Guided historic daytime tours of the Mineral Springs Mall, one of the most haunted locations in one of America's most haunted small towns! Guided historic daytime tours of the most haunted locations in this century old treasure include stories of the spirits and visits to the iconic pool, grand banquet hall, second floor rooms, the infamous ‘Jasmine Lady’ staircase, the haunted artist mural and also includes admission to the Historic Museum of Torture Devices.
Operating as usual
A little history on our Grand Dame!
MINERAL SPRINGS HOTEL OPENS WITHOUT FANFARE
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 27, 1914
106 years ago
With no ceremony whatever, the different departments of the new Mineral Springs Hotel in Alton will be put into operation. The first dinner will be served in the hotel tomorrow evening at six o'clock, and after that it is expected that other things will follow along until within another week the entire hotel will be running full blast. The first departments of the new hotel were opened today when the bar and the barber shop were put into operation this morning. After the first meal is served tomorrow evening, arrangements will be made for letting out the rooms. It is expected that the first rooms will be opened to the public about Monday, when the clerk's office will be established in the hotel. Sometime about the middle of the week, the swimming pool and the bath features of the hotel will be put into operation. Notwithstanding the fact that the hotel is one of the best and most modern equipped in this part of the country, there will be no ceremony about the opening. Each department will be put in operation as soon as it has been completed.
The mechanics who are putting the finishing touches on the interior of the building have been working many hours overtime to have it in condition for service next week. Even today while hundreds of people are inspecting the interior of the building, the workmen are busy putting on the finishing touches. Some of the rooms are completed now, but they will not be thrown open to the public until next week, at which time all of them will have been completed.
The new hotel will be conducted under the management of August Ratz, who was in charge of the Illini Hotel at Alton before M. G. Baker took charge of it. Mr. Ratz told a reporter for the Telegraph this afternoon that a number of applications had been made for rooms, and he expected to have the building filled soon after it was opened.
Thomas Hawkins, who did the plastering, says that the job was the biggest by far, that has ever been done in the city of Alton. He has not finished, as he must wait to do the stucco work on the south side until such a time as the weather cools off a bit. He says it would be impossible to do this work with present weather conditions.
August and Herman Luer began the construction on their Mineral Springs Hotel in 1913. It was located at the southeast corner of Broadway and Alton Streets in Alton. The architects for the hotel were Helfensteller, Hirsch and Watson of St. Louis. The original building was of brick and terra cotta, and was triangular shaped - 200 feet on Alton Street, 75 feet on Broadway, and 100 feet on Front Street. It was two stories in height on Broadway, and three stories on Front Street.
During construction of the hotel, a mineral spring was discovered, and this was developed into mineral baths. An Alton plumber, P. C. Kortkamp, suffered severe hiccoughs that disabled him to the point of being unable to work. He sought help from doctors to no avail. Finally, he was told to try drinking the mineral water recently discovered at the Luer Brothers property. He agreed, and began taking sips of the water, since the hiccoughs and the spasms that followed were so violent, it was impossible to take a long drink. In ten hours, the hiccoughs ceased completely.
The hotel included a restaurant and saloon, 80 hotel rooms, swimming pool with Turkish and mineral baths, a telephone for each room, summer roof gardens, and a beautiful view of the river. Ratz stated that the water from the artesian well in the hotel was similar to sea water, with medical properties of unquestionable value. The pool had water running in and out at all times. Three inlet pipes kept the mineral spring water bubbling, while water flowed out when it reached a certain depth. A rule was made that no woman was allowed to enter the pool who did not have a pair of stockings on as part of her swimming outfit. There were specific times for men, women, and children to swim separately. James Coleman, a young man from Alton, was in charge of the pool and gave swimming lessons.
The hotel was popular in its day, but closed in 1971 after the addition of a ballroom on a lower level failed to attract more business. The building still stands, and contains a variety of businesses.
