Annie Pardee Winchester and the story of the Winchester Mystery House are well known around the world. Annie’s father, William Wirt Winchester was the treasurer of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, a position he held until his death in 1881.
Annie Pardee Winchester’s Family
Annie Pardee Winchester was born on 15 Jun 1866 in New Haven County, Connecticut, USA to Sarah and William Winchester. Sarah Lockwood Pardee was born the daughter of Leonard Pardee and his wife Sarah W. (née Burns), in the Summer of 1839 in New Haven, Connecticut. On September 30, 1862, Sarah married William Wirt Winchester, the only son of Oliver Winchester, the owner of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company.
William was born on June 22, 1837, to Oliver and Jane Ellen Hope in Baltimore, Maryland. His siblings include Ann Rebecca Winchester, who married Charles B. Dye; and Hannah Jane Winchester, who married Thomas Gray Bennett. Sarah and William’s only daughter Annie, died on July 25, 1866, from marasmus, only after 6 weeks after her birth.
In the span of one year, 1881, Sarah lost her mother, her father-in-law, and finally her husband William, who died of tuberculosis on March 7, 1881. He was buried in Evergreen Cemetery in New Haven. In 1886, Sarah purchased a small, two-story farmhouse and ranch in San Jose, California. The property was called Llanada Villa, and would later become known as the Winchester Mystery House. She died at Llanada Villa on September 5, 1922, of heart failure.
Annie Pardee Winchester’s Net Worth
Annie Pardee Winchester had a very short life of about 6 weeks before she died of marasmus, a form of severe malnutrition. Her parents were among the richest people of those times. Her father, William Winchester, was the treasurer of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, a position he held until his death in 1881. The William Wirt Winchester Hospital in West Haven, Connecticut, was established by his wife Sarah for the treatment of tuberculosis. The hospital was later sold and became a Veteran’s Administration Hospital. The Private Pavilion at Yale New Haven Hospital was then renamed in his honor.
Annie’s mother, Sarah Winchester amassed great wealth after the death of her husband, and her mother-in-law. Her inheritance included $20 million ($598.6 million in 2022) as well as a 50% holding in the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, which made her one of the wealthiest women in the world at the time. Since her death, the sprawling Winchester Mystery House has become a popular tourist attraction, known for its staircases that lead to nowhere, along with its many winding corridors and doors that lead to walls or sudden drops. The Haunting of Winchester is a musical about her by Craig Bohmler and Mary Bracken Phillips that takes place in the Winchester Mystery House. It was commissioned by the San Jose Repertory Theatre for its 25th anniversary season.