|Setting for Murder House and YGTDIT|
|The Murder House|
|“||I've never said this to any of my employers for fear of losing their trust or my job, but this house is possessed. Things break, disappear. Doors open for no reason. There are spirits here. Malevolent spirits.||”|
|— Moira O'Hara to Vivien Harmon[src]|
1120 Westchester Place, colloquially known as "The Murder House", is the central location and focus of the first season of American Horror Story and of the web experience "You're Going To Die In There".
The house is a classic Los Angeles Victorian, built by prominent "surgeon to the stars" Charles Montgomery for his wife, Nora. Their son Thaddeus was kidnapped and dismembered by the boyfriend of one of the woman Charles performed an abortion on in 1926. Charles used his surgical expertise to "revive" his son using the beating heart of one of his clients but he was restored as some kind of "Frankenstein" creature. Nora traumatised by her sons death and what her husband had turned him into, murdered Charles by shooting him before committing suicide by shooting herself in the head.
The home had been transformed into the office of a dentist named Dr. David Curran. One day a young woman named Elizabeth Short arrived for an appointment, Curran used his anaesthesia to knock her unconscious and then proceeded to rape her. However he used too much and accidentally killed her. Durran panicked and dragged her to the basement, Dr. Montgomery’s ghost then appeared to offer his assistance. Montgomery mutilated her body and cut her in half before Duran dumped her in an abandoned lot. Short would become famously known as the ”Black Dahlia”.
Constance Langdon lived in the Murder House, but then moved next door. It is as of yet unknown in which year she and her family moved in.
36 deaths have been legally documented in the house. In that same year, Cordelia Goode sent Madison Montgomery and Behold Chablis to the house in order to gather information about Michael Langdon, a possible next Supreme. They purchased the house under the guise of a newly married couple, keeping it in the posession of the Salem coven to ensure no more deaths occurred within its walls.
It can be assumed that everyone who has died within the house or near it’s property has become a ghost. Here is a list of all those confirmed to be trapped in its premises.
- Charles Montgomery - a renowned surgeon who built the house and is its original owner.
- Nora Montgomery - Charles’s socialite wife.
- Elizabeth Short - the infamous "Black Dahlia".
- Gladys - nursing student killed by serial killer R. franklin in 1968.
- Maria - nursing student killed by serial killer R. Franklin in 1968.
- Troy and Bryan - twins killed by the Infantata in 1978.
- Moira O'Hara - a flirtatious maid killed by Constance Langdon in 1983.
- Hugo Langdon - Constance Langdon’s adulterous husband, killed by her in 1983.
- Lorraine Harvey - Larry Harvey’s wife, killed herself and two daughters in fire she started in 1993.
- Margaret Harvey - killed by her mother in a fire in 1993.
- Angela Harvey - killed by her mother in a fire in 1993.
- Beauregard Langdon - Constance’s deformed son, smothered by Larry on her orders in 1994.
- Tate Langdon - Constance’s mentally unstable teenage son, killed by police in 1994.
- Chad Warwick - gay man, Patrick’s Type A boyfriend, killed by Tate in 2010
- Patrick - gay man, Chad’s adulterous boyfriend, killed by Tate in 2010.
- Fiona - serial killer enthusiast, killed in 2011.
- Dallas - serial killer enthusiast, killed in 2011.
- Hayden McClaine - Ben Harmon’s deranged mistress, killed by Larry in 2011.
- Travis Wanderly - Constance’s boy toy, killed by Hayden in 2011.
- Violet Harmon - Ben and Vivien’s rebellious teenage daughter, died from accidental overdose in 2011.
- Phil - exterminator, killed by Tate in 2011.
- Jeffrey Harmon - newborn baby, died shortly after birth in 2011.
- Vivien Harmon - Ben’s wife and Violet’s mother, died during childbirth in 2011.
- Ben Harmon - Psychologist killed by Hayden, Fiona and Dallas in 2011.
