Haunted houses. Do the words give you goose bumps? Well, you are sure to get a few Goosebumps reading our compilation of the most extreme haunted houses in the US! The circumstances that led to each of these acquiring the horrific status of ‘haunted houses,’ will surely make you feel uneasy and cringe! If this piece sends shudders down your spine, it is feeling enough for you to plan a personal visit to these extreme haunted houses! Here we go.
1. Myrtles Plantation
One of the most extreme haunted houses is the Myrtles Plantation. Located in St. Francis Ville, it is claimed to be one of the eeriest ever, in the South. It is also claimed that scores of deaths occurred here due to illness, murder, and poisoning, ever since the house came into existence in 1797.
Previous residents, as well as visitors, have mentioned seeing many strange happenings here. Most interesting among them are a piano playing by itself; furniture that moved of their accord; people in framed photographs randomly appearing or disappearing; people finding themselves totally tucked into bed, on waking up; vanishing jewelry and strange looking handprints.
It is rumored that the house was built on an old burial ground, and is said to be home to around 12 ghosts! The records have mentioned a sole murder of one William Winter, an attorney who lived there. On being shot by a stranger, he tried to climb the stairs, staggering along but died on the seventeenth step. However, there are claims of 10 murders having occurred in the plantation house.
The Myrtles Plantation is at present on the bed and breakfast mystery tours. The house has featured in the Unsolved Mysteries, and Ghost Hunters show on TV.
2. Winchester Mystery House
The Winchester Mystery House is a real life mansion located in the city of San Jose, in California. It is a huge 160-room affair, built in the Victorian style. The bizarre features of its architecture make for eerie origins. This mansion, once the private residence of Sarah Winchester, is on the National Register of Historic Places and is now a tourist attraction.
The construction started in 1884, and there have been assertions ever since, that the mansion was haunted. It is claimed that the construction went on uninterrupted, and was still incomplete, when Sarah Winchester died, in 1922. Earlier, in1881, aspersions were cast when her husband and daughter died in succession and Sarah was left with a huge inheritance.
Among other weird features of the house, a strange maze of winding hallways, a network of secret passageways and a dedicated séance room stand out. One would wonder the purpose of a stairway that descends seven steps and then goes up eleven! It fits into the list of extremely haunted houses, and it would not be inappropriate to say that the mansion was built, with the intention of having the spirits themselves as the residents!
3. The Joshua Ward House
The Joshua Ward House is yet another that stakes claim to the ‘most extreme haunted houses in US’ tag. It was once home to Joshua Ward, a sea captain of enormous wealth. This house, built in the year 1784, has the reputation of being the first fully brick construction in Salem, Massachusetts.
The Joshua Ward House, it is said, was built on the site that housed George Corwin’s home. Corwin was the Sheriff of Salem during the famous Witch Trials. When he died, his remains were buried in the basement until they were later transferred to the nearby cemetery. Rumors have it that Corwin’s ghost haunts the house to this day!
George Washington is credited to have specially arranged to stay in this house in 1789 when he went to Salem. In 1978, the house was included in the list of the National Register of Historic Places. Recently, in 2015, the house was converted into a hotel.
4. The LaLaurie House
The LaLaurie House is among the spookiest of homes in the oldest town in New Orleans, the French Quarter. It was the home ofDelphine and Dr. Louis LaLaurie, a socially known family of the early 1830s. This building is a standing landmark from the bygone era, not merely due to its associated history, but also because there were very few houses of such vast proportions, in the French Quarter.
It is believed that Delphine was very brutal in treating her slaves. She is reported to have chained her cook to a stove, for the very silliest of reasons. She also chased a slave girl using a whip, which made her jump to her death, from atop the building.
There was evidence, too, that she had a secret room in the attic, where she tortured and mutilated many other slaves. This was discovered when a huge fire broke out in the house and rescuers broke into the home during firefighting operations. They found slaves tied together in the attic and evidence of violent, cruel treatment meted out to them. Eventually, when a mob of irate citizens threw her out, ‘Madame LaLaurie’ as she was addressed, and her family, escaped to France.
Delphine was married thrice, her two earlier husbands having died previously. The LaLaurie House was owned by Nicolas Cage, the actor, between 2007 and 2009. It is said that the agonizing screams of Delphine’s slaves can be heard in the mansion to this day!
5. Franklin Castle
Franklin Castle is the last, but not the least, on our list of most extreme haunted houses in the US. Built in 1865, and now historical house, it is located in Ohio City, Cleveland. Consisting of around twenty rooms, spread over four floors, it is known as the most extreme of the haunted houses in Ohio.
Originally built for the Tiedemann family, the very exterior of Franklin Castle gives one a real spooky impression. This is perhaps due to its sandstone facade, with ornamental embellishments and a round corner tower to boot.
People who have gone inside the mansion, have claimed having witnessed a weird woman, dressed in black, gawking out of the tower window. They claim to have heard crying children, seen lights spinning around, doors, and windows just flying about! This, they say, is because Tiedemann killed a mistress inside the tower and also his niece in a dark passage. His four young children too died in the mansion. Isn’t that spooky enough.
This, then, brings us to the end of our list of most extreme haunted houses. We could go on with more, but we’ll save that for another time. Meanwhile, re-live the above stories and let your imagination run wild. What if you were in one of these places, and alone…?