Last time we checked, the closest we get to castles and jousting is driving to Medieval Times for a big turkey leg and some mead. After all, castles are straight from the history books and any remains of them are only found in Europe. Right? WRONG. These 13 fantastic “American” castles are all available for you to view here in the States. Don’t believe me? Check’em out below.
Bishop’s Palace (Gresham Castle)
Found in Galveston, Texas, this Victorian castle (also known as The Bishop’s Palace) was built in 1892 by lawyer and railroad entrepreneur Colonel Walter Gresham and architect Nicholas Clayton.
Bannerman Castle in Pollepel Island, New York was built in 1901 by Frank Bannerman, a Scottish immigrant who settled with his family in Brooklyn. Laid to ruin in a 1969 fire, the building continues to survive in the elements, but is continuing to fall in to further decay with every passing storm. There are several tour options on Bannerman Castle’s website, but visiting is not for the faint of heart. The official Historic Hudson River Towns website plainly warns: “Do not attempt to visit Bannerman Island. At this point it is a very treacherous combination of buried hazards and dangerous wall conditions.”
Found in Tarrytown, New York, this romantic counsel was designed in 1838 by Alexander Jackson Davis, and has been the home of former New York City mayor William Paulding, merchant George Merritt and railroad tycoon Jay Gould.
Castello di Amorosa
Winery owner and Italophile Dario Sattui began building an authentic 13th century Tuscan castle which would function as a winery in 1994. Open for tours daily, make sure to enjoy crossing the real drawbridge and moat on your way in!
A summer dream home on Heart Island (Alexandria Bay, New York) built in 1900 by millionaire hotel magnate George C. Boldt, the house is still fitted with period furnishings, and the grounds include Italian gardens, a tower fortress, and a dove cote
Castle in the Clouds
This Moultonborough, New Hanpshire Castle in the Clouds, also known as Lucknow Estate, is a shining example of the Arts and Crafts moment as it is relatively small and modest, yet filled with crazy innovations such as a jigsaw floor, a self-cleaning oven, and a central-vacuuming system.
Built Charlevoix, Michigan in 1918 by Albert Loeb, acting President of Sears, Roebuck and Company, this “house” acted as a working dairy farm to display the latest farming equipment available through the Sears catalog. And oddly enough, a few years ago a large model railroad was installed on the property. Why? Who knows… 😉
Yet another New Englander wanting to play Medieval Mansion, John Hays Hammond, Jr., himself a prolific American inventor, built this medieval-style castle in Gloucester, Massachusetts between 1926 and 1929 to serve both as his home and a museum for his collection of Roman, medieval, and Renaissance art. Today, the house is a museum and features secret passages ways, great dining halls, and a fine library.
Fonthill Castle has served as a home and a museum since it was built in 1912. The castle is a mix of Medieval, Gothic and Byzantine architectural styles. You can visit this castle daily in Doylestown, Pennsylvania… if you can find it 🙂
American newspaper publisher William Randolf Hearst once dreamed of building a retreat he called La Cuesta Encantada (“Enchanted Hill”) on his family’s property. Luckily, he finished it in 1947 before he passed away in San Simeon, California, complete with two ornate pools, gardens full of exotic flowers, and antique ceilings, not to mention Hearst’s large art collection.
In 1914 this true castle was built as as part of William Gillette’s estate and called the Seventh Sister. Located in East Haddam, Connecticut, the outside looks like a ruin, but the inside is full of modern innovations like built-in couches and sliding tables. Even more interesting… an elaborate 3.2-mile railroad with mini trains also winds around the property.
Ready for us to blow your mind? Located in New York City, this castle sits in the middle of Central Part and was designed in 1865. Although it was originally designed to be purely ornamental, since 1919, the National Weather Service has used it for a weather tower. Inside, there is a nature observatory. Views from the castle include the turtle pond and the open-air Delacorte Theater.
Built following World War I, Harry Delos Andrews built this mansion in Loveland, Ohio after returning home to find that his fiancé had married another man. Intended for his Boy Scout Troop — The Knights of the Golden Trail — in the style of the ones he had visited in Europe, members of The Knights of the Golden Trail still guard the castle today. The architecture is a combination of German, French and English styles, and houses a collection of weapons. The castle is also rumored to be haunted by ghosts. (via: Mashable) Share these sweet uses of rich people money with your friends below.
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