Sarah Lockwood Winchester was a millionaire heiress who owned half of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company. After the tragic death of her husband and daughter, Sarah consulted a psychic medium who told her that all the misery and misfortune that had followed her family was caused by the vengeful spirits of people who had died from being shot by Winchester rifles. The Psychic told her that the only way to break the curse was to build a huge mansion for the ghosts to live in. The Psychic warned that if Sarah ever stopped construction on the house, she would die too.
So, in 1884 Sarah moved to San Jose, California, purchased the 6 bedroom house and began building onto it. She hired 22 carpenters and kept them working all year round – 24 hours a day. Sometimes, workers would describe hearing disembodied footsteps, voices and the organ would sometimes play by itself.
Every night, Sarah would draw up new plans for the house and propose them to the workers the next morning. However, the workers were often left confused as she deliberately proposed plans that didn’t make sense as some of the stairs and doors would lead to no where. Sarah believed that her designs would confuse evil ghosts – for the same reason Sarah would sleep in a different bedroom every night.
Construction on the mansion continued until Sarah’s death on September 5th, 1922. By then, the house consisted of 160 rooms, 10,000 windows, 2000 doors, 47 fire places and 9 kitchens.
The Winchester Mansion is now a museum which you are able to tour 110 of the 160 rooms of Sarah’s mansion. Select a tour
DID YOU KNOW?
“Sarah’s inheritance from her husbands estate included $20 million (equivalent to $500+ million in 2017)” – Wikipedia
Winchester Mystery House, South Winchester Boulevard, San Jose, CA, USA
Google Maps Co-ordinates: 37.318290, -121.950999