Investigation Team: Dave Miller, Shane Miller,
Investigation Date: August 2009
In 2000, my sons Matt & Shane said “Dad you need to watch this new TV show called Ghost Hunters. It is cool”. I watched and was hooked. They said why don’t we form a team and investigate. We already owned a digital camera, a movie camera with night vision, flashlights and tape recorders. So we did. We called our club, POOP – Paranormal of Ohio Professionals. We did lots of investigations in Ohio and when vacationing around the country in our camper, would try to schedule a famous place or two to investigate.
When investigating sometimes we got evidence, sometimes nothing. Some investigations were true 6 to 8 hour overnights with full equipment, other times shorter investigations with partial equipment. Personally, I found the history of the facility and the alleged haunts fascinating regardless of whether we found evidence or not. To me the true secret in seeking the unknown is in the looking, not the finding. The JOURNEY is what matters most. I enter every investigation as a skeptic, a “doubting Thomas” but I am very open-minded.
GOLD HILL HOTEL HISTORY: When gold and silver was discovered (called the Comstock Lode) in this small mountain town in 1859, Virginia City grew as big as San Francisco with over 30,000 people, countless mining millionaires, schools, opera house, trains, newspapers, courthouse, churches and police/fire forces. Two major tragedies occurred: an April 1869 fire in the Yellow Jacket Mine (located right behind the hotel) killed 47 miners underground (many still remain in the shafts today) and in 1875 a fire started by a kerosene lamp raged through town destroying 2,000 of the 3,000 buildings. The town rebuilt but by 1878 the silver was all mined out. Today, Virginia City has a population of only a few thousand people. The Gold Hill Hotel was established in 1859 is Nevada’s Oldest Continuous Operating Hotel and the most famous Haunted Hotel on the Comstock. It was originally named the Versey’s Hotel.
PARANORMAL CLAIMS: The ghost of Rosie, believed to be a former prostitute haunts room #4 – reports of strong smell of roses, lights turn on and off, moves personal belongings. The ghost of William thought to be a former hotel manager or one of the dead miners haunts room #5 – reports of cigar tobacco odors, footsteps on the squeaky floor boards. Voices of giggling children are heard in the hallways. The apparition of a elegant woman killed in a carriage accident in the front of the hotel has been seen in the hallways. William’s cigar smell and his apparition have been seen on the winding staircase from the first floor Great Room to the second floor guest rooms.
INVESTIGATION: Wife Rosie (no relation to Rosie the ghost) and daughters Holly and Jacque slept in room #4. Holly recalls being too scared to sleep on the floor in the sleeping bag as she kept imagining a ghost under the antique canopy bed. So she jumped in bed with Rosie and Jacque. Both Room #4 and #5 had outside wooden balconies. Son Shane slept in room #5 with me. Son Matt had been dropped off in Arizona two weeks before as he played college football. Since then we had vacationed all through California and visited many national parks. The family all fell asleep as I waited until midnight when the music, food and bar closed downstairs. At 1pm I walked the silent hallways and took photos. I made my way down to the Great Room which was empty (see photos). I settled into a soft chair with camera and tape recorder. The hotel had no air conditioning as many of my photos show fans everywhere although none were turned on that night. The mountain air was a tad muggy but not uncomfortable. I sat alone, no traffic on the street outside, the entire town and hotel silent. I dozed off briefly. I awoke with a start and immediately felt I was being watched. I slowly raised my camera and began taking photos. This investigation was memorable because it is the only time in any investigation that I physically felt a “cold spot”. The muggy air temperature suddenly became very cold and I felt a cold draft move from my left to my right for about 30 seconds and then disappear. None of my photo’s produced evidence nor did the tape recorder produce any EVP’s. However, the cold sensation and the feeling of being watched makes this investigation special. I remained in the Great Room for ten more minutes and then walked outside and took some photos behind the hotel of where the mine is.
FYI – The Ghost Adventurers TV show had one of their best ever evidence shows at the Gold Hill Hotel and in Virginia City.