Americans have a very specific idea about what makes a house look creepy. If you search for “haunted house” on Google images, only one type of architecture appears in the first 25 images: a Victorian mansion.
Art historian Sarah Burns wrote about the phenomenon for the academic journal American Art back in 2012. “Certainly, there are other sorts of places we associate with ghosts: old world castles, dungeons and crypts, the antebellum Big House, the alleged ‘witch’ houses of seventeenth-century Salem,” she writes. “Yet none so pervades and dominates the haunted visual landscape as the Victorian house does today.”
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