America's Lady of Supernatural Thrillers

“Raven's Cove, a great mystery by Mary Ann Poll. Avoid it when winds are gusting to hurricane speed outside. No extra creepiness needed.”
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Step aside Stephen King, Alaska’s Mary Ann Poll is here to spin new tales of the super-natural and the ungodly, as her heroes and heroines take on the forces of evil on 'The Last Frontier.' ~Jeff Babcock

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Haunted Destinations: The Presidio La Bahia (Goliad, Texas)

Deep in the heart of Goliad, Texas, about 91 miles southeast of San Antonio, lies an ancient bastion shrouded in legend and mystery – the Presidio La Bahia. For history aficionados and supernatural enthusiasts alike, this place offers a tantalizing journey through time, dark tales, and chilling encounters.

A Bastion of History and Conflict

Presidio La Bahia, officially named Presidio Nuestra Señora de Loreto de la Bahía, stands as a testament to the Spaniards' legacy in Texas. Originally constructed in 1721, this fort witnessed two relocations before settling in its current spot in 1747. A wooden structure initially, the fort's reincarnation in stone came after the French relinquished their Texan claims to Spain. As the sole Spanish stronghold between the Mississippi and the Rio Grande, it evolved into a pivotal trade point and played a crucial role in the Mexican War of Independence.

However, the fort's most haunting chapter is its involvement in the Texas Revolution. Following a Texan triumph at the Battle of Goliad, troops from La Bahia were designated to aid their besieged comrades at the Alamo. Tragically, these men were ambushed after the Mexican victory, resulting in the gruesome Goliad Massacre. The horrific fate of Colonel Fannin, shot, beaten, and burned, amplifies the tragedy of this event.

Today, this once mighty fortress stands transformed – part museum, part Catholic church, under the moniker Our Lady of Loreto. Yet, whispers of its tragic past linger, as tales of apparitions, phantom screams, and inexplicable occurrences abound.

Ghosts of Goliad: Haunting Reminders of a Bloodied Past

Imagine walking the corridors of La Bahia, feeling the weight of centuries of history. As dusk falls, the fort's supernatural side awakens. From the bloodcurdling screams of fallen soldiers begging for mercy to the eerily tangible presence of Colonel Fannin awaiting his execution, the Presidio is brimming with restless souls.

Witnesses speak of chilling encounters in the quadrangle, the site of the massacre. Phantom bloodstains appear and vanish, while the overpowering smell of decaying flesh looms, even luring vultures from afar. The chapel, Our Lady of Loreto, is particularly active. From the mournful spirit of a woman in black clutching a candle to a protective monk guarding the chapel's sanctity, visitors have reported numerous sightings.

Interestingly, La Bahia isn't just about its ghostly residents. The fort, initially established as a Spanish response to the French colonial threat, has its tales of conflict with indigenous tribes like the Karankawa. The once formidable Fort Saint Louis, built by the French but decimated by the Karankawa, set the backdrop for the establishment of Presidio La Bahia.

A Siege, a Massacre, and Resounding Echoes

The Texan Revolution in 1835 saw Presidio La Bahia besieged by 125 Texan separatists. Although the Mexican defenders initially resisted, they eventually capitulated. By early 1836, Colonel James Fannin, renaming the fort "Fort Defiance", spearheaded the forces stationed there. Yet, the tables turned tragically when Fannin's troops, attempting to aid the besieged Alamo, were captured and executed by Mexican forces, marking the Goliad Massacre.

Spectral Legacy: Presidio La Bahia Today

Today, Presidio La Bahia is more than a mere relic. It's an echo chamber of the past, where spectral soldiers patrol, ghostly footsteps resonate, and chilling screams pierce the silence. The stories have garnered significant media attention, with the fort being spotlighted on shows like the Travel Channel's "Most Terrifying Places in America."

While not explicitly promoting its paranormal aspect, the Presidio offers overnight stays in 'The Quarters.' But a word to the wise: those seeking a quiet night might find themselves in the company of spectral soldiers, their restless souls still yearning for peace.

In conclusion, Presidio La Bahia stands as a mesmerizing blend of history and the supernatural. Whether you're a history buff or a seeker of the unknown, this fort promises an experience that transcends time, bridging the past with the ethereal present. Visit, if you dare, and immerse yourself in the captivating tales of the ghosts of Goliad.


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