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The Tuttle Mansion

Posted by Maryanne Porter on April 8, 2013 at 7:30 PM

S.C.G.H Investigates

The Tuttle Mansion

May 18, 2012

S.C.G.H investigated The Tuttle Mansion! Owned and operated by Oliver Realty, since 1974, the Tuttle Mansion is one of oldest Victorians still in existence today in the county of Santa Cruz and it remains in its former glory.

Over 112 years old, the Tuttle Mansion was originally designed by famous architect William Weeks, an icon of Santa Cruz historic builders in the 1800’s. Built in 1899 for Morris B. Tuttle, a well to do rancher in South County Santa Cruz, the grand Victorian has withstood the test of time, enduring the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 and the Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989. The latter nearly toppled this majestic behemoth and took the Olivers nearly 2 years to restore. However, the Olivers’ love for this fabulous piece of Santa Cruz history does not go unnoticed. The full restoration of this magnificent self-standing piece of art speaks for itself. It rises 3 stories and contains well over a dozen and a half rooms. One can only imagine the grandiose parties and lavish lifestyle the Tuttles enjoyed during their occupancy. While being one of the richest and most admired families during their heyday, their lives did not come without skeletons.


 Tuttle Decendants

According to Jeniffer Oliver and her niece Shannon, along with additional business occupants, the mansion is not without its unusual quirks. The home currently houses various business suites, the Oliver’s told us. “When all appears to be quiet, the mansion seems to take on a life of its own.” There have been reports of hearing old-fashioned-style typewriters typing by themselves, multiple second-story doors slamming open and shut continuously when no one is occupying the upstairs, sightings of the apparition of an elderly lady ringing a dinner bell who seems to vanish, and sounds of laughter and footsteps of perhaps children on the third story dance floor when it is completely unoccupied.

Although the Olivers and the mansion’s occupants do not appear to be fearful of these events, they made it clear they wanted to confirm that these oddities are more than just their active imaginations.

The Tuttles were a large multi-generational family, with each child having 6-9 offspring apiece. Those children had children, and so on. There is evidence of great wealth, education, power, and drive among the Tuttle descendents, but they were not without their share of drama. The Tuttle family history goes back to the early 1500 to 1600s and includes both homicidal criminals and masterfully educated geniuses.

The Watsonville Tuttle family included Mrs. Mary E. Tuttle, wife of Owen Tuttle. Mary loved her home very much and was considered to be a member of high society. Though she threw lavish parties, she had a kind heart and never thumbed her nose at the less fortunate. Sadly, Mary was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 56 and while she and her husband were returning via horse and buggy from a treatment session in San Francisco, her grim prognosis took a turn for the worse. While her dying wish was to return to her beloved home to live out her last days, she passed away during the return trip before making it back to the mansion.

Could the apparition of the elderly woman ringing a dinner bell be that of Mary Tuttle? Could she have achieved her dying wish to return to the home she loved after death?

S.C.G.H learned that the third floor, currently a dance studio, was once a favorite recreation area for a Mr. R. Tuttle. He used the third floor for a billiard room for himself and his gentlemen friends. R. Tuttle was a well-known mason in this secret society of men. The billiard room was also used as a playroom on rainy winter days for the many children who roamed the halls of the grand home. Could the footsteps and giggles heard on the third floor be those of those children, or something else?

As with all historical legends, there is a downside to every upside. Psychics aiding S.C.G.H kept getting the name “Alice,” resulting in a deeper dig into the Tuttle Mansion history. S.C.G.H learned of an old carriage house that was once used to keep horses, as well as an old apartment house located beside the mansion. Now currently converted into a modern apartment, the carriage house is believed to have been once occupied by the estranged wife of William Tuttle. She was believed to be named Helena and the couple’s 9-month-old daughter was named Alice.

