The Mystery House Blog Has a New Home!

For a complete look at the Winchester Mystery House check out my Mystery House Commentary at my new site, Mystery House Guide. You'll find a complete description of every room on the Winchester Mystery House tour (with photos), so check it out here!


Palm Reader

A view of 'Palm Drive,'where carriages entered the estate.
Originally it was lined with 13 palm trees.


Drop Down

These call boxes were located throughout the mansion, allowing Mrs. Winchester
to summon servants at the push of a button. A number would drop down to indicate
where she was in the mansion.


Under Water

This staircase winds around the interior of the water tower. Many of
the men in Mrs. Winchester's employ lived inside the tower.



It seems like every film crew to visit the house does a low,
handheld shot of this hallway to make it look spooky.
From eye level, it's just a hallway.


Happy Halloween

Pictured above are Mrs. Winchester's carpenters. They were well-compensated professionals who worked hard to meet Mrs. Winchester's strange but exacting standards.
They lived, worked, and in some cases raised families on the estate. At least one of them may still be there.

During most of the mansion's history the main basement has been closed off. It wasn't until a few years ago that a second tour was added to include the basement. This meant clearing about 80 years of accumulated debris and dust. Since tours guides have some downtime between tours, they were given the job of sweeping up. It took several months, and during that time people kept running into someone they didn't know. He wore overalls, and had a wheelbarrow, and looked like he might be part of the restoration crew.

One of the guides, expecting to be alone in the basement that day, asked his manager who the other person doing the cleaning was. The manager was confused because no one else was scheduled to do any work in the basement. She asked what the other person looked like. The tour guide described him as wearing overalls and having a mustache, and he was pushing a wheelbarrow.

A few weeks later a different guide asked the same question. 'Who is that guy in the basement?'
The manager was curious, and asked what he looked like. The tour guide described him. He had a mustache. He wore overalls. He was pushing a wheelbarrow. This was very strange, no one was scheduled to be in the basement.

The tour opened to the public shortly thereafter. One afternoon in the basement, a guest asked her guide who the man with the wheelbarrow was. What man, he replied. No one was supposed to be in the basement. After the tour, he asked the manager who might have been in the basement with a wheelbarrow. No one, what did he look like? Well, he had a mustache, and wore overalls....

People kept seeing the man with the wheelbarrow. One day, a guest pointed to the picture of the carpenters and said to her guide, 'I saw that man in the basement. He had a wheelbarrow.' The guide told the manager what the guest had said.

Out of curiosity, the manager showed the photo to one of the guides. The guide was surprised. 'That's him.' The manager brought in the other guide. Without being asked, the guide pointed to the man on the far right side of the photo. 'That's the man with the wheelbarrow.'

People ask me if the house is haunted. I tell them that I don't know, but some of Mrs. Winchester's employees were very loyal.


An Interview (fixed link)

There's no regular update for today, but there's something special. Earlier this week, I gave an interview to the Travel Blog jaunted. You can read the interview here, and post any follow-up questions in the comments section.