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Martha Washington Institute | Martha Washington School | Martha Washington School for Insane Girls

Martha Washington Institute | Martha Washington School | Martha Washington School for Insane Girls

Seattle, Washington

Martha Washington Institute Information:

Martha Washington Institute, otherwise known as the Martha Washington School for Girls was located at Brighton Beach on Lake Washington. Prior to being located here, it occupied two other locations, one on Queen Anne Hill, and another on Mercer Island. From 1900-1971 it functioned as a boarding school for delinquent girls. It was, at one time, known as “The Martha Washington School for Insane Girls”.

The Martha Washington School at Brighton Beach was originally the home of Judge Smith who built “Morningside” on five acres that he had purchased in 1889 from John Wilson. John Wilson had received the property from Asa Mercer in 1867 as payment on a loan that John Wilson had made to Mercer in 1863 when Asa Mercer was stranded in San Francisco with a cargo of Mercer Girls. Judge Smith built the home with a nursery and a boat house. He also included a hollow stairway to a Madrona tree on the property.

The Martha Washington School evolved after a number of transactions and continued operations until 1971.

In 1971, the school was closed due to financial problems. The abandoned buildings were then utilized by a satanic group that vandalized the buildings and sacrificed animals on the property.

The city council finally decided to demolish the Marth Washington Institute and turn the site into a park after many strange goings-on and general community uneasiness with the buildings. Today, Martha Washington Park stand sentinel at the location once occupied by the Martha Washington School for Insane Girls.

Martha Washington Institute Ghosts and the Paranormal:

There are rumors of violence including murders and suicides were associated with the Martha Washington Institute.

Paranormal activity still occurs at the park where the Martha Washington Institute once stood. One resources noted that some of the old trees that were planted by residents of the school seem to have ghostly energies attached to them still.

Disembodied footsteps and screaming sounds have been reported in the park.

Other Related Haunts:

Northern State Hospital, Western State Hospital, and Eastern State Hospital all functioned as insane asylums in Washington state during the dark days of psychiatric care.


Wilma, D. (2001). Martha Washington School. Retrieved April 9, 2011 from

Phoenix, L. (2007-2009). Haunted Places and Legendary Spots around Seattle. Retrieved April 9, 2011 from

StrangeUSA (1901-2012). Martha Washington Institute. Retrieved April 9, 2011 from

6612 57th Avenue South, Seattle, WA Washington 98118, USA

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  1. I have a picture of an apparition that showed up behind my son when we visited here one evening. It’s a pretty clear pic of a girl looking right at me. Nothing evil or scary was felt. I’d like to share it though.

    • Hi! Could you please send the picture to
      I have a picture of my own and would like to compare the two.

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