“Haunted Bisbee” (Haunted America Series)
By Francine Powers. The History Press. $21.99; $12.99 Kindle.
With its rich and somewhat checkered history steeped in Western lore, it’s not a stretch to assume that the Southern Arizona town of Bisbee might harbor a ghost story or two. The sheer abundance of paranormal goings-on in the old mining settlement, however, is startling. Bisbee is one of the “most haunted towns in America,” says Francine Powers, who runs historical haunted tours there. She is qualified to make this case: the journalist, author, and historian had her first paranormal experience at age 6 — instigated by the mishandling of a Ouija board — that required intercession by a Catholic priest. She became a spiritual medium at 14, has penned numerous articles about haunted sites, and is a frequent guest on radio and television. In “Haunted Bisbee” she provides a historic overview that gives context to her reporting on hauntings, visions, and restless ghosts in locations in and around the city. As a journalist, says Powers, she’s a stickler for facts and gives little credence to accounts of paranormal activity that she can’t verify. As a result, this is no tall tale about things that go bump in the night: an eerie, historically supported read is guaranteed. Powers, whose roots go back a long way in Bisbee, recently relocated to Tucson. She is also the author of “Mi Reina: Don’t be Afraid.”