Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Rives Mansion — One of Downey's mysteries

Rives Mansion

Most of the time, we know our city from the outside. The insides, the stories and the explanations, remain a mystery. The Rives Mansion is one of those mysteries for me. I love the era and the style of the house. It's the kind of house I'd like to live in, and I want to explore every inch of it.

A few years ago, the owners opened the house up for tours during the Christmas season, and I got to see portions of the inside. At the time, it was owned by a Swedish couple who covered every nook and cranny with Swedish furniture, memorabilia, and pictures. Not necessarily in a bad way, just in an overwhelming way. It was hard to see past Sweden to the house itself.

The house changed owners recently, and the new owners have repainted the entire outside, cleaned up the yard, and added new landscaping. The outside is truly beautiful now. And the little bit I can see of the inside makes me think that the inside is beautiful now too. But will I ever get the chance to see it again? Maybe next Christmas...

To see a picture of the Rives Mansion circa 1912, click here. For more posts about the Rives Mansion, click here.


  1. Hi. I love your blog. Great photos. I was researching about the Rives mansion and found your post. I really don't like this house. They neutered so much of structure and hemmed it in with 3rd street that it is left as a odd anomaly here in Downey. I am excited because they just rezoned the downtown area for some new building projects and the Rives mansion was part of that rezoning. Anyway, keep shooting!

  2. A Guatemalan marimba concert will take place in this mansion in the summer 2011. Maybe you can attend and also view the inside at your leisure. I will place a poster in the photography studio next to the mansion for times and actual date. Hope to see your there. 562-396-6937 cell Ninette

  3. Thanks, Ninette, I'll be sure to be there!

  4. The