What’s scarier than a home with shag carpet and wood paneling? How about one with nightly apparitions and unexplained noises? In honor of Halloween, we bring you seven properties with haunted histories.
Henry Webber House
Located in Aspen, Colo., the Second Empire-style brick house was built by Webber, a wealthy shoe merchant, in the 1880s. When Webber’s wife, Harriet, died of an accidental overdose of strychnine, rumors of suicide or murder were rampant. Her ghost is said to haunt the house, which still stands as a private residence.
Winchester Mystery House
When Sarah Winchester’s husband died in 1881, she was left with a broken heart — and several millions dollars in cash. So the rifle heiress spent the next several decades building a sprawling seven-story, 160-room mansion in San Jose, Calif. According to legend, Winchester conducted a nightly séance to receive guidance with her construction plans. Now a popular tourist attraction, the mansion is said to be a site of paranormal activity.
Joshua Ward House
Located in arguably the spookiest town in New England — Salem, Mass. — the Joshua Ward House is reportedly the site of haunted happenings. The house was built on the foundation of George Corwin’s former home. Corwin was Essex County sheriff during the Salem Witch Trials and was responsible for the arrest and execution of the accused. In the 1990s, a Polaroid taken in the house shows a blurry female figure, clad in a black gown, standing at the top of the stairs.
The White House
Abigail Adams. Andrew Jackson. Dolly Madison. Those are just some of the ghosts that people have reported seeing at the White House. The spirit of Abraham Lincoln has been spotted many times, including once by Calvin Coolidge’s wife, who said that he stood at a window in the Oval Office, looking toward the former battlefields across the Potomac River.
Often called “Ohio’s most haunted house,” this four-story gothic castle was built in the mid-19th century for Hannes Tiedemann, a German immigrant. According to legend, Tiedemann’s mother and teenage daughter died of illness in the castle, and countless others were murdered there by Tiedemann himself. Witnesses say that several spirits inhabit the home.
Lizzie Borden House
Perhaps it should come as no surprise that this restored Victorian bed and breakfast in Fall River, Mass. is rumored to be haunted. It’s the original site of the gruesome double-murder that made the accused, Lizzie Borden, a household name. Witnesses say spirits visit the third floor of the house. The Lizzie Borden House website even has a video that some say shows evidence of the supernatural in action.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this St. Francisville, La. estate is surrounded by many legends. Currently a bed and breakfast, the property is reportedly occupied by at least 12 ghosts, one of whom is a former slave named Chloe who roams the grounds in a green turban. In a 2002 “Unsolved Mysteries” segment about the hauntings, the crew purportedly encountered unexplained technical difficulties while filming at the plantation.