Outdoor & Road Trip

Secrets Of Stunning Abandoned Mansions

Mellon mansion, Florida, USA

Tucked away in the undergrowth in Palatka, Florida, this clapboard house was formerly the vacation mansion of financial magnate James Ross Mellon, who was a member of one of the wealthiest houses in America throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. After his death in 1908, Mellon's father, Irish immigrant Thomas Mellon, bequeathed his sons his significant banking and real estate wealth. Although James and his spouse Rachel were Pennsylvanians, they would spend their winters in Florida's warm climate and eventually constructed this 6,000-square-foot home as their headquarters in the Sunshine State.

In 2019, photographer Leland Kent of Abandoned Southeast took pictures of the house, which was in a deplorable state of disrepair. Here in this fading parlor, glimpses of the place's past grandeur are overshadowed by its condition of ruin. Debris and peeling plasterwork cover the floor, exposing portions of the main framework. However, with close inspection, few historical gems have survived the years of disuse. What was previously the fireplace is still framed by wood paneling and has a gorgeous surround of inky blue metro tiles.

Although James supposedly visited the Palatka property until his death in 1934, Rachel passed away in 1919. In the years that followed, the house changed hands a few times, but it doesn't seem like it has been inhabited for many years. As a matter of fact, the residence included a dog-eared calendar dated January 1970.  Memorabilia from a series of residents provides an insight into the lifestyles that formerly inhabited this abandoned house. On the fireplace are framed pieces of art, vintage radios, and a small child's piano. Kent also found an elaborate grand piano in the drawing room, indicating that a previous tenant had musical tastes.

Appuldurcombe House, Isle of Wight, UK

Appuldurcombe House, Isle of Wight, UK

When Appuldurcombe House was built, it was the biggest private home on the island and a remarkable example of English Baroque architecture. This picture of the partially restored interior, which has Ionic columns topped by elaborate plasterwork friezes, clearly illustrates its grandeur. It was clear that the estate had received an excessive quantity of funding. The famed British landscape architect and gardener Capability Brown designed the expansive gardens in the late 1700s.  The land was first purchased by Sir Richard Worsley, 7th Baronet, and later by the Earls of Yarborough after Sir Robert Worsley passed away in 1747.

Following the sale, Appuldurcombe House underwent many transformations, including conversion into a hotel, a college catering to young gentlemen, and a monastery housing Benedictine monk. Sadly, other from housing occupying forces temporarily during World Wars I and II, it remained uninhabited after 1909.  The mansion suffered greatly during the war years and was almost completely destroyed by a devastating attack in 1943. Although it was planned to be demolished, the home was miraculously spared from the wrecking ball and has remained under the UK Secretary of State's care since 1953.

Tannenfeld Castle, Thuringia, Germany

Constructed during the 1800s, this remarkable Baroque manor home is located south of Leipzig, close to the German town of Löbichau. When it was at its most opulent, Duchess Anna Dorothea of Courland lived there. She was a socialite, diplomat, and art patron who was said to have socialized with Napoleon and Prussia's King Frederick William III. It is believed that the Duchess has held a wide range of events at Tannenfeld, including political meetings and concerts. It's easy to picture the grounds teeming with the day's major players.

Dunnington Mansion, Virginia, USA

The mansion, which was formerly the site of lavish social events, has been abandoned to decay. After Walter Dunnington's wife India passed away in 1960, it is unclear to whom the house belonged. The Community Development Authority purchased it in 1999 with the intention of converting it into a hotel and spa. But the money stopped coming in, and the house was abandoned to decay.

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Rockwell House, Georgia, USA

Rockwell House, Georgia, USA

Even though the estate was showing symptoms of wear and tear by the middle of the 1900s, it remained mostly intact until that tragic August day in 1969. Unexpectedly, light leaked into the wooden construction as workers were using a blow torch to remove paint from the walls of one of the upper rooms. Even after the damage was repaired, the room and the rest of the building were left to deteriorate in the open air.

Abandoned billionaire's mansion, Japan

Once owned by industrialist Genshiro Kawamoto, this abandoned billionaire's house was built. The opulent home was abandoned when he was arrested in 2013 for tax fraud, and years of neglect have worn down the opulent interior. In 2018, Kawamoto was subsequently given a four-year prison term.  The elaborate stairway, which was formerly covered with opulent red carpet and was seen on camera by urban explorer Steve Ronin, is now covered in trash and dirt.