Ghosts of the Old American West

One of the most haunted places of the United States of America regarding the Old West is the Alamo which today is a big, very historical tourist site. The Alamo is a very old Spanish Christian mission and a mission is a special church built by Catholic missionaries and Native American Indians to proselytize mainly to the Native American Indians, then to administer to them, and Non Indian Catholics. The Alamo was built over the years starting in 1744 in and around what is now Santa Antonio, Texas, USA, but was at the time, the nation of Spain, called “New Spain”. Originally known in Spanish as “The Mission San Antonio de Valero”, The Spanish word “Alamo” refers to a popular tree from the southwest area of what is now the USA. An example of an Alamo is the cottonwood tree. The famed church fort in Texas was nicknamed “the Alamo” after a cottonwood tree that Spanish Christian Catholic priest, Father Antonio, had once gathered below that territory about eighty years earlier, around 1664. The mission and fortress compound is mostly known for its role in of “The Battle of the Alamo” (February 23, 1836 to March 6, 1836) in which was later became “The Republic of Texas” and then much later  “The State of Texas” belonged to “The Republic of Mexico” (Spain lost its territory in that part of the America, through wars and Mexico achieved its independence from Spain on August 24, 1821); and American separatists and insurrectionists waged a bloody war against Mexico over American independence for Texas.

The Battle of the Alamo was between President General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna with 1,800 to 6,000 soldiers to reclaim the Alamo compound to Mexico that led to the slaughter of 185-260 Texan Americans defending the church fort. Prominent American defenders included William Travis, James Bowie, and Davy Crochett. President General Santa Anna suffered 400 to 600 killed and wounded.

The Alamo as it stands today

People, for many years since the battle have claimed to see and hear spectral armies of Mexican soldiers and the defenders of the Alamo battling each other with guns, knives, cannons fired,(both sides used cannons), then very soon mysteriously vanish. In a small number of cases, ghostly sightings of civilians of the Alamo were also reported. (Some civilians remained in the Alamo during the entire battle. Most civilians, but not all civilians, survived the battle that ended on March 6, 1836.

Today, there are ghost tours of San Antonio, Texas that includes its most famous haunted site: The Alamo.

Our next stop for Old West American ghostly sightings is Tombstone, the famous city of southeastern Arizona, founded in 1877, notorious for its Wild West history. Tombstone was a prosperous silver mining and silver processing city. In 1881, the population of Tombstone was most probably 6,000 residents. The population for Tombstone, Arizona in 2019 was only 1,209 making it today a town. In Old West Tombstone, saloons were open 24 hours a day, and there were many brothels. There was much crime and lots of rowdy, noisy troublemakers; criminals that were afoot. The O.K. Corral, famous for its big gun fight, is located in Tombstone, Arizona. That gun battle occurred on October 26, 1881,Wednesday at 3:00 pm and lasted approximately 30 seconds. Nearly 30 shots were fired.

Lawmen commanded by Virgil Earp fought against a group of loosely organized criminals called “The Cochise County Cowboys” (“Cowboys” for short). “The Cowboys” gang lived on a ranch outside of town and were cattle rustlers, horse thieves, mule thieves (they stold mules from the US Cavalry-federal offenses), murderers, and frequently ignored a Tombstone city ordinance not to bring guns into the city.

Virgil Earp, deputy US Marshal, and Arizona Tombstone Territory Marshal, led his younger brothers Wyatt Earp, lawman and gambler and Morgan Earp, Sheriff; lawman and Doctor John Henry Holiday, a dentist, gunfighter, and gambler against “the Cowboys outlaws”: Joseph Issac “Ike” Clanton, Billy Clanton(on his tombstone grave reads “Billie” Clanton), Frank McLaury, Tom McLaury, and Billy Claibourne

The famous gun battle did not occur at the Boot Hill Cemetery, but in a nearby vacant lot behind the O.K. Corral. People have claimed to see spirits of the dead at the site of the famous gun fight. People have also claimed, years after all the participants of the battle were dead, to witness spectral scenes of the gun fight and hear spectral gun fire.

Our next stop of haunted sites of the American Old West is also in Tombstone, Arizona, is the famous Boothill Cemetery that holds the graves of notorious villains, and a few others. The cemetery includes those outlaws of the O.K. Carrol shoot out. “Boothill” Cemetery got its name because those individuals buried there “died with their boots on”. The implication here is that the deceased died violently, as in gun battles, or from hangings, and not of natural causes. Boot Hill Cemetery is still a functioning cemetery on very rare occasions and visitors are charged a small $3 fee  per person for the historical viewing of the graveyard and entrance to a gift shop, both owned and maintained by the Town of Tombstone, Arizona. Boot Hill Cemetery, But, children under 15 can visit for free. Arizona Boot Hill Cemetery of Tombstone Town has at least 250 interments.

People have claimed to see the ghosts of Tom McLaury, Frank McLaury, and Billie Clanton and other outlaws at Boot Hill Cemetery, Tombstone City, Arizona. There are ghost tours given of Tombstone Town Arizona that also includes the Boot Hill Cemetery.

Note: There are over 30 other cemeteries in the United states of America that are named “Boot Hill Cemetery”; all for the same reason that pertains to the execution of criminals. Two other such Old West famous cemeteries include The Boot Hill Cemetery of Dodge City, Kansas and the Boot Hill Cemetery of Deadwood, South Dakota. Dodge City, Kansas and Deadwood, South Dakota were two other territories that had much lawless activities and gun violence.

Lastly, for this article, we come to probably the most haunted site of the American Old West being San Francisco City, California because of The Great San Francisco CA. Earthquake and Fires of 1906.At 5:19 AM on April 18, 1906, Wednesday the west section of Northern California was hit by a powerful earthquake with an estimated moment magnitude of 7.9 and a maximum Mercalli intensity of XI. Surrounding areas of San Francisco were also damaged by the earthquake to a much lesser extent. Within 30 seconds, more than 3,000 people died. Over 28,000 buildings were destroyed from the earthquake and resulting fires. There are many people who claimed to have sensed invisible spirits of the dead wandering around San Francisco. Some psychic mediums claimed to have felt the great emotional distress and anxiety of the ghosts. There were entire families that perished together. In and around San Francisco, the areas considered to still be especially haunted since 1906.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jiR7LnOkKug – San Francisco 1906 earthquake film recovered.
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