It’s a spooky, spooky time of year! Halloween is upon us, and the season just isn’t complete without a few haunted houses. They’re a staple of our idea of something spooky and have been featured in movies and books for decades. What’s Psycho without the Bates Motel? What’s The Amityville Horror without the house? Whether or not we believe in ghosts, demons and spirits doesn’t matter — just about everyone can get on board with a good supernatural story.
Haunted houses, however, aren’t just a part of our popular culture. Haunted properties, from hotels and houses to asylums and castles, make for popular-real life attractions. Whether or not these properties are authentically haunted is a constant, unsolvable debate. At the same time, we do not recommend our investors buy haunted houses - real or not!
Just the same, check out these infamous pieces of haunted real estate across the U.S.
7 Infamous Haunted Houses in the United States
The Mordecai House — Raleigh, NC
Featured on an episode of Ghost Hunters, The Mordecai House hosted the family of Moses Mordecai for numerous generations. The home was willed to the city in 1964 and has since been incorporated into a public park. The ghost on the premises, said to be Mary Willis Mordecai Turk (who died in 1937), can allegedly be heard playing the piano in the downstairs drawing room, while others have reported a gray mist appearing around the piano. The sightings has consistently reported her wearing the same clothes, making her being a figment of imagination unlikely.
LaLaurie Mansion — New Orleans, LA
This mansion in the middle of the French Quarter is known for its meddlesome hauntings. Originally home to Dr. Louis and Delphine LaLaurie, the property is said to be haunted by the ghosts of the slaves Delphine brutally tortured in the attic. Their screams of agony cause routine problems for the current owners, who bought the home from actor Nicholas Cage in 2009 (who lost it to foreclosure, not apparitions).
Winchester House — San Jose, CA
A lot of us know about the Winchester House. The widow of William Winchester (of famed rifle manufacturing), Sarah, worked on her home around the clock for 38 years, until her death. She believed that she was being chased by the spirits of the men killed by her husband’s rifles, and thus built her home to both confuse and appease them. Doors to nowhere, nonsensical design, trap doors and other odd constructions can be found here, along with consistent reports of hauntings.
The Lemp Mansion — St. Louis, MO
The Lemp Mansion, now a restaurant and inn, was named one of America’s most haunted houses in 1980 by Life magazine. At least three suicides took place in the house by members from various generations of the William Lemp family. The mansion also offers haunted tours.
Lizzie Borden House — Fall River, MA
The home in which Lizzie Borden allegedly murdered Andrew and Abby Borden with an ax in 1892 is now a bed and breakfast. The grim events here have become subject of nursery rhymes and popular culture. The ghosts of Andrew and Abby are said to roam here, even today.
Villisca Ax Murder House — Villisca, IA
You can stay overnight here, though we don’t know why you’d want to. After the brutal ax-murder of all six members of the Moore family along with two guests in 1912, this home is said to host wandering spirits, crying child ghosts and a door that opens and closes by itself.
The McRaven Home — Vicksburg, MS
This Southern home was heavily damaged during the Civil War, during which it was used as a makeshift hospital during the Siege of Vicksburg. The owner at the time, John H. Bobb, became angry and attacked a sergeant with a brick before being dragged to the rear of the house, where he was shot multiple times. The this haunted property is said to be home not only to various Confederate soldiers’ spirits, but to Mary Elizabeth, ghost of a previous owner’s wife. She’s said to try to interact with guests. Creepy.
While none of us probably want to own a haunted property (unless you’re willing to risk not only hauntings, but difficulty selling down the line), we eat up stories of haunted homes and their gruesome history.
Would you ever buy a haunted property? Share with us in the comments.