Scotty’s Castle

Scotty’s Castle is two story villa located in northern Death Valley, CA. Although it is named after Scotty, it did not belong to Scotty nor did he build it. It was built by Albert Johnson, a Chicago based investor. Walter Scott, a performer in the Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West Show, conned Johnson to invest to invest in his gold mine. Johnson found out about it, but was still fascinated by Scott. After making several trips to Death Valley, Mrs. Johnson convinced her husband to build this villa.

This house is an engineering marvel. A spring feeds the ranch and is used to generate electricity. The electricity is regulated by large sets of nickel-iron batteries. One-quarter of a mile of tunnels are located under the building that house the electrical supply and a house sized refrigerator. The house also contains a 1121 pipe Welte theater organ.

The Johnson’s left the property and all his wealth to the Gospel Foundation to do charity work. The National Park Service acquired the property in 1970.

I enjoyed the grounds and the tour of the house. I appreciated the guide’s effort to keep the tour lively and fun.

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