The cover of "American Ghost."

(Courtesy of Hannah Nordhaus)

In the 1970s, a janitor at a Santa Fe, N.M. hotel spotted a woman dressed in a black Victorian gown. Her white hair was in a bun, and she seemed sad. She vanished as suddenly as she had appeared. Days later, a security guard saw her -- and ran. Chandeliers swayed. Glasses tumbled from shelves. Guests reported that their rooms suddenly became freezing. These were the first reported sightings of arguably the most famous ghost in the Desert Southwest. Some say that the La Posada De Santa Fe hotel is haunted by Julia Schuster Staab, who came to New Mexico from Germany in the late 1800s after marrying a man who would become one of the state's most successful businessmen. Boulder writer Hannah Nordhaus tells the story in her new book, "American Ghost." It's a personal journey because Staab is Nordhaus' great-great-grandmother.