Curio Collection by Hilton

523 6th Street, Rapid City, SD

(605) 342-1210

Status: Historical Haunted Hotel; Staff is Very Open to their Haunting;


A Ghost Package can be Booked with the Hotel Including a Stay in one of the Haunted Rooms


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By <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="">ono-sendai</a> - <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="">2008-08-10 08.30.52 - Rapid City (Alex Johnson Hotel)</a> Uploaded by <a href="//" title="User:Xnatedawgx">xnatedawgx</a>, CC BY-SA 2.0Link


Built by Alex Carlton Johnson – hence the hotel’s name – a Vice President of the Chicago and Northwest Railroad and an admirer of the geography and indigenous culture of the area. He began construction on the hotel the day before construction began on Mt Rushmore; October 3, 1927.

The architectural design of the building was based on the designs of both the German immigrants and the Aboriginal Plains Tribes.

The hotel opened on July 1, 1928 with the very first customer being Paddy O’Neill; who’s name is now the name of the hotel bar.

On some of the lobby bricks – and throughout the hotel – is a symbol very much like the Nazi swastika can be seen but, in reality, its an ancient symbol used by the Aboriginal population meaning the four sacred corners of the Earth.

Through many owners – and even more famous guests – this hotel has become one of the most famous historical heritage hotels in the USA.

It is also one of the most haunted.


Paranormal Activity

A red binder on the front desk called “The Hauntings” is available for anyone to read. It contains stories by both guests and staff of their experiences with the ghosts.

Room 812 and the 8th Floor

In the 1970’s a young bride is said to have killed herself by throwing herself out of the window of Room 812. The thing is she was described as very friendly and positive; she was also about to inherit a large amount of money; so why would she kill herself? Those who knew her well said she had to have been murdered but the investigation found no suggestion of this so the ruling of suicide stood.

Just recently an old newspaper clipping was found saying a woman died from a fall from the hotel on August 18. Her name was Shirley – she was 31 – and from Montana.

Since then, young woman’s ghost has been wandering the 8th floor – presumably searching for her killer – dressed in a long white gown. She is known as the “woman in white”.

The window of Room 812 is often found wide open in the morning by guests when they knew it to be closed when they retired for the night. The drawers are often pulled out of the dresser, dumped, and then reinserted upside down.

Her energy is said to suddenly fill the room preventing the guests from getting any sleep.

The Little Girl

Also, on the 8th floor the ghost of a young girl patrols the hallways. She is known for knocking on the doors of the guest rooms on that floor – often multiple times – before disappearing into thin air. Her phantom giggles are also heard on this floor. She thought to be Alex Johnson’s niece who died at a young age from a disease.

Alex Johnson

Mr Johnson left the mortal coil in 1938 but he seems to have no interest in leaving his hotel. His apparition is seen throughout the hotel but he is most commonly seen on the third door where he died. Rooms 304 and 305 bear the majority of this paranormal activity.

The Other Bride

Also, again, on the 8th floor another bride is seen wandering the hallways in her wedding dress. Legend says she straggled herself with a telephone cord – probably in Room 802 - when her husband-to-be never showed up for their nuptials. This death has been collaborated by reports with the city police.

Other Activity: phantom knocks and growls; elevators stopping on the 4th and 8th floors when those floors are not pressed; sheets moving on the bed and the feeling of someone getting into bed with solitary guests; phantom footsteps of a woman in high heels in the lobby; disembodied voices; a piano playing with no one sitting at it; objects moving and shaking on their own and feelings of being watched and not being alone.