Winchester Mystery House

Categories: Usa, Viaggi
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Comments: 5 Comments
Published on: 17 September 2006

Aerial view

Sito di riferimento

This is the story of a house. A big house that I’ve seen many years ago and that I had forgotten until some days ago, when I have read its name in a book about bob Dylan.
It’s the Winchester Mystery House, an infamous California mansion that was under construction continuously for nearly 40 years and is reputed to be haunted. Construction of the San Jose, California mansion began in 1884, financed by owner Sarah L. Winchester, the widow of gun magnate William Wirt Winchester. Construction continued 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, until her death 38 years later in 1922. The cost for such constant building has been estimated at about US$5.5 million.
The mansion is renowned for its size and lack of a master building plan. Sarah Winchester believed the house was haunted by the ghosts of individuals killed by Winchester rifles, and that only continuous construction would appease them. It is located at 525 South Winchester Blvd. in San Jose.
Sarah Winchester inherited more than $20 million upon her husband’s death. She also received nearly 50 percent ownership of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, giving her an income of roughly $1,000 per day, none of which was taxable until 1913. This amount is roughly equivalent to $19,000 in 2005 dollars.
Deeply saddened by her husband’s death and seeking solace, she consulted a spiritualist on the advice of a friend. According to legend the medium (who has become known colloquially as the “Boston Medium”), told Winchester that there was a curse upon the Winchester family because the guns they made had taken so many lives. She told Winchester that “thousands of persons have died because of it and their spirits are now seeking vengeance.”
Although this is disputed, many believe the Boston Medium told her she needed to leave her home in New Haven and travel west, where she must “build a home for yourself and for the spirits who have fallen from this terrible weapon, too. You can never stop building the house. If you continue building, you will live. Stop and you will die.” Whether this tale is true or not, Winchester did move west, settling in California. Some believe Winchester followed the medium’s directions to distract the spirits she believed were hunting her. She was reported to have slept in a different room each night for some time.
Every night, Sarah would go to her Seance Room to receive messages from the spirits telling her what she should build. The orders from the spirits resulted in many strange constructions, such as doors that open onto walls, stairs that go nowhere, a cupboard that has only 1/2 inch of storage space, and tiny doorways and hallways just big enough for Sarah (who was 4’10” and of slight build) to fit through.
Prior to the 1906 earthquake, the house had been built up to seven stories tall, but today the highest point is the fourth floor. The house is predominantly wood frame construction, with a brick foundation. There are 160 rooms, including 40 bedrooms and two ballrooms. The house also has 47 fireplaces, 10,000 window panes, 17 chimneys (with evidence of two others), two basements and three elevators.
The house retains unique touches that reflect Winchester’s beliefs and her reported preoccupation with warding off malevolent spirits. The number thirteen and spiderweb motifs, which she considered to be lucky, reappear around the house. For example, an expensive imported chandelier that originally had 12 candle-holders was altered to accommodate 13 candles, wall clothes hooks are in multiples of 13, and a spiderweb-patterned Tiffany window contains 13 colored stones. In tribute, the house’s current groundskeepers have created a topiary tree shaped like the number 13.
Today, several different tours of the house are available, including flashlight tours at night on dates around Halloween and each Friday the 13th.
Here is a big aerial view of the house. This image shows the house’s size, but can’t reveal the construction’s complexity. This b/w image shows a closer look.

The house website
English text is taken from Wikipedia.

5 Comments
  1. Zia Petunia says:

    Pazzesco!
    Chissà quel mago cosa ci ha guadagnato!

  2. Mauro says:

    Non saprei. In realtà non si sa nemmeno chi fosse. È noto solo come il mago di Boston.

  3. Lemi says:

    Secondo me era un agente immobiliare.:-)

  4. marchengi says:

    Divina,la meta del mio proximo viaggio!!Sono venuto alla conoscienza d quest’opera cercando informazioni su rose red d seattle,ke speravo esistesse per visitarla ma a questo punto nn c spero piu d tanto,se qualcuno avesse informazioni su rose red….anche se distruggessero i miei sogni prego d informarmi grazie e home sweet home!

  5. Mauro says:

    The six-hour miniseries centers around a house called Rose Red, a turn-of-the-century Seattle mansion that has long been abandoned, but according to local lore, continues to add rooms onto itself. Intrigued by the story, a college professor named Joyce Reardon (played by Nancy Travis) enlists a group of psychics to spend the weekend in the house as a research project. They soon find themselves not only face-to-face with the mansion’s restless spirits but also trapped in a maze of rooms that constantly change locations, dead-end hallways and stairways that lead to nowhere.

    Although the house Rose Red is not real, Stephen King has created an entire “history” for the house. The story goes that the house once belonged to a Seattle millionaire and that his wife, Ellen Rimbauer, haunts the mansion after being told that she would live forever as long as construction on Rose Red was never completed.

  1. quoted on rgnqvwyn says:

    rgnqvwyn…

    rgnqvwyn…

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