Bethlehem's first house was built on this site in 1741, to be later replaced by the Eagle Hotel in 1823. In 1922, Charles Schwab, president of Bethlehem Steel, decided he wanted more modern digs to live in and the Hotel Bethlehem was born. It even had running water!
But it came with more than hot and cold water. Over the years, people have reported being tapped on the shoulder by the unseen, bodiless voices have called out employee's names, there are reported cold spots, and even sightings of unplugged vacuum cleaners gliding across the rugs (we wish we had one of those haunting our carpets!)
The Bethlehem was built over the site of the old Eagle Hotel, which was demolished to clear land. The bricks and mortar may be gone, but the Eagle's legacy lingers; the guests and staff seem to have found a permanent home in its replacement building.
The oldest spook is Mrs. Brong, the wife of an innkeeper dating back to the Eagle Hotel days. She's been spotted in the kitchen and the restaurant. They know it's her because she's barefoot, just as she liked to be in her flesh and blood days.
One famous spook that never checked out is that of actress and songbird of the 1890s, May Yohe. She grew up in the hotel that her grandfather once owned, and has been reported on the third floor gazing out a window, singing, playing the piano in the lobby, and in the exercise room reliving her childhood.
Francis "Daddy" Thomas, who lived in the hotel during colonial times, is another ghost that likes to play pranks on the staff in the boiler room. In fact, one engineer refuses to work in the area.But he's a friendly guy who used to be early Bethlehem's welcome wagon to visitors.
There's also a woman dressed in Victorian garb that appears in the kitchen and floats out to the dining room, only to disappear. Ghosts of children have been reported playing throughout the Hotel, and another has been seen on the mezzanine - maybe a young May Yohe?
Some guests have requested room transfers because of the spectral shenanigans in the building. In room 932, for example, a couple saw a spook standing by the bed in his boxer shorts and undershirt. Another time, guests saw a man at their bed, and he wanted to know what they were doing in his room. EVPs recorded the voice of a spirit named Mary. Paranormal phenomena is commonplace; we particularly like the wallpaper changing color. The hotel has decided to tap into this history, and offers a "Room With A Boo" package for this spooky suite.
One set of potential spirits they won't discuss is that of the five elderly guests who died in a fire there in 1989, caused by a faulty iron cord.
They haven't been heard from, so apparently they crossed over peacefully. But it doesn't look like they could convince the other hotel spooks to join them on their journey towards the light.