APPLETON, NY - Visitors to this historic Niagara County home come for the wine - and spirits. It's now known as the Winery at Marjim Manor but this picturesque, white, windowed home has a much darker history.
It was built in the 1800's by Shubal & Sophia Merritt, who had an orchard and grew peaches. But life was not sweet. The couple's son, Louis, was the first unfortunate soul. He was coming downstairs to speak to his father, after the two spent the afternoon together hunting.
It was a Thursday at 3:00 when Louis burst through these French doors and wrote the first chapter in this ghoulish story. "Shubal turned and accidentally shot and killed his son," says Marjim Owner Margo Sue Bittner.
Devastated, he ordered the French doors locked and never opened again.
Shubal himself met with his own demise also in this home, and also on a Thursday at 3:00. His daughter Phebe Sophia took possession of the manor. And while decorating for a ballroom dance, a fatal surprise, the locked French doors burst open. It was a Thursday at 3:00. "Phoebe Sophia looked up, gave a gasp, and fell down dead," says Bittner.
Even today, occasionally, on a Thursday at 3:00, these doors fly open on their own - as if Louis himself burst through from the other side.