The Winchester Mystery House, San Jose, California


The Winchester Mystery House began as a project for the grieving widow Sarah Winchester, who tragically lost her infant daughter to marasmus, and then her husband to tuberculosis 15 years later. After their deaths, Sarah visited a medium, who told her that her family had been cursed by the roving spirits of people who’d been killed by Winchester rifles (designed by Sarah’s late husband, and the source of her enormous fortune). It’s said that Sarah was instructed to move west and build a great house to keep the spirits — and that her own life would be safe so long as she never stopped building. Sarah purchased the then-unfinished farm house in 1884 and got to work. By the turn of the century, the house was seven stories high, and featured a number of odd features: extremely long hallways, staircases leading into solid ceiling, and doors that open right into walls. Strange sights and sounds were reported in the house during Sarah’s lifetime, and have only continued since her death in 1922.

First part of the award-winning 20 minute video that masterfully tells the story of Sarah Winchester and the house that Sarah built. Produced in 1997 by Tam Communications for the Winchester Mystery House.

Interested in learning more watch America’s Castles – California Dreamers: The Winchester Mystery House and Scotty’s Castle by A&E Home Video.