Monday thru Friday through the end of May you can investigate Mineral Springs 5pm to Midnight for $200! Must be a Family Unit so we can stay in compliance with social distancing rules.
Call 618 717 0546 to book. Cash or Check only.
riverbender.com ALTON - Take a journey on the infamous Underground Railroad in Alton during a series of two-hour guided shuttle tours scheduled throughout the spring an
FREE DEAD OF WINTER FESTIVAL - FEBRUARY 8!
Join us for the annual Dead of Winter event at the Mineral Springs Hotel in Alton! FREE admission with donation of canned good / non-perishable item for local food banks! Ghosts, hauntings, and the unexplained at one of the most haunted locations in Alton, Illinois!
Morrison's Irish Pub
There is so much history here in Alton IL, Morrison’s Irish pub included. The building we are housed in was built in 1865 and started as the First National Bank of Alton. Many other business’s have opened here over the years and we have been fortunate to meet some of the previous owners and hear their stories. We know the building has been a bank, florist, retail store, supply store, antique store, art store, hardware store, and many others between. We are located by so many historical landmarks like the confederate prison, which we believe is where the stone to build our basement came from, the area where Elijah P. Lovejoy, a famous abolitionist was murdered and his printing press destroyed, the Alton glass factory, Lincoln Lofts, once called the Franklin House Hotel where Abraham Lincoln once dined and is rumored to have stayed, and the Great River Road, that many love to explore with its dramatic cliff drops. There is so much more history and so much to explore. We are proud here at Morrison’s to continue and hopefully be a part of Alton’s historical legacy. Sláinte!
#morrisonsirishpub #altonillinois #ouralton #historicaltown #connectwithhistory #irishpub #historyofalton #historicalplace #historicalbuilding
Great Rivers & Routes
Alton, Illinois played a vital role in helping slaves make connections to freedom. Discover this history: RiversandRoutes.com/shuttle
Another great place to experience in Alton! Love our McPike Family!
Doors open 1pm Friday and 4pm Saturday.
Benefits Oasis Womens Shelter!
Much Love Marshall!
Happy Trails is right around the corner! Get your tickets here!
Stay Tuned! It's Raining Zen will be giving away 2 VIP Tickets to this event! Locals, supporting locals! It is what we do! Congratuations to Season Two, Richel Stratton and Brian Murray!
Hi Friends....stay tuned...It's Raining Zen will be giving away 2 VIP Tickets to this event! Locals supporting locals! It is what we do! Congratuations to Season Two, Richel Stratton and Brian Murray!
eventbrite.com Help us raise money for Suicide Awareness
Madison County ILGenWeb
ORDINANCE BARS WOMEN FROM PATRONIZING ALTON SALOONS
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 9, 1909
110 years ago
After ten days’ time, when the new wine room ordinance takes effect, no woman can get a drink or be entertained in any licensed saloon or any room connected therewith, upstairs or downstairs, without the proprietor being subject to a $25 fine, and for second offense the revocation of his license is the penalty. The ordinance, which was passed unanimously under suspension of the rules, is as follows, in effect:
“It shall be unlawful for any person, persons or corporation engaged in the business of selling at wholesale or retail spirituous, vinous or malt liquors, to permit any female, married or single, to be entertained therein or in any room connected with the building in which liquors are sold, either by side entrance leading to or connecting with the same by stairways to upper room, nor shall wines or beers, or liquors of any kind be furnished to any female connected therewith.”
The ordinance was made as drastic as possible to abate a tendency toward evil that required some firm controlling power to restrain it. As stated last evening, there was no wine room ordinance in the city revised ordinances, it having been omitted through oversight and the new ordinance is the strictest one that has ever been in force.
Always something to learn!
THE LAURA BUILDING IS NAMED
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 8, 1896
123 years ago
Captain Huntington Smith, owner of the new post office building, has decided to name it the "Laura Building" in honor of his noble wife, Mrs. Laura Griswold Smith, who is a lady of high musical talents, a celebrity in those circles in St. Louis. Contractor Weld went to St. Louis yesterday to procure the joists for the third story of the building, which will now be pushed to completion as rapidly as possible.
