Haunted Basin Hotel
Eureka Springs, Arkansas
The Basin Hotel is one of Arkansas’s real haunted hotels. The hotel has long been the source of eerie tales, unusual happenings, and many ghostly hauntings. According to town history, by 1880 an elegant, four-story hotel known as the Perry House was built on the site of the healing spring which gives Eureka its name. Eureka Springs grew rapidly because of the water. The healing waters attracted the rich and those looking to get rich. Gambling, drinking, and prostitution were popular activities available at the seventeen saloons in operation. Many notorious outlaws were drawn to the boomtown including Frank and Jessie James, the Younger bothers, Belle Starr, and members of the Dalton Gang.
Like most other buildings in Eureka at that time, the Perry House was built completely out of wood. In 1890, it fell victim to one of the four fires that completely leveled Eureka Springs. William Duncan built the Basin Park Hotel from local limestone in 1905 on the site of the old Perry House. Duncan died in 1907, but it’s believed that he continues to roam the halls of the Basin Hotel in a brown suit and derby.
Besides William Duncan, there are legends about visitors who checked into the hotel, but who also never really left. Patrons in rooms 307, 308, and 310 repeatedly report sightings and encounters with a young translucent woman with steel blue eyes and cotton candy blonde hair; a little girl with braided hair in a yellow dress; and man in a cowboy hat and duster, with a six shooter strapped to his hip. Stories involving floating orbs, moving objects, and late night shouts of “Fire!” are frequently reported to hotel management.
Blood Moon, to be published in 2016, is a fictionalized account of the mysterious and unexplainable events we experienced during our recent stay at the Basin. In writing our story, we tired to stay true to the history of the area and the hotel. We focused on facts and true incidents that have occurred at the establishment. We personally look forward to revisiting the Basin Park Hotel in the future and investigating further the spirits of the paranormal kind.