The Palmer House Hotel
When the old Sauk Centre House, the town's first hotel, burned to the ground on June 26, 1900, a feeling of relief came over the townspeople. The delighted citizenry spoke among themselves, “Now at last, perhaps the town can have a first class hotel.” Then, in 1901, Ralph L. Palmer and Christena J. Palmer built The Palmer House Hotel. And, it was a first class hotel! They lived there with their children Hazel Palmer and Carlisle R. Palmer. Christena's mother and brother, George Brandner, also worked at the hotel.
Modern for its day, The Palmer House was the first building in Sauk Centre with electricity. Salesmen traveling by rail regularly used the hotel for business meetings and relaxation. The hotel soon became the cornerstone of Sauk Centre's downtown area and served as a gathering place for the now-content locals. Nobel Prize winner Sinclair Lewis referred to the hotel as the Minniemashie House in his 1920 novel, Main Street.
Palmer’s Hotel is indeed one of the most haunted places in Minnesota, and has reports dating back to the 50’s. There are various unexplained things happening in the hotel which makes for great horror stories. The current owner of the Palmer House is Kelley Freese. She has owned the house for more than a decade. Freese was not a believer herself, until she came into possession of the house.
Kelley Freese didn't know that the Palmer was famous for its ghostly guests when she took over in 2002. Since then, she's come to believe her business is some kind of transit hub for the dearly departed. "Psychics say there's hundreds there," she says. "They come and go." Spirits glide through the pub, books fly from shelves, and furniture and place settings rearrange themselves.
One little boy has been seen repeatedly, sitting on a step in the hallway with his ball. He's most commonly seen by other children, though adult guests sometimes complain they were kept up by a child laughing and playing outside their door. Freese says she's heard this more than once on nights when the rest of hotel was vacant. Of all the rooms in the hotel, room 11 and room 17 are reportedly the most active. A newlywed couple were staying in room 17, when one night the wife woke up suddenly to see a lanky man dressed in 1920′s-30′s clothing standing at the foot of the bed.
The Palmer House Hotel also offers Haunt Investigation Packages
The Palmer House Hotel
500 Sinclair Lewis Avenue
Sauk Centre, Minnesota 56378
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