Quarai Mission (Paranormal Claims)

The following entry is in the book ” The Haunted Places, The National Directory” by Dennis William Hauck.

Visitors to this seventeenth century Spanish mission are surprised to find the ghost of a conquistador still guarding the ruins. He enters through one of the gaps in the adobe walls and is surrounded by a blue-white light. He wears a tabard bearing the symbol of the Calatrava, a Spanish military religious group. He was first sighted in 1913, when he pointed his finger at a startled tourist and said (in Spanish) “Frequent this place, traveler on a mystic journey.”

Since this location was being talked about on local television, we decided to investigate the claims and see if it is anything more than an urban legend.

I was unable to locate the account of the tourist that saw the specter in 1913. However  it seems unlikely that tourists would be visiting the mission during that time unless they were a part of the archaeological team that was there that year. Major studies of Quarai have taken place since 1913, when the School of American Archaeology began excavations in the southern-most mound (believed to be the oldest area of the ancient village.) It is also very questionable if the knights of Calatrava were even in New Mexico, as we could not find any definitive records of such.

With the historical account missing, I focused on interviewing the Park Rangers and staff. If anyone would have witnessed anything unusual at the site, they would be the most likely candidates. I talked with three rangers and two former rangers that worked at Quarai. Out of these five people, only one knew about the 1913 ghost story. All five had never had anything unusual occur to them while on the site other than a rowdy tourist or two.

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