This establishment is said to be haunted by a few female employees that worked there when the building held a brothel. It used to a hotel that was turned into an unofficial brothel by a Mrs. Jackson, who headed as the madam of the house.
The rumors that float around about the events that led to it being haunted include the idea that the patrons killed Mrs. Jackson out of greed and stole the profits of the brothel women. Another version of the story states that Mrs. Jackson hung herself on one of the chandeliers on the third floor due to the stress of losing the hotel.
The reports of the haunted activity include staff reporting pictures moving on their own, the ghost of a woman who haunts an upstairs window where it is believed she committed suicide, and late night visitors who drive by the building sometimes report seeing a shadowy figure in the upstairs window.
The Jackson Hotel is Founded
The history of the building is interesting to say the least. It all started when a Swedish immigrant named Charles G. Jackson moved to Anoka in the 1870's. He married a Ms. Lotta C. Iverson, a Norweigan immigrant, in 1877. The same year as the wedding, Mr. Jackson builds and opens the Anoka Hotel. The hotel was renamed the Jackson Hotel in the 1880's.
In 1884, the Jackson Hotel is a victim of the great Anoka fire in August. A year later, the hotel reopens its doors in its current location at the cost of $6,000. This was also the year that the first murder took place within Anoka city limits, just outside the Jackson Hotel.
Anoka's First Murder
In 1885, W.F. Mirick murdered Peter Gross outside the hotel. The murder created an uproar and the crime was considered a mysterious case at the time because the reason Mirick killed Mr. Gross was unfounded. The story says that Mirick had been drinking and decided to go home to retrieve his revolver. When he retrieved the gun, he continued to wander about the town until he ran into Peter Gross in front of the Jackson Hotel. The two men exchanged words and laughed until Peter Gross had stated something that offended the armed Mirick. A few bullets were fired, not hitting Mr. Gross, and when he realized his friend was trying to kill him, he ran for his life. When Peter turned his back, Mirick fired a single shot into his back.
Peter Gross made it to the hotel and a doctor was called. After 20 hours of fighting for his life, Mr. Gross had died in the upstairs of the hotel due to internal bleeding.
Mirick was found and put into police custody. Later at his trial, he was found guilty.
In 1904, the hotel is renovated at the cost of $7,000. In 1918, Mrs. Jackson dies. The report is that she died of pneumonia but this clashes with the suicide rumors of her demise.
More research reveals that Mrs. Jackson did not die in the hotel as the rumors state. She passed away in 1918 from pneumonia. In fact, her and her husband moved away from Anoka long before her death. The couple resided in a cottage in Crooked Lake.
In 1927, Fred Jackson inherits the building. After 25 years, the hotel's restaurant and bar close down. The building is then converted into apartments in 1952.
In 1975, the building is closed down. Fred Jackson sells the building to a Mrs. Delong. The building is placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.
Eight years later, Wayne Meloche purchases the hotel in 1987. Currently, the building houses Billy's Bar and Grill.
A Haunted Affair
Residents and visitors often have reported that the third floor window holds the image of a woman who looks down on them. The owners have also found an empty coffin on the third floor but the third floor is currently only for storage and rarely do people venture up there.
The usual occurrences of a haunted location have also been reported by staff members such as hearing strange noises and seeing the apparition of a woman walking through the restaurant. Other staff members have claimed to have seen the paintings in the restaurant move on their own.
Location: 214 Jackson Street, Anoka, MN 55303
Phone: (763) 421-3570
Directions: From Highway 14 turn north on E Main Street. Turn west on Jackson Street.
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ChefMoz.com's Information & Review
Source: The Minnesota Road Guide to Haunted Locations