Quote and Credit

Quote and Credit


Bring the Whole Family to Mystery House Vernacular Architecture Gone Blood Mad

The whole family visits the Winchester Mystery House!

Full of ticky tacky construction...and as the first image pulled up when I search the place is a real photo postcard which reads (in shaky handwriting) " Winchester Mystery House Near San Jose BEFORE THE EARTHQUAKE" I have to assume these folks were there on a good day...it looks terra firma anyway.

The stupid place was an attempt by the crazy heir to the Winchester rifle fortune to make up for "settling the west" by spilling blood and inventing a machine which could kill three native people with one load...if you had good aim and weren't drunk.

The fantasy ramshackle pre-Disneyland hunk of balsa was the creation of Wirt Winchester's nutty bride, Sarah. Sarah inherited a good chunk of Winchester blood money when Wirt contracted tuberculosis and joined his once youthful and proud civil war friends in 1881, some twenty years after his family helped put them into early graves.

What to do with $20 million 1881 dollars? Why, take it to a seance! The spirits told Sarah to move west, buy land and commence drawing up plans for a house as nutty as she was. With no experience in architecture, Sarah began drawing up plans on paper and handing them to her builders. Obsessed with the number 13, she insisted each window have 13 panes of glass. Windex was not invented until 1933, so those corners probably got "durn dusty" even before the quake.

Eventually the Winchester fortune resulted in 160 crazy, rich widow rooms. Then came the quake. Sarah was trapped in her own insane, pre-code monstrosity.

Fortunately she survived to crazy the place up again for 15 more years before passing away in her sleep in 1922, putting an end to the madness and setting the stage for landmark status!

Today the Winchester Mystery House tricks the public into a visit by spreading myths the place is haunted. The website, complete with the sound of a rifle being cocked, is HERE, a testimonial to what happens when too much weapon dough is left to a emotionally fragile visionary of sorts. There is no indication on the site if a NRA card provides a discount.

Anonymous Snapshot, circa 1925? Collection Jim Linderman
Dull Tool Dim Bulb Book and Ebook Catalog HERE

No comments:

Post a Comment