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The House of Death | Real Haunted Places

Photo of Samuel Clemens from Wikipedia Commons

The Back Story:

The House of Death at 14 West 10th Street was built in the 1850s and was home to many of New York's most elite citizens.  The author Mark Twain owned this townhouse (now divided into ten apartments) from 1900 to 1901.  He is known to occasionally return for a ghostly visit.  The House of Death is located in New York's City’s Greenwich Village (Washington Square Park) neighborhood.  

What Happened?

The house's haunted history is documented in author and actress Jan Bryant Bartell's book "Spindrift Spray from a Psychic Sea."  According to Bartell, the location is haunted by twenty-two ghost, including a six-year-old girl beaten to death by her father.   Why the high number of ghosts? According to some, it is because the house is cursed and it curses those who live there.  Shortly after finishing her book, about her paranormal experiences in the home, Jan Bryant Bartell mysteriously died. 

Paranormal Occurrences:

Jan Bryant Bartell

Paranormal activity has been going on since the early 1900s when Bartell and her husband first moved into their third-floor apartment.  She said that the activity started out very small with some footsteps that she felt were following her.  As time went on, the activity became more noticeable.  Bartell started to see shadow figures in the house, furniture move on its own and the sound of crashing glass.  She also smelled odors that she described as "rotting miasma." It intense. 

They ended up calling in a medium who believed there was a presence of something dead under the floorboards.  The medium thought it could be one of three things: a young girl with curly hair, blue eyes and a tiny nose; an aborted child or a small gray cat. She learned that the house was haunted by several different ghosts.  She and her husband no longer felt safe.  So, they eventually moved out.

Mark Twain

Multiple inhabitants have claimed to see Samuel Clemens (aka, Mark Twain) in his classic white suit, walking along the hallways and passing through doorways on the first floor and near staircases.  In the 1930s, a mother and daughter reported an encounter with Clemens.  His ghost was sitting near a first-floor window and he said to them, "My name is Clemens and I has a problem here I gotta settle." Before the women could respond, he disappeared.

Joel Steinberg

In the late 1980s, Criminal Defense Attorney Joel Steinberg beat then killed his 6-year-old, illegally adopted, daughter.

Other incidents

In the 2000s paranormal investigators had an experience with a lady in white.  In 2012, a resident observed women in long gowns going from room to room in their apartment and reported some flickering lights. 

Best Time to Visit:

Warning: This is a private residence.  Use discretion.