Double Eagle Restaurant, Mesilla, NM (Witness Accounts)

April, 2002
Danny Villalpondo was finishing setting tables in the Maximillian Room about 11:30 PM. He and manager, Jerry Harrell, were finishing closing the restaurant and were the only ones in the building. It had been a long day for Jerry so he gave the keys to Danny and said to lock up when he was finished. Jerry said he would meet Danny in the morning to open and left. Not too much later, Danny realized someone was in the room with him. Danny’s first thought was not of the ghosts but that Jerry had forgotten to lock the front door and allowed someone to get in. Danny turned and saw a young Hispanic girl in a white linen shift walking out of the Maximillian Room and onto the Patio, going toward the Carlotta Salon – the ghosts room. Danny still did not realize what was happening and called out that the restaurant was closed while walking toward the Patio himself. As he turned the corner into the Patio, he could not find the girl. Danny checked all the doors. They were locked. No one could have gotten in. Danny was still not convinced and called out, “Inez? Is that you?”. Danny heard a girl’s voice strongly accented say, “Danny”. That was enough for Danny. He ran from the building and, the next day, made Jerry sign a written pledge never to leave him alone in the restaurant again.

March, 2003
Leslie Stailey, a server in the Double Eagle, was the opening server for lunch. Other employees were in the back of the house but she was the only one in the front public area. As Leslie was going about opening duties, she heard a girl’s voice, strongly accented, say, “Leslie”. Leslie raised her head and said, “Yes?” and looked around thinking one of the kitchen workers needed something. There was no one. Because the Double Eagle is an old home, it has a series of connecting rooms. Leslie walked into the next room and looked around. Again, she heard, “Leslie” coming from the connecting room. Leslie followed the voice and ended up hearing, “Leslie” coming from the Carlotta Salon – the ghost room. She did not enter but, thinking the kitchen employees were playing a joke, turned and entered the kitchen. There she saw all the kitchen employees were working and all were male.

September 2003
Jerry Harrell, manager of the restaurant, was at the restaurant early one Monday in September, 2003 before the 9:30 AM kitchen crew arrives to prepare for the 11:00 AM opening. Jerry received a phone call from a first grade teacher at Mesilla Elementary School. She said she was out on the plaza with 23 first graders and the guide who was supposed to be there to talk about Mesilla history was a no show. She asked if Jerry could give a tour of the restaurant. Jerry said sure. come on over. Jerry had already starting the opening procedures, checking all rooms, turning on lights, checking the alarm system. So, with 23 first graders and a relieved teacher in tow, Jerry walked from room to room and explained the history of various pieces of art, talked about the chandeliers, the gold ceiling, the Billy the Kid artifacts. Finally, Jerry said this is the way to the ghost room. Jerry backed in motioning for the kids to follow. Suddenly Jerry was staring at the ceiling. A dining chair was no longer tucked under the table but pulled right out into the walkway and Jerry had backed right over the chair. Jerry had checked the room and the chair was in it’s proper place not 30 minutes earlier. There were no other people in the building. Jerry received a thank you note from the class with artistic first grade renditions of a ghost pulling the chair out for Jerry.

October 5, 2004
A gentleman who worked for the City of Las Cruces was entertaining some guests for lunch in the Carlotta Room (the ghost’s room). The gentleman thought the room was getting colder. Colder and colder he felt but continued talking to his guests and wondering why no one else commented on the cold. Suddenly, he saw the curtains over the window moving with strong gusts of wind coming into the room. He realized now why the room was cold and got up to shut the window. As he brushed the curtain aside to get to the window sash, he realized the wall actually had no window opening in it. The wall was solid. A window frame and curtains had been hung on the wall to give the appearance of a window. As he stepped back in shock, he heard a young girl’s laughter and turned around to see all his guest staring at him.

August, 2003
A new Assistant Manager was hired at the Double Eagle. Much time was spent in training and the ghost story was mentioned briefly. The gentleman was a skeptic and said he thought it was all a bunch of bunk, just a story to sell the restaurant. The Manager at the time said no one was asking him to believe anything, just to be aware of the story in case anyone asked. After working here a week, it was the Assistant Manager’s time to close the building up at night without supervision for the first time. A customer had left about 2 glasses of wine in a bottle and the Assistant Manager told the server that he knew what to do with it. He took the bottle and two clean glasses into the Carlotta Room (the ghost room) and set them on the table. He said to the ghosts, “Here! I’ve brought you some wine so you can enjoy the night.” Laughing, he turned to the one remaining server and said, “We’ll see in the morning if they had a good time.” They walked to the back door, set the alarm system including the motion detectors and left for the night. Returning the next morning, the Assistant Manager disconnected the alarm system and walked directly to the Carlotta. He was stunned to see the bottle empty and on its side. The two wine glasses were shattered in the fireplace. As he walked out the back door, he tossed the keys to the Executive Chef Larry Campos who was coming in and said, “I’m not working here. Just mail me my check.” And we did.



Viva Mesilla

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