8 Skull Rating out of 10
Winchester House
525 South Winchester Boulevard
San Jose, Ca 95128

County: Santa Clara County
GPS: 37.3189340, -121.9507530
WebSite: None

San Jose, California is the where one of the most unusual houses in the world calls home. The 160 room house is a jumble of twists and turns, dead ends and doors to nowhere. It is the result of thirty-eight years of nonstop construction with no more of a blueprint than the whim of the house`s owner.

Sarah Winchester was the wife of the heir to the Winchester Rifle fortune, William Winchester. They had one child, a daughter, Annie, who died about one month after her birth. William died approximately 15 years later of tuberculosis. Mrs. Winchester, deeply distraught over both deaths, consulted a medium for guidance. This is where the fun starts.

The medium, rather than giving a message of a comforting nature, told Sarah that her family was cursed by the spirits of all those killed by Winchester rifles. These spirits had taken the lives of her husband and daughter as a revenge. The only thing that would pacify these tormented, and tormenting, souls would be to purchase a house and build on it continually. If Sarah did as the spirits directed, she could escape them. Apparently, the medium also gave Sarah the impression that if the construction ceased, so would Sarah`s life. Make sense to you? Me neither! It made sense to Sarah, though, which is why I`m able to write about this.

In 1884, Sarah bought a house in San Jose and immediately set to using her $20,000,000 inheritance to fund nonstop additions. There were people working on the house twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year until the day she died, thirty eight years after construction began. Sarah was responsible for the architectural design of the additions, which includes doors that open to 8 foot drops, staircases that rise to nowhere but the ceiling, switchback staircases with two inch steps, and a room that has a window in the floor. Theories abound as to why Sarah constructed the house in this fashion. A common one seems to be that it was her intention to confuse the spirits that were after her. A more outlandish one is that she had a seance every night to learn what the spirits wished. Most sources I read stated that the house has a "seance room", but some claimed it a bit of legend. The most down-to-earth theories are: 1) The house looks like that because she was not an architect and had no idea how to design a house. 2) The house looks like that becuase the woman was completely out of her gourd.
Here are some statistics about the house:

160 rooms
40 bedrooms
47 fireplaces
13 bathrooms
2 ballrooms
40 staircases
more than 450 doorways

(408) 247-2101

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Submitted by: AnonymousVisiter

Last updated by: Anonymous

Last updated on : 6/1/2005

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User Comments: 
               Like      Dislike        Comment# 164     7/19/2006 12:00:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 6/11/2008 11:50:06 PM  
i will go there this summer and yess the legend is true pretty creepy right but very true try checking it out anytime of the year but be very carefull that house may not be friendly!!

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 2544     2/10/2007 12:00:00 AM     Edit       Reply    
Georgia Paranormal Society

Last Seen: 1/18/2010 9:42:10 AM  
i captured a great apparition of Mrs winchester from here.. listed on my website: georgiaparanormalsociety.com

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 2545     2/10/2007 12:00:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 2/17/2015 3:18:42 PM  
The number 13 has an importance in this home as well. Sarah was rather intrigued by this number, so that is why it appears rather often with in the Winchester home. Along with there being 13 batherooms, It was also obvious that Sarah was intrigued by the number "13". Nearly all of the windows contained 13 panes of glass: the walls had 13 panels: the greenhouse had 13 cupolas: many of the wooden floors contained 13 sections: some of the rooms had 13 windows and every staircase but one had 13 steps. This exception is unique in its own right.... it is a winding staircase with 42 steps, which would normally be enough to take a climber up three stories. In this case, however, the steps only rise nine feet because each step is only two inches high.
Also, I have a link on the history on the Winchester Mansion. It describes in detail of the history.


               Like      Dislike        Comment# 2950     4/3/2007 12:00:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 1/16/2008 8:05:19 PM  
I visited the house over my spring break, three weeks ago.
The strangest room, in my opinion, was the room where Sarah Winchester was trapped for several hours during and after the 1906 earthquake. After she was trapped in this room, she took it to be a sign from the spirits that she was focusing too much on the front of the house -- so she ceased construction on the front of the house, moved herself and her servants to the back, and completely closed off the entire front of the house.
When I entered the room where she had been trapped, chills went up my spine. I only understood why after our tour guide told us the story.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 3384     4/26/2007 7:37:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 1/16/2008 8:05:32 PM  
This house is not friendly, however, it is to intriguing to stay away from. Sarah`s favorite room was called the Daisy Room, which is the room she was trapped in when the 1906 quake hit. She thought the spirits caused the earthquake because they were mad at her for working to much on that part of the house. She then boarded up that section of the house, which included the Daisy Room and began work on another section of the house.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 3987     6/24/2007 7:32:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

i heard that part of it burnt down a year or two ago i na fire on tv

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 4403     7/25/2007 8:52:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 1/16/2008 8:06:28 PM  
my cousins went to see it since they lived in san jose.
i was born there and wish i could have seen it although it seems kind of rude to the spirits though.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 5583     9/29/2007 3:08:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Me and my family went to visit in the early 2000s. While we were on the tour in the top room, we experienced a very large temperature drop for about 5 seconds. Both before and after this experience it was well over 90 degrees in that room. There were no fans or of course, no air conditioners within a couple rooms distance of where we were.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 5612     9/30/2007 10:03:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 1/16/2008 8:07:09 PM  
I went there recently and have loads of pictures. Also, if you have seen Most Haunted on the travel channel, they will be visiting there soon and the episode will show on, i think October 20th or 21st

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 5728     10/5/2007 9:57:00 PM     Edit       Reply    
Georgia Paranormal Society

Last Seen: 1/18/2010 9:42:10 AM  
Here is the picture of Mrs, Winchester after death!

