Investigation Report

Location: Baker Hotel, Mineral Wells, Texas
Date: 02 March 2002
Weather Conditions: Cloudy
Humidity: 46%
Geomagnetic Storm Activity: Unsettled
Temperature: 20
Number of Photos taken: 698
Number with possible targets: 98
Average EM Readings: 5 mg
Average M fields Readings: 5 nt
Average E Field Readings: 1 vpm
Cold Spots detected: None
Hot Spots Detected: None
Olfactory Phenomena: Cigar smoke
Visual Phenomena: None
Type of Investigation: Investigation

All information and photos Copyright 2002 to 2005 by Cody Polston, Bob Carter and SGHA. All Rights Reserved.

Location Description and History

The Baker Hotel was always at cross purposes with time.

It opened at a point when time seemed to stand still, just before it jerked backwards. T.B. Baker threw open the doors of his 14 story, 450 room pleasure palace two weeks after Black Friday, the stock market crash in October, 1929.
But then, for the next 40 years or so, the hotel was ahead of its time.The Baker Hotel was glamorous, indeed. Baker, a hotel entrepreneur, designed it in the Spanish Renaissance style after the Arlington Hotel in Hot Springs, Ark., another Southern city, like Mineral Wells, renowned for the curative abilities of its water. It was only the second hotel in the United States to have its own swimming pool.

Now, even in disrepair, the regal digs evoke wonder. Even cloaked in suffocating heat during a recent visit, standing in the wasted lobby it was easy to imagine Will Rogers shuffling up to the check-in desk, Gen. John J. Pershing marching down the stairs, or Marlene Dietrich sashaying in the grand entrance. They were just a few of the rich and famous who came here to “the South's greatest health resort.“

The whole second floor of the air-conditioned hotel - that was still a novelty in 1929 - was reserved as the bath-and-massage floor. Private elevators allowed guests to discreetly go to and from treatments in robe and slippers. And “patients” came from all over the United States, as doctors everywhere prescribed week long stays in health resorts, in those days before pharmacology caught up to demand.

By the late 1940s, modern medicines had replaced mineral water as cures for ailments such as rheumatism and eczema. The magic of the waters of Mineral Wells had faded. Not that the Baker Hotel was left high and dry. In the 1950s, the hotel turned to business conventions and non medicinal vacation packages for its main business.

The Baker Hotel advertised its baths to “overworked, stressed out executives,” according to the Mineral Wells Chamber of Commerce, which notes that some 80 percent of the hotel’s business came from Dallas and Fort Worth businessmen and their families escaping the city. In the early days of the Dallas Cowboys, when the games were blacked out in Dallas, people rented rooms at the Baker to watch the games on a television station out of Wichita Falls, the chamber notes.

The hotel stayed busy. It was so popular it got the attention of the federal government, which made it quit advertising the mineral water as a cure-all. There began the beginning of the end.

Time, suddenly, was passing the Baker Hotel by.
By the 1960s, health resorts all over the country were losing business. Earl Baker, nephew of the founder, let it be known that he would get out of the business when he turned 70. In 1963, he did, and some Mineral Wells businessmen bought it shortly after - but the Baker's enchanted era was over. The hotel closed its doors for good in 1972.

In those days, folks in Mineral Wells told tales of those who drank the water and lived long into their 100s. The story of a demented woman who drank the water and became sane made news across the nation.

Some tried to bottle the water and sell it. Others tried to sell the land for outrageous prices. But only Baker had the genius to build a mammoth hotel on top of the well and advertise it as a resort for the wealthy, and for $30 a night -- about $200 in today's currency -- you could drink all of the water you wanted.

The Baker Hotel, as it once was.

Surrounded by comfort, guests could douse themselves in mineral water, which could take five years off their age, Baker advertised.

There is something almost eerie about Baker's ability to see the future. For example, many spa rooms were furnished with mechanical chairs with electronic devices that moved the feet back and forth and rubbed the back. The rooms' lights were linked to the door handle so that the light automatically came on when a guest opened the door.

This place became popular on a level that Mineral Wells hasn't seen since, it was hard to know what was the bigger draw, the hotel or the water.

The hotel had three stairwells, one for the rich, one for their servants and one for those who wished not to be seen. Judy Garland and Lawrence Welk fit in the first category. The outlaws known as Bonnie and Clyde fit in the last one. All visited more than once.

The hotel is full of little trick doors and secret rooms. In Baker's 10th-floor quarters, you can push back a cabinet to reveal a closet in which Baker reportedly concealed his liquor during Prohibition. On the third floor, a hidden door led to a gambling parlor.

Baker watched his masterpiece fall on hard times in his later years and died in 1972 just one year before his hotel finally closed its doors. What followed was a scenario similar to that involving the Settles in Big Spring.

