It looks innocent enough. A small house located just off the main road through Dumfries Virginia. If you ask local historians and ghost hunters they will tell you the Weems-Bott Museum is not for the faint of heart. The museum is listed as the 2nd most haunted spot in Virginia.
Lets start with a little history. The town of Dumfries is the oldest charter city in Virginia. At one point it was a bustling seaport but silt from the Potomac River eventually closed the port. The museum is named after two of the owners. The first was Mason Weems, George Washington's biographer. He is credited with the stories about George Washington chopping down the cherry tree and throwing a silver dollar across the Rappahanock River. He also wrote biographies of other famous people during colonial times including Ben Franklin and William Penn.
The second owner was an attorney, Benjamin Botts. He was famous for being part of the defense team during the Aaron Burr treason and conspiracy trial. He used the building as his law offices. There is a gap in the history of the Weems-Bott house between 1811 and 1869. Homes in the area were often used during the civil war for troops and hospitals but there isn't any recorded history of what went on with the home until the Merchant family took residence in 1869. The home remained in their family until 1974.
It was then as the home was being converted to a museum by the Historic Dumfries society that they began to notice the strange occurances in the home. Books that fly off shelves, a woman in a long dress seen outside the museum and another woman that followed visitors from the upper floor bedroom down the stairs. Ghost busters spent the night in the home and supposedly recorded a child's voice telling them to "get out of my house." That certainly is enough to send shivers up your spine.
Tours are available every Friday and Saturday in October. Call the Museum to get details on the ghost tours at (703) 221-2218.