Contents of Haunted Mississippi Home Up for Auction Jul 17, 2014 6:58:57 GMT -5
Post by Graveyardbride on Jul 17, 2014 6:58:57 GMT -5
Hundreds inspect auction items inside haunted Twelve Oaks
GAUTIER, Miss. – Spending summers at the purportedly haunted Twelve Oaks plantation home in Gautier was less of a horror story and more of a joy for now 69-year-old Charlotte Harris Barial, she said today. Barial, of Gautier, walked the halls of Twelve Oaks on Wednesday morning to reminisce while the house was opened up for auction bidders to inspect hundreds of items up for sale by Taylor Auction & Realty, Inc.
Now that the house is in foreclosure, the auction company is selling off its antique contents and the home is listed for sale for $725,000. "When I saw it in the paper, I thought I just had to come see it before it gets sold," said Barial.
Barial's mother, Kathryn Richo Harris, moved with previous owners Wallace and Augusta Quinn from Florida in 1938 to work as a cook in the circa-1896 house. She worked for the Quinn family until the late 1970s, she said. Augusta Quinn even gave Barial the name Charlotte.
"I'd come down in summers and play with their grandchildren," Barial said. "It was awesome. We'd have so much fun because we could just get lost in the house. There was a rope swing we'd play on. There was a pier that we would go out on. My mother would give us pieces of meat and we'd go out there and think we were crabbing."
Wandering through the house Wednesday, Barial remembered several of the larger furniture items, including the half-tester bed that's still in what was Augusta Quinn's bedroom.
Ownership of the house – which was first built by a founding father of the city, Henry Gautier, in the late 1800s – switched hands after the Quinns and changed a lot, but Barial said much of it is still familiar.
No ghosts were witnessed during Barial's tour, although several phantoms are said to roam the home. According to Kay Adams, an artist who came to paint a mural in the foyer was the first to make contact with one of the home's multiple spirits. "We have a gentleman ghost," she said and it was her opinion this particular apparition was the spirit of Henry Gautier, founding father of the town. She also spoke of “a dark-haired teenage girl" who stares at guests as they sleep. A third specter is that of a woman seen staring down from an upstairs window. A gardener who once worked at Twelve Oaks claimed to have seen the image on several occasions. However, if any spirits were present on the day of the inspection, they were likely confused by the steady stream of visitors who spilled into the house to scan the more than 290 items for sale.
Some visitors gathered on the wrap-around porch to enjoy the views of the Mississippi Sound, discuss Twelve Oaks' history and share their own ghost stories. Others took notes and snapped photos of antiques to help them remember the items they wanted to bid on online.
Maggie Arthur, of Gulfport, eyeballed an ornate bookcase that she said would be perfect for the study in her old home. "It has some very interesting carvings and I love it," she said. "I guess we'll see how much everybody else likes it when I get home and bid on it. Fingers crossed."
Auctioneer Benny Taylor said online bidding will end July 24 and auction winners will be able to pick up their goods July 26-27.
Taylor called the auction a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to buy period antiques."
Source: April M. Havens, Gulf Live, July 16, 2014.