The entrance to Calico Ghost Town. Photo credit: Wikipedia.
Calico Ghost Town in the Mojave Desert was once a booming gold rush town and is now a tourist attraction, campground and reportedly a home to several ghosts.
History of Calico, California
A Calico Silver Mining Crew. Photo Credit: Mojave River Valley Museum
Calico, California is a silver mining town from America’s Old West that was established around 1881. It is nestled within the Mojave Desert with the extremely hot and dry weather that comes with it.
Calico rocketed in growth from nothing to just over 3500 people in 1890. At it’s peak the town had a meat market, bars, brothels, five general stores, three hotels, three restaurants and several boarding houses.
Unfortunately for Calico the value of silver was soon to be regulated and the Silver Purchase Act of 1890 drove down the price of silver to the point that mining in the desert conditions of Calico was no longer financially viable.
The decrease in the value of silver led to many abandoning the trade for greener pastures and by 1900 Calico had become a ghost town.
Several efforts were made to revive the town but none were very successful.
In 1950 the town of Calico was purchased by Marvin Knott of Knott’s Berry Farm fame. He turned it into a tourist attraction and then gifted it to the San Bernardino County who incorporated it into their parks system.
The Ghosts of Calico
There are several ghosts said to now reside in the Calico Ghost Town. Many visitors report seeing shadowy figures in the corners of their eyes, feeling tugging on their clothing and unexplained temperature drops. Some have felt touches on their faces and hands when no one else was nearby.
Three of the most famous Ghosts are as follows:
One of Calico Ghost Town’s most famous residents it Lucy Lane. Lucy and her husband John ran one of Calico’s general stores during the town’s boom period. Like many of the towns other residents the Lanes moved away when the town began to decline in order to make a living in another town.
The Lanes missed the town they had known and loved and returned there in 1916 after it had been long abandoned. The couple lived out the remainder of their days in the now quiet surrounds of the Calico Ghost Town.
It seems fitting that her spirit would choose to stay around in Calico after she was so dedicated to the town in her life. Many visitors to Calico have reported seeing Lucy’s spirit walking between the building that was once her home and the general store. She has also been spotted inside both buildings, behind the counter in the general store and even causing the rocking chair to rock back and forth on its own in her old home. She is said to be seen wearing the same beautiful black lace dress she was buried in.
Teachers and Students in the Calico Schoolhouse
Another prominent hotspot for paranormal activity in Calico Ghost Town is the old school house. There is no record of the teachers names but their spirits are frequently seen milling about in the schoolhouse.
Shadowy figures are often seen peering out of the windows of the schoolhouse as if supervising children playing. Visitors often report seeing a red ball of light flickering around inside the schoolhouse.
Some visitors have reported hearing the ghostly footsteps of children running around or playful whispering coming from empty rooms. It seems there is still plenty of activity in the school house if you stay quiet long enough to hear it.
Arguably Calico Ghost Towns most famous resident is Tumbleweed Harris. He was the last Marshal of Calico and it seems he wasn’t ready to retire even in death!
Tumbleweed is often seen walking along the boardwalks of Main Street recognized by his large frame and long white beard. His body is buried in the Calico cemetery where you can stop by and pay you respects. Some have reported feeling a ghostly hand on their shoulder while doing so.
Other Ghosts of Note
There are several other ghostly entities seen around town, including Dorsey, the mail-carrying dog, and an aggressive cowboy spirit said to haunt Hank’s Hotel. A female spirit dubbed Esmeralda is often seen wandering on the outskirts of town wearing a long white dress.
Some other places in Calico where various types of paranormal activity have been reported include Hank’s Hotel, the Calico Corral and Maggie Mine.
Calico Ghost Town Campground
Some of the facilities at Calico Ghost Town Campground
If you want to stay the night and do some ghost hunting you can stay at the Calico Ghost Town Campground. There are rooms, cabins and camping sites available so you can have a comfortable base while you see if you can have your own encounter with Calico’s Ghost population.
Make sure you bring clothes for both hot and cold weather as Calico Ghost town is scorching hot during the day but can be very cold and night time.
Bill Cook’s Ghostly Guide to Calico Ghost Town – Get it on Amazon
Fleshgait: Predatory Mimic in the Woods
A fleshgait is a creature that imitates the voices and appearances of people in the woods, with the intention of luring them away. People who have seen fleshgaits describe them as tall, thin, grey beings with long claws and no hair.
