The iconic Winchester Mystery House. We've heard the story of an eccentric widow who built a rambling nonsense house to "confuse" the spirits of those killed by the Winchester Rifle. The Winchester House is one of the most recognized estates in the United States. It has over 160 rooms, staircases that lead up to nowhere, and doors that open to solid walls. Was all this the musings of a crazy woman or are we missing the hidden meanings of the house's anomalic architecture?
Who was Sarah Winchester? Most of us know only one side of the story. Dubbed "The Belle of New Haven," Sarah Pardee Winchester was a beautiful woman with a brilliant mind and an impressive education for a female of her time. She was fluent in Latin, French, Spanish, and Italian. Sarah had an extensive knowledge of Homer and Shakespeare and was an accomplished musician.
Young Sarah was raised in a liberal environment that embraced progressive Freemason-Rosicrucian theology. She attended Yale University's female scholastic institution, the "Young Ladies Collegiate Institute." Yale has strong ties to Masonic-Rosacrucian ritual and symbolism and is home for the secretive club, of the Skull and Bones Society.
Given her rote knowledge of Shakespeare, numerology, Freemason iconography and an eye for architecture, it's time we take a fresh look at the Winchester Mystery House.
The house is bursting with cryptic and anomalous features throughout. The prime numbers 7, 11, and 13 are prominant throughout the estate. Be it 13 windows in a room, 11 rails in a railing, or the number of planks in a floor, these numbers were of particular importance to Sarah Winchester.
Many of the rambling staircases and labryinths contain sacred geometry and may hold pieces to a much larger puzzle.
Was Sarah Winchester wanting vistors to participate in her puzzle to stretch our ideals? Is the house simply filled with anomalies and whimsy and placed randomly, or is this house more like a backdrop from The Divinci Code?
Perhaps she is aluding to the Freemason's philosophical ideal as noted in Proverbs: 25
"It is the Glory of God to conceal a thing. It is the Glory of Kings to find a thing."
Let us take a look at Winchester Mystery House with fresh eyes as I chat with historian Janan Boehme
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