Winnipeg's Hamilton House, known for paranormal activity, getting restored
Fans of the paranormal have a chance to spend the night in a historic Winnipeg house known for its eerie history and brushes with the unexplainable.
Hamilton House has been purchased and restored by Cheryl Wiebe, owner of Gags Unlimited.
Her plan is to move the store into the bottom level and rent out the two, top levels that were used as residential apartments on Airbnb, giving guests the chance to have an encounter with the home’s storied spirits.
“It might happen. I can’t guarantee,” Wiebe told CTV News. “We have a book library, we’ll have a video library though for anyone waiting for the ghosts, so something you can sit back and relax at.”
Why does this house have such a reputation for the paranormal?
The Henderson Highway house was once owned by Dr. T.G. Hamilton, a Manitoba physician, MLA, and school trustee, and his wife Lillian.
According to the University of Manitoba Library Archives, the couple became interested in spiritual communication after the death of their three-year-old son Arthur in 1919 from Spanish flu.
As the couple tried to reconnect with Arthur, their home became the meeting place of a circle of spiritualist mediums, hosting numerous séances, trance states, and psychic readings.
Over 700 archival images donated by the Hamilton family to the U of M show alleged instances at the home of telekinesis, teleplasm, and other psychic phenomena.
Since buying the home, Wiebe said she has had a few unexplainable experiences of her own.
“My personal experience is when I was waiting for the appraiser and I was at the front counter, which is right 10 feet from the door, and I heard a knock at the door,” she recalled.
“I went to go and answer the door and it is glass, and nobody was there. So I went to the back door thinking someone was there, that it was the appraiser and nobody was there.”
Wiebe said a similar experience happened when she was renovating the home with her son. He went to use the washroom and heard a knocking sound. When he returned, he asked his mother if it was her.
“I said, ‘I’m not knocking. I was hanging wallpaper.’ He said ‘I was downstairs and somebody knocked on the door,’ and he knocked on the wall. He said it was clear, like that,” Wiebe explained.
Our own CTV News Photojournalist Zachary Kitchen had a few eerie moments himself when shooting interviews at the home. The batteries on many of Kitchen’s electronics died unexplainably. Additionally, a ring that was found buried in the carpet during renovation unexplainably made its way into Kitchen’s wagon that was hauling his camera gear. He discovered it while unloading his equipment for the shoot.
“It seemed very strange to have a ring pop into my wagon all of a sudden,” he said. “Cheryl said that the ring was on the counter, and she doesn’t know how it ended up on the wagon.”
Psychic Medium Bernice Bisson said she too feels a strong, paranormal presence in the home.
“When I had the opportunity to read from this house over last summer, I had so many paranormal activities going on. I had so many unexplained noises, doors opening and closing, things going on,” she said.
“This place had such a great history and as I delved into the history, I started to figure out who these paranormal entities who were showing up, because they belong to the house.”
Wiebe hopes to start taking guests in early November, and hopes to open the storefront soon after.
“So people can come and experience Hamilton House for themselves,” she said.