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The Ghosts of Mineral Springs Mall in Alton, Illinois
Mineral Springs Mall was once a hotel known for it's Mineral Pools. It opened in 1914 and was owned by August and Herman Luer. It was once said to have the largest swimming pool in Illinois. Guests could rent room upstairs and go down stairs for a dip in the famous mineral water filled pools. Two pools were at this location, the men's pool and the women's pool. The water was thought to have healing powers and eventually water was being sent to buyers from far a way. A man named "Doc" Furlong organized hydrotherapy baths. Though his methods were questionable, Doc had many satisfied customers.
August Luer sold the hotel in 1926 but people still flocked here until the 1950s or so. The hotel closed for good in the 1971. It later opened as an Antique Mall and once again people were talking about Mineral Springs, but not about it's mineral water cures, but of murder and ghosts.
The Man In the Pool
The story of this ghost began in the 1920’s, at the height of the hotel's fame. One evening, people gathered at Mineral Springs for a pool party. One of the couples who was attending the party had an unstable relationship. Mostly because the husband had an eye for other women. All evening he danced and flirted with a number of young women. Eventually his wife couldn't take it anymore and in a fit of rage, she began screaming accusations at him. He laughed at her and he even tried to brush off her accusations. So she took off her shoe and hit him in the face with it. Blood poured from his his face and he stumbled over into the water. Whether he went unconscious from the blow to his face, or he was just a bad swimmer, we do not know. Before anyone realized what was happening, the man had slipped under the water and had drowned. What became of his wife is unknown. Another story is that he didn't fall into the water, but was pushed by his jealous wife.
In the years after the tragic event, and after the hotel closed down, people began to see a man dressed in black around the pool, and in other lower parts of the building. Many say that his ghost is angry and menacing.
People say that revenge may be his reason for staying behind at this location. According to some people, he is waiting at the pool for the return of his wife’s spirit. People believe that when he finally finds her, he intends to push her into the pool and kill her the same way he was killed.
Cassandra is thought to be the ghost of an 11 year old little girl, and is also said to haunt the pool. Her story is that during a pool party for her 11th birthday, somehow little Cassandra drowned in the pool.No one knows if she fell, or somehow slipped under the water unnoticed. Many visitors have left her toys in the pool where she died. It is said she takes marbles form the trays that are left there and will leave them in various places around the building. As if she's playing some sort of game.
The Drunk Artist
The story behind this ghost is that he was a struggling artist named Charlie living at the hotel. In exchange for being unable to pay his rent, he was asked to paint a mural of the city of Alton in the lobby. Before he could finish it, he died reportedly hung himself. His ghost is said to haunt what was formally the hotel bar, but is now an Antique store. The mural remains in the lobby to this day unfinished.
People who have encounter this ghost say he isn't frightening, and that he appears drunk and that they can faintly smell the scent of alcohol when seeing him. He is usually seen standing around as if he doesn't know where he is.
The Jasmine Lady
The most famous ghost of the Mineral Springs is the “Jasmine Lady”. People say she haunts the staircase by the former lobby. This is where it's said she fell to her death. According to the story, the Jasmine Lady was a guest at the hotel and had came to take in the “healing waters” of the springs with her husband. While she was here, she began an affair with another guest of the hotel. One evening, while her husband was away, she took her new lover up to her room. Unfortunately for her, her husband returned early and caught the couple in bed. Having found his wife with another man, her husband became enraged. Frightened she ran away from him towards the steps. What happened next is unknown. Some people say she fell, others say she was pushed by her husband. Either way the Jasmine lady fell down the steps, broke her neck and was killed instantly. Her husband went back to the room and killed himself.
People say they have seen an apparition of a lady at the top of the stairs, replaying the tragic event of that day. Some even say that they can smell her Jasmine perfume near the staircase while suddenly feeling cold.
Pearl came to the motel one night an rented a room here. It is said that committed suicide by sleeping pill overdose that night because she was convinced her husband was cheating on her. Her husband wasn't cheating. He did however have a gambling addiction and that's where he was when Pearl thought he was out with another woman. Some people say that because of his gambling debts he amputated her finger before they buried her to get her engagement ring back so that he could sell it to help pay them off.