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Twain’s Haunted House in Hartford

Some of Twain’s happiest….and his most heartbreaking…years were spent in the home he built in 1874 in Hartford, Connecticut where he lived for 17 years with his wife and three daughters.

Susy, rumored to be Sam Clemens’s favorite child, died tragically in the home of spinal meningitis when she was 24 years old in 1896. Since opening as a museum in the 1960s, an apparition fitting Susy’s description is often reported in the Mark Twain House. The entity is wearing a long white period dress, and appears to be in her mid-20s.

Many of the tour guides, and often visitors, report hearing and seeing paranormal activity in Sam Clemens’s old home including the sounds of young children giggling, whispering, footsteps, shadows, loud banging, cold spots, objects moving, billiards being played in Twain’s billiard room/study, and stomping feet.

Tour guides have seen children going upstairs, although there were no children in the home at the time. One guide was holding a picture of Susy, when she looked up and saw an apparition of Susy running out of the drawing room door.
A guide and his entire tour heard a tremendous boom, but no one outside of the library heard the sound.

A woman on a tour at the home felt three tugs on her shirt, and heard children’s laughter, although there were no children around her at the time.

In the second floor nursery, the woman in a white period dress is often seen standing in the window from outside. The curtains on the window are often glimpsed to open and close. A photograph taken by a tourist shows the image of a woman and a child in the window. This same apparition often appears in Susy’s room, and walking down the hallway past Mark Twain’s bedroom.

When SyFy Channel’s Ghost Hunters visited Mark Twain’s home in 2009, they heard banging sounds, felt vibrations on the steps upon which they were sitting, saw a shadow, heard footsteps, heard a sound like a “bass drum” that echoed throughout the entire house, and heard the sound of a billiard ball being dropped on the floor coming from the billiard room. They also picked up high electromagnetic field readings.

A group of paranormal investigators called Givens Paranormal Investigations visited the home/museum in March of 2010, and picked up some interesting EVPs including “not your place,” and “enter” when they first walked into the basement. They also picked up a tapping noise.

In April of 2010, Lorraine Warren visited Mark Twain’s Home and saw the image of Susy lying on the bed. The image tried to grip Lorraine’s hand. Lorraine felt that the entity was desperately lonely and in need of solace and comfort.

Twain sold the home in Hartford in 1903. Returning to the house was unbearable after the death of Susy. For a time, starting in 1917, the house was a boarding school for boys. The house served as a coal warehouse in 1922; then became an apartment building until 1929, when it was saved by the Friends of Hartford organization.

The Mark Twain House & Museum in Hartford, Connecticut is open daily throughout the year.

References:

SyFy Channel’s Ghost Hunters Season 5/Episode 23 Mark Twain’s House in Hartford, CT
http://articles.courant.com/2009-12-02/news/09120112521211_1_ghost-hunters-twain-s-daughter-mark-twain-house
http://www.damnedct.com/ghost-hunters-mark-twain-house/
http://givensparanormal.com/default.aspx
http://www.marktwainhouse.org/museum/current_exhibits_main.php

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