The Pfister’s Spectre

If you’ve ever listened to Art Bell or George Noory of Coast to Coast AM  on radio stations across the nation in the wee hours of the morning know that there are things that go “bump” in the night. Ghosts, spirits, spectres, unexplained phenomenons they’re all around, whether it be at a house, cemetery, church, hotel or even here in Milwaukee.

Pfister Hotel late 1800's

Pfister Hotel late 1800’s

Here in Milwaukee we have the Pfister Hotel. The Pfister was built It was owned by Guido Pfister who left “motherland” in 1845 for the frontier city of Milwaukee WI. Guido became a leader in Milwaukee, and envisioned a gift to the city that gave him so much – a grand hotel. Before his “palace for the people” as he liked to call it was complete he died. His son Charles Pfister continued on his father’s dream and opened the hotel in 1893 at the cost of over 1 million dollars (was originally budgeted at $500,000). Pfister enjoyed his creation until his death in 1927.

For many years, there have been stories about guests and staff who have seen, for a fleeting moment, the smiling image of Charles Pfister. He is always described as a heavy-set, tastefully dressed gentleman, and many who have seen his apparition have identified him by a portrait that hangs in the hotel.

Charles Pfister (1859-1927)

Charles Pfister (1859-1927)

The Pfister Hotel is a magnificent building, it has the largest “Hotel” collection of Victorian art in the world, as well winning the AAA Four Diamond award twice.  It has hosted dignitaries, movie stars and presidents (nearly every one since William McKinley), as well as locals, and even Major League Ballplayers…and that’s where this (ghost) story is going…

When visiting MLB clubs come to town they stay at the Pfister, recently articles have been run about certain ball players and their experiences at the hotel.

Pablo Sandoval of the Giants described a time in 2009 when, while in Milwaukee his iPod turned on by its self while he was taking a shower.

Bryce Harper the Nationals phenom had an experience in 2012. He moved out of his room, because the clothes he laid out the night before had mysteriously moved to the other side of the room in the middle of the night.

Michael Young

Michael Young

Micheal Young Phillies third baseman, heard footsteps stomping, asked whatever was there to make themselves at home, but let him sleep.

Gomez #27

Gomez #27

Even our own Carlos Gomez (Brewers-centerfielder) was so freaked out that he ended up in the front lobby, in his underwear after he got “spooked”…Carlos spent the rest of the night in a teammate’s room.


Charles Pfister build a beautiful hotel, a Milwaukee Landmark, something that both he and the city are proud of, it just so happens that his ghost checks in time and again, to admire his gift and make sure it’s running well…and maybe he just gets mischievous.

One thought on “The Pfister’s Spectre

  1. The Milwaukee pro teams should pay the Pfister staff extra money to scare the hell out of visiting players.

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