On the outskirts of El Paso, Texas past Socorro, lies San Elizario, steeped in history dating back hundreds of years and one of the most haunted areas in the region.


Sitting just 20 miles east of downtown El Paso, the city is notoriously known for the 1877 Salt War of San Elizario. After a dispute over rights to the salt deposits just west of the Guadalupe Mountains, several men died included being chopped up and dumped in a well.

San Elizario is also the sight of the First Thanksgiving. In 1598, the Spanish explorer Don Juan de Oñate requested the friars traveling with them to say a Mass of Thanksgiving followed by claiming the land for the King of Spain.


For hundreds of years, San Elizario has been the backdrop for so much turmoil and death, and today the treasured little city is home to some of the most active paranormal sites in the region.

From another shadow person to La Llorona roaming the area to haunted restaurants and homes, these and many other haunts are happening daily at San Elizario.

#1 - Pistoleros


When visiting San Eli, you might want to stop by Pistoleros near the plaza. Built in the late 1970s, the restaurant also doubles as a venue. It has a mini theatre that lends itself perfectly for dinner theater presentations.

Ghosts appear on and off at Pistoleros; they walk between people, they take the stage as footsteps and clothes are heard rustling along with sounds of applause when no one is around.

A few years back, during a ghost tour, the Paso del Norte Paranormal Society captured three consecutive photos of an attendee standing at the back of the theatre. In the last picture, a hand is visible near the lady's left shoulder and the expression of fright on her face.

#2 Los Portales Museum and Visitor Center


Los Portales used to be a school way back in the day, but now it's a public museum and probably one of the most haunted. Stories tell that a little girl appears now and then and once stepped out of the shadows, emerging to a group during a recent ghost hunt only to disappear back into the darkness leaving behind a cold spot and freaking out everyone present.

In another instance, the Paso del Norte Paranormal Society captured audio of a female signing with an EVP - (electronic voice phenomenon) device.

Visitors have also claimed to experience scratches and whip marks on their bodies after spending time in the building, while others have seen shadowy figures move about the museum at night.

#3 - Haunted Field


Next to the Presidio Chapel and a public park is an open field that was the original cemetery for the chapel in the late 1890s. Locals talk about seeing ghostly images around that same field as over 200 bodies remain today.

#4 - Ellis Home


Charles Ellis was a prominent merchant killed during the Salt War of 1877; only a wing of his large adobe hacienda remains today. But don't kid yourself because while it's a historical treasure, it's also very haunted as people have claimed to see the shadow of a man that roams the premises.

#5 - Hanging Tree


The oldest and largest pecan tree in the valley lives in San Elizario, and to the locals, it's known as the Hanging Tree because it was the tree where prisoners would hang for their crimes. Locals also talk about shadowy figures spotted near the giant pecan tree and faces appearing in photos between the leaves.

During my recent visit, I captured a photo that seems to show a ghostly image appearing along the tree's trunk after taking three consecutive pictures in the dark with no flash. And yes, it was rather creepy standing out there in the darkness.

#6 - Old County Jail


The old county jail was built in 1850 and was made famous thanks to Billy, the Kid, after breaking into the prison to rescue a friend and then locking the guard in the cell and throwing away the keys. While the infamous jail still stands today as a museum, it's also the site of many haunts.

At night locals say they hear noises and knocks coming from inside the jail, and gaunt faces appear in photos taken by visitors.

#7 - Haunted Convent


Many years ago, the Presidio Chapel and a convent were once attached – today, that convent is now a private residence. However, it is also well known that after the convent had long closed, fetuses and baby stillborns were discovered buried in the convent's adobe walls.

While San Eli is a treasure trove of historical importance, it's also full of strange paranormal activity, making our list one of the most Haunted El Paso locations on the borderland.

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