Houghton Mansion Hill

High Weirdness, Thin Places



The Houghton Mansion is the spooky crown jewel of the Berkshires – it was built by the original mayor of North Adams, AC Houghton, in the 1890s. Members of the Houghton family met an unlucky fate in a horrible car accident, while their chauffeur allegedly took his own life days later in the stables and AC died in the home days after that. There are several local tales of the land underneath, and the general area, being a giant hotspot for strangeness.

To the right of the building is Pleasant Street, a steep climb into the neighborhoods behind downtown. Underneath the first 100 feet or so of the incline, serving as a retaining wall for the side yard of the Houghton Mansion property, sits literal tons of granite taken from the Hoosac Tunnel.
(The Hoosac tunnel is often referred to as “the bloody pit,” in reference to all of the horrible deaths that took place during its construction.)

Local stories circulate from time to time about strange things happening to people’s cars and electronics when driving up that hill.

I have had phone calls drop, radio signals cut out entirely as well as go completely haywire, and very brief ringing ears. I’ve had a fully charged phone freeze up and die as if it was depleted of battery. Other stories tell of check engine lights coming on, only to go away once they drive onto another road.

Submitted by Mary R.