The Morse Mill Hotel

A Pre Civil War "Haunted" Hotel!


  • THE BUILDING The Morse Mill Hotel, located in Jefferson County, MO is full of history, as well as lot's of mystery.  The building was constructed in 1816 as a farm house while the area was still ruled by the Spanish under Louisiana Territory.  John H. Morse purchased it in 1856 and added on making it the structure that it is today. Mr. Morse was a Bridge Engineer, Confederate sympathizer, among other things. Built of Maple, Oak, Cypress and Limestone . The structure is 4 stories tall. 5,300 sq. ft.In front of the Hotel still sits the Stone Wall which was built by freed Slaves, hand carved before electricity existed. It once encircled the building. The previous owners gave away pieces, that now sit on the properties of several neighbors in their yards.

  • VISITORS The hotel heyday was during the 1920’s and 1930’s.  The elite of St. Louis visited often.  It was a close weekend getaway to escape the sweltering summers in St Louis. Other guests came from all over the world including Africa, Switzerland, Cuba, Philippines Islands, Bombay India, London England, Berlin Germany, Austria and Hong Kong China.  One of my personal favorites marked in the register is Saturday, September 5th, 1931 Zarna and her trained seal Suzanne.  The famous guests include black and white film star Clara Bow, Betty Boop was created in her likeness.  Tom Mix, a black and white cowboy film star.  Pilot Charles Lindbergh and gangster Al Capone also marked their stay here.

  • THE PARANORMAL: Those that investigate the Para-normal  have experienced many unique events. We consistently when entering day or night hear, see or feel things that have no logical explanation. For years people have said, they sense nothing evil but something just moved in front of me or touched me. Hearing footsteps is my personal favorite. When I walk in, turn off the alarm and hear footsteps across the upper floor I now just go about my business. If you want first hand experience, truly wish to know…….45 minutes SW of St. Louis is your answer. It will rewrite your perspective. If you don't wish to meet the spirit world, you best not stay long. Bring a flashlight, and lot's of bravery you may need it to keep from running. Funny thing, you will not out run them! The spirits can move in a blink of eye, thru floors, up walls, down the hall.

  • FACT: 98% of the people that hunt for Paranormal activity here, are female.

  • FACT: Men tend to be far less brave, than women here. The men tend to run 1st to the door , or not enter at all.

  • FACT: Taking pictures in sets of 3, tends to capture things in the 2nd shot. Strange but very true, happens routinely! The picture on the front page, was the in 2nd of 3 pictures.

  • FACT: The activity is usually escalating up to midnight, 1AM. Rarely does it occur, after 3am. Usually upon entry into the building, it starts.

  • FACT: If a person tries, you can engage the spirits here, in the daytime. They don't leave during the day, we re just noisier.

  • FACT: In 12 years of quietly recording eyewitness details, nothing ever repeats itself…nothing!!!

  • FACT: It's not uncommon to see shadows walking across the grounds after dark, sometimes running. Usually between Garage, and Hotel 1,000 feet away.

  • FACT: Animals will show you, when the spirits enter the room by their actions.

  • CONFEDERATES: Jesse James and his Brothers stayed here. They are known to associate with Mr. Morse, and that a lot of their actions could be traced to them stealing for the Confederate Army gain. One of them was a cartoonist, drawing a stone archway in the register.

  • THE CISTERN ROOM: We have eye witness accounts from elders, of people 60 years ago saying they use to play in the tunnel beneath the basement floor, as kids that went from beneath our basement floor under the road to the river edge into the ice house shed across the street. In the future, we will enter the 22' deep cistern in the basement floor, and open the wall that closed off the tunnel. The biggest shadow walker, we've seen resides in this area. People have been pushed, growled at, even thrown when provoking,

  • SERIAL KILLERS: Bertha Gifford lived, and worked here-1 of  the 1st female serial killers in the Nation. She killed numerous kids(19), and adults w Arsenic Chocolates for the kids. She worked at the Hotel, and is buried nearby. She was an exceptionally gifted cook, go figure! It is believed to be her husband who she poisoned, that is seen in full body, trench coat at the window North end of the hall 2nd floor.

  • GANGSTERS: Al Capone rumored to use this as a rest house, speak easy, gambling. The Historians traced his movements to here at the time that he was building his gambling & whiskey operations. He served great Whiskey from here, some of which still exists on the shelves of local grandparents that say it never ran dry at the Morse Mill Hotel. It is also a undisputed fact that Police would never dare to enter this neck of the woods, knowing it was out of their reach. Legend is the moonshiners, lived in these woods.

  • Some evidence suggests hotel may have helped the effort to return rebels back to the south. It is referred to as “the Secession Railroad” or “the Chip Trail.

  • Charlie Chaplin marked the register of his stay here! He was a known ’Womanizer’. A nearby elder woman says when she was a child her Mom would complain about this Chaplin man carrying on with the young girls.

  • This place has been a private home, speakeasy, brothel ,half way house, Confederate Hospital, Underground Railroad, Indian Burial site, Post Office, multiple murder scene spanning decades, hanging scene and several known murderers have visited and stayed here.

  • THE RENOVATION :  We put back load bearing walls, that someone in the past took out. We raised the entire 1st floor 3 inches, the 2nd floor 3 1/2 inches, and placed steel I beams, and a 980 lb x 38 ft long wood beam to correct the compromised structural integrity. We have insulated the walls, using closed cell Foam to achieve peak efficiency going forward. We 11 years ago deconstructed the General Store from the same era on the property and de nailed every piece, and put on racks to wait till we had a use. We will begin transforming this amazing inventory of old growth lumber into trim, and doors. Stored along side the old growth lumber, are the original doors that will be reinstalled. All the old flooring, has been saved and has been refinished now. Someday soon music will flow, kids will play, families will laugh, memories will be made here. Like we promised, we may not be moving fast, but we are moving forward. Our goal is to provide a place to relax, enjoy the river or a quiet picnic in the shade. We are not trying to be a 5 star hotel. We are going to be unique, but small in scale. We may not have neighbors in mansions, Olympic pools, valet parking, or curb appeal yet. But we have a history that is long, and that for some people is one of the draws to this place.

  • Today visitors are sometimes greeted by the Paranormal activity, which tends to begin when they 1st enter, even during the daylight  hours. The tour guide has noticed that if people enter in good spirits they encounter, and experience great things. People that enter in a bad frame of mind, don't get the same experiences. Interesting thing is when someone in a bad mood departs, those that remain tend to notice a positive change in paranormal events. Negative gets negative in response.

  •  Whatever these spirits are they are not stupid, they will out fox you, shut your equipment down, touch you, contact you even possibly walk past you so fast you will freeze. As a eyewitness I will tell you the residents are very fast, and paying attention. For those that can make it to our side, they have got things to say. Smart phones, cameras upon entering sometimes take pictures randomly, or lock up and stop working, only to regain full function once departed

  • I once witnessed a cameraman from New York City shooting for the travel channel, enter with a TV camera, and a vest full of batteries. The vest went completely dead, he steps out unto the side deck. The vest returns to full power. Then something kept shutting off his camera, as well as draining the battery vest. He was visibly shaken, or more anger than fear.

  • If you do not believe, and or a skeptic we can cure that, or want to but need proof come visit. We can’t promise but we have a steady list of eyewitness accounts that suggest your going to have something to talk about after you visit. Bring flashlights, recording devices, back up batteries, above all remember:




Free Wifi
Just ask for the access codes, upon check-in.


“I' arrived a skeptic, now I'm way past that given the things that all 6 of us witnessed. I can't deny this place is as creepy as they say-but more so”


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