If walls could talk, the Whaley House could fill history books. Completed in the 1857, it served as the home of the Whaley Family, Mr. Whaley's general store, San Diego's first commercial theater, and the second county courthouse. All aspects of the home have been restored and today it is open to the public as a historic house museum.
A classic example of mid-nineteenth century Greek Revival architecture, the Whaley House was designed by Thomas Whaley and built using bricks from his own brickyard.
On the basic tour, visitors explore on their own, but docents are available to answer questions about the house’s history and ghost stories. Rumor has it the house has been haunted since it was built. The Whaleys reportedly believed the spirit of Yankee Jim Robinson haunted the house. Robinson was hanged on the property before the house was built. According to legend, there is a list of ghosts that roam the house, including the Whaley’s daughter Violet, who committed suicide in 1885.
The Whaley House offers evening ghost hunting tours for visitors more interested in the supernatural then architecture.
Whaley is pronounced with a long a, WAY-lee. The Whaley House is open year round, but hours and closures vary with the season and holidays. There are some two hour unmetered parking spaces available nearby, but free all-day parking in the public parking lots on Harney and Twiggs Streets might be your best bet.