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For those of us who worked and lived there, it became fairly entertaining. With a history stretching back to the 1980s and impeccable vintage decor throughout, the Gilpin Hotel was located in the mountains of Colorado. It was situated on the main dirt road, in the midst of an historic mining town called Black Hawk. Population: 750. And this hotel was haunted. The resident ghost is known as Lucille Malone. She jumped to her death a century ago after learning her lover was run over by a wagon in front of the hotel. She had been eagerly awaiting his return. Lucy lived in Room 3. We also had a ghost named George in Room 5, though he wasn’t a full time resident. We knew he was around if the bed broke in Room 5 when a couple was staying there. Despite the broken bed, they’d reported having great sex.

Lucy had been a schoolteacher. She taught school in the back room of the hotel where I lived. I was lucky to get close up and personal with Lucy. I knew she was around when I was cleaning. If Room 3 was colder than usual, I knew she was there.

When I lived at this hotel, I was like a jack of all trades. I also tended bar, and kept an eye on the building when everyone else was gone. It was the locals’ favorite gathering place. There was the best open stage night on Thursday, and the musicians would also come to play on the weekends. The hotel became my place of refuge after a divorce. Lucy pleasantly went about her business, and loved to listen to the music when the musicians were there. They had also written a beautiful song about her.

One night, the hotel caught fire. It was about 2:00 a.m. My two small sons were up visiting that night. We made it out alive, barely. It was a very hot fire. Emotions ran high when arson was discovered. The arsonist used gasoline. It was a horrible crime of passion. We strongly believe that Lucy saved our lives by alerting us in paranormal fashion. The arsonist to this day remains at large. We lost everything we owned, and the awesome hotel was totally gutted. All of those gorgeous antiques were lost.

After the fire, the hotel was rebuilt into a high stakes gambling casino. Gaming had come to town and greed permeated the air. It just wasn’t the same anymore. I knew I had to go back to Denver. The day I left Black Hawk as I was driving down the canyon, tears filled my eyes. The fun was over. Lucy, obviously displaced by the fire and the construction of rebuilding, appeared to me one night in my bedroom. She was a long way from home, all that way. I had woken up suddenly, and there she was. It was the first time I’d actually seen her. But I knew it was her. She was wearing her long navy blue dress, had her hair up in a bun and she was sewing. Same description from others who had seen her before me. There have been reports of people seeing Lucy—she has been living at the new Gilpin Hotel Casino.

I miss those people and wonder how they are doing with their lives. Almost everyone moved away to other mountain towns. As for me, Denver was just too hot or cold, so I packed up and moved over to another small town, Waikiki.



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