2 The Hubby William Wirt Winchester Born - June 22, 1837 Married Sarah Lockwood Pardee – September 30, 1862Had one childAnnie Pardee WinchesterBorn July 15, 1866Died July 24, 1866, of marasmusFather – Oliver Fisher WinchesterManufactured and marketed the Winchester repeating rifleDied on December 11, 1880Ownership of company given to William WinchesterDied March 7, 1881 of tuberculosis
3 The wife Sarah Lockwood Pardee Born in 1839 Death of only child Became deeply depressedNever had any more childrenFather-in-law and husband died within 3 months of each other50% ownership of Winchester Company upon husband’s deathIncome $1,000 a day (equal to $22,000 a day in 2008)Died September 5, 1922 – 83 years old
5 The house Winchester Mystery House Sarah - convinced Winchester family was cursedWent to a psychicFamily cursed by spirits killed by Winchester rifleShould move westBuild house for herself and spiritsConstruction should not stop or Sarah would dieMoved to San Jose, California from ConnecticutBought eight-room farmhouse on 162 acres
6 QuestionsHow did Sarah keep building constantly according to the psychic’s directions?How big is the house?What are some unique features of the house?Why did Sarah build the house the way she did?What happened after the earthquake?What happened to the house after Sarah died?Is the Winchester House haunted?
7 Plenty of money ($20 million dollar inheritance) HOW did Sarah keep building constantly according to the psychic’s directions?Plenty of money ($20 million dollar inheritance)Hired workers to build13 full-time workers24 hours a day7 days a week365 days a yearFor the next 38 years!Workers caught not working immediately fired
8 How big is the house? Covers 4 acres Had 7 stories (earthquake brought it down to 4 stories)2 functional basements160 rooms40 bedrooms13 bathrooms5 kitchensTo paint entire house 20,000 gallons
9 How big is the house? 3 elevators 47 fireplaces @1,257 window frames @10,000 window panes467 doorways950 doors40 staircases
10 What are some unique features of the house? Repeating number 13 theme13 Chandeliers13 panes in many windows13 bathrooms13 steps on most staircases (one has 39)Doors that open into wallsStairs that lead nowhereWindows that look into walls
11 What are some unique features of the house? (continued)
12 Why did Sarah build the house the way she did? Following psychic’s instructionsHeld seances (spirits “told” her how to build the next day)Strange designWanted to confuse spiritsWasn’t a trained architectSlept in a different room every nightBelieved if she stopped building, she would die
13 What happened after the earthquake? Earthquake in 1906Top 3 stories collapsedSarah trapped in her roomConvinced spirits were angry because house almost completeBoarded up front 30 rooms of houseEnsure house would never be completeTrap spirits that fell through the floors
14 What happened after Sarah died? All building stoppedLeft possessions to niece, Frances MarriotTook 6 weeks to remove furnitureHouse auctioned to investorsTurned into a tourist attraction
15 Is the Winchester House haunted? Many visiting psychics claim to see spiritsNumerous claims of ghost sightingsEmployees/VisitorsFootstepsBanging doorsMysterious voices
16 Is the Winchester House haunted? Windows bang so hard they shatterCold spotsStrange moving lightsDoorknobs that move by themselvesLight orbs in pictures
17 Conclusion – No, the house is not haunted. Sarah was mentally unstable.Suffered severe depression from the loss of her husband and daughterWas not in a good mental state when she went to a psychicLived as a recluse for 38 yearsLack of communication with people did not help her sanity.Bizarre events can be explained:Light orbs are reflections of flash off of dust particles.Cold spots are normal in a huge house with inconsistent heating.Strange noises in a house where tours are given could be explained by other tourists making them.People want to see ghosts so badly, they interpret normal events as ghosts.There are so many windows, some are bound to break.