‘Legally Haunted’ New York Mansion Is on the Market for $1.9 Million

tupungato/iStock via Getty Images
tupungato/iStock via Getty Images

A 4628-square-foot house that just went on the market in Nyack, New York, has a lot to offer: five bedrooms, riverside views, and a history of being haunted. The so-called "ghost house" has such an infamous reputation that it was legally declared haunted in 1991. Now, People reports that you can own it for $1.9 million.

Built in 1890, the Queen Anne Victorian home on the Hudson River had a relatively unremarkable track record until the 1960s. That was when a woman named Helen Ackley moved there with her family and started spreading rumors of its otherworldly residents. She alleged that spirits from the Revolutionary War lived there, and they made their presence known by shaking beds and hovering in midair. Her accounts were reported in the local newspaper and Reader's Digest.

The poltergeists apparently weren't terrifying enough to make the home uninhabitable, and the Ackleys lived there for more than 20 years before listing it in 1989. But the house's next would-be owners didn't share their relaxed attitude. When the couple discovered the mansion was reportedly haunted after signing a contract, they backed out of the deal and sued. They argued that, like mold or vermin, a potential ghost infestation should be disclosed to potential property buyers.

The New York Supreme Court agreed: In 1991, it declared that because the Ackleys had widely publicized their beliefs about the house, they had created a stigma around it, and that information needed to be shared with the next home owners. The "Ghostbusters ruling" is still referred to today when determining what qualifies as a "legally haunted" house.

Since that supernatural scandal, there hasn't been a lot of negative press about the home at 1 LaVeta Place. Celebrities like singer Ingrid Michaelson and rapper Matisyahu have lived there for brief stints, and neither reported seeing ghosts. If you don't mind the property's spooky history (or perhaps consider it a perk), you can check out the listing on Trulia. And even if there is a ghost or two haunting the halls, the in-ground saltwater pool and views of the Hudson may make up for it.

[h/t People]

When “Weird Al” Yankovic Asked Kurt Cobain for Permission to Parody "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

Erik Voake/Stringer/Getty Images
Erik Voake/Stringer/Getty Images

"Weird Al" Yankovic has gotten plenty of rejections throughout his career. Prince, Jimmy Page, and Paul McCartney have all denied the musical comedian the right to turn one of their hit songs into an irreverent parody. Even so, Weird Al was hesitant to ask for Kurt Cobain's permission to skewer the Nirvana chart-topper "Smells Like Teen Spirit" in the early 1990s.

“I was very nervous, and I didn’t know how he would take my requesting the parody," Yankovic told Loudwire in 2014. The phone call would have been especially nerve-wracking because he wasn't planning to write a spoof that was divorced from the original artist, as was the case with previous hits like "Eat It" and "Like a Surgeon." His parody "Smells Like Nirvana" was going to make fun of the fact that no one could understand Cobain's incoherent singing.

But, as Yankovic recounted decades later, he had no reason to worry. "I explained it’s about how nobody could understand his lyrics. There was probably half a beat on the phone, and he said, ‘Yeah, yeah, sounds like a funny idea.’”

Cobain would have been sympathetic to Yankovic's sense of humor. The Nirvana frontman had a reputation for being a serial prankster, pulling stunts like taping an upside down cross onto the drive-through window of his favorite fried chicken place. Other stories tied to the band's antics involved lighting tour bus curtains on fire, giving out a friend's phone numbers in a live interview, and inviting the audience on stage to escape security.

"Smells Like Nirvana" debuted in 1992 and it was an instant success. It topped the Billboard charts and earned a platinum record, and Yankovic credited the track for revitalizing his career after a brief slump. You can watch Weird Al channeling Cobain in the music video below.

[h/t Loudwire]

Wales Is Home to the Baked Bean Museum of Excellence

Baked Bean Museum of Excellence
Baked Bean Museum of Excellence

If you don't think it's possible to get excited about beans, you've clearly never been to the Baked Bean Museum of Excellence in Port Talbot, Wales. The site is filled with memorabilia celebrating canned baked beans, but the legume-loving "superhero" in charge of it all may be the most intriguing attraction.

Before legally changing his name to "Captain Beany" in 1991, the owner of the Baked Bean Museum was a Welsh man named Barry Kirk, according to Atlas Obscura. He was born in 1954 and spent the early part of his adulthood working in the computer department of a British petroleum plant in South Wales.

But his life took a much different direction in 1986 when he broke the world record for longest time in a baked bean bath at 100 hours. He fully adopted his Captain Beany persona five years later and began painting his face and head orange. He also started dressing in a gold-and-orange superhero costume. Since then, he's raised nearly $130,000 for charity by performing various bean-related stunts like pushing a can of beans along the beach with his nose. His biggest claim to fame, though, is his Baked Bean Museum, which he opened in his two-bedroom council flat in 2009.

Baked Bean Museum of Excellence.
Baked Bean Museum of Excellence

Visit Captain Beany's home and you'll find more baked bean swag than most people see in a lifetime. His lavatory has been transformed into the "Branston Bathroom," with the British product's logo embellishing every surface, and the kitchen is all about Heinz. The museum also features vintage advertisements, collectible cans, and knick-knacks like a pair of baked bean cufflinks. And if you ever start to feel overwhelmed, Captain Beany will be there as your personal guide in one of his tomato-sauce-orange outfits.

Baked Bean Museum of Excellence.
Baked Bean Museum of Excellence

The Baked Bean Museum of Excellence is technically free to enter, but Captain Beany does accept donations that he gives to charity. You can visit the Port Talbot institution from Monday through Friday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

[h/t Atlas Obscura]

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