Description of a Fleshgait
Imagine a mysterious creature lurking in the depths of the woods, capable of mimicking human voices and appearances. Meet the fleshgait—a cunning trickster that entices unsuspecting wanderers. Witnesses who have encountered these eerie beings describe them as towering, slender figures, draped in a shroud of grey, with razor-sharp claws and an absence of hair.
Picture this: as you venture into the wilderness, unaware of the lurking danger, the fleshgait slinks in the shadows, perfecting its masquerade. With a supernatural ability to mimic the voices of both people and animals, it skillfully mimics the ones you hold dear, beckoning you deeper into its treacherous domain.
It is widely believed that fleshgaits are dangerous towards humans and often lure them deeper into the woods in order to harm or eat them. Some people also think that fleshgaits are connected to the Missing 411 disappearances, but there is no evidence to support this claim.
The powers of fleshgaits are not fully understood because nobody has witnessed their full capabilities. Based on reports, here are the commonly agreed-upon traits:
Voice Mimicking: Fleshgaits can imitate the voices of both humans and animals. They can only mimic voices and phrases they have heard before. Their calls can be captivating and difficult to resist, even when people know the voice is not from the person they are concerned about.
Super Speed: Fleshgaits are known for their unnaturally fast movement, often disappearing quickly into the woods.
Excessive Strength: Animals found torn apart in areas where fleshgaits are sighted suggest that these creatures possess tremendous strength.
While some reports suggest that fleshgaits can change their shape, not all reports mention this ability. Reports of shape-shifting fleshgaits occur frequently enough for many people to believe in their shape-shifting abilities.
The Lore Lodge covers the the legend of the Fleshgait
Angeles National Forest, California – Alex Reynolds, Sarah Mitchell, and David Thompson, had a heart-stopping encounter with a fleshgait almost ten years ago. Despite the scary moment, these brave explorers managed to come out of it without any harm.
On a sunny afternoon, specifically on July 21st, 2013, the trio set off on an exciting adventure deep into the breathtaking Angeles National Forest. Towering trees and stunning views provided the backdrop for an experience they would never forget.
As they went further into the wilderness, a strange feeling of unease settled over them. It felt like the forest was holding its breath, and they sensed something they couldn’t see. Curiosity pushed them forward, unaware of the terrifying encounter they were about to face.
In the heart of the forest, they heard a voice calling their names from all directions. Confused, they looked at each other, trying to figure out where the calls were coming from.
With fear gripping them, the hikers cautiously followed the enchanting yet unsettling voices. Suddenly, in a sunny spot, they saw the fleshgait appear. It was tall and slender, with eerie eyes that seemed to shine from another world. Its appearance matched what others had described—a tall and thin creature with pale skin that stood out against the green forest.
Surprisingly, the fleshgait showed no signs of wanting to harm them. Instead, it seemed curious and watched them with an enigmatic gaze. The hikers watched in both awe and fear, their hearts racing with a mix of emotions.
After a few intense moments, the creature vanished into the forest, disappearing quickly as if it were never there. The hikers were left bewildered but relieved that nothing bad had happened. They hurried back to civilization, eager to share their extraordinary story.
How to Know A Fleshgait is Near
Here are some signs that suggest that a Fleshgait may be nearby:
You hear someone calling your name, but it’s not the person you know. For example, a woman heard her “mother” calling for help in the woods, even though she knew her real mother was far away. Despite the strange voice, she felt a strong urge to follow it. Later, she heard chattering noises and realized something was wrong. She barely escaped.
Your group feels like it has more people than before. People often sense an “extra person” around them before a fleshgait attack.
You see claws wrapped around a tree or a very thin figure that doesn’t look human. Many people witness them with their hands wrapped around trees or standing nearby. Some even describe them as resembling the character Gollum from Lord of the Rings.
There are reports of animals being killed in unusual ways or strange disappearances happening nearby. This makes sense because fleshgaits are predators.
The forest suddenly becomes quiet and eerily still. This often means there’s a predator nearby and creates a feeling of panic in the woods.
Your “friend” starts acting strangely and doesn’t sound like themselves.
If you notice any of these signs, it’s a good idea to trust your instincts and make a quick exit from the area.
How to Avoid a Fleshgait Attack
Fleshgaits are believed to be attracted to bright colors so it may be wise to wear more dull colors when adventuring in the woods.
Have you ever seen a Fleshgait? Tell us about it in the comments.
One of the Belmez Faces.
