This weekend I made a quick trip from ranch to beach, heading down to Galveston, Texas to celebrate the wedding of a childhood friend. Leaving Margot and Taylor behind, I traveled with my best friend, Lauren, who was also solo for the weekend and we enjoyed a couple of relaxing days off mom duty.

The beautiful bride surrounded by some of our high school girlfriends.

Wanting to take advantage of our time to ourselves, Lauren and I set out early Saturday morning to explore the town. We consulted our concierge at the Hotel Galvez to find a local coffee shop. She not only pointed us in the direction of a great place, Mod House, but also filled us in on the history of some “haunted” places to check out. Being an old port town that was once the capital of the Republic of Texas, Galveston has a rich history that can still be felt today and many buildings that still stand from the turn of the 20th century are haunted according to their occupants, including our hotel.

The Galvez opened its doors in 1911 (the same year my grandfather was born in Galveston) and the 5th floor is supposedly where most of the supernatural activity occurs.

We hit the strand to check out the local shops that range from touristy souvenir places to an entire store dedicated to selling parts from old ships. One of the highlights was the Antique Warehouse we visited on 25th St. This corner building was formerly the Oleander Hotel erected in the early 1900s. It has a secret rear entry because back then it served as a brothel. If you look upstairs, the original rooms of the working girls remain well intact and serve as show rooms for some of the antiques for sale. You can see in one room where a woman tallied her income from working with a pencil on the wall and a wooden lock outside another door that kept the orphan boy who lived there locked in his room during working hours. According to the owners, there have been several reports of an older woman and a little boy that haunt the upstairs, especially when people venture off to shop by themselves, and they will never go upstairs alone at night.

Exterior of the old Oleander Hotel. The former rooms upstairs that once were home to the working women now store an inventory of antiques.

While I am a skeptic, I am fascinated by these kinds of stories and even more so, the history behind them. This had me wondering what kind of hauntings are rumored to take place in Roswell? While our city is known for the supernatural and has its own amusing history, what about the ghosts that are still hanging around from days gone by? Be sure to check out the winter regional issue of Focus to read about some of the local legends we covered. However, I know there are many more out there and would love to hear if our readers know of anymore because what would a town be without its folklore.

The ‘History and Mystery’ issue features stories from Roswell and the surrounding areas.