Historical documents provided by the Pajaro Valley Historical Soceity and California digital news articles confirmed the existance of William Tuttle married later in life to the young Helena. It is believed he suffered from emotional problems and, despite his vast wealth and new family, was unable to make the marriage work.

On December 12, 1912, William went to the local hardware store where he purchased a toy ball as a Christmas gift for "Alice". He also bought a revolver and ammunition. William reportedly rode his bicycle to the Tuttle Mansion carriage house where he presented the gift to Alice, who was in her crib. Shortly after his arrival at the carriage house, neighbors heard two shots ring out. When they arrived at the apartment to investigate, they discovered the bodies of William and Helena Tuttle lying deceased from an apparent murder-suicide. Each was shot in the right temple. Baby Alice was located unharmed and safely playing in her crib in the adjoining room.

Baby Alice’s fate did not end that day, according to California digital news articles. She stood to inherit $35,000 from the Tuttle estate, a grand fortune in those days. This resulted in a feud between relatives on both sides of the decedents, ending with a two-day court battle in Sacramento. As the family fought for custody of little Alice, the judge superseded both parties and in a twist of fate decided that as a friend of Iowa and Helena, he would take custody of their child. S.C.G.H was unable to find out what happened to the young girl throughout her growing years.

UPDATE 2013: Upon further investigation into the murder / suicide we discovered that Alice Tuttle was officially adopted out and her name changed to Shirly Wiseman, it was learned that she did inherit stocks, bonds and a substantial amount of her inheritance  which she recieved  when she married at the age of 24. At the age of 26 she was out shooting with her husband and according to geneology references her husband stated his wife was riding in the back of the buck board while he was at the reigns, she yelled for him to "Stop, I see something to shoot" , suddenly their dog who was following behind the buck board jumped up on his wifes lap, resulting in her accidently shooting her self with the loaded shot gun. Her husband inherited her fortune. Both her and her mother died at the hand of a gun.

NOTE: Recently we have discovered conflicting news articles dating back to the early 1900's surrounding the location of the murder / suicide, we are further researching articles to determine if in fact the location is accurate. S.C.G.H has also uncovered that Iowa Tuttle did infact commit suicide at the Tuttle Mansion, he is buried at the Pioneer Cemetery, he died of a single gun shot to the temple and his body was discovered by one of his 3 daughters after hearing the gun shot. We are continuing our efforts to uncover the exact circumstances of both suicides and the accuracy of the records at hand.


First Investigation

May 18, 2012, S.C.G.H, takes its first investigation directly into the carriage house, where we attempt to make contact with what we think maybe Helena, the murdered wife of Iowa Tuttle, or perhaps that of someone else...through historical documents, S.C.G.H was able to confirm incest and the marriage of 1st cousins was common during this era and in the Tuttle family history. Many generations of children in fact roamed the halls of the mansion and not all of the males present within the home had a friendly disposition. This is what our investigation revealed.

This video has audio, for best results headphones are advisable.


During our investigation of the carriage house, we also took evp's.  

In segment 1, of the video, myself and Jeniffer are speaking and trying to get an entity to talk to us. While Jeniffer is speaking you hear what sounds like a breathe or a "haaaa" that is not from any of us.

 In segment 2, the raw footage is very quiet, we are speaking amoungst ourselves, we have requested an entity to turn the light on, and suddenly the light in fact turns on, at the exact same moment the light turns on, when replaying the digital recorder, we get the word "HELLO" very loudly, an intelligent response and in sync with turning on the flashlight.

In segment 3,  the team had been discussing if an entity was fearful, an uncle was mentioned on the ghost radar, we had asked if the entity was afraid of males, in this evp, we hear an echoing whisper which sounds like it is saying "Their's a man" and soon after the ghost radar picks up the word "HIM", we infact had one male investigator present at this time.

The following video depicts evp's we captured that night, we advise using amplified speakers or headphones for best results.


S.C.G.HEditor:[email protected] Crime Reporter - CrimeVoice.com

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