New owners sold much of the interior, vandals sprayed graffiti on some of the walls, have broken windows and other features and the building fell into disrepair.

There is something ominous about a huge empty building that just sits there.

Reported Phenomena

Paranormal activity that has been reported in the hotel centers around several major areas. These include the ballroom, the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 10th floors, the Brazos room and the lobby.

Lights turn on and off by themselves in the Brazos room and the sweet smell of chocolate, similar to "Milk duds" can be easily detected at times. The smell also seems to accompany the presence of orb phenomena.

The sound of someone walking in high heels can be heard in the lobby. A possible apparition has been seen in the windows of the 7th floor. Also on this floor, a paranormal investigator was molested by a "friendly" feminine presence, until a female investigator showed up, then the presence became "angry".

Other interesting facts about the location include:
The area under the Olympic sized pool is open, supported by huge columns.

The parking garage for the Baker is across the street and is accessed by driving into a tunnel and underneath the pool and street. The tunnel is now sealed before it reaches the street.

The Baker also generated its own power. Two huge generators are located in the basement which supplied the hotel with all of its power requirements. It should also be noted that the hotel has certain areas that allowed unseen access to rooms and other areas by the employees.

There are several interesting stories about the hotel itself. One concerns Mr. Baker's mistress, who lived on the 7th floor. She committed suicide and her ghost is said to still roam the hotel, but especially the 7th floor. The feminine presence there is said to be hers.
Another story tells of a intoxicated woman who tried to jump into the swimming pool from the ballroom balcony, on the 12th floor. Naturally, she was killed.

The gangsters Bonnie and Clyde have also been rumored to haunt the Brazos room and Ballroom.
During our investigation, some phenomena registered as high as 40 milligauss.

The Investigation

Investigation Log

Time
Location
Event
5:00pm
Secretary's Office
Established base, prepared and checked equipment. 
5:30pm
Mezzanine
Began walk through of location. Initial EM readings taken. It is decided that base will not be manned for the basement section of the investigation. Team departs and enters basement.
5:45pm
Basement
Possible orb phenomena located near main generators in basement. No unusual EM fields detected.
6:06pm
Basement 
More possible orb activity recorded in the laundry room.
6:20pm
Basement
Team moves out of basement and into the kitchen.
6:24pm
Kitchen
Possible orb activity recorded with EM measurements of 5 milligauss.
6:40pm
Lobby
Team returns to lobby for dinner. While waiting several photographs are taken in the lobby and Brazos room which may contain possible paranormal activity. EM readings were obtained in the lobby of 6.2 milligauss between 29 to 5 Hz.
8:10pm
Secretary's Office (Base) 
Team resumes investigation and heads to the top floor of the building, working their way down. Jessica takes over at base.
8:12pm
Brazos Room
IR camera is set-up to monitor the Brazos Room along with a led EMF detector.
8:42pm
Cloud Room
Odd EM readings and photographs recorded in the ballroom (Cloud room). After sweeping the ballroom , Face and Robin proceed to the bell tower while the rest of the Team proceeds to the 10th floor and the Baker Suite.
8:50pm Baker Suite (10th floor) Team records several unusual EM fields and possible targets are recorded on the digital camera. Face and Robin rejoin the Team shortly afterwards.
9:00pm Baker Suite (10th floor)  Unidentified voices are heard coming from one of the rear rooms of the Baker Suite. Team decides to start an EVP session in the suspect room. Possible orb phenomena is captured on video and with cameras. Unexplainable EM readings, fluctuating between 3 to 6 mt , are recorded during the EVP session. Team moves down the hall to the gym after the EVP session is completed.
9:20pm
Gym (10th floor)
Several possible orbs captured on camera  but no unusual readings were detected.
9:30pm
Presidential Suite
More unusual EM fields detected and possible phenomena captured on cameras.
9:45pm
 Mistresses Suite 
(7th floor)
Team begins a second EVP session. Eighteen possible paranormal events are recorded on video during the session. The events are also captured on still camera. Unusual EM fields detected and measured during this event. Fields varied from 3 mt to strong and steady readings of 6 mt on the Trifield meter.
10:00pm
7th floor / Lobby
Team skips several floors and heads down to base for a break. Lori takes over at base.
10:55pm
Brazos Room
IR camera is retrieved from the Brazos Room. Camera has mysteriously shut down or had been turned off.
12:15pm
Secretary's Office (Base)
Team resumes investigation. IR camera is repositioned in the Brazos Room. Several possible targets are recorded on still camera while the IR camera is being set up. The Team then heads to the second floor.
12:32 am
2nd Floor
Several possible targets recorded on still cameras. No unusual EM fields are detected.
12:45am
2nd Floor
Team departs to the 5th Floor.
1:14am
5th Floor
Team sweeps the entire floor. Nothing unusual is found. Team returns to Mezzanine.
1:20am
Mezzanine
Faint to strong smells of a swisher sweet cigar are detected by all members of the Team. Still photographs show the presence of possible orb phenomena. Weak EM fields are detected.
2:00am
Secretary's Office (Base)
Investigation is concluded.

