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The ghosts that haunt Granbury, Texas, are good for tourism

Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tours are popular among people interested in the town's wild Texas history. The spirits of John Wilkes Booth and Jesse James, who both spent time in the town, are among those rumored to haunt the town.
BY CHRIS JONES Modified: October 18, 2012 at 1:06 pm •  Published: October 28, 2012

Unsavory characters

“There are good things and bad things that linger from the past,” Pannell said. “This city was a focal point for the wilder part of Texas, and a nesting place for unsavory characters. It once was very hard to get to and outlaws found a home here surrounded by the river.”

Many of those outlaws landed in the Hood County jail, now a museum. The Old Western jail built in 1885 is a bleak structure and served as the jail until the 1970s. Historians there have many stories to tell of ghosts banging and clanging their way through the old building.

The Nutshell Eatery Bakery is down the street from the jail on the town square. Kay Collerain has owned the restaurant for 33 years and once lived in rooms above the restaurant.

She said voices often drifted up the staircase. When Collerain investigated, there was no sign of anyone. Others have said they see a woman painting murals on the walls.

Collerain is known for the best pancakes in the county and the restaurant is worth visiting whether or not ghosts are of interest.

People have shown up in Granbury with ghost meters and it's said there are 89 ghosts in the old bank.

A spooky nighttime cemetery tour takes visitors out in the dark where it's easy to imagine the crack of a tree branch is an approaching spirit.

The outlaw Jesse James, who died at 104, is buried in Granbury and his family still maintains his grave. Visitors regularly place small bottles of Jack Daniels on his grave, as well as coins that are said to buy his way to heaven.

Guide Boots Hubbard has a sense of humor, knowledge of the area's history and leads a fun and friendly tour. The town of 8,000 has more than enough sites to visit alone or on a tour.

Go ahead and meet the ghosts of Granbury and pick a favorite.