Mythical Monday: Visiting a Haunted Hotel by Mae Clair

One of the ponds in the TNT Area of West Virginia

One of the ponds in the TNT Area of West Virginia

Those of you who follow my blog regularly know that I recently took a trip to Point Pleasant, West Virginia in order to continue researching my Mothman series of novels. This time, I was able to garner a much better understanding of how the “TNT AREA” is laid out, and visited a few specific locations I wanted to see. Originally used to store munitions in World War II, the TNT is now a wildlife management area that encompasses over 3600 acres. Riddled among dense woodlands, overgrown trails and algae-covered ponds is a network of concrete “igloos” where ammunition was once stored. These are built into hillsides, and covered by trees and grass, making them invisible when viewed from the air.

There are several roads connected to the TNT that I really didn’t have a feel for, including one where cars have been known to shut down or stall for no reason. After visiting, I now understand how they intersect, and was even able to snap a photo of a map for the TNT at the Mothman Museum (yes, there is one). The museum has recently moved to a new building, and it’s far nicer than before. Hubby and I chatted with the guy who runs it for a while, and I was able to pick up some good info and another map.

Metal fencing in front of the site of the old North Power Plant in the TNT area, West Virginia

Site of the old north power plant in the TNT

I also wanted to see the ruins of the North Power Plant along Fairgrounds Road. This is the location where the Mothman was first sighted in 1966. The power plant is gone but I was able to snap of photo of the ruins and location where it stood.

So what does any of this have to do with staying at a haunted hotel?

During my last trip to Point Pleasant, my husband and I stayed across the river in Gallipolis, Ohio. This time we stayed in downtown Point Pleasant in the Historic Lowe Hotel. This is a very old four-story behemoth built in 1904. As I have an old hotel in my novels, I wanted to get a feel for this one.

The owners were super friendly and the location put almost everything I wanted to do within walking distance (except the TNT). I can’t begin to relay the scope of this place—it was mammoth. With its long halls, old stairways, elaborate moldings and woodwork, there were times I felt like I stepped into the Overlook hotel in The Shining. Everything was furnished with antiques, and I do mean antiques—as if nothing had ever been changed. I opened the top drawer on the dresser and discovered an old songbook from the 1940s, the pages yellowed and tattered, inside. The sink in the bathroom had separate faucets for hot and cold water. I can’t even remember the last time I saw a sink like that. The second floor landing had a huge parlor with a piano, parlor benches and chairs, this even before we ventured down the hallway to our room.

So where does the ghost fit in? When I inquired why the hotel was billed as haunted (something I didn’t realize until our last night there), our host told us that a phantom had been seen occasionally on the third floor. Nothing much appeared to be known about this ghost but there was a picture someone had snapped hanging in the second floor hallway. Our host told us the spirit was visible in the photo so my husband and I checked it out. I wasn’t expecting a lot, but have to admit, the image of someone is definitely visible in the bottom right hand corner. I tried to grab a shot of it with my phone. Are you able to see the ghost?

Framed photo of ghost rumored to haunt the Lowe Hotel in West Virginia, apparition visible on right

Framed photo of ghost rumored to haunt the Lowe Hotel in West Virginia, apparition visible on right

We left the next morning without having encountered any spirits or experiencing anything that went bump-in-the-night (er, not that I would want to). No Mothman, no UFOs, no men-in-black. But I did meet some great people and came away with additional research notes on an interesting, historic town.

39 thoughts on “Mythical Monday: Visiting a Haunted Hotel by Mae Clair

  1. I didn’t see the apparition in the corner, but when I blew it up I’d swear I saw a man standing in the archway wearing a white button-down shirt. Oddly enough, I never meant to blow it up; the computer did it on its on. Oooooh…

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    • After reading through everyone’s replies, I wonder if there is more than one ghost in this photo. I never saw a man in the photo, but it appears others have. I see a woman with poofy hair in an old-fashioned white dress. She’s standing in profile on the right hand side near the bottom. Very cool to hear many see something different! Thanks for sharing, Sue!

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  2. I can see him. A dark haired man. He appears to have a moustache and there is something odd about his neck, as if his hands were clasped around his throat.
    What a fascinating place to visit. I’ll look forward to the story that uses this inspiration. Great post, Mae.

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    • How odd about his neck, Daisy. I can’t see him, but I know others have commented that they see him, too. Perhaps both the man and the woman in this photo were connected somehow. Thanks for sharing what you were able to see. It puts a whole new spin on this photograph!

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  3. What a fun trip that had to be. I wish hubby was into that kind of stuff.

