Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Whaley House Part 1 (The Halloween Series)

(GPS: N 32 45.150 W 117 11.670)

(Note: these pictures are from the late 1990's. Since that time a new organization has taken over and the insides of the house are much different. I enjoyed the Whaley House at the time I did this, but the changes and new policies I do not agree with and cannot with good conscience recommend spending your money on touring this house as it now is.)

Another really fun, but spooky place to visit is the Whaley House. In the 1960’s the U.S. Department of Commerce gave the house “officially haunted” status. Some claim it may be the most haunted house in the U.S.
In 1852, a man named “Yankee Jim” Robinson was hung at the site for attempting to steal a boat. Unfortunately, it was not a quick and painless death as it is reported it took 45 minutes for him to be strangled to death. Stories have come out that he now haunts the house. His heavy boot steps have been heard, people feel the tightness of a rope around their neck between the parlor and the music room, as well as his ghost being seen.

In 1857, Thomas Whaley and family, moved to the property and the house was built. Unfortunately, the youngest child, Thomas Jr. died of scarlet fever at 17 months. Stories have come out of people hearing a child crying from his room upstairs where he died.
I had to tweak the above picture to brighten it since it was really dark. It is rare for me to shoot inside of a house and I can't remember if they had rules on flash photography or not. Anyways, the above is the Andrew Jackson sofa which, naturally, belonged to Andrew Jackson when he was alive. It is here that tv entertainer Regis Philbin "saw" Anna Whaley (husband of Thomas) sitting there at 2:30 am.
The above is the Gone with the Wind piano taken from the movie of course. There are stories of the music box (to the right) playing and the piano playing in this room by themselves.
I believe the above is the dining room.
What is interesting is that the house was used as the San Diego Courthouse. When you enter the house it is to the left past the dining room. There are a lot of old 19th century trinkets in this room. I remember seeing some Civil War items. The arm above is just my brothers and nothing to freak out about. However, there are stories of sounds of lots of people moving around in here. There is a picture on the net where a person claims to have seen something that looks like a ghost.
Still in the courtroom. What is interesting here is that little face you can see in the middle right side of the picture. That would be this:
Ignoring the shadow of me shooting the picture, this is a mask of Abraham Lincoln. The Whaley House owns 1 of 6 of them. Cool, but kind of creepy! Originally, when I wrote this entry I was under the impression this was a "death mask" because that was what I was told, but I have since learned that this is a myth. Please click this LINK about the history of the two masks Lincoln had done.

Tomorrow I will show what the upstairs looks like at the Whaley House.