A new room was just discovered in the Winchester House
The Winchester House, also known as the Winchester Mystery House, is a weird place with a weird history – and it keeps getting weirder. In fact, a new, hidden room was just discovered.
Located in San Jose, CA, the Winchester House was the personal residence of Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun manufacturer, William Wirt Winchester. The mansion was built with money from gun sales, something that Sarah Winchester took to heart – so much so that she believed the house was haunted by the ghosts of people killed by Winchester weapons. To keep them at bay, she came up with a peculiar solution.
William Winchester died from tuberculosis in 1881. He left his wife an inheritance of $20.5 million, as well as 50-percent of the rifle company, which gave her an income of around $1,000 per day. She was uneasy about the money though, and she was a believer in the supernatural.
Once story claims that during a séance, Sarah Winchester reportedly received a message from her husband, who told her to move west and build a new house for herself and the spirits of those killed by her husband’s rifles who were following her. That story has been disputed, of course, but the result is that she left Boston and moved to the Bay Area, where she began construction of her new mansion in 1884. And she kept building and building and building.
The story goes that she had the house built to be as confusing as possible to keep the ghosts from finding her. She kept building onto the house for the same reason, and the result is a maze of rooms, passageways, and stairs – some of which don’t lead anywhere. Construction continued for 38 years, until her death in 1922.
The Winchester House has 10,000 windows, 2,000 doors, 47 fireplaces, 40 staircases, 13 bathrooms, nine kitchens, and 140 rooms – make that 141 rooms. Earlier this week, a preservation team working in the house, which is a registered landmark, discovered a new room hidden in the attic. It contained a pump organ, Victorian couch, dress materials, a sewing machine, and paintings.
The room was boarded up and forgotten after the 1906 earthquake. Sarah Winchester was in the room at the time of the quake, and she blamed the spirts in the room for the disaster. She left everything exactly as it was and sealed it away, hoping to trap those particular malicious spirits. The image above shows everything exactly as it was discovered.
That history has paranormal investigators drooling at the possibility of spending some time in the room. And they’ll get their chance as soon as the preservationists get the chance to catalog everything.
Assuming they don’t get lost on the way to the attic, that is.