According to a “Haunted Housing Report,” 35 percent of homeowners claim they’ve had paranormal experiences in their vintage homes, or in a home that they have previously owned. While an individual’s perception of what is “haunted” is subjective, that percentage might be just high enough to cause you to think twice about that noise you heard in the basement yesterday.
Certain factors increase the likelihood of homeowners experiencing paranormal activity in their new vintage homes. These may include whether a house is located on or near cemetery property; if the property is over 100 years old; if there were numerous transitions between owners; and whether the house is built near a battleground or other area where multiple deaths occurred, thus creating negative energy.
Joshua Ward House, Salem, Mass.
The name “Salem” conjures up images of witch hunts and accusations. These are what took place in this vintage home. The brick mansion was built for Joshua Ward in the 1780s; however, the home’s previous owner, Sheriff George Corwin, also known as “the Strangler,” killed many women accused of witchcraft. Their souls are said to sulk through the corridors of the home.
Farnsworth House, Gettysburg, Pa.
The famous Civil War battle at Gettysburg was one of history’s bloodiest combats. The Farnsworth home was dedicated to Confederate sharpshooters and acquired at least 100 bullet holes over the course of the war. The home is rumored to still house deceased souls of misery-ridden Confederates.
The house is still in use today as a bed and breakfast. Visitors claim there is a spiritual presence in the house that isn’t quite alarming, but still noticeable.
LaLaurie Mansion, New Orleans
If you’ve watched American Horror Story, you’ll recognize the LaLaurie Mansion in New Orleans as the same mansion depicted in the show. Located in the city’s French Quarter, the mansion was where the family of Dr. Louis Delphine LaLaurie resided in 1832. They were an affluent family with a dark secret-Madame Delphine tortured slaves in the attic. Supposedly, the souls of the deceased slaves still torment the home.
Visitors are continuously attracted to the spooky home and reputation of Madame LaLaurie.
Villisca Ax Murder House
The final house contains a tragic history similar to the tortures that took place in the LaLaurie Mansion. In 1912, six children and two adults were murdered with an ax wound to the skull. The Moore family’s death was never solved, and little evidence was found to determine who murdered them. Reports by people who have spent time in the house claim that there are sounds of children crying, ladders moving, and doors opening and slamming shut all on their own.
It is clear that these homes are filled with rich history. Those with an interest in the dark arts or haunted abodes will likely find great pleasure in continuing to research these vintage homes and their murky histories. Others may need more convincing.