On May 18, 2019 Hollyweird Paranormal was apart of a Lockdown at the infamous Braken Fern Manor hosted by OC Ghosts & Legends. Tune in and listen to our interviewS with the rest of the OC Ghost and Legends members along with our sit down with Dixie Tantardini, OC Ghosts & Legends’ Psychic and Medium. We talk about mobster ghosts, ghost hunting tools one should always carry during an investigation, how to protect yourself during a paranormal investigation and the creepy EVPs we collected during our investigation with OC Ghosts & Legends.
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Braken fern manor built in 1926 was originally known as “The Crib” while the Tudor House formerly known as “Club Arrowhead of the Pines” became a social hideaway for Hollywood’s elite. The Manor- This 10 room, 10 bathroom was said to have been used as a brothel during prohibition while The Tudor House was used to house illegal gambling, liquor, and other illegal pastimes. Infamous mobster Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel was said to have funded the construction and built the locations as a sanctuary of escape for Hollywood’s big wigs and Mob members.
Nestled in San Bernardino National Forest, surrounded by pine, cedar, and dogwood, at an altitude of 5100’, is Lake Arrowhead, CA, an area described as the “Alps of Southern California”
in 1826. At that time, about 40 Paiute Indians, a warlike tribe, used the mountains for their hunting grounds. They lived in the high desert area. Many were killed in a fight with the white men of Little Bear Valley.
At the same time, a more peaceful tribe of Indians, the Serranos, lived very near Little Bear Valley, in an area now known as Rock Camp, on the north side of the mountain. They would take their old and sick to Arrowhead Hot Springs for rejuvenation and healing. They hunted in the beautiful and bountiful valley and lived relatively peaceful, somewhat nomadic lives descending to the desert highlands and warmer inland valleys during the winter months.
Beneath the historic Arrowhead, sits the equally unique Arrowhead Springs. The Arrowhead Springs is a place deeply rooted in legend, with the most ancient one possibly being passed down from the Native Americans. The legend goes like this: The Great Spirit had an arrow, which was to guide the Native Americans to the spot where they were to make their home. The Great Spirit, having selected the place, fixed the arrow to mark it forever. It is believed that the native inhabitants of the San Bernardino Mountains through the Arrowhead directed the way to the hot springs with healing properties and therefore considered it holy ground.
Fast forward to the 1920s and prohibition. We touched on this subject in Ep. 30 on Famous Haunted Hollywood Bars. Police were cracking down on the mob in the city so the mob moved their operations in less discrete areas. One famous mobster who was rumored to lead this move was the notorious mobster, Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegal.
Rumor has it that Bugsy talked the Chicago Mob into backing his new venture, which is now known as Bracken Fern Manor. This Alpine-style inn opened as Club Arrowhead in The Pines on July 4th, 1926. The inn had state of the art amenities, such as electricity! More importantly, it catered to the rich and famous, offering gambling, illegal liquor and “working girls.” Other amenities included an Olympic size swimming pool, skiing, tennis courts, a bathhouse, and more. The brothel continued operations through World War II. Gambling was maintained in the speakeasy (across the street) up until 1955. Today, Bracken Fern Manor is a Certified Historic Landmark in the State of California.
Across from Bracken Fern Manor is where gambling took place at The CLUB. Now called “The Tutor House.” The story has it that when cops were on their way up the mountain from San Bernardino, and administrators were alerted, gambling tables were actually turned over, then appearing as regular tables.
Bracken Fern Manor claims to be haunted by a former “working girl” named Violet. She killed herself after the mob killed her lover. You can still smell her violet-scented perfume wafting through the halls. Another ghost of a little boy has also been seen at this historic inn. He is thought to be the son of a former prostitute and was trampled by a team of horses. Today his tiny footsteps are often seen in the snow…so it is told.
After the inn became successful, Bugsy convinced the Bosses in Chicago to front him the dough for another little gambling adventure…..Las Vegas. However, Bugsy’s lavish taste caused him to go way over his one million dollar budget and ultimately cost him his credibility with Chicago. And his life. While he was having dinner one evening with his lover, Virginia Hill, at her Hollywood home, Bugsy was shot dead.