The Laura Building is located at the southeast corner of Market and Broadway in Alton. The original building on this property was a frame structure, constructed in 1829 by Beal Howard, in which a hotel was located. It began as the Union Hotel, and the name later changed to the Virginia House and then the Central Hotel. The hotel was destroyed by fire. In 1846, the First Presbyterians constructed a brick edifice on the site. They were located there until 1896, when Captain Huntington Smith, a St. Louis realtor, purchased the property. He added a third story, and named it the Laura Building in honor of his wife, and leased the building to the post office and other offices. A fourth floor was added in 1908. Later, businesses such as the Faulstich Cigar Store, Lake View College of Commerce, Y.M.C.A., and Brown’s Business College were located in the building. The building still stands.
Beal Howard, who originally constructed the frame building on the property in 1829, arrived in Alton with his brother, Charles, in August 1829. They settled in a small log home at the northeast corner of Broadway and Market Streets. He then purchased the property at the southeast corner of Market and Broadway, and erected the Union Hotel. There, he and Charles began holding religious services, with Charles as the preacher. Beal then erected a four-room brick house (the first in Alton), on the east side of Market Street, third door north of the corner of Broadway and Market. It was in this house that Beal raised his children. This home was later owned by Uttell Smith and later, Timothy L. Waples. It was razed in 1904.
Beal Howard was one of the founders of the Protestant Methodist Church in Alton, and aided in erecting a small stone church at Easton and 4th Streets. There he was an active member until it was disbanded, after which he connected himself with the Baptist Church. Beal died in August 1874, and is buried in the Upper Alton Oakwood Cemetery.
1. The First Presbyterian Church, southeast corner of Market and Broadway. This building was later remodeled into the Laura Building.
2. The Laura Building, c. 1915.
3. The Laura Building, which then housed the Faulstitch Cigar and Billiards and the Lake View College of Commerce.
4. The Laura Building today.
Madison County ILGenWeb
GRAND THEATER HAS BIG OPENING
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 4, 1920
99 years ago
The new Grand Theater at Market and Third Streets was opened to the public at 2 o'clock this afternoon. The day could hardly have been more discouraging for an event of the kind. The management of the theater was unwilling to see anything bad in the outlook, as he was confidently expecting a big business on the opening day, regardless of weather conditions. He felt that the public would turn out to see the new playhouse regardless.
The finishing touches were still being put on the place up to the time of opening. Little details here and there remained to be finished. The lighting arrangement in the front was the most important work that had to be finished up, the management having planned for a perfect blaze of light on the front of the Grand. The new manager said that Market Street is not very well illuminated otherwise, and he intends to make it light as day. A good program of pictures had been arranged for the afternoon and evening. As recognition of the opening there were some handsome floral pieces sent by friends of the owners and the management with their best wishes, and the new theater looked like a flower shop. The new theater has a big orchestra which made its bow to the Alton public today, and which will be in service constantly.
The owners and managers of the theater believe that the desire for amusements in Alton is ever on the increase, and they think that the Grand will enjoy steady popularity. The handsome floral offerings sent by friends attracted much attention, due to their great beauty. Among the pieces received were many from St. Louis friends to Manager Oberstolz. Flowers were received from Alton Brick Company, Board of Directors, Alton Evening Telegraph, Princess Theater, J. J. Rielley, owner, George Palmer Electric Company, H. H. Unterbrink, Famous Players, Universal Film, Standard, Krug's Floral, and the Alton Daily Times. Miss Bertha Edwards, assisted by Mrs. W. A. Clark of Ouatoga Theater, was in the ticket office selling tickets. Francis Mills was at the door. Berg Plummer's Orchestra was a big feature of the opening. Fred Boem was stage manager. The Misses Nellie Neil, Julia Selhime, Helen Thomas, Ruth Simpson, Vera Kimmel, Velva Wheeler, Eunice Crouse and Vera Herman were the ushers. The Western Military Academy attended in a body, and were the first to enter the Theater.
