Voted the nation’s best haunted mansion in a poll on Yahoo Taiwan, the Liu family mansion in Chiayi County has had even more visitors this month, the seventh month of the lunar calendar, or Ghost Month.
According to traditional Chinese beliefs, spirits of the dead are released into the mortal realm during Ghost Month. Every day, offerings to these spirits can be observed on almost any street.
The Liu mansion in Minsyong Township (民雄) was built during the Japanese colonial era, but it was abandoned shortly after being completed, making way for many ghost stories.
Photo: Tsai Tsung-hsun, Taipei Times
According to a local myth, the owner had an affair with a maid, who, after being abused by the wife, drowned herself in the mansion’s well.
Another tale says that a Japanese soldier killed himself when staying the night, while others say there were “unmistakable” occult disturbances when the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) army set up camp near the mansion.
A visitor, surnamed Ho (何), said that he was starting off Ghost Month — which this year began on Thursday last week — by visiting haunted houses, and that he traveled from Taichung to Minsyong because the Liu mansion is the most famous.
Ho said that the overgrown Baroque-style ruins have an eeriness to them, but he did not feel scared.
“But it might be because I visited in the morning,” he added.
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