Your Community Newspaper

Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Your Community Newspaper

Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Your Community Newspaper

Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Winchester Mystery House

Welcome to Colleen’s Corner. This is a column meant for fun and some information About myself: I am a Freelance Photographer you often see me on the side of the road  or in various places taking photos of different things animals, birds, places, people etc.  l have lived in Lumby just over 8 years you have seen my photos in the newspaper (Lumby Valley Times) and once in awhile in the Vernon Morning Star, and the Lumby Art Gallery. Photography is my passion. Disclaimer:  The information on some of my photos that I write about a lot of times come from the Internet or books I research them, hopefully the facts are as close to the truth as I can come.

While we were in San Jose California Tim and I went to the Winchester Mystery House. It was amazing. The now deceased owner Sarah Winchester was the wife of William Winchester of Winchester repeating rifles. William had been the sole heir to the Winchester fortune left to him by his father Oliver Winchester, the founder of the  Winchester Repeating Arms Company. Sarah and William were married during the Civil War. Living in New Haven at the time. where they oversaw the construction of their family mansion.

After the death of her husband William who died of Tuberculosis in 1881 Sarah remained at the mansion mourning her husband and their daughter Annie who had died in 1866 at the age of five and a half weeks. After staying there for several years, Sarah went to see a psychic, the psychic told her that the house she was living in was a haunted house from all the spirits that had died from being shot with the repeating rifles made by Winchester. The psychic told Sarah she needed to leave that house and never return. Sarah was to buy property, build a house, and never stop building. Taking the psychic’s advice Sarah moved to San Jose California in 1884 with her sister and niece buying a farm on forty acres of land. She called her new residence “Lianda Villa”. Sarah started to remodel and enlarge the farmhouse  and never stopped until Sarah’s death in 1922. By the time of Sarah’s death there were 160 rooms, on property which covered 6 acres of land. This house had 10,000 windows, 2,000 doors, and 13 bathrooms. There were stairways that led to nowhere. Sarah never stopped building on the house; it was like an obsession for her. By the 1890’s Sarah had built a fourth floor observation deck, and a five story tower on the North side. In 1906 a massive earthquake had destroyed the south turret badly damaged as well as the upper rooms. After that Sarah had the four top floors removed she started to work on a  new south wing and a summer house no of which were ever completed. 

By the time of her death Sarah had 161 acres of land.

After Sarah’s death in 1922 John Brown and his wife bought the house that no one else wanted. He opened the house to the public which help to keep up the maintenance of the house.

The Winchester Mystery House has seen over a million people come through the doors. The charge for a daily viewing to people helps to pay the staff and the upkeep of the very expensive house. Some people state the house is haunted some do not believe this. 

If you are ever in San Jose California be sure to checkout the Winchester Mystery House and see if you think it is haunted or not.

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