Haunted Peyton Randolph House in Williamsburg

In 1715, Sir William Robertson constructed this two storey, L-shaped, Georgian-style mansion in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia. Later, it passed into the hands of a renowned revolutionary leader Peyton Randolph, the first President of the Continental Congress. That’s how this old pre-Victorian style building got its name the “Peyton Randolph House,” and was later designated a National Historic Landmark in the 1970s. The mansion is also known as the Randolph-Peachy House.

Peyton Randolph House
The Randolph House is located in near the center of Colonial Williamsburg, at the northeast corner of Nicholson and North England Streets. © Virginia.gov

The mansion conveys a trail of tragedy and miseries from its history that will make anyone sad. It is said that Mr. Randolph’s wife, Betty Randolph, was known to be a very cruel slave master. Eventually, one of her slaves, Eve, had placed a terrible curse on this house while she was cruelly separated from her 4-year-old child.

Haunted Peyton Randolph House in Williamsburg 1
Portraits of Peyton Randolph and his wife, Betty Randolph

It was the time when Africans forced into slavery in the United States were routinely separated from their children — not only in being transported to the Americas, but then repeatedly at the auction block. Not thousands, but millions — of mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, parents and children, brothers and sisters — were all forcefully separated from each other. And this was no brief period of the nation’s history, but a feature of the institution of slavery that existed in the United States for nearly 250 years, until the 13th amendment of 1865.

Since Eve and her son were separated, many unexpected deaths have occurred at this mansion: “Within the 18th century, a boy was climbing a tree near this house, while the branch had broken and he fell to his death. A young girl living on the second floor fell out of her window to her death. An accomplice veteran attending the College of William and Mary suddenly and mysteriously fell sick and died in the house. Later in the early 19th century, two men staying at the house entered a heated argument and shot and killed each other.”

Apart from this, during the American Civil War, the building was owned by the Peachy Family, and was used as a hospital for Union and Confederate troops wounded during the Battle of Williamsburg on May 5, 1862. Therefore, the house has witnessed uncountable deaths and miseries throughout history.

In 1973, the house was declared a National Historic Landmark, for its well-preserved early 18th-century architecture, and for its association with the prominent Randolph family. Now, it serves as a historic house museum in Colonial Williamsburg.

However, visitors often claim to see and hear ghostly occurrences in the building. Many have reported to have been attacked with objects by evil spirits that are said to reside in this archaic house. Even, a security guard once reported of being trapped inside the basement of the building by an angry soul. So, is this the ghost of slave Eve who is still upset for her child? Or all these stories are just words of mouth?