- Rose Langdon - Constance’s eyeless daughter, died from an unknown cause at an unknown time.
- Constance Langdon - committed suicide in 2015 (reversed by Mallory using Tempus Infinituum)
Outside & Gardens
The property features a porte-cochère with a medium-high wall. Violet Harmon has been seen sitting there while smoking. In "Murder House", Ben Harmon builds a gazebo in the garden to mask where Hayden McClaine was buried. Moira O'Hara is also buried in the same grave, but Ben is unaware of this.
- Ben meets clients for therapy sessions here since he operates his psychiatry practice from home.
The basement is now home to the Infantata.
- 1926: The unnatural half-human prodigy of Elizabeth, a vampire, killed and consumed Charles Montgomery's nurse after a failed abortion.
- 1978: Troy and Bryan were killed here by the Infantata.
- 2011: Leah was attacked here by the Infantata. Fiona, Dallas, Chad Warwick, Patrick, and Joe Escandarian are all killed here.
The Parlor/Dining Room
Currently houses a gas-fed fireplace.
- 1926: Dr. Charles Montgomery was shot here by his wife Nora before she killed herself.
- 2010: Tate/Rubber Man attacked Chad and Patrick here.
Ben suggested using the space as a music room for Vivien. However, due to his wife's reluctance to play the cello, it serves as a living room. Vivien played the cello here. The peeling wallpaper, which was removed by Vivien, hid a mural across several walls depicting gruesome imagery. In 2011, Vivien and Violet were bound here during a home invasion to re-enact R. Franklin's murders.
Turquoise Bedroom (Tate's/Violet's/Gabriel's bedroom)
- 1994: Tate is shot by the S.W.A.T. Team.
- 2011: Other than scenes involving Violet and Tate or Violet and Vivien, Moira gives Joe a blowjob here. Tate attempts to kill Gabriel Ramos in this room, with the purpose of not leaving Violet alone, but he fails to do so when she saves the Ramos' son by distracting Tate.
Note: The kitchen and the turquoise bedroom were the only rooms that the crew redecorated. All other furniture and decorations belong to the Rosenheim Mansion (with the exception of the wall mural). The defining color of Violet's room (other than the turquoise wall color that is part of the Rosenheim Mansion) is, of course, violet: her bedding, her carpets, and her small, round, leather seat are all violet. Violet's room was decorated with items which relate back to several episode storylines. It features:
- A poster of a skull next to her bed.
- A jar with dolls heads (referencing the jars in the basement).
- A collection of spiked belts draped over her desk lamp.
- A collection of dead bugs and butterflies.
- An armchair.
- A Ferris wheel (the Ferris wheel was invented for the 1893 Chicago World Fair mentioned in Piggy Piggy).
- A dollhouse on the window sill. When Tate lived in this room, a copy of Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House" was in its place.
- When this was Tate's room, he had a poster of Saturn on his wall. In Roman mythology, Saturn fulfilled the same role as the Red Dragon that Leah mentions in Home Invasion in the Bible's Book of Revelations: He devours children as soon as they are born. Saturn assumed power by castrating his father, then married his sister. In Medieval and Renaissance occultism, the planet Saturn was associated with depression. It is still a symbol of death. In astrology, the planet Saturn in one's chart indicates a tyrannical, domineering parent who seeks to mold the child in his or her own image. Children often become "swallowed up" by such domination. This could be entirely coincidental, however.
- 1968: Gladys was drowned in a bathtub by R. Franklin.
- 2011: Violet does her cutting here at the sink with her father's razor blades.
- Violet dies in the bathtub after overdosing on sleeping pills. At the time it appears as though she lived but Tate later reveals that she had swallowed far too many and that she did, in fact, pass away in his arms.
The kitchen and Violet's/Tate's room were the only two rooms of the Rosenheim Mansion that were redecorated for the show. All other furniture comes with the property, with the exception of minor props. For later episodes, the exact same furniture from the Rosenheim Mansion had to be recreated.
The Attic is now home to the gentle Beau, though he does occasionally play in the basement.
