Happy Halloween! As I was trying to come up with a way to tie in personal finance with the holiday for a festive post, I found inspiration from one of my favorite spooky shows, Ghost Adventures. If you’ve never seen it, it’s about 3 guys who go around the country investigating supposedly haunted places. A common theme with many of the haunted houses they check out is that they are mansions once built and owned by millionaires of their day. There are so many to choose from, but these 3 are all-American creepy classics:
Winchester Mystery House
They say that money can’t buy you happiness, but perhaps money can buy you madness! The Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California, is the work of one Sarah Winchester, heir of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company. She inherited the fortune when her husband died in 1881, after already having suffered the loss of their daughter. Deep in depression, Sarah consulted a psychic who advised her that spirits, who were killed by the very weapons made by her family’s company, had cursed them. She was advised to begin a process of constant construction on her mansion to appease the ghosts. This resulted in her adding 160 rooms,dozens of stairs to nowhere, and windows and doors that open up to empty walls. The construction went on for nearly 38 years, until she passed away. Today, you can take a tour of the house and see the mysterious design for yourself.
The Lemp Mansion
The Lemp Mansion, built in the 1860s, is located in St. Louis. It was once the home of the wealthy Lemp family, who also opened and owned the Lemp Brewery. Unfortunately, wealth (and beer) weren’t enough to keep this family happy, as they suffered a series of tragedies, including mysterious deaths, suicides, and the eventual demise of their brewery. Many believe that the unsettled spirits of the family still reside in the home. If you’re feeling brave, you can spend the night.
The Myrtles Plantation calls itself one of America’s most haunted homes. Located in St. Francisville, Louisiana, and built in 1776, it is a stunning example of antebellum architecture and Southern charm. Too bad it’s haunted. Legends of poisonings, shootings, illness, and murders have been circulating for centuries, and it is believed that there are at least 12 resident ghosts at the plantation today. One of the most prominent ghosts is Chloe, a slave who was supposed killed after poisoning the owner’s children. It’s a beautiful, if not spooky place to spend a night or two, if you dare…