    I see the image. At first, I thought it was a woman, but when I looked closely with the picture bigger, I see the man with the mustache. 🙂

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    • Drat! I don’t see him. He must be there, though. Too many others see him, too. You’re one who was able to see both, Lauralynn!

      And, I have to admit, my husband really isn’t into any of my weird research. but he indulges me. Given the drive was (only) six-and-a-half hours and he’s retired, he didn’t mind the excursion. I was the one who had to take off work, LOL!

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  4. I think it’s awesome you got to go visit the place where your series is set. I don’t know if I could get my husband to be so good about my writing. I see a woman in an old fashioned dress in the lower left hand corner. I’m supposed to be looking in the right hand corner but I didn’t see anything. I think I’ll blow it up like others have done. Or should I?! Going back I see a man’s profile. Freaky!

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    • A woman in the left hand corner wearing an old-fashioned dress is definitely a new one, Mary. I see the woman as you’ve described, but I see her in the lower right hand corner. How curious. If you double click the image it will enlarge on the screen. I did that but still can’t see the man with the mustache.

      And, hey, it’s great to have you drop in! 🙂

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  5. Your trips sounds fabulous. Even if you met no Mothman or UFOs you had the”feel”of the place. And who knows, likely the Mothman waited to see what was your intention.
    I like the description of the old hotel and comparing it with the one in The Shining, my all time favorite in horror genre. Like Craig and the ladies who commented after him I see a woman in the lower right corner of the photo. And the kind people you met can easily become characters in another captivating novel

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    • I see the same woman, Carmen. She seems so clear to me in the photo. You know I just realized, I forgot to ask when the picture was taken and by whom.

      And you are so right about getting a “feel” for Point Pleasant. It was my whole reason for visiting a second time. Sadly, the area is somewhat depressed, but there is a lot of history there, much dating back to pre-revolutionary times. And, of course, the Mothman and UFOs. Definitely a unique combination for a small river town!

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  6. Right off the bat I see a woman’s profile in the bottom right corner. Her hair is up and she is wearing an old fashioned dress and earrings. She appears in a style of the late 1800’s. There is also a man looking in through the doorway. Something about him makes me think he’s younger than the lady.

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    • Thanks, Stanalei. It was my second time visiting Point Pleasant, and I was able to make a good deal of notes. I loved being able to experience the area first hand!

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  7. I see the woman on the lower right of the photo. Even after enlarging the picture, I still didn’t see the man. It’s just as well, I’ll be checking out dark corners now looking for people that shouldn’t be there.

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    • LOL! You sound like me, Alicia. So intriguing to read about this stuff, but I certainly don’t want to encounter anything first-hand! And I blew up the photo too, and didn’t see the man, just the woman in the bottom right. I wonder if that means she was the stronger presence of the two. Thanks so much for commenting!

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    • I’ve been hearing from others telling me they see multiple images, too. I can’t get pass the woman in the woman in the white dress who was visible for me immediately. Weird, but I can’t see any of the other images. I think it’s very cool that you and others can!

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  8. It’s funny how people see different things. I saw the woman in white at the bottom right, but if I look long enough, who knows what I can conjure up. LOL
    sherry @ fundinmental

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    • Agreed, Sherry. I was showing it to some people on my phone last night and they were all seeing different things, although for most, the woman in white stood out as the most prominent. Thanks for visiting and commenting!

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  9. Oh I’m late to the party!! (My mom had surgery yesterday so hospital all day yesterday, today etc etc….) but I so enjoyed this post! I am also enjoying the Myth and Magic book tour and hope to catch up if I can just find two minutes to call my own… 😀

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    • Oh, I’m so sorry to hear about your mom, Debbie. Take care of her and take care of yourself. I’m glad you enjoyed the post and my Myth tour (I’ve got a more detailed one coming up in October for the Halloween theme). Crossing my fingers things settle down for you soon!

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  10. Did you ever venture up to the third floor to see if you could catch a glimpse, or even a cold breath of air, of the ghost? I’ve never been anywhere “haunted”. Not sure I want to; there’s the curious part of me, but then there’s the scaredy-cat part 🙂

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    • Julie, I admit I didn’t want to go up to the third floor (the hotel actually has four stories). If I had known the hotel was haunted before booking, I probably wouldn’t have stayed there. This is the second haunted hotel I’ve stayed in, learning about the ghosts, after the fact. I love writing spooky stuff, but in real life I’m pretty much a scaredy-cat, too! 🙂

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  11. Creepy and cool photo.
    I’ve love to visit a haunted hotel for the atmosphere and setting, but I wouldn’t mind if the ghosts stayed away on the night of my stay.

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  12. Pingback: Ghost Hunting and Haunted Houses -

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