The Grand Theater was constructed in 1920 at a cost of $150,000, by a group of Alton business men who formed the Alton Amusement Company. The theater was located at the southwest corner of Third and Market Streets, where the old Crescent Theater once stood. The theater went up so quickly, that the bricks from the Alton Paving & Fire Brick Company were still warm when they arrived. The sign for the Grand theater included 700 light bulbs, and at the time, was the largest in Alton.
The original opening day was to be on Thanksgiving Day, but the opening was delayed because the theater was not yet finished. The Grand officially opened on December 4, 1920, and included a live orchestra. The feature film was “The Sin That was His,” with William Faversham. The price of admission was 20 cents for adults, and 10 cents for children. Box seats were 50 cents.
The Grand closed in 1977, but was used as a haunted attraction in the 1990s. The building still stands today. Plans are being made for the renovation of the theater by the owner – Alton attorney John Simmons. A New Year’s Eve party was held at the Grand in December 2018, and will be held again on December 31, 2019.
1. The Grand Theater in Alton.
2. Interior of the Grand Theater.
3. Clarence Kulp, manager of the Grand.
4. Opening night ad from the Alton Evening Telegraph.
Go Haunted Roads Media Team! A well deserved award, Mike!
WE WON! At Shockfest Film Festival Vegas Haunted Road Media won the award for Excellent Media In The Paranormal Field!Having this award presented by Johnny Zaffis was an absolute honor! Thanks so much to all of those at Shockfest for the amazing job they do and including the paranormal this year in their festival (Matt Rosvally and Guil Claveria you guys rock!), for all of those that support Haunted Road Media, all the HRM authors, my co-hostess Vanessa Hogle, and most of all Shana Wankel for all of the support and being my partner in crime with HRM! And thanks to Nicole Guillaume for helping me out at the event this weekend. Also... to all of those who have had a paranormal experience and people thought you were crazy... you are not alone and this is for you!
Great team to investigate with!
my.cheddarup.com D&M Paranormal is turning 5 in May of 2020! We are celebrating with a public event and various activities to raise money for The Lost Limbs Foundation. Event Tickets will be sold for $30.00 each. Raffle Tickets are 1 for $5.00 or 5 for $20.00. Winner will gain entry for 2 people to the May 2nd event...
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|Sunday||12:00 - 17:00|
Mineral Springs Haunted Tour offers the best paranormal tours in Alton. Come with us and explore the city's rich history and its ghostly inhabitants.
See what Alton, IL is offering with these exciting photography tours. Tours last 3-4 hours with a variety of tours, transportation and price packages
The official tourism portal to Great #RiversAndRoutes of Southwest Illinois! Your new favorite getaway starts here: http://RiversAndRoutes.com .
Alton Hauntings is the Award-Winning tour that offers the Real Story behind the History & Hauntings of "One of the Most Haunted Small Towns in America!"
Kerry is an independent rock star travel designer who knows the best beaches, packages, restaurants, hotels, tours, & honeymoons at the best prices - and handles everything for you. You don't have to pay for her services, because the suppliers do!
EAGLE 1 TRUCKING LLC IS A WELL ESTABLISHED DUMP TRUCK BUSINESS IN THE ALTON IL AREA WE CAN HAUL COMMERCIAL OR RESIDENTIAL ANYWERE CALL 618-917-5677 anytime
Ghost Camps are held on lands that have a macabre history or some paranormal activity reported on them. Campers are challenged to spend the night.
This is one of the pages for ghost tours owned and run by Alixandria Andrews. It is NOT a page for the website of the same name.
Come to historic Alton Illinois. MaryAnn Warmack,certified tour guide can show you what Alton has to offer.