Globe Courthouse: A converted playhouse with a ghostly past

What is now a Globe playhouse, has a ghostly past of murder.

Nearly every place in Arizona has its own ghost stories – but Globe, well, this city has a few more. 

Globe's glory days were in the early 1900s, when the once-lined-with-saloons Broad Street kept the huge courthouse across the street full.

Some say that building, and the former jail behind it, are haunted.

Today, the old county courthouse is a playhouse where dramas are acted out on a stage.

But back in the old days, it was the stage for something else -- a murder trial of a man believed to have killed a rancher's two young daughters.

Donna Anderson wrote the book on the history of Globe, Arizona. 

She says it’s in the jail, in the suspect’s cell, that two ghosts came to visit. 

“He told the matron over there who was looking in on him, that the girls came to visit him one night, and that they asked him to go with them, told him to ‘come, go with us,’" she said. “And he was so afraid that he said, ‘no, no, I can't do that.’ And that happened two different nights that he told the matron that he had seen them.”

Although no one can know if his story is actually true or not -- visitors to the jail, today, have reported hearing a woman's voice on the empty upper floors. And employees working late have said they sense something strange.

“Mr. Goswick is not resting in peace, at all, and Mr. Goswick, they believe, walks the halls up here because sometimes when people come in up here, they can smell cigar smoke,” Anderson said.

Some say that cigar belongs to Wesley Goswick, the rancher and father believed to have waited for revenge.

According to lore, he shot and killed the man responsible for the deaths of his daughters from a distant window.

The assassination and the murder of the two girls made national news. The New York Times reported, "an angry mob on the courthouse steps was ready to kill the suspect if the rancher didn't."

“They think he (Goswick) came in for the trial and at some point in time, he got back into these rooms and hid there until everybody left for the day,” Anderson said.

Cigar butts at an open window gave locals clues to assume it was Goswick taking justice. 

“He was never convicted and there are two definite thoughts on that: Number one, there's no real proof that he was the one who did it, and number two, he was a very well respected rancher in the area, in those days, that carried a lot of weight,” Anderson said.

He may have never been physically arrested, but some believe his soul had a different ending to the story -- arrested and ordered to walk the halls of the courthouse forever.

“They think that has to be him, still pacing, wondering for sure that his daughters are in peace and that he is still around taking care of things,” Anderson said.

Copyright 2016 KPNX


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