During the investigations at the hotel, we interviewed several people to establish what the paranormal claims actually were.
Ronny reported one night he was near the main lobby on the first floor when he heard the distinct sound of a woman in high heels walking across the lobby. Thinking the footsteps to be those of Jane Catrett, he yelled out her name; however, the footsteps faded away, and upon further inspection, Ronny found himself all alone. Later he discovered that Jane had not been in the building that day.
On another occasion, he told us that he was on the 7th floor, re-setting an electrical breaker to the Christmas lights, which continuously tripped every night during display. As he was inspecting the fuse box, attempting to locate the breaker switch, he heard the footsteps of an unseen person walking up to his left, quietly, as if not to bother him. A bit startled, he turned to look and saw no one. Ronny spoke to the possible ghosts and assured them he meant no harm. After that night, the lights never tripped off again.
Ronny also shared his thoughts about the findings of the other ghost hunting teams that had visited the building. Most he thought were “flakey.”
Jane told us about the following accounts of odd occurrences happening in the hotel.
In the 1990’s she was told that employees at the bank across the street from the hotel reported that they noticed the windows of the hotel would be open on various floors. Later they would notice that these windows would be closed and others would be open. After a while, they began to take note and count, which were opened and closed. The pattern changed.
They thought that it must be the man who lives in the building and takes care of it”. After that, the interest ceased, and they stopped noticing. The strange thing is, no one has ever stayed in the Baker at any time since its closure in 1970. There never was a caretaker. So just who was opening and closing the windows?
On the weekends, my boyfriend and I went to the downtown video store and rented movies. On several occasions, we’ve witnessed strange lights coming from the windows. The lights that we’ve seen aren’t like the kind of light you see coming from a flashlight. It doesn’t reflect on the window like the light from a flashlight does.
We’ve also seen people looking down at us from many of the windows. I waved to the figure without hesitation, and the figure waved back. When we looked back up, it was gone.
Paranormal activity that has been reported in the hotel centers around several major areas. These include the ballroom, the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 10th floors, the Brazos room, and the lobby. Lights turn on and off by themselves in the Brazos room, and the sweet smell of chocolate, similar to “Milk duds,” can be easily detected at times. In general, the phenomenon that is reported relates to one of four legends that surround the old hotel.
- The mistress on the 7th floor
The genesis of the Baker’s ghost stories started in the 1960s when a porter reported the ghost of a woman on the seventh floor. Not much remains of this initial report other than the fact that the “ghost’ had red hair. This ghost is commonly believed to be the hotel manager’s mistress. She lived in a suite of rooms on the southeast corner of the seventh floor. Distraught from her affair, the woman, whose name was Virginia Brown, committed suicide by jumping to her death from the top of the building. Connected to this event are reports of people smelling perfume-like odor that has a lavender scent. Glasses were found by a maid working at the hotel that had lipstick stains on the rim when nobody was staying in the suite. The ghost also flirts with men to whom she takes a fancy and gets angry when females invade her space.
- The intoxicated “suicide” jumper
Another story tells of an intoxicated woman who tried to jump into the swimming pool from the ballroom balcony on the 12th floor. Naturally, she was killed. The stories of the myth vary. Some say that she was racing her boyfriend down to the pool and thought she could survive the dive into the pool from the 12th floor, while others indicate foul play was somehow involved. 3. The Cook and the Maid The legend states that the hotel’s cook was having an affair with one of the maids. When the maid threatened to expose their relationship to his wife, he flew into a fit of rage and stabbed her to death in the kitchen pantry. Female visitors had reported hearing a woman’s voice telling them to leave when they entered the kitchen.
- The Ghost of Earl (or T.B.) Baker
It’s believed that the ghost of Earl Baker, the owner of the Baker Hotel, and another entity are still residing in his once luxurious 10th-floor residence where he died. Some early accounts claim that the ghost is actually T.B. Baker, the hotel’s original owner.
- The ghost of Douglas Moore
The ghost of a 16-year-old boy that was tragically killed in an elevator accident is believed to haunt the basement. The gangsters Bonnie and Clyde have also been rumored to haunt the Brazos room and ballroom.