Bodie is situated close to the Nevada – California border and in it’s heyday it was home to over 10,000 people (around the late 1870’s mark).
The area was discovered to be of value back in 1849 when a prospector, W.S. Bodie, and his partner, Black Turner discovered large gold deposits in the hills.
By the 1870’s New York and San Francisco decided to hit the scene and pumped large amounts of money into the town improving the mines’ harvest of gold.
In this article we will be taking a look at the Bodie Ghosts that now inhabit this deserted ghost town…
The Bodie Bulge
So, in the early 1870’s the town of Bodie bloomed due to the input of money linked to the mining industry. The booming economy revolved around thirty gold mines in the hills above the town.
Bodie’s booming economy led to many ‘perks’ popping up in the area making it a more attractive proposition to miners.
A Wells Fargo Bank, various fire companies, breweries, unions, a railroad network, a Longfellow’s Lodge…the list goes on and on…
Unfortunately the majority of this thriving area was taken over by rather undesirable characters and the underbelly of the town soon become rotten to the core.
Many of the miners became rich overnight and decided to use their wealth on prostitutes, alcohol and gambling binges.
The remote location of the town also meant that it attracted seedy characters who were on the run from the law.
These desperate, violent characters brought a terrible gun fighting culture along with them causing the town’s Methodist minister, Reverend F.M. Warrington, to label Bodie as “a sea of sin, lashed by the tempests of lust and passion.”
As the mines dried out and the violence grew, the population of Bodie slowly diminished and the town became nothing more than a tourist attraction by the early 1900’s.
Unfortunately the tourist side of it’s economy took a big hit in 1932 when a devastating fire destroyed 95 percent of the buildings.
It was caused by an insolent child playing with matches after an argument with his parents.
The Bodie Ghosts
Due to the violent nature of the town, there are at least twelve spirits known to be in residence there.
The most famous of these manifestations is a character named Ed who was murdered in the nearby creek.
Now, Ed was not what you’d call a ‘nice fella’ and one night a drunken rage led him to shoot his native Indian wife. One of the gunshots actually managed to completely remove one of her breasts and she died later that night in hospital.
Three rather violent Bodie characters heard about Ed’s actions and decided to take the law into their own hands. They dragged him down to the local creek and drowned him.
After Ed’s spirit appeared months later to each of the three men; shaking his fist at them, each of the three killers died untimely and strange deaths.
The first killer met his end through a simple gash to the head, the second was taken out by a atrocious hemorrhage that caused his head to over-expand and the third disappeared into thin air down a local ravine!
Bodie is also rumored to carry a curse with it’s resident spirits who feel it is their duty to keep the ghost town in order.
Apparently you are advised against taking ANY sort of souvenir from the area as the spirits will be tempted to release the curse on you.
People who take these souvenirs are fated to experience bad luck and misfortune, until they send everything they have stolen back to the rangers at Bodie.
Even now, rangers still receive letters with local objects that have been sent back, explaining how the curse had come true and apologising for their actions.