In 1971, strange stains in the shape of human faces started appearing on the kitchen floor of a house in Bélmez de La Moraleda, a little village in Andalusia, Spain.
The Story of the Bélmez Faces
Another Belmez Face
Back in August 1971, María Gómez Cámara noticed a weird stain forming on her kitchen floor. It soon transformed into a creepy face, and to her surprise, the stain seemed to move around.
María tried to remove it, but nothing worked. Her husband and son even tried destroying it with a pick-axe and re-cementing the floor, but it came back a week later, along with more faces.
News of the “house of faces” spread quickly, attracting many curious visitors who wanted to witness this mysterious phenomenon for themselves. Parapsychology experts arrived and considered it a great mystery. They even claimed to have recorded strange voices in the house.
A local urban legend began to spread claiming that skeletons were found buried under the floor during an investigation.
Eventually, a new floor was made, and people thought the faces were gone for good. However, just two weeks later, a different face started appearing, surprising everyone once again.
By Easter of 1972, a large number of people were visiting the house to witness the faces. The Pereira family continued to claim that new faces kept appearing for the next 30 years. These faces were of both men and women, and they varied in shapes, sizes, and expressions.
Investigations into the Belmez Faces
The main researchers involved in the Bélmez case were Hans Bender and Germán de Argumosa. They worked together in Bélmez and Freiburg in the early 1970s when the alleged phenomena began. Surprisingly, neither Bender nor de Argumosa published an official report on their findings.
Bender only mentioned the case briefly in his journal, Zeitschrift für Parapsychologie. He did make some references to the case in his lectures, particularly mentioning the sealing of certain areas of the floor where faces were forming, using transparent plastic material. He stated that slight changes in the faces’ appearance during this sealed period, as documented by a notary, supported their paranormal origin.
In 2014, a TV show called Cuarto Milenio, hosted by Iker Jiménez, conducted a technical analysis to investigate the possibility of a hoax related to the Bélmez faces. The research was carried out by José Javier Gracenea, a chemical engineering doctor and general manager of Medco, along with Luis Alamancos, a forensic criminalist who served as the chairman of Gabinete Pericial Inpeval and director of the Spanish Institute of Applied Criminalistics. Alamancos was later honored with the European Police Cross of Honor.
With the permission of the house owner, Gracenea collected samples from the faces and analyzed them. His conclusion was that the images “were not created with paint” and that there was no evidence of external manipulation or added elements based on scientific knowledge and analysis techniques.
Alamancos attempted to replicate similar images using various methods that had been considered valid in previous investigations, including concrete solvents, hydrochloric acid, and silver nitrate. However, he failed to reproduce the faces and concluded that he was utterly perplexed by the phenomenon.
Skepticism about the Belmez Faces
Super Horror Bro covers the Belmez Faces
According to skeptical investigator Joe Nickell, the Bélmez Faces were intentionally fabricated, and he believes that the faces had a very unprofessional and amateurish appearance in their design.
Similarly, Brian Dunning from Skeptoid has written that investigations revealed the faces were actually painted onto the concrete floor, initially using paint and later with acid. Dunning also suggests that the woman residing in the house was involved in perpetrating a hoax on the public, potentially for financial gain.
In a journal article published in July 1993, Luis Ruiz-Noguez discussed the presence of three pigments commonly used in paint manufacturing: zinc, lead, and chromium. Based on this, Ruiz-Noguez suggested that the use of paint should be considered when it comes to the Bélmez faces, particularly with the suspicion of lead being involved. Here are the reasons he provided:
Lead was commonly used as a pigment for primary colors for a long time.
The analysis showed that the amount of chromium present was too low to be a likely option.
Lead tends to create dark and hard-to-see colorations, unlike chromium.
The most common and inexpensive primary colors are enamels that contain lead, which are widely used in homes because they are easy to apply.
However, Ruiz-Noguez also mentioned some objections to the hypothesis of paint being used based on the ICV (inorganic chemical values) samples. These objections include the fact that alkydalic-type enamels are not resistant to abrasion, paint leaves a visible film that is easily distinguishable from the surface it is applied on, and alkydalic enamels have low chemical tolerance to acids, alkalis, and detergents.
What do you think caused the faces to appear in Belmez? Let us know in the comments.
If you enjoyed learning about the Belmez Faces you might also be interested in other ghostly faces such as the SS Watertown Ghost Faces or faces appearing in an airplane oven on Flight 401.
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