The Saint James Hotel, which was built in 1880, is described as “a genuine piece of Western Americana.” The interior of this Hotel is both Victorian and Western in style. It is adorned with crystal chandeliers, velvet curtains, brocade wallpaper and heavy, sturdy furniture, which was built to withstand a lot of abuse from rowdy clientele. A steep staircase leads up to the second floor guest rooms. Below these guest rooms, one can find the old 1873 saloon, which is now used as the hotel’s dining room and where the original, antique bar still exists. There are mirrors all along the front of the bar. The Saint James is open all year round, with 13 historic rooms, which range from being fancy, to practical. A modern annex to the hotel has 12 rooms.
The Saint James Saloon and Hotel was built by Henn Lambert, a former cook of General Grant and President Lincoln, during a time in New Mexico’s history where law and order was unheard of, until 1903. While many well-known people, such as Annie Oakley, Buffalo Bill Cody,General Sheridan, Zane Grey & Bat Masterson, stayed at the Saint James, so did many of the criminal element, who considered New Mexico a haven from legal justice. It’s not surprising then, that the Saint James had a raucous, violent history, with 26 documented killings and many other undocumented ones. Gunfights, brawls and knifings took their toll on the living, and explains why there are so many restless spirits still checked in as residents of the hotel. If one studies the ceiling of the dining room, 22 bullet holes still exist. A double layer of heavy wood prevented the killing from spreading up to the sleeping clients upstairs.
The Saint James now has the reputation of being an elegant, friendly hotel with fine food and service. The unseen clients expect it as well. Psychics have identified 7 of these restless ones, though more are present.
Mary Lambert (wife of Henn Lambert).
Her presence is marked by her strong perfume, which waifs through the hallway by the upstairs guest rooms. If the living want to sleep in her old room, the window must be kept shut completely as Mary wants it to be safe for everyone. She will tap and beat on the window if left open, waking up the hotel patrons sleeping in that room, and won’t stop until the window is shut. She perhaps is still looking after her hotel and her guests.
Johnnie, who is still a ball of energy is having too good a time running around the hallways, playing in the hotel, getting into mischief and won’t be coaxed to the other side.
Johnnie’s spirit was seen by a young man cleaning up the downstairs bar. He saw the 2 year old, with long golden curls,wearing a long white gown, spinning a bottle while sitting on the bar. Thinking he was a guest, he asked him to go back up to his room. When the little boy looked up at him, half of his face was horribly scarred with burns. The boy jumped off the stool and disappeared into the floor!
It seems that Johnnie had run into someone carrying a big pot of fried foods and suffered fatal burns.
Johnnie isn’t the only child ghost…
He has the company of two little girl ghosts,12 yrs. and 9 yrs. old, who died of diphtheria in the late 1800s. Both are very polite and well-behaved, and don’t approve of Johnnie’s behavior!
A mischievous “gnome-like” old man, named Little Imp by the owners, plays tricks on the living, annoying many, especially new employees.
He once appeared on a bar stool, and laughed at the young man hired to clean up the dining room. He is also the one who took a steak knife from the holder in the kitchen and stuck it in the floor between the two owners of the hotel. More evidence points to him as well, when lamp shades and glasses crack all by themselves, and objects disappear and reappear in other places.
Card player – T. James Wright
Because he was killed before he could collect his huge card winnings, he haunts hotel room # 18. He is unfriendly, very angry, wants to be left alone and gives off evil vibes. He has been known to knock over unwanted people who come into room #18, and has spun his chandelier, which is hanging in room #18, around and around to let the living know that he is still there. So, the owners give this spirit what he wants. Room #18 is locked and not rented to guests. It hasn’t been renovated or fixed up. Inside, there is a table, playing cards, a shot glass and a bottle of Jack Daniels. A vase of flowers stands outside his door.
Other ghosts who live there have appeared to the living.
Early one morning, when the owner’s wife had walked into the dining room, she saw in the mirror, on the front of the bar, an apparition of a pleasant-looking cowboy in a big hat, standing behind her.
Psychics have identified the spirits mentioned in 1, 4 and 5 and have discovered that the many other ghosts who haunt the hotel are happily reliving all the great experiences that they had at the hotel, which makes sense to the current owners, who currently strive to offer service pleasing to their living clients.
The children ghosts in 2 & 3 were identified by psychic Nancy Myer.
The Southwest Ghost Hunters Association has investigated this hotel and has come up with some interesting results.
It stands in the city of Cimarron, which is in Northeast New Mexico. Cimarron is a city on the historic Santa Fe Trail. The hotel is located near the intersection of U.S. Highway 64 and Highway 21, at 17th and Collinson.