, and from time to time you can still find them there. MORE

The Infamous Ghost of Granbury
There are a lot of strange places in Texas; just about as many as there are strange tales to go along with them. And Garnbury, Texas, nestled in the gentle Brazos River Valley in the north central region of the Lone Star State, has its share. Some say Granbury was a central focal point for famous and infamous characters of the 19th century; people like Davy Crockett's wife, Elizabeth, Jesse James, and a man believed to be John Wilkes Booth, who may haunt the Granbury Opera House to this day? Read one of Texas' strangest mysteries. MORE

Ghosts of Fort Brown
Historic Fort Brown is a landmark of Rio Grande Valley history. Wars have been fought there. During the years of the great Yellow Fever outbreak, thousands of bodies were buried in mass graves under what is now UTB-TSC campus. Most of the students are there for an education; some of the residents of the Old Fort still haunt the hallowed halls of the University, because they can't leave. Discover one of Texas' most haunted spots!  MORE

The Haunted Jefferson Hotel
If you think adventure is limited to a good raft and a little whitewater, or a bike tour across Palo Duro Canyon country, or a short bungee rope at the high Devil’s Canyon bridge – you might have another think coming. There’s a book in Jefferson in the Caddo country of Northeast Texas, kept behind a hotel desk in the main lobby, where adventure awaits the traveler daring enough to open its pages. But there’s a catch. Not just anyone can ask read this book. You must be a guest of old, historic hotel. And to get the most out of this other-worldly adventure, you must take the book back to your room to read it. MORE

UFOs OVER TEXAS SKIES!
There are two sides to the UFO controversy in the world -- there are the believers, and there are the nonbelievers. In Texas this year, there are certainly more believers than ever before. Sure - the belief in and/or study of Unidentified Flying Objects has been the at the center of pop controversy for a long time, at least since 1947, and no one would argue that Texans often like their tall tales and proportionate twisted sense of humors. But a large number of residents around Stephenville and across adjacent counties have been reporting something very weird in the sky -- and very large. What is it? MORE

Brownsville's Old City Cemetery
Every community has at least one cemetery, a refuge for those who have passed from this world into the next, a final resting place that offers perpetual peace for our loved ones who have gone before us. In Brownsville, on the Texas-Mexico border, the Old City Cemetery is full of ornate architecture akin to the New Orlean's historic cemetery -- and full of the history that has made Texas great. Take a walk through this graveyard and you may find more than you are looking for! MORE

There were a lot of folks around Mineral Wells in 1914 that thought building a major hotel in this rural community 50-miles west of Ft. Worth was a crazy idea. Built over a water well known as the Crazy Well, the hotel now stands as a hot spot for Texas ghost tales. MORE

Welcome to Aurora, a community that in the late 1800s boasted of being the site of a crashed spacecraft. The alien pilot is allegedly buried in a cemetery nearby. A state historical marker points the way. MORE

The Confederate Ghosts of Andrews
"Just north of Andrews, Texas, west of Highway 385, is the original location of the county seat of Andrews County, Shafter. It was named after a Confederate general of the same last name. The town was almost completely wiped out by a smallpox epidemic around the turn of the last century, possibly sometime before 1910. Up until about ten years ago, the cemetery where the victims were buried was located on the near edge of the small lake (which comes and goes as it pleases), but the bodies were moved and reentered elsewhere. Legend was that a "lady in white" haunted the graveyard, possibly the reason for its removal. Sometime during the fall of the year, you may also see a troop of Confederate soldiers and their horses galloping across the lake, usually during a full moon. Most think it is General Shafter and his men, who did patrol that area before it was settled, trying to escape Comanche Indians pursing them. By the way, the lake wasn't (and isn't) always there. It just appeared sometime in the forties, according to my mother, who lived in the area from 1948 on. The water is very salty, not good for anything, and there is no explanation for its being there at all."

Bandera - Kerr County - Bandera Pass
"According to a book in the Kerrville Public Library, Bandera Pass is one of the most haunted places in Kerr County. Bandera Pass is some Hills that separate Kerr County and Bandera County. Bandera Pass has it's own ghost lights that nobody can explain like those of Marfa and Anson. The lights are believed to be that of spirits that are protecting a lost Treasure that settlers hid from Indians back in the 1800's. Bandera Pass also has a Headless Horseman who rides from Bandera Texas to Center Point Texas. He is a Mail carrier who got his head cut off by Apache Indians his fate is to ride for eternity looking for his head. Bandera Pass also has a ghost wagon of settlers that were murdered by Apache Indians. These settlers now ride on certain nights and cut thru local ranchers pastures. People have reported seeing all of these three in the surrounding area. All of this is in the Kerrville area."

