Spengler's Spirit Guide

The Winchester Mansion Haunting

Welcome back, Extreme Ghostbuster trainees! Now that you've become familiar with the Ghost Lexicon and the basics of Ghost Hunting, I feel confident that we can move on to case studies of "actual" haunted locations.

We'll begin with one of the most famous paranormal playgrounds on record: the Winchester Mansion in San Jose, California. The Mansion is quickly becoming a must-see attraction for tourists in the Bay area. I had the good fortune to visit this paradise of paranormal activity as a graduate student a... um... few years back. Highlights include staircases that lead to the ceiling, doors that open to eight foot drops (I discovered that particular feature the hard way), and a prolific use of the number 13 in design and dimension. The Winchester Mansion is one of the creepiest buildings I've ever had the great pleasure to stand in. After a lengthy discussion with some of the building's caretakers, I learned that the story behind the Winchester Mansion is as bizarre as the structure itself.

Biker GhostThe tale began in 1882 when Sarah Winchester, heiress to the Winchester Rifle fortune, was faced with the untimely deaths of both her husband and child. In her loneliness, she began to consult with numerous psychics in an effort to contact her deceased loved ones. Though Sarah was unsuccessful in her attempts , one psychic (possibly the son of a California building contractor) made a startling pronouncement; Ms. Winchester's grave misfortune would continue until she built a home for the soul of every person ever felled by a Winchester rifle. Unfortunately for Sarah, by this point in time, Winchester rifles had contributed to the death of quite a few people.

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