October 7, 2020

The Ghosts of The Treasurer’s House, York, England

The famous Treasurer’s House is quite historic. Built in 1419- just behind York Minister, it served as home to the Minister’s Treasurer. This was an incredibly important job as the Treasurer was in charge of all churches’ finances in that locality. Aside from handling finances, the Treasurer also has the role of hosting important guests to the church in neighboring towns. For these reasons, the residence had to be quite impressive. But what’s all the talk about the Ghosts of The Treasurer’s house? Is it true or just a bluff? Read on as we dig deeper.

History

The first-ever Treasurer of York Minister was chosen in 1091. However, the original house remains are an external section of the 12th-century masonry wall, but it’s still uncertain whether this section is reused or still in-situ. Up until 1547, this house was reserved for the Treasurer. After the English Church reformation, the Treasurer’s job was scraped off, leaving the residence to the York community’s archbishops.

From 1562 to 1568, Archbishop Thomas Young had this house remodeled with an attractive, symmetrical façade during the early 17th Century. Later on, Sir George Young would play host to King James I in 1617. Around this time, the house would be split into two, separating the current Treasurer’s house with Gray’s court.

Frank Green

By the later half of the 19th Century, the house was progressively falling apart, and that’s how ownership subsequently moved to private ownership. Fortunately, in 1887, Frank Green, a rich industrialist who was a collector of furniture and fine art, purchased the house and resided there until 1930.

By the later half of the 19th Century, the house was progressively falling apart, and that’s how ownership subsequently moved to private ownership. Fortunately, in 1887, Frank Green, a rich industrialist who was a collector of furniture and fine art, purchased the house and resided there until 1930.

Green removed the recent changes and restored this house completely to what many believe was its original condition. He used this setting to keep his impressive artwork. Green structured the rooms in styles of various eras and periods for his timely furniture collection. Some of the rooms in this house are named after Queen Alexandra, King Edward, and their daughter Victoria- the second royal visit to this historic house. After Green retired in 1930, he handed the house and the huge artifact collection to the National Trust.

Roman Ghosts

Apart from acting as host to valuable artifacts and relics, the Treasurer’s House is surrounded by one of the most intriguing and world-famous ghost stories. The story has it that as one of the workmen, 18-year old Harry Martindale, went down to the dark cellars to work on a repair; he saw a group of about 20 or more Roman ghost soldiers marching past him.

What’s more frightening is that the ghosts appeared to be walking with their knees at first, but as they drew nearer, he could see their legs. Harry was totally frightened, and as soon as the soldiers marched past (without glancing at him), he dashed right out of the cellar. The caretaker of the house, at this time, also reported that he’d seen these soldiers. Harry would leave the house that day, not to set foot again for the next 25 years.

About four years later, another caretaker also reported seing these Roman legionaries on two separate occasions. Excavations later show that an ancient Roman road ran under the cellar, exactly where the soldiers marched. But the tale of ghosts of the Treasurer’s house does not end here as the apparition of George Aislaby, one of the owners in the 17th Century, is also said to haunt this residence.

The Finer Details

At first, people, including Harry’s workmates, did not believe his story. This incident caused him to go on leave because of stress for several months. When he finally told the story, newspapers, and experts, especially from the military regalia, came in to capture it. First, the story Harry was giving was considered vague as the descriptions didn’t match Roman military attire.

But as archeologists continued to uncover Romans’ physical remains from the earlier eras, they found uniforms for auxiliary Roman Soldiers that matched what Harry had given. Since there’s no way Harry had this information before, more and more people started believing his ‘ghost story.’

A Tour to The Treasure’s House

The Treasurer’s House is a central tourist attraction. Its gardens are peaceful and breath-taking. Besides, the house is quite historical, with featured furnishings from the Georgian to the Medieval era. Tours are available during the day for anyone past five years, with the guardian or parent’s discretion. A 30-minute tour will cost you 4 Euros. There’s no need to purchase a ticket to this house.

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