Big Spring - Flight Line Prison
"Shut down many years ago. Occurrences started happening before the prison was even completely finished. Some building materials were stolen from the site so a guard had to be posted there. During the first night our control center got a frantic call from our guard asking for back up because he knew some one was out there he could hear them but he couldn't find them. Upon response loud music could be heard in the mess hall, but as soon as they would open the door the music would stop. The entire facility was searched and no trace could be found of anyone. Guards were doubled up due to the fact that no one would go out there alone. Strange noises, lights, and whispering reoccurred every night. The prison was completed and staffed. A fire safety inspection, area shakedowns and an outer perimeter fence check is conducted every night. While doing these checks guards have reported seeing an old woman in the education wing that will walk the halls at night and give you a quick glance and disappear only she leaves behind a white powder everywhere she has been spotted. A mischievous entity that haunts the mess hall that will clank and rattle the pots and pans as well as move things to and fro. A shadowy figure that walks the living quarter wings. And a small child who loves to scare the life out of anyone who so happens to be in the perimeter truck at that time. It has appeared on several occasions in the back of the truck looking in at you through the back window, or in front of the truck as you drive around, and has even decided to wake up several guards who dozed off by tapping them on the arm. It has caused several wrecks from trying to swerve to miss him, rounds being chambered into their firearms, and on a couple of occasions guards to quit on the spot."

Brownsville - University of Texas - The Old Fort Morgue
"This building is currently used as a storage building and a three room accounting office. There are strange noises in the building, which cannot be identified. Reports of apparitions of a woman and small child, books fall from shelves, chairs move in the library, voices and doors opening and closing are heard, and a lady dressed in black has been seen sitting on a wall in front of the Old Morgue. Also, electrical devices in the building will suddenly stop working or break for a while. Later they will start working again. Plugs will also pull out of sockets by themselves and stored items will move themselves. These are supposed to be caused by the ghosts of soldiers whose bodies were stored here. A picture was taken in May of 2001 of what appears to be a hanged body."

Corpus Christi - The USS Lexington
"It has been said that in the boiler room of the ship there is a spirit of a young man in a sailor outfit who will tell you where things are located. The vintage aircraft carrier, by the way, is known as the "Gray Ghost"

Galveston - The Hotel Galvez
"It's on Seawall Blvd. and is the oldest hotel on the island. One room, room 505, is supposed to be haunted and most people how stay in that room, do not stay overnight. Most just feel incredibly uncomfortable there. You can also smell Gardenias in and around the room at times. There are two other ghosts there but no one seems to know much about them. There are several locations in Galveston that are haunted including the Tremont House hotel on Mechanic's Street and the Peanut Butter Warehouse to name a few."

Matador - US HWY 70
"Though much of it unconfirmed highway 70 between Matador and Paduca, TX has a lot of deadly history. Many car accidents have occurred here. The nearest hospital being over 80 miles away many accident victims do not survive. Driving through at night can give you a complete sense of dread. Some drivers claim that on the highway the became very agitated wondering if what they were feeling was real. Wondering if they were alive or dead. Paranoia is the strongest emotion felt here. Many have claimed to see lights and refractions coming from the Matador Cemetery. This desolate highway has very little to offer in the way of peace. It however has much to offer in the way of death."

San Angelo - Fort Concho
"Many ghosts haunt this "best preserved" frontier army fort in America. The buffalo soldiers were stationed here in the late 19th century for protection against Indian attacks. Many of them are still there along with others. Officers Quarters' #1 still has a little girl upstairs who died of an illness. She can be seen from time to time. Ask any employee for details. Conrad McClure, and employee and re-enactor have had many ghostly encounters there during his career."

San Antonio - The Alamo
"Cold spots and a feeling of melancholy can be felt throughout the Fort. 189 Alamo defenders and at least 1200 Mexican soldiers fought and died here in San Antonio, many without the benefit of a proper burial leaving a lot of lost souls in search of a eternal resting place, thus making San Antonio one of the most haunted cities in America."

San Antonio - The Menger Hotel
Haunted by 38 known ghosts, including Teddy Roosevelt, a lady in blue, Sallie White who is a murdered chamber maid, Captain Richard King, and many others. My sister, who is a little psychic, had an experience here. Our family was sleeping in the new portion of the hotel, and she woke up in the early hours and saw a misty "cowboy" like-person standing in the room with his back turned to her. He had a blank stare on his face and just stood for several minutes before leaving. Many of Teddy Roosevelt's rough riders haunt the bar.

Editor's Note: If you have a strange story about Texas, let us know. editors@texaslesstraveled.com