Nothing says Halloween like an old-fashioned ghost story — and we have ten of them about real-life haunted houses around the world. Whether you believe in the paranormal or not, these chilling tales reveal a fascinating history about each property’s former residents and the cities themselves. The homes are also wonderfully creepy to look at. Get into the Halloween spirit by learning about these haunted abodes, and feel free to share your own ghost stories, below.
Winchester Mystery House
San Jose’s Winchester Mystery House, built and owned by gun magnate widow Sarah Winchester until 1922, claims to be a haunted location. “There have been numerous reports of paranormal activity, by both guests and employees. Psychics have said that there are three spirits currently residing in the mansion,” the estate’s website indicates. The depressed widow once consulted a medium, who claimed that her family and fortune were being haunted by the spirits of people killed by Winchester rifles — including soldiers and Native Americans. The medium advised that the only way to keep the restless spirits at bay was to build them a house. “As long as construction of the house never ceased, Mrs. Winchester could rest assured that her life was not in danger.” From 1884 until her death, Winchester used her inheritance to fund the ongoing construction. The house contains 160 rooms, including 40 bedrooms, 2 ballrooms, 47 fireplaces, over 10,000 panes of glass, 17 chimneys, two basements, and three elevators. Spirit sightings and other phenomenon have been frequently reported.