- 1994: Constance's son, Beau, was smothered by Larry Harvey.
- 2011: Vivien finds a gimp suit attached to the ceiling in the attic.
- Stained glass
- The house features several original Tiffany lamps and stained glass windows. The stained glass windows feature the color blue, which Nora explains was Charles' tribute to her eye color. All stained glass windows are actually part of the Rosenheim Mansion. It is true though that the stained glass in Ben's office, which is, in reality, a Greek temple, resembles the gazebo and that the Dining Room has stained glass windows with violets in them. It is thus possible that the writers of the show took clues from the actual decorations of the Rosenheim Mansion.
|Homeowners and tenants|
- Overall, as of "Return to Murder House", there are 36 people who have died in the estate and been trapped in its confines as restless (or malevolent) ghosts, not including the occupants featured in You're Going to Die in There - 1.) because it is unknown if it is canon to the show's universe, and 2.) because it is deliberately kept unclear how many additional people died in the house, and is left up to the audience to decipher.
- The house is revealed to be sentient to some degree and resistant to magical powers, cancelling out abilities such as telekinesis. This is explained by the fact that witches draw their magic from light, and given that the Murder House is a hellmouth, or a gateway into Hell itself, their powers are heavily mitigated inside it. For this very reason, Tate Langdon states that even people protected by magic are not safe in its depths. Despite this, passive powers and spells are shown to still work on its grounds, such as Divination and the Spirit Revealing Spell.
- Similar to the Hotel Cortez, the Murder House is a place where people who die within its premises are unable to cross into the afterlife, remaining forever trapped there as disembodied souls. If the human remains of a deceased person are placed outside the house's limits, however, their soul will be free to depart, as in the case of Moira O'Hara. The limits of the house, though not strictly laid out, are known to include the yard surrounding it and the sidewalk in front of it. It is unknown if the Hotel Cortez's ghosts could be similarly released if their corpses are removed from its grounds.
- According to Madison Montgomery, the ghosts in the house behaved violently due to the Devil's influence there and his desire to manipulate the living and deceased to sire the Anti-Christ. Madison claims that once the Anti-Christ was born and left the house in the form of Michael Langdon, he took all of the ghosts' evil thoughts and urges with him. This seems to be true, as by the time Madison and Behold arrive at the house, all of the ghosts choose to remain unseen by the living and do not actively try to harm or toy with them (although this may also be because Madison and Behold are witches and the ghosts were afraid of them).
- Billie Dean Howard is revealed to be one of few living human beings who the ghosts will allow to come and go from the house.
- The house, in addition to being populated by the ghosts of its past tenants, is also home to other supernatural phenomena, such as the Frankenstein-esque Infantata and the Devil. The Anti-Christ was also born in the house and lived in it for a period of time, and in 1926, the house was visited by a vampire who gave birh to a half-human-vampire hybrid in its basement. In the erased timeline, the house was also visited by witches, who bought the estate to prevent more unsuspecting people from dying in it. This places the Murder House as one of the spookiest locations in the American Horror Story universe, next to the Hotel Cortez and Briarcliff Manor.
- The house used in filming is the Rosenheim Mansion.
- On February 2018, current owners of the house Dr. Ernst von Schwarz and Angela Oakenfold sued the previous owners and estate agents for failing to disclose its connection to the FX show. Daily intrusions and trespassing by fans of the show are the main issues motioned in the lawsuit.
- This house was featured and sold on the SYFY show Collection Intervention.
- ↑ Mentioned by Billie Dean Howard to John Lowe
- ↑ Episode: Pilot
- ↑ Episode: Afterbirth
- ↑ Episode: Home Invasion
- ↑ Saturn in mythology
- ↑ Episode: Return to Murder House
- ↑ ‘American Horror Story’ house has become a nightmare: lawsuit
- ↑ The Owners of the ‘Murder House’ From ‘American Horror Story’ Aren’t Happy They Have to Live With Ghosts Now