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The House of Death - Bone Chilling Glimpse of Mark Twain & ghosts Haunting America over a Century!

house of death, mark twain

Despite a fantastic picturesque, the building on 14 West 10th Street, Greenwich Village has a haunting history. Constructed during the 1850s near the Civil War, more than 20 people died in the home.

Several sources even report that some of the spirits still dwell in the house. Residents living in the building said the ghost of Samuel Clemens alias Mark Twain, who lived in the house from the 1900s to 1901. Besides, there were other bone-chilling sightings of the ghosts haunting the block over a century.

The House of Death, also known as the “House of Horrors” is situated in Greenwich Village, New York City. Of course, as the name suggests, it is indeed a house of horror. This residence is a Greek Revivalist brownstone building built-in 1856.

The House of Mark Twain

A notable feature about this residence is that this was the house of the author of the famous book ‘Tom Sawyer’. Mark Twain, whose real name was Samuel Clemens, moved into this residence in the 1800s. Before him, this house was the home to many other elite personalities of the city.

A rich widow lived in the house with her daughters, after which it Fred.H Andrew, a known cyclist resided there. Bad luck seemed to have followed Andrew when he collided with an 8-year-old boy while reckless bicycle riding.

The boy broke his leg and Andrew got arrested. This led to a chain of unfortunate events to anyone who lived in that house. Mark Twain also had to face several shortcomings during his stay at home.

Along with depression and financial troubles, Twain also seemed to have battled with the paranormal activities that took place during his visit. Throughout the living of tenants, apparitions of Twain walking down the stairwell, which is the most haunted part of the house, was seen. But what led to a mystery, is why would Mark Twain’s ghost, who did not even die in that house, linger in the property.

In the 1950s, actress, writer, and psychic Jan Bryant Bartell and her daughter dwelled the house. Throughout her stay in the house, she claimed that a “monstrous moving shadow” would always follow her around. One day she even saw the apparition of a man standing by the stairwell, and when she tried to touch him, her fingertips turned numb with a prickling sensation creeping up her body.

The Living Ghost of the House

The Bartell family would smell strange odors around the house along with pungent odors. They would find rotten food on the table, even though they never purchased any. Their pets would bark or growl at something invisible most of the time.

She called a paranormal investigation and found that the house was dwelled by twenty-two ghosts, including that of Mark Twain’s and a woman dressed in white, a young girl, and a grey cat.

Jan Bryant wrote a book about her stay in the house and the strange instances that took place called ‘Spindrift’. Few weeks after the publishing of the book and her moving out, Jan Bartell was found dead due to unknown circumstances that added on to the thoughts that the House of Horror was indeed cursed.

Lisa' Murder and Steinberg

Even though Jan Bartell seemed to have experienced a complete Hollywood Amityville horror, the case of Lisa Nussbaum appears to have topped any Hollywood horror. It all started in 1987 when Hedda Nussbaum (a children’s book author and editor) called the emergency line at 6.40 am saying that her six-year-old daughter was not breathing.

An ambulance was immediately sent to Greenwich village. When the paramedics arrived, they saw the most disturbing sight in the house. They found Lisa lying naked and unresponsive on the kitchen floor, and her brother, Mitchell, tied to a playpen and soaked in his urine.

Hedda Nussbaum herself was covered with bruises and had several broken bones. Investigators also discovered marijuana, cocaine, hashish, over twenty crack pipes, and $25,000 in cash at the apartment. However, poor little Lisa was unable to recover and died due to repeated blunt-force trauma to the head.

Hedda and Lisa’s father, lawyer Joel Steinberg were arrested with the charge of murder. Joel Steinberg was found to abused his wife and daughter after the cocaine binge and was found guilty. He was charged under murder and sent to prison. After his release in 2005, he started working at construction sites.

The events in The House of Death soon seeped into neighboring homes as well. In one complex, people have noticed flickering lights, as well as a female figure in a long gown. One resident, a photographer, had seen her float through doors for twenty years. He says that ghosts have scared away subjects for his work. This house is now under private property, though paranormal sightings still seem to circulate the premises.

Despite the house having a dark name, it might not be the most haunted house in NYC. Some even argue that several haunted spirits roam about all the buildings in the street. The next time you are visiting NYC, visit 14 West 10th Street. You might meet Mark Twain waving at you from the window.

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