Mine Shaft Tavern, Madrid, New Mexico

Mine Shaft Tavern, Madrid, New Mexico

Known for their fantastic green chile cheeseburgers, the Mine Shaft Tavern in Madrid, New Mexico is one of the many interesting spots I missed during my four years of living in the Land of Enchantment.

Madrid (Mad-rid), once known as “coal gulch” is an unusual little art colony resting north of Albuquerque and south of Santa Fe on the Turquoise Trail. Part of the oldest coal mining region in New Mexico, Madrid was a coal mining town from 1869 to 1954.

Wooden framed houses were brought by train from Kansas to house the miners and their families. When the mines closed, it had at one time been even larger than Albuquerque.

Like many old mining “ghost” towns, there are sightings of some unusual beings. A Spanish woman dressed in fancy clothes and her companion cowboy are often seen strolling down the main street in the historic area of town.

The Mine Shaft Tavern, said to be the most haunted place in Madrid, is also part of the historic area. The tavern burned in 1944, and was rebuilt by town father, Superintendent of Mines, Oscar Huber.

Huber led the community of Madrid in building schools, a hospital, and a company store. He also started an Employees Club which required donations for community betterment. Starting in the early 1920s, the town of Madrid started its Christmas light displays, which are famous today.

Some of the odd occurrences that workers and guests notice in the Mine Shaft Tavern include glasses falling from their shelves and shattering on the floor; doors opening and swinging back and forth; mysterious sounds; furniture and other items are found unexplainably moved to other locations; and, the most troubling of all, looking into mirrors and seeing a face other than their own looking back at them.

If you are traveling through New Mexico and get a hankering for a green chile cheeseburger (which I still dream about since I moved back to the Midwest), you might want to stop at the Mine Shaft Tavern in Madrid. When you are in the bathroom washing any remaining green chile sauce from your hands before you forget and accidentally touch your eyes (yep I did that too, more than once), and you happen to glance into the mirror, don’t be too startled if it’s not your face staring back at you! Of course, the older I get, the less that face in the mirror looks like the “me” I think I look like anyway!

Sources/References/For further information:

Hauck, Dennis William. Haunted Places: Ghostly abodes, sacred sites, UFO landings, and other
supernatural locations. NY: Penguin Books, 1996.

Robson, Ellen and Dianne Halicki. Haunted Highway: The Spirits of Route 66. AZ: Golden West Publishers, Inc., 2003.



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