The Driskill Hotel, opened on December 20, 1886. It was the second tallest building in Austin for many years, the State Capitol Building being the first. Within four months of the Grand Opening, Jesse Driskill was bankrupt and lost the hotel in a high-stakes poker game to J.M. “Doc” Day. The Driskill Hotel closed its doors in May 1887. . Three years later, Driskill died, flat broke. The beautiful hotel reopened under new management and embarked on a long, and rocky career as the reigning queen of Sixth Street.
The Driskills first ghost is that of Jesse Driskill. He makes his presence known by smoking cigars and turning bathroom lights on and off in several guest rooms on the top floors of the hotel. The daughter of a U.S. Senator haunts the grand staircase leading from the mezzanine down to the lobby. According to hotel lore, the senator was visiting Austin to participate in a political event at the hotel. His unattended four-year-old daughter was playing with a ball near the staircase when she slipped, and fell, and died on the marble floor at the bottom of the stairs. Late at night, the front desk staff has heard the child bouncing the ball down the steps as her giggling echoes through the empty lobby.
-Suicide Brides-1 & 2
During the 1940’s a young woman who planned to marry and spend her honeymoon at the hotel met a tragic end by her own hand. After her fiancé canceled the wedding at the last minute, she hanged herself in her rose-filled room. Known as one of the Driskills more active apparitions, many employees and guests have witnessed the sad woman pacing the hallways of the haunted fourth floor traditional side in her wedding dress.
Bride #2 was a Houston socialite engaged to be married in the early 1990’s. When her fiancé had second thoughts and called off the wedding, the young woman took a trip to Austin to recuperate from her shock and depression. She booked Room 29 on the haunted traditional side and went on a weeklong shopping spree with her ex-fiancé’s credit cards. The young woman was last seen coming out of the fourth floor elevator, arms full of bags and packages. Her body was discovered three days later when housekeepers became concerned that she hadn’t left the room to eat. She was found lying in the bathtub, having shot herself in the stomach through a pillow. She is seen most often during October wandering the hallways in a modern wedding gown and with a gun in hand.