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Davis-Horton House

01 Nov 2017

written by Cindy Matalucci

Live from The Davis Horton House INTRO

Part 2: Enter House, first floor: Dining Room, Kitchen,

Heading down into the basement

Upstairs Tour and Hospital Room

Final Segment on Alonzo Horton’s Bedroom

Gaslamp Musuem:
410 Island Ave. San Diego, CA 92101
Tours start at 10:30 am and cost $5.00 per person.

The Davis-Horton House (formerly known as the William Heath Davis House) built in 1850, is the oldest standing structure in Downtown San Diego. It serves as the home of the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation (GQHF) and the Gaslamp Museum at the Davis-Horton House.

Originally, the house was one of several saltbox-style structures shipped from Portland, Maine, to San Diego, which had little wood for construction due to a lack trees along the coast.  A saltbox structure takes its name from its resemblance to the wooden lidded box in which salt was once kept. Typically, a saltbox structure has just one story in the back and two stories in the front. A long pitched roof that slopes down to the back, flat front and central chimney are also recognizable features.

The houses were intended to comprise the first settlement in what was then called “New Town.” The structures were erected near what is now State and Market Streets near San Diego’s oldest public park, Pantoja Park.

In 1873, Anna Scheper purchased the house after it had been moved from State and Market to Eleventh and K Streets. Anna contracted with San Diego County to run the house as the “County Hospital.” She earned $1.00 per patient per day.

A late owner, George Deyo inherited the house in the 1930s and passed it on to the Lanuza Family in 1977, who in turn, donated the house to the City of San Diego to become a museum. The house was moved to its current location when the museum restoration began. Electricity was installed for the first time in 1984, and 17 layers of wallpaper were peeled back to reveal earlier décor. Former Museum Curator Mary Joralmon worked tirelessly to restore the house to its current state as a museum for visitors to enjoy.

Each room in the house depicts a period in its history:

From its first use as a pre-Civil War military officers’ barracks, to a county hospital, to a private residence. Various individuals have occupied the home, including: Alonzo Horton, considered the “Father of San Diego,” an alleged German spy, and several families. The Davis-Horton House is the only home in which Horton lived that is still standing.

Today, the Davis-Horton House welcomes thousands of visitors annually.


Find out for yourself. Touted by many as, “the most haunted house in the Gaslamp Quarter,” the Davis-Horton House has become a highly popular place for investigating paranormal activities. Paranormal research teams present evidence to support their claims of having made contact with several house spirits. They’ve recorded voices, taken photos, and shot video to document their surprising findings.  These other-worldly experiences are available to the public through monthly Paranormal Investigations tours, led by San Diego Ghost Hunters, a professional paranormal research team that conducts on-site investigations.

Tonight 10PM more to come in 2018

Other Rumors of Hauntings

The Davis-Horton spot is one to put on your list.

• There have been reports of lights flickering even before electricity was running through the house when lamps had to be lit by a match and even after the house was wired for electric.

• Still today, random lights are found on after the museum staff has turned them off.

• Ropes placed on the tops of doorways at closing time have been found off doorway hooks in the morning.

• Breezes often blow through an uninsulated part of the house (when there’s no breeze.)
• A Victorian woman has been seen (from the waist down in long petticoat and shoes) in the house near the child’s room at the top of the stairs.

• A medicine chest that is left open by museum staff has been found closed and items are found shifted inside when staff come in the morning.

• Visitors have mentioned feeling a foreboding presence surrounding the chest.

• Items on a table set for four have been moved at night by random forces.

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