October 22-28, 2014
The Balsam Mountain Inn sits at 3,500 feet in elevation looks out over a range of mountains. Construction on this amazing Inn started in 1905, and was undertaken by brothers-in-law Joseph Kennedy and Walter Christy. It began as a spacious 100 room hotel which was completed and opened in 1908. The hotel boasted beautiful views and 100 foot long porches with fresh spring water that many believed had “healing” properties. At the time the hotel opened (originally as the Balsam Springs Hotel), springs were extremely popular and many flocked here for the rejuvenating waters and the fresh mountain air.
Unlike many other Inns that perished in the middle of the 20th century due to fires, negligence or age, the Balsam Mountain Inn withstood the test of time. That is until the late 1980s, when a declining number of guests and maintenance issues saw it go downhill fast and fall into disrepair. Merrily Teasley, an innkeeper from East Tennessee, spotted the hotel and bought it and began restoration. It is now on the National Register of Historic Places and has been beautifully restored. It is perhaps during these restorations, as is often the case, which the paranormal gets stirred up.
My first paranormal experience at the inn was in 2000 at a Christmas party. I left the party for a few minutes to walk around and explore this grand hotel with my mom (who was attending the party with me). We heard footsteps ahead of us moving farther down the hallway. Curious, we went down the hallway to see who or what was causing it. We found no living person making the footsteps, and yet they inexplicably continued. We followed the sounds of the footsteps down the hall until they stopped. We also stopped, looked at each other, and looked up to see we were standing in front of Room #207.
Amazed and excited we turned around to head back to the party. Just then the doorknob started to jiggle. No one came out of the room, but the footsteps began again as if someone had left from inside. The footsteps headed back down the hallway and towards the party and we followed them as we also headed back to the party.
When we returned to the festivities we were still chatting about what we had experienced when a woman approached us. She was attending the party with her husband and mentioned that she was a little scared by the place. She said she was coming back from the restrooms when she heard someone following her down the hallway but when she turned no one was there.
I started doing research on the location a couple of days later and found out what we experienced wasn’t anything new, in fact many others have reported it. The activity seems to focus around rooms #205 and #207. According to eyewitness reports and employee testimonials, there doesn't seem to be anything harmful causing the activity. From the descriptions it seems like residual energy. Perhaps whatever spirits still haunt the Inn, they are continuing to do their own thing, oblivious to everyone around them as they perform their habitual activity.