“Where learning, laughing, and literature meet.”
Thurber House is located near downtown Columbus, OH at 77 Jefferson Ave in the restored home of James Thurber and his family. Listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, Thurber House is a living museum open to the public every day from 1–4 p.m. for free, self-guided tours. Guided tours are available on Sundays for $4 for adults and $2 for students and seniors. Thurber House is an affiliate of The American Writers Museum. Visitors to Thurber House have reported a number of ghostly encounters, from James Thurber's own experience with the mysterious footsteps running up the back stairs, to books throwing themselves on customers, to shadowy figures moving across lighted windows. Here you'll find an introduction to some of our ghostly encounters. You also can take a haunted tour of Thurber House and other ghostly Columbus spots each October through the Columbus Landmarks Foundation. It all began with the night the Ohio Lunatic Asylum burned on November 17, 1868. The Asylum covered several blocks of downtown Columbus, including the area where Thurber House now stands. Seven people died in the fire, and their spirits are said to be many of our ghosts. The night of James Thurber's ghostly experience was exactly 47 years after the Ohio Lunatic Asylum burned. According to his story "The Night the Ghost Got In," Thurber was in the upstairs bathroom washing his face when he heard the heavy footsteps of a man pacing around the dining table downstairs. He thought a burglar had broken in and tiptoed to his brother Robert's room to wake him. Thurber and his brother approached the head of the stairs just as the footsteps ceased. Suddenly, they heard the footsteps launch up the steps two at a time, coming straight for them! When they glanced down, there was nobody there, though they heard the footsteps rapidly approaching. Thurber's brother ran to his bedroom, and Thurber ducked into the bathroom and slammed the door at the moment the invisible figure would have reached him. The Thurber House was featured on Ghost Hunters Season 6 in Episode 18.
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