Designed by the famed architect Isaac L. Taylor, The Crescent Hotel here in Eureka Springs, Arkansas opened in 1886. This beloved building, has quite a past and it has gone through a number of failures during its journey in time.
Unable to financially sustain itself as a hotel, the business was closed and the building was empty for several years until it re-opened in 1908 as the Crescent College and Conservatory for Young Women. The school proved to be a failure and closed its doors in 1924.
Once again the building was abandoned until it was repaired and opened as a junior college in 1930. The junior college was a failure as well and classes were suspended in 1934.
An epic failure
Several years later, a new owner, Norman Baker, purchased the building and turned it into a the Baker Cancer Hospital and health resort. The basement was turned into a morgue. As The Baker Cancer Hospital and health resort, the Crescent provided services to thousands of people from 1937-1940 . . . or did it?
You see, Norman Baker, was a charismatic charlatan who made over $4M with his promises to cure the ailing. He was not a Doctor. He was a hoax. He killed more people than he cured and, as a result, many of these spirits, like Theodora, are believed to have never left the premises.
Records are a bit confusing as to whether Theodora was a cancer patient or a hospital worker and it has been speculated most that she was a nurse who became stricken with cancer while employed at the hospital and then became a patient until she died.
Room 419 is Theodora's room. She died in this room. This room is the second-most requested room at the hotel by guests. (Note: room 218 – Michael’s room is the most requested.)
There are two different stories as to who Theodora was when she was alive. Some think she was a hospital worker during the time that the building was Baker's Cancer Hospital.
While it still remains a mystery, some witnesses who have actually spoken to the spirit of Theodora have said that she introduced herself as a cancer patient.
When she IS seen, she is seen as an older woman fumbling for her keys outside of what was her room - 419. She is also reputed to have an aversion to untidy spaces, and is known for organizing things in this room, if she feels it is in disarray.
If you leave your belongings scattered, you may return with them neatly placed. Guests have reported jewelry being moved, sometimes going from on top of the desk into a drawer.
Both men and women have also reported being lightly touched while laying in bed asleep. This lends itself to the theory that she was likely a nurse.
Although Theodora is said to be a kind spirit and a welcoming energy, in one story, a couple unpacked their things, then went downstairs to meet friends. When they returned, their suitcases were packed and sitting by the door. It was later determined that Theodora did not wish for them to stay in the room as they were arguing with each other when they were unpacking their things. They took the hint and decided to stay elsewhere.
Theodora has spoken.
Since it is The Most Haunted Hotel in America, it’s not surprising that the Crescent Hotel and Spa has captured the attention of the Ghost Hunters crew, as well as several other paranormal groups who love to visit haunted houses and other paranormal locations around the world.