This has been a post that has been a long time coming. Having lived here since 2001, I’ve listen to a lot of stories. Here are the ones I know about. If you’ve got different versions or can correct the details, feel free to jump in. Can Indian Springs lay claim to the most haunted town in Nevada?
The Flight Nurse
On 3 April, 1999 a B0-105CBS-4 helicopter call sign Lifeguard 01 crashed near Old Ben Road. It was snowing. Witnesses and first responders stated that they were directed to the crash site by “a woman with flashlights”. Nearing the crash site no one could find this woman. The crash was fatal for the three people on board. Flight Nurse Kathy Batterman was the only female on board. During the crash she was ejected from the aircraft and then was crushed when the fuselage rolled over her.
Over the years she has appeared up and down Old Ben Road and as far south as the Senior Center.
The Old Woman
Back in the pioneer days a family lived in a cabin located in a valley south of Indian Springs. The loneliness and isolation got to her and she killed her husband and children. To this day she has been spotted along Old Ben Road. Notably, my son and his friend encountered her on Old Ben Road while walking back to town after getting a flat tire. She was dressed in a black dress and refused to talk when they asked if she had a cell phone.
George and Belle Lattimer owned a ranch where the Indian Springs casino is now located. In 1906, George was bitten by an insect (maybe a Brown Recluse) and Belle hitched the wagon to take him into the doctor. A 16 year old Paiute Indian boy named Coachie Siegmuller was left to watch the ranch. While they were gone Coachie saw another Paiute named Bill “Wild Bill” Williams approached the ranch. Wild Bill was known as a “Bad Indian” and Coachie was terrified of him. Williams was notorious for exploiting young Paiute men by hiring them out to local ranchers and then pocketing their wages. Williams was there that day to collect some of these wages. Finding no one home, Wild Bill stretched out on the porch and was soon fast asleep. Coachie felt he needed to defend the ranch and fetched a rifle from the kitchen. He silently crept up on Wild Bill and shot him in the head. He pled guilty to the murder and was sentenced to death. The Paiute reservation threatened to go to war over this and to keep the peace Coachie was sentenced three years in the Carson City prison. The Lattimers buried Wild Bill behind the ranch. Dogs kept digging him up so he was buried a few times before he stayed put.
The presence of Wild Bill still manifests itself in the casino. The ceiling fans in the cafe spin by themselves. Cans fly off the pantry shelves. Dishes and such are occasionally shattered on the floor.
In 1906 Indian Springs became a way station and watering place for the Las Vegas and Tonopah Railroad. The original rail line ran along what is now known as Winston Road. The LV&T ceased operation in 1918. But on quiet nights and sometimes during the day you can hear the train whistle blow.
[ed note: Someone still lives in the Depot on Winston Road.]
The Indian Bells
In the 1840′s and before the White Man came The Southern Paiute lived around the flat area near the natural springs where they grew crops of corn, gourds, pumpkins and other tasty veggies. In 1858, the Mormons came through and named the place “Willow Springs” but that was later changed to “Indian Springs” because of well….the Indians.
The site of the original Paiute village is in the still vacant field behind to the current Post Office. It’s the corner of Lincoln and MacFarland if you want to go look for yourself. On quiet nights you can hear the sounds of bells as the long dead Indian celebrate.
The Bicycle Boy
This one is personal. I was driving home from work at about 10:30 PM. As I was about to turn into the Pioneer Mobile Home Park there at the corner of Clark and MacFarland I was horrified by the sound of me hitting “something”. To make it worse I saw a body fly across the hood of my car. Indian Springs is in need of some street lights and the kids tend to stroll up and down the roads on “dates”. To make things worse they like to wear dark clothes. I’m always on the alert to spot them but on this night I knew I hit one.
I jumped out of the car and found NOTHING. No body. No kid. Just me and my car on a dark road.
A few years earlier a boy was struck and killed by a car at that very spot. Others have claimed to see him still crossing the road. Sometimes on a bike. Sometimes on foot.
The Old Man
Back in about 1994 an old man died in his bed of a massive heart attack. The coroner reported that he had been “Scared to Death”. To this day his ghost haunts the trailer on Boulder Lane telling current renters that “Everything will be all right.”