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Hearthstone Historic House –
Haunted Place: Hearthstone Historic House Museum
625 West Prospect Avenue
The Hearthstone Historic House Museum is
located across from the Fox River, between a main drag S. Memorial
Drive (47) and S. State Street, in an area which once housed the
well-to-do in Appleton.
Tom and I stopped by for a visit during our
June of 2007 road trip. Though it was closed, it is surely is an
imposing, solid, 4 story grand old lady with upscale gray
stone/brick with wooden decoration & trim, steep roofing style
and huge brick fireplace chimneys; all the proper Victorian
architecture, including the porch which winds around the
In 1882, Henry J. Rogers was an
industrialist in Appleton who had made his fortune establishing a
paper plant. The hydrogen electric plant located on the banks of
the river, not only provided electricity for his paper plant but
also for his glorious Victorian; becoming the first
home in the world to have electricity from a centrally located
hydroelectric station, which used Thomas Edison's newly
The Hearthstone Historic House Museum has
the original electrical hardware, electroliers and light
This restored 1882 Victorian Hearthstone
House has a lovely late 1890s decor, including "intricate woodwork,
stunning fireplaces and exquisite glass windows." There is also
antique furniture and Victorian decorative touches, like the
restored, multi-colored parlor ceiling.
The dining room has a gorgeous view of the
From 1900 - 1930, A.W. Priest enjoyed
living here until he died.
This Victorian mansion got its name from
John Badenoch, who rented this mansion and opened an upscale
restaurant, called The Hearthstone, and the name stuck.
Eventually, an organization formed, called
The Friends of Hearthstone, which stepped in to save and renovate
this old house, for the enjoyment and education of the public.
The mission and promise of Friends of
Hearthstone, Inc. is "to restore and preserve Hearthstone, a
Victorian landmark house, and to re-create a historical experience
based on its Thomas A. Edison heritage for the cultural enjoyment
and educational benefit of the public."
A variety of displays which are changed
monthly offering visitors interesting information and items to
peruse and study. A big favorite is the Victorian Christmas
display which is up during the holiday season.
HISTORY OF MANIFESTATIONS:
A.W. Priest was a successful entrepreneur
and a much loved philanthropist. He was the second owner of
Hearthstone Mansion, buying this beautiful Victorian mansion
for his family's residence, and happily lived there until 1930,
when he died.
The entity of A.W. Priest, former owner is
said to make his home here for his after-life.
Staff and others have heard unusual sounds,
like someone sneezing when no one living did the sneezing.
Volunteers often feel the disapproving
unseen presence, watching them intently.
When she opens up the museum for the
day,The office manager always says, "Good Morning, Mr. Priest,"
upon entering the mansion.
This entity doesn't quite
trust the living with his home, and feels the need to keep a sharp
eye on the volunteers. He loved his house and isn't ready to
leave it just yet.
The Wisconsin Road Guide to Haunted Locations
By Chad Lewis & Terry Fisk
Unexplained Research CO