Haunted Carcross, Yukon, hotel featured on new Canada Post stamp
Gold Rush-era Caribou Hotel's resident ghost recognized in 'Haunted Canada' stamp series
A new stamp from Canada Post recognizes a long-standing ghost story about the Caribou Hotel in Carcross, Yukon.
The stamp is part of a series of five called "Haunted Canada." It's one of the more ghoulish of the stamps, showing a ghost with the face of a skull looming over the hotel.
The hotel's co-owner Anne Morgan says the stamp's version of the ghost is pretty frightening compared to local stories.
"That's Mrs.Gideon," she says.
"Her name was Bessie Gideon. She was married to Edward Gideon, the couple that owned the hotel on its present site."
She's never heard people mention a skull face. However she says — with a mischievous twinkle in her eye — that people claim to have seen something.
Call it the hotel's unexpected guest.
"I think what happens the most is her visiting people in the night. Especially on the second floor, which is the only room with a balcony," she says.
"When people stay in the owners' suite, people will often wake up in the night and she'll be standing at the foot of the bed looking at them."
Morgan adds that a guest reportedly once "took [Mrs. Gideon] downstairs and let her out because they thought it was a guest who got locked in the building at night. She's quite realistic when she does come to visit."
Renovations to historic building
Morgan and her partner Jaime Toole have been working for years on the renovation. They hope the Caribou Hotel will be open next summer.
Asked about the ghost, Toole says he's more "skeptical about that."
Toole says his plan is to restore the Gold Rush-era building to its historic splendour. Much of his focus has been on woodwork and finding old-style chandeliers and other details.
"We want this building to be finished off beautifully. When people and customers walk in here, (they'll be) stepping back 100 years in time," Toole says.
Bruce Barrett, a historic sites project officer with the Government of Yukon, says the hotel will likely be a grand attraction when it's renovated. It has plenty of history and character, and a ghost or two may only add to the allure.
"You can't go wrong with a good story, let's face it," he says.