Photographs

Click the thumbnail to view the larger image

Photo 1
Mezzanine
Photo 2
Mezzanine
Photo 3
Basement
Photo 4
Basement
Photo 5
Laundry
Photo 6
Basement
Photo 7
Basement
Photo 8
Basement
Photo 9
Basement
Photo 10
Basement
Photo 11
Basement
Photo 12
Kitchen
Photo 13
Brazos Room
Photo 14
Lobby
Photo 15
Lobby
Photo 16
Lobby
Photo 17
Lobby
Photo 18
Lobby
Photo 19
Lobby
Photo 20
Lobby
Photo 21
Lobby
Photo 22
Ballroom
Photo 23
Ballroom
Photo 24
Baker Suite
Photo 25
Baker Suite
Photo 26
Baker Suite
Photo 27
Baker Suite
Photo 28
Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
Photo 31
Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
Photo 34
Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
Photo 36
Baker Suite
Photo 37
Baker Suite
Photo 38
Baker Suite
Photo 39
Baker Suite
Photo 40
Baker Suite
Photo 41
Baker Suite
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Baker Suite
Photo 43
Baker Suite
Photo 44
Baker Suite
Photo 45
Baker Suite
Photo 46
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 47
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 48
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 49
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 50
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 51
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 52
Gym/ 10th floor
Photo 53
10th Floor
Photo 54
10th Floor
Photo 55
Presidential Suite
Photo 56
Presidential Suite
Photo 57
Presidential Suite
Photo 58
Presidential Suite
Photo 59
Presidential Suite
Photo 60
Presidential Suite
Photo 61
Presidential Suite
Photo 62
Presidential Suite
Photo 63
Presidential Suite
Photo 64
Presidential Suite
Photo 65
Presidential Suite
Photo 66
Presidential Suite
Photo 67
Presidential Suite
Photo 68
Presidential Suite
Photo 69
Presidential Suite
Photo 70
Photo 71
7th Floor
Photo 72
7th Floor
Photo 73
7th Floor
Photo 74
7th Floor
Photo 75
7th Floor
Photo 76
7th Floor
Photo 77
7th Floor
Photo 78
Brazos Room
Photo 79
Brazos Room
Photo 80
Brazos Room
Photo 81
Brazos Room
Photo 82
2nd Floor
Photo 83
2nd Floor
Photo 84
2nd Floor
Photo 85
Photo 86
5th Floor
Photo 87
5th Floor
Photo 88
Mezzanine
Photo 89
Lobby
Photo 90
Lobby
Photo 91
Lobby
Photo 92
Mezzanine
Photo 93
Mezzanine
Photo 94
Mezzanine
Photo 95
Mezzanine
Photo 96
Mezzanine
Photo 97
Mezzanine
Photo 98
Mezzanine
Photo 99
Mezzanine
Photo 100
Mezzanine
Photo 101
Mezzanine
Photo 102
Mezzanine
Photo 103
Manager's Office
Photo 104
2nd Floor
Blank

Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP)

   EVP session in the Baker Suite 
Question
Heard answer
EVP
Do you want us to get out? 
 Help me here
Where else should we go?   Into that room
Tell us your story.
Crash? Shut up
2 different voices
Are you stuck in here?
 No key

 

  EVP Session in the Mistresses Suite (7th floor) 
Question
Heard Answer
EVP
 What is your name?
Virginia
What are you doing in here?
sounds like "Have patience"
How long have you been here?
Get the hell out of here
Do you want us out of here?
Come here to me
Are you angry at something?
sounds like "tip"
Who are you angry at?
garbled
Has someone hurt you?
Yes
Are you following us?
Watch Yourself

Initial Conclusions

 

Interference was affecting the Team's radio's in certain areas of the hotel. Still camera photos and video reveal that suspect paranormal activity (possible orbs) were present when ever the interference was present.

  • The vast majority of the EM fields that were unexplainable were DC in nature that ranged from 3 mt to 6 mt. The areas were the readings were taken was consistent with witness reports of haunting activity. By using a multitude of detectors, we were also able to establish that the EM fields had a frequency between 5 to 29 milligauss.
  • The unusual EM fields were either fluctuating wildly or moving around rapidly. The fields did not appear to be polarized.
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