Friday, August 1, 2008
The Winchester Mansion..Haunted?
The tale of the very strange Winchester Mansion is a well known story.There are, however two or three versions of the origin of the mystery.
Sarah Winchester endured the unexpected deaths of her only son and her husband.This was a devastating experience for her.In late 1884, the heiress of the Winchester Rifle business began the construction of one of the most bizarre houses known.It is said she moved to that location to begin a new life.Some reports say she was directed to move there by a Native American Shaman who said this was the area for building the house.So many people had been killed by the guns there was a curse on her.The only way her death with the curse could be avoided was to continually use the money and constantly build on the never to be finished house.
Another version says that the spirits she communicated with nightly told her she must fool the spirits haunting her by confusing them with the house so she could not be found for their revenge.
It is said that there was a special structured seance room with no windows and one entrance only, where she conducted a seance nightly at midnight.It is also said she slept in a different room each night until her death at age 85.
Apparently construction, often including tearing out and reconstructing, continued day and night until her death.The result was a very strange structure in San Jose,CA with some 750 rooms,halls and spaces being built then torn down.One author says 160 rooms remain.Stairs lead to nowhere,doors open into walls and small and varied spaces are sandwiched in between.
It is commonly stated that the fortune grew for decades as the building and spirit communication continued.In later years,some say the funds began to dwindle.Sarah Winchester although famous refused all social contact except for servants (and perhaps a few others ?) Teddy Roosevelt wanted to visit and came to the house,but was not allowed to enter,it is said.
Be that as it may, she died of natural causes amidst servants and construction workers as the only mourners.In the large safe, there was only a lock of her husband's hair and a small picture of her son.
Some say she haunts the home, others say a particular couple who faithfully served her does while some mediums report seeing a Native American circle within the seance room...
I have never visited although it is a popular place on the "Haunted" tours.Would like to.I find her a sad tragic figure whether she is there or not...