Sarah Winchester suffered a guilty conscience. The diminutive heiress to the Winchester rifle fortune was informed by a medium that it was her duty to go West and build a home. This home was to house herself and all the victims killed by Winchester rifles. There were an awful lot of victims. From 1884 for 38 years around the clock, the Queen Anne was built. One hundred-and-sixty rooms, 467 doorways (many leading nowhere), 40 stairways (ditto on the nowhere), 47 fireplaces, 17 chimneys, 52 skylights, 20,000 gallons of paint, two basements, and $5.5 million dollars later, Sarah died. She left behind a host of apparitions, from balls of light to floating spectres to whispering, door-slamming poltergeists. And why wouldn't they want to stay in what now is called the Winchester Mystery House
? Sarah stipulated in her will that the ghosts continue to enjoy the good "life", treated as they had been to five-course banquets served with solid gold table settings when Sarah was alive.