Happy Halloween from the Downtown Castle Rock Alliance & Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum!
The Downtown Alliance has paired up with the Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum to share some of Downtown Castle Rocks spookiest stories. Get in the Halloween Spirit and check out our interview with Angie Deleo, Director of the Castle Rock Museum.
How long has the Castle Rock Ghost Tour been going on? When will the tours be offered?
This is the second year that we have offered the “Ghost Tour and Tragic Tales of Castle Rock”. We tried it last year for the first time and had an overwhelming response. We scheduled three tours, but one had to be cancelled due to bad weather. We are offering five tours this year, every Thursday evening in October. We just added a sixth tour on Friday October 30th at 6:30pm because the other tours are full. Call the museum at 303-814-3164 if you would like to take the tour. We do not charge for the tours, but we do accept donations.
What is Castle Rock’s oldest building?
Castle Rock’s oldest building is the City Hotel on Perry St. It was built by the second mayor of Castle Rock, Thomas Harris, and his brother John. The hotel was built in the little town of New Memphis, near the site of the Douglas County Justice Center today. In 1874, when Castle Rock won the election to become the county seat of Douglas County, Harris was persuaded to move the hotel to Castle Rock. In 1875 the hotel was advertised, as well as, situated in Castle Rock one block from the new Denver & Rio Grande Railroad Depot. His business, which included a saloon, was successful and he became a respected member of the community such that he became the second mayor. Unfortunately, a few years later he was killed by a runaway steer on a town street. The building operated as a hotel/boarding house into the 1980’s. It was later divided into several apartments. The building was landmarked by the Town of Castle Rock in 1998 due to its architectural integrity and historic significance to the founding of Castle Rock.
What is your favorite old story or ghost tale in Castle Rock?
My favorite ghost tale is Victoria Christensen, Victoria’s House, now the Chamber of Commerce on Jerry street. St. Victoria inherited the house from her parents and remained there when she married her first husband. Unfortunately, he was killed in an accident. She later married Thorwald Christensen and the couple remained in the house. The story I have been told is that there is still a presence in the house, apparently Victoria, snoring can be heard, things moved, and the phone rings but no one is there. Of all the ghost stories I have heard, all Castle Rock ghosts seem to be good-natured, but may not adapt well to change.
What is a unique or tragic tale in Castle Rock that most people do not know?
A sad story that most people do not know is about the Sobey family, Robert and Eva. They were a young couple with two children. Robert developed a kidney disease that caused dizziness and nausea. He liked to hike up Castle Rock. Unfortunately, one day he fell from the rock and was killed. Eva, who had been the deputy county clerk, felt that she needed a larger salary to take care of her family and took a job in Denver. She took the train each day to her job. One November day she came home on the train in a terrible blizzard. The Santa Fe depot agent begged her to stay, but she wanted to get home to her children. Because the bridge from the Santa Fe depot to 3rd street was no longer available, she had a long walk home. She never made it home and the next day family members found her buried under deep snow.
What is the Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum’s favorite way to celebrate Halloween?
In the past few years, we have had a great time participating in Treat Street. This year we have decorated the museum and conducted as many tours as we can. In addition to the Ghost and Tragic Tales tour we have conducted our annual history tour of Cedar HIll Cemetery on October 10. The Castle Rock Museum is located at 420 Elbert St. It is open from 12 to 5 Wednesday through Friday and 11 to 4pm on Saturday.