In 1890 the El Paso and Northeastern Railroad had arrived in the new founded town of Alamogordo and the railroad was intending to extend farther north. This would require more timber, so in 1898 a crew went into the Sacrament Mountains and discovered a summit to harvest the forest. The forest was vast and beautiful that they believed that it would be a great area to attract visitors. By 1899, the railroad would reach up to Cox Canyon, NM and then the visitors would journey the rest of the way to what is now Cloudcroft, about 13 miles. Cloudcroft New Mexico is in the heart of the Sacramento Mountains surrounded by rugged steep slopes and would become a popular destination. The original Cloudcroft Lodge, built in 1899, would become “one of the greatest summer resorts in the West.”
On June 19th, 1909, the Cloudcroft Silver Lining announced that the Lodge had succumbed to a fire. The fire was one of the greatest losses for Cloudcroft, however by 1911, the Lodge was rebuilt. The Lodge has entertained the likes of Judy Garland, Clark Gable, and Pancho Villa. In the 1930s the resort was managed by Conrad Hilton, who was raised in San Antonio, New Mexico.
There is a ghostly story that is associated with the famous Lodge. The legend of a beautiful lady named Rebecca. Rebecca was a chambermaid with striking blue eyes and flaming red hair. The story is that she disappeared after her lumberjack lover found her in the arms of another. There have been many of unexplained happenings at the Lodge, ashtrays slide across the tables, doors open and close for no apparent reason, furniture moves, and lights turn on and off by themselves. There have even been reported instances that fires have spontaneously ignited by themselves. Is this the work of Rebecca? It has been said that only the male guests who come to the Lodge, may see an apparition of a woman, or even feel a cool breeze brush against them. As some believe that this is spirit of Rebecca, who still wanders the halls in search of a new lover who might appreciate her flirtations and mischievous ways.