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This room is in the attic of a Seventeenth Century stately home in North Yorkshire. There’s an old, old legend that a woman called Mad Mary was once locked up in it for life.

In 1839, Charlotte Brontë was working nearby as a governess. She toured the house, heard the legend and BOOM, Jane Eyre.

The staircase (at right) was paneled over in 1880 and the room was lost. It was only rediscovered in 2004 when the current owner began major renovations. They have supposedly left it just as they found it.

Here are a couple of articles about it in the Telegraph and the Independent. The story is several years old, but I only ran across it today and was sure you would love it.





Comment from Uncle Al
Time: August 14, 2018, 9:42 pm

From the Telegraph article:

The conservation project could not have been much more challenging. But the couple’s guiding principle was surprisingly simple. “We always ask the house what it wants,” says Lady Graham. “It has a very strong presence. The house talks to us through feelings. It reveals its secrets grudgingly, so we have to work hard.”

I find it utterly charming that Sir James and Lady Graham are at the same time quite the pair of loonies AND have the vision, stamina, perseverance, and all the other resources needed to accomplish this wonderful work.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: August 14, 2018, 9:53 pm

I always wanted to visit Virginia Wolfe’s house. It looks cozy. I like her bedroom with all the books and tiny bed and her writing shed. I’d be comfortable there.

Comment from Some Vegetable
Time: August 14, 2018, 10:10 pm

A perfect office for Jeremy Corbin!

(Assuming Sir James and Lady Graham are willing to have that wall repaneled)

Comment from AliceH
Time: August 14, 2018, 10:49 pm

I visited Carl Sandburg’s house (North Carolina) and oh did I love it. The official website photos do not capture at all how friendly, comfy, and just plain inviting it was. Every room was filled with books, an assortment of well-used but comfortable chairs, and reading lamps. That includes kitchen and dining room, study, living room, bedrooms….

Also, his wife’s prize-winning goats were leaping and dancing around outside looking all joyous and it almost seemed like stepping into a particularly real-looking happiness dream.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: August 15, 2018, 1:33 am

Not being well educated, I went to sparknotes for a summary of Jane Eyre. Just the summary was exhausting! Now I know what they did before TV afternoon soap operas.

Comment from DurnedYankee
Time: August 15, 2018, 3:49 pm

I’m trying to imagine walling off a portion of my living space.
I can’t think of why I would do it.

Not enough bad memory and pain maybe.

Comment from Brother Cavil
Time: August 15, 2018, 4:47 pm

Aretha Franklin has joined the Choir Invisible. I’m pretty sure someone had her in the Dead Pool, she seemed a recurring choice…

Comment from ExpressoBold
Time: August 15, 2018, 5:49 pm

Hmmm….. a mirror at the first landing, placed so that anyone ascending the staircase could detect a surprise attack staged in the blind spot around the corner. This is “Silence of the Lambs” territory.

Comment from DurnedYankee
Time: August 15, 2018, 6:14 pm

Brother Cavil – yeah, KMM snagged her a couple days ago.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: August 15, 2018, 7:51 pm

Pity, Skandia. It’s very readable for a ‘school book’ — but now you know the spoiler!

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