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 9961     2/26/2008 12:01:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

I saw the Most Haunted program. What a gyp! As usual, they concentrated on the unimportant, had far too much talking about the whys and wherefores of Sarah's insanity, why she built so much, and in all the program was very boring. It was as bad as the BBC program in 1965 put on by the English Psychic Group. All it really showd were five or six older people sitting in a very stiff half circle reciting poetry. Very little time was spent on the haunted castles, churches or whatever. The same was true in the case of the Winchester House, lots of talk, very little haunting.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 10625     3/12/2008 10:43:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 2/8/2009 11:21:49 PM  
 If you ever get the chance of touring this house i suggest that you do. All the documentaries done serve it no justice... you just have to see it for yourself. Didn't get the feeling of a haunt here but by far the craziest house ive ever seen. I found the staircases to be the strangest.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 11069     3/23/2008 1:08:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 7/29/2008 9:12:56 AM  
this place is the freakiest and coolest place i've been. its sad though how the media took it over now and i hate going there now because the people who you go on a tour with dont give you any chance to explore and its just sad.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 12683     5/8/2008 2:05:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 4/6/2012 9:36:08 AM  
have 2 photos each with orbs.  One in the music room and another in a stairwell

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 13570     5/30/2008 8:49:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 5/30/2008 6:32:42 AM  

T.A.P.S. Was there some time ago and found nothing as far as EVP's, Orbs can be a few different things, No I for one know that Ghosts do not show up on que, so there is still a possability of it being haunted. I would like to find out for myself though.

Does anyone have solid pictures of spirits in the house? I am not talking about Orbs.

I for one think the poor lady suffered a significant loss and was searching for answers as to why her family died. I feel sorry for her even though she has been dead for a long time


               Like      Dislike        Comment# 15061     7/8/2008 3:31:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

I was at the house recently and did not feel a single presence there. I was actually greatly disappointed by the tour and felt that the way they roped things off made things more "mysterious" and seem larger or "crazier" than they are. Every design in the house made perfect sense to me and a lot of the "strange" things can be explained based on the continued building. I did however feel several presences on the grounds coming from the Foreman's House, the workshops and the greenhouse and felt like I was being watched outside of the house. The Foreman's house really gave me the chills.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 22648     11/1/2008 2:45:00 PM     Edit       Reply    
Lee Wacker

Last Seen: 11/2/2008 8:24:33 AM  

I had a very interesting thought concerning Sarah Winchester recently. 

As you all know, she was supposed to have been told by a psychic that the spirts of people killed by the rifle manufactured by her company were angry and needed to be appeased.  Of course, all the angry spirits were most likely Native Americans.  No mention of the settlers, soldiers and otherwise killed with the same gun as the Native Americans.  Unfortunately, the psychic lumped everyone together.

Now, consider this.  Although Mrs. Winchester was supposed, or at least reputed, to be a bit insane, just how insane was she?  She evidently ran the company, watched over the craftsmen working on her house, and was aware of a lot of other things going on, while she practiced and believed in spiritualism.  She evidently saw the Crash of 1893 coming, perhaps through her spirits, and was able to stave off hardships for the various communities around.  It is said that she single-handedly saved San Francisco through her constant building.

Now, the question is begged:  Was she crazy as in mentally inept, or was she crazy like a fox?

Think about it.





               Like      Dislike        Comment# 24418     12/8/2008 8:05:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

i will never go thier it is 2 scary plus im scared of those places

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 26376     1/24/2009 8:05:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

I have worked there and I can tell you from experiance.there is no malevolent spirits or ghosts, all that lurks in the shadows...is only dust

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 28978     3/17/2009 5:39:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

I went there once and to my disappointment there was no presence. I stared in mirrors hoping to see something creepy behind me, listened for weird noises... nothing.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 30350     4/7/2009 3:48:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 3/31/2014 1:48:41 AM  

I actually went thru the tour of this amazing house about five years ago while out visiting friends in Cali.  I thought it was really cool and odd at the same time.  At the time I went there I had NO idea that it was rumoured to be haunted though, but under the circumstances I could believe it!

I remember feeling a cold draft but thought that it was because the house is old and probably often times musty and drafty...not sure.  I thought it was eerie when they took us into the room where Ms. Winchester used to hold seances!  Anyways, I got some cool pics...if I can get them scanned I will post them up  (back before I had a handy dandy digital camera!).

Very cool house, I would LOVE to go back.



               Like      Dislike        Comment# 42553     10/24/2009 7:29:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

i want to go to this place. it sounds intriguging. my best friend went there and found no such evidentice of ghost or ghuols... sadly olny dust and spiders. ive always been interasted in the paranormal. but yet never had a exsperiance myself.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 64289     12/19/2010 11:51:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

I've been there and I saw her.

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 66638     2/8/2011 12:59:00 AM     Edit       Reply    

Last Seen: 2/8/2011 12:51:29 AM  
Went there on a day trip from Berkeley. Also went to the Rosicrucian (sp?) museum, which I think was also in San Jose. What a cosmic day!

               Like      Dislike        Comment# 77932     5/18/2012 2:05:00 PM     Edit       Reply    

My aunt swears that when she was little back in the 60's she went to Winchester Mansion and kept seeing this little old lady. She says she thought she was a tour guide except that she never spoke like the other tour guide. She only motioned with her hands and always managed to stay infront of the group. She kept asking her mom but she didnt understand. When it was over, in a brochure or something she caught a glimpse of Sarah Winchester and quickly blurted out "thats the lady I saw"! She says there was nothing menacing about the old woman she saw that day she just seemed like she really wanted to show people her house. 




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