When researching this hotel, I could understand why these spirits didn’t want to leave. There have been several hotels that I have visited over the years that I loved so much that I regretting having check out at the end of my vacation. Maybe it was the trip itself, the amazing staff making it feel like a second home, or just a break from normal life that made it impossible to say goodbye but the Palmer House is full of spirits that just couldn’t check out when it was time to move on.
The Palmer House is located in Sauk Centre, Minnesota. It was built in 1901 by Ralph and Christina Palmer after the Sauk Centre House burned down in 1900. Ralph and Christina lived in the Palmer house with their children, Christina’s mother, and Christina’s brother who all ended up working at the hotel at some point. They designed the hotel to be a first class getaway for its clientele. It was one of the first buildings in Sauk Centre to have electricity. Sauk Centre author, Sinclair Lewis worked for two summers as a desk clerk at the hotel. He would later refer to the hotel as Minniemashie House in his 1920s novel, Main Street. The hotel was renovated in 1993 to bring some modern comforts to the hotel.
The current owners have embraced the paranormal side of the hotel. They often host historical and paranormal tours. They even have a section of their website dedicated to guest experiences with the paranormal. You can check that out here. The Palmer House has been featured on television shows like Ghost Adventures and Dead Files. Rooms 11 and 17 seem to be the most active rooms. In room 11, guests say that they experience extreme cold spots in the room and intense feelings of overwhelming sadness. Over in room 17, guests say that they have seen two different apparitions. One is the spirit of a lanky man dressed in 1920s clothing standing at the foot of their bed in the middle of the night. The other is thought to be the spirit of Lucy. Lucy used to a prostitute that was murdered in the Sauk Centre House. Room 22 seems to be haunted by Raymond, Lucy’s pimp. Raymond ran a brothel on the top floor of the Palmer House in the 1920s. He’s ghost has also been seen walking around on the top floor. Staff members claim to have started a conversation with a woman who looks like Hazel Palmer (Christina and Ralph’s daughter) but the woman will disappear from view in midconversation. Both guests and staff have reported seeing Sinclair Lewis walking through the hotel. Guests say that they have heard someone calling their name within their room but no one else is in the room. Some guests have reported to waking up with the sensation that someone is laying on top of them. A few of the guests have reported feeling a cat jump up on the bed. Televisions will turn on and off on their own. Guests claim to hear knocking on their walls or their room door but no one is there when they investigate. Doors throughout the hotel have a tendency of slamming shut on their own. Guests have reported hearing a child bouncing a ball down the hallway but no kids are staying on that floor. There are also reports of hearing kids playing in the children’s playroom but no one is in the room upon checking it. A young boy with dirty blonde hair and green eyes has been seen on the stairs going to the second floor but he fades from sight as he goes up the stairs. Shadow people have been seen in the foyer. Guests report hearing footsteps in their room or in the hallway in front of their room’s door but no one is there. In the basement, there is a dark shadow that has been seen pacing back and forth often. The lights in the basement like to flicker on and off. Also in the basement is a snowman decoration that has a tendency of turning on and dancing for guests despite not being plugged in.In the bar area, the staff there has reported seeing poltergeist activity with stemware flying out of their racks by themselves, candles moving across tables, and glassware being thrown down with quite a force but not breaking.
With all this activity, you would expect that it would come from a few deaths or tragic events happening within the hotel but you’d be surprised to learn that since the Palmer House was built, there have been no reported deaths or murders happening at that location. Yes, Lucy and some others were killed at that location when it was the Sauk Centre House but that was before the Palmer House was built. It just goes to show how much the staff, family, and guests have loved being at this hotel.
Would you check out some of the haunted events at the Palmer House? Is there a hotel that you would like to haunt if given the chance? Let me know in the comments down below!