Everyday People Who Discovered Remarkable Mysteries in Their Own Homes
Homes are often an extension of the homeowner’s personality. The interior design choices – colors, furniture, and accessories – reveal a lot about the people who made those choices. It is almost like a story of who they are and what they like. However, people don’t always choose their surroundings – sometimes they discover them!
This can happen when peeling back some wallpaper to find a hidden door or cleaning the exterior of a building to find an old sign. Sometimes, our houses and buildings harbor more than meets the eye. The curious discoveries below baffled the homeowners who stumbled upon them.
1. Whirlpool Bath Found Hidden Beneath the Floorboards
Before the homeowners below decorated their new home with all their belongings, they decided to inspect the rooms in detail. In the living room, they decided to look beneath the carpet to see if anything needed to be repaired.
As you can see from the picture above, they found a wooden floorboard placed over a jacuzzi! It turns out that the previous owner, an older lady, had a fully functional jacuzzi installed. What a great find. Although it might have been a hassle doing all that work, it worked out in the end.
Finding the Spot
The first thing the new homeowners did upon taking over the new property was to look for the spot where the hidden tub was concealed. It felt like they were pirates on the high seas searching for lost treasure.
When they found the treasure, it was quite the find indeed! Who wouldn’t like to relax in a living room jacuzzi after a rough day at work? Make a cold drink and feel the bubble jets taking away all stress from the day.
The first order of the day was to create holes in the floor, so the couple could have a glimpse of what was hidden underneath. The first thing they saw when kneeling down to peek inside was the color – a bluish shade like the deep sea.
They didn’t want to damage anything, so they were careful when sawing through the wooden floor. As they pulled back the wooden pieces to see more, they got excited, thinking about the good times they were going to have.
The new homeowners were pleasantly surprised when the flooring was finally removed, and they found a tub more beautiful than they had imagined. It had plenty of space for them to move around in, and it was a few feet deep.
That being said, the jacuzzi still needed to be worked on to restore its previous glory. Adhesives around the surface corners needed to be scrubbed off, and the whole structure had to be sanitized. Upon further examination, they decided to replace some of the old pumps too.
For some families, having a home of their own is enough to make them happy. Mark and Jenny Ronsman now have that and a beautiful jacuzzi to top it off. This sale was a win for the previous owner as well because she got to hand off her lovely property to a well-deserving family.
After they uncovered and cleaned the hot tub, the couple decorated the room with rows of plants around the windows. With their in-laws living just across the street, they could invite them over for a relaxing dip whenever they felt like having company.
2. Humongous Game Board
During the four years that Nyeland Newel and his wife lived in their home in Fresno, California, they never once looked under the carpet. Why would they need to? Instead, they spent their days working, cooking, and building a life together.
Then the time came for some home renovations. As they began pulling up the carpet, they found oddly aligned bits of paint scattered on the floor. Once it was finished, they stood back and saw a giant monopoly board – complete with naked figures.
Source of Trouble
The Monopoly board they found painted on the floor had its own set of rules. Unlike traditional Monopoly, where players use money to purchase properties, this kind of Monopoly allows players to trade clothes to purchase properties! This kind of scandalous rule might have been the reason why it was covered up.
Nyeland’s wife found it distasteful and indecent. Instead of rejoicing at the board game discovery, the couple ended up fighting about it. The wife wanted Nyeland to paint over the board, but he liked it too much.
The couple compromised by only partially painting over the floor, but the compromise didn’t end up solving their marital issues. Shortly thereafter, they got divorced. “We’ve never gotten over the issue,” Nyeland Newel said, perplexed at how their odd home discovery created such a big problem.
Now the couple is living apart. Nyeland has the freedom to do as he wishes with his new apartment, so he might feel like painting an equally large game board on the floor. Who knows, maybe he’ll go with Scrabble instead.
3. Old Coins in the Bathroom
The young homeowner below was inspecting his newly acquired property one day when he noticed that the bathroom was in dire need of some repair. Nothing major that could break the bank, just a bit of a facelift to make it sparkle and shine.
The house was a bit old, and to be honest, the previous owners could have done better with regular maintenance and upkeep. They didn’t. So, it fell onto him, which was fine in the long run, but it did mean a lot of extra work. He was happy enough to have a place all his own.
The interior of the house needed some work – the walls could do with a fresh coat of paint, and the little crevices and crannies needed a detailed cleaning. He went over to the sink and decided to uncover the compartment above because it looked like it would fall apart sometime soon anyway.
The loose panel behind it gave in without much of a fight and revealed a safe inside. It had been deliberately sealed, so he quickly reached in to investigate this strange new find. He didn’t know what to make of it.
A Gift from the Original Owners
It’s hard to say what the original homeowners had in mind when they built this strange shelf. Clearly, they were trying to hide something, but what? His eyes widened as he pierced into the dark box and picked out a gilded cylinder and some plastic wrap.
A scrap of paper with a note scribbled on it revealed the original owner’s intentions and ruled out the possibility that these had been forgotten articles. The note clearly showed that they were left as a gift – they were like good luck charms meant to welcome the new owners.
It was apparent to the new homeowner that these coins had historical value, but their monetary value remained unknown. He thought they had to be worth more than their face value because some old coins are made up of prized metals.
Also included in the stash were two rings. One had a diamond that looked genuine at first glance. These treasures were hidden in a way that made it seem like they wanted to be found – how strange (and kind) of the previous owners!
4. Underground Chapel
Ever since the Farla family moved into the Victorian building pictured below, they felt that something wasn’t quite right. It was almost as if a ghost from the past was teasing them by gently pulling their hair and whispering secrets.
They never thought about it much until, on one Good Friday, the family members gathered around the kitchen table for some drinks. Emboldened by the consumed spirits, they decided to confront the source of this mystery. They literally marched towards it.
Lined up in the hallway of their Victorian home, the family members stared down at a strange grill that had always been covered with a floor mat. They covered it to try and forget about the mysterious grill and what might lie beneath.
But try as they may, they couldn’t forget about it – the mystery kept pulling them in like moths to a flame. Today, however, they decided to do something about it. They lifted the grill, and one by one, the family members crawled down inside.
What they found in the darkness underneath shocked them. Beneath their modern-day home was a hidden chapel used by Catholics in the 1700s, a time when it was illegal to practice their faith. Concrete pews and a rotting cross were the only adornments left.
The family learned that a Tudor house was once built above the hidden chapel. Further documents also showed that the property had been used as a pub, with the deed going back more than 200 years. It’s amazing how much history one place can have.
5. Bank Vault Inside the Pharmacy
Shoppers, in general, can get a bit distracted when walking around stores because there’s too much to see. Usually, this means shopping takes a little while. If you mix that with the architecture below, you’ll know why people spend a lot of time in this pharmacy.
The owners of this Walgreens store decided to put up their flagship branch in what used to be a bank. The neo-classical architecture of this old building goes way back to 1919. It can feel like you’re walking inside a theater rather than a store.
The bank that used to be housed here went out of business during the Great Depression. The old building is now considered a historical landmark, and through the years, it underwent extensive (and costly) repairs and restoration.
Inside the building, meandering around the aisles, one cannot help but look up at the decorative ceiling and the walls to appreciate the structure’s incredible details. It has tall windows that look out onto the neighborhood and chandeliers that highlight its architectural jewels.
The Main Attraction
First-time visitors to the store featured below might get confused when they come across this vitamin vault inside a bank vault. The shelves are stacked with pills of brilliant colors that remind us of rare gems kept inside the safe for protection against thieves.
Instead of clearing up its old features, the new owners of the historical building embraced what the past had to offer them. In so doing, they produced a unique time capsule that combined a bygone era with modern times.
6. A Secluded Wine Cellar
The secluded wine cellar pictured below was originally built in the late 1700s. Part of a house that changed hands multiple times over the centuries, it was eventually used during Prohibition to avoid the authorities. The present-day owners plan on expanding the property.
To do so, the owners hired some workers to break through the partitions. The plan was to add more rooms – nearly double the previous capacity. However, somewhere along the line, the workers breached a wall that led to this secret wine cellar. Everyone was surprised.
Oldest Wines in the World
An examination of the types of wine found in the cellar revealed some of the oldest that could be found in the world today. All these belonged to a millionaire wine collector who had passed away centuries ago. Somehow his old cellar lasted the test of time.
Each bottle discovered is worth tens of thousands of dollars. Considering how many were found on the wooden racks, that’s a substantial sum. It was also reported that more valued liquor was found in the attic.
In many ways, it’s a story of lost treasure. To preserve the value of the bottles, the wine cellar was sealed up for more than a century – until everyone who knew about it forgot or passed away. The color of the liquor in the tinted bottles must have delighted the heart of the original owner, and now it has a chance to delight a new generation.
Such a rare collection also came with wine accouterments – casks, demijohns, cork openers – that the new owners decided to share with the public through a museum display.
7. Ads From an Era Long Gone
Construction workers were brought in to renovate an old building in New York City. The city itself is one of the most populated in America and is a melting pot of diverse cultures. It’s also known for its advertising – especially in Times Square.
As people were leaving the business district, workers began scrubbing the exterior walls of one of the buildings. After getting rid of old paint and wallpaper, they realized something else was underneath. They unmasked an ad from a time past.
A nearby ad can give passersby a clue as to what these buildings may have been a few decades ago. By the look of it, times were simpler, and a lot cheaper. The first ad featured offers for decent lodging at a dollar a night! Prices have certainly gone up a lot since then.
The markings may be faded and grimy, but the message is clear – times have changed. These nostalgic images harken us back to a New York City that’s long gone.
Old Times Square
Another ad spotted in the area is a throwback to an era when commuters rode carriages to reach their destinations. It was around this time that electricity first lit up the streets of Times Square, transforming drab spaces into high-tech roads.
Building restoration projects have uncovered advertisements that become like time machines. They can bring people back to when horses roamed the streets, when soldiers danced with their wives after their WWII victory, and when the mob controlled small businesses.
8. Wartime Hiding Places
Settling in a new place in Europe, especially when one chooses an old house to move in, can be quite the adventure. This is where most of the battles took place during the Second World War, which caused millions of people to lose their lives and plenty of homes to be destroyed.
A lot of people chose to find secret hideouts to try and wait out the devastation. The hideout above was recently discovered by students in Norway, who immediately got a weird vibe about it.
Upon further investigation, urged by stories that indeed their place of residence has a wartime hiding place, the students found a door that led to a bare room. What they saw strewn inside left no doubt that a lot of suffering occurred here.
The war survivors must have been cramped inside for long periods to avoid their enemies. No doubt, these soldiers and civilians were trembling in fear at the sound of German Shepherds barking outside while trying to trail their scent.
People had to hide wherever they could find a safe place, whether that be a cellar, a basement, or an attic. Often, they endured extremely tough conditions. They had to be quiet and hide for as long as they could in order to avoid execution or being sent to concentration camps by the merciless German soldiers.
The students who found the hideout above recognized a device that would alert those in hiding if intruders were close by. The room seems to have been preserved for around seventy years, reminiscent of Amsterdam’s Anne Frank.
Since the secret room was so small, it might be surprising to learn that it was used for an entire family. The cramped quarters could make it difficult to breathe and stay quiet all the time – especially with the added life-or-death pressures.
A handwritten sign in Norwegian says that those who have bad stomachs shall not have access to this room. For indeed it would have been difficult to keep silent and stay the course while others defecate and vomit in their shared hideout.
The secret room in the attic was accidentally discovered when one of the students stretched, pushing the loose paneling that concealed its entrance. They found maps pasted on slanted walls. This place might also have been utilized to listen to the radio.
People needed to be updated about the war, so they could discern propaganda from the truth. They gathered information, shared them with the others who might have more intel to contribute, giving them a better picture of how things stand. The students shared their discovery online with mixed emotions.
9. Underground Community
When Europe’s largest market closed on account of poor trading practices, it left hundreds of thousands of small-time entrepreneurs and workers in financial trouble. Many business and political analysts believed this left them no choice but to disperse and go underground.
This means that people would continue to find a way to sell their products for a living. If it didn’t come through registered shops, then it would come through the black market. Or, more accurately, an underground market because the workers literally went underground.
Authorities rushed to the site after a land developer, who had purchased the marketplace, made this discovery. The land development project began the clearing phase, heavy equipment rolled in, and apparently uncovered the illegal activity below. The cops raided the area shortly thereafter.
The community of illegal immigrants had learned to adapt to such harsh and inhumane conditions. Somehow, the mostly Asian workers flourished into a community made of difficult work. The raid frightened them, and they looked quite pale in the constant darkness.
After the marketplace’s closure, the illegal immigrants felt they had no other option to survive except to seek jobs from an employer who gladly took advantage of their misfortune. The police raid brought to light an illegal complex underground. They found sewing machines, accessories, and piles of multicolored fabric.
The whole workplace was cramped, giving us an idea of how poor their working conditions were. They were underpaid despite being overworked. They slept on makeshift beds that were thinly cushioned with scraps of clothing and snatched cotton.
Work Machinery Found
Apart from industrial sewing machines, authorities also found ruffle machines and other tailoring materials that were used by an estimated 250 illegal workers. None of the workers had social security or medical insurance, and they were forced to live in a place considered a fire hazard.
Aside from the horrendous workplace, further inspection of the complex revealed a cinema, diners, and bars to allay their boredom. Police also found chickens who lived cooped up alongside their owners in this shady and unhealthy environment.
These hundreds of exploited workers were led by armed officers out of their den. Some were reportedly crying and begging for leniency. Some clutched to the others hoping to derive strength from their equally troubled companions. They would be detained and subsequently deported, where more poverty awaited them.
This is reminiscent of another group of illegal workers arrested while operating in a former bomb shelter. The business owners of these illegal workplaces will be investigated and shall likely face criminal charges.
10. Apartment Attraction: Jail Cells
If a business gets a bad reputation through unlawful acts, it can eventually lead to its downfall. Entrepreneurs do what they can to keep their brand squeaky clean. Others, however, have devious talents that allow them to hide their misdeeds under the rug.
The people who bought this historic property boast about the criminals who once stayed there. Although that might sound odd, it’s their biggest drawcard for getting visitors. This apartment building used to be a jail, and they converted the old jail cells into guest rooms.
Renovated Police Station
The property was built in 1871 and was used as a police station set beside the courthouse. When the latter underwent a major renovation, the police station was altered as well. Some walls were demolished, which meant that more space was accorded the property.
The owners of the estate converted the old police station into an apartment without wiping out its original design. The cell doors are still intact, the windows have the same bars installed, and guests are shown old records of the prisoners.
Tourists Love It
Guests love the place because it is undoubtedly unique and rich in character. People are drawn to it, impressed by the new owners’ creativity in utilizing the place. They have spent seven years planning and renovating it, and their efforts have finally paid off.
Renovations were made outside the building too. An area where the police exercised was landscaped. Guests may now spend time outside enjoying the view while having coffee or tea. A few steps around the place might lead one to walls with former prisoners’ names written on them.
11. Secret Door to Mysterious Black Staircase
The family had lived in this house for more than a year and were quite comfortable there. It was built in the early 2000s, and like most homes during that decade, it was architecturally designed to make smart use of the limited space. The teenage brothers loved it, and their parents were glad.
One day, the kids were playing around the house, chasing each other up and down the stairs and around corners. One of them got accidentally pushed into the mini-library in the master bedroom.
The momentum of the push swung the bookshelf open, revealing a mysterious presence, like a dark ghost that had suddenly appeared before them: a black turning staircase. The boys braved the eerie space and went down, only to find a wall.
They crawled under it and found some of their Halloween candies purposely gathered on sheets. They could not have fallen downstairs, past the partitions. Even if they did, how did some of it end up unwrapped and eaten?
The teenagers wanted to bolt out of the uncharted space right after this discovery. They also found a couple of dolls where the candies were gathered, a strange-looking red elephant, and a key that didn’t fit any lock in the house.
The police confirmed their suspicion that someone had lived behind those walls and had stolen some of their supplies. They were shaken by the idea that someone knew their home better than they did and had watched them in secret. Nobody was reportedly found there.