This house located at San Jose, California just has to be one of the world’s most strangest structures ever. From the outside, it appears to be a Victorian-inspired mansion surrounded by a beautiful garden. Its interiors, however, are entirely shrouded in mystery.
The house originally belonged to Sarah Winchester, widow of William Wirt Winchester. The 7-story mansion has more than 160 rooms and it is filled with many architectural oddities – from stairs that lead to ceilings or walls, to doors that lead to steep drops, to blind chimneys, and many others.
Why is that the case, you may ask?
Well according to history, Sarah Winchester never stopped building the house since she acquired it.
In fact, it was always under construction for an entire 38 years.
It all began when William Wirt Winchester died in 1881.
This eventually left Sarah with a massive fortune of more than $20 million along with about 59% stake in Winchester’s gun company which means she had an income of at least $1,000 a day.
Obviously, that was a huge amount of wealth but that did not make Sarah happy. 15 years before that, she lost her infant daughter as well. She never recovered from the tragedy and William’s death eventually added more pain.
Later on, Sarah decided to consult a psychic medium and she was told that their family was being haunted by ghosts of people who died to rifles manufactured by William’s company. This resulted to, according to the medium, the deaths of William and their child.
To thwart the ghosts, Sarah was then advised to move west, build a big house, and never stop building it.
So she left New Haven, Connecticut and headed to San Jose where she purchased a property.
The widow never consulted any architect and didn’t have any master plan for the house, except for a few sketches she showed the foreman.
As a result, the house is filled with doors and stairs that lead to nowhere and many other bizarre architectural decisions.
Theories tell us that Sarah did this to confuse and trap the ghosts, although it is also possible that she simply looked for a never-ending hobby to help her deal with sadness.
Construction was always ongoing until Sarah died in her sleep on September 5, 1922. It is estimated that she spent $5.5 million building the house and has since been known as the ‘Mystery House.’