It's the time of year for turning leaves and cooler weather. Before pumpkin spice flavored everything from coffee to donuts, and orange plastic ornaments invaded store shelves, October was the month when classic and terrifying tales of haunted houses were used to mark the onset of autumn, and remind us the day the veil between the worlds was thinnest was fast approaching.
The Bly house from "The Turn of the Screw" by Henry James
Henry James' gothic masterpiece unfolds in a simple country house in Essex, where a governess is given the task of looking after two young orphans. But as quickly becomes apparent, the siblings' previous caretakers may still be present on the grounds. This book is the original reminder to never be a babysitter in a horror story.
Hill House in "The Haunting of Hill House" by Shirley Jackson
Shirley Jackson is an undisputed master of the ghost story. "The Haunting of Hill House" is one of the first examples from the genre in which the ill-fated characters week scientific proof of the supernatural. When you go looking for the ghosts, you should know how your story will end. Hill House has inspired two films and found a die-hard fan in Stephen King.
The Overlook Hotel in "The Shining" by Stephen King
Inspired by his own one-night stay at the Stanley Hotel in Colorado, Stephen King created one of the true nightmare locales of fiction: The Overlook Hotel.
When the Torrance family holes up in the empty hotel as caretakers for the winter, the building's dark and terrifying secrets start taking hold. Beware the bartender.
Manderley from "Rebecca" by Daphne du Maurier
"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again."
This Gothic classic finds a young, unnamed narrator swept off her feet by an older, wealthy man, who brings her home to his isolated English estate: Manderley.
She quickly learns that the house is burdened with the ghost — maybe literally — of his first wife, Rebecca, who died the year before. And the housekeeper, Mrs. Danvers, doesn't love change. Everything unravels from there.
The book is a reminder that having a mansion means you just have more room for secrets.
The House of Usher from "The Fall of the House of Usher" by Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe unsettles like no other. It's difficult to pick the most haunted location from his work — it could be the room with the heart under the floorboards or the catacombs where you don't want to turn your back — but the House of Usher has a lot going for it in this competition. There's the nearby tomb and the corpse that may not be a corpse. The eerie, glowing house-swallowing lake really seals the deal.
Hell House, The Legend of Hell House by Richard Matheson
A group of psychic investigators moving into the home of Emeric "The Roaring Giant" Belasco. Belasco was supposedly an evil murderer, and his spirit is said to still walk the halls of his former estate. Sure enough, as soon as the investigators start setting up their bizarre ghost-detecting machines, all sorts of paranormal activity kicks off.
Henry Treat Rogers House basis for the film The Changeling
This 1980 movie is a bit of a slow-burner, but it’s seriously creepy if it catches you in the right mood. George C. Scott stars as John Russell, a solitude-seeking composer who rents the wrong house while grieving his dead wife and daughter. The eerie old mansion is home to the ghost of a murdered child, and when it’s not pushing its wheelchair around the place, it’s pushing John to uncover its story and wreak its revenge.
Its screenplay is based upon events that writer Russell Hunter claimed he experienced while he was living in the Henry Treat Rogers mansion in Denver, Colorado.
Eel Marsh House, The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
The house is situated on Nine Lives Causeway. At high tide, it is completely cut off from the mainland, surrounded only by marshes. Kipps the solicitor soon realizes there is more to Alice Drablow, his client than he originally thought. While sorting through her papers at over the course of several days, he endures an increasingly terrifying sequence of unexplained noises, chilling events and appearances by the Woman in Black. In one of these instances, he hears the sound of a horse and carriage in distress, closely followed by the screams of a young child and his maid, coming from the direction of the marshes.
Source MPR NEWS
Marlene at Miami Ghost Chronicles is a freelance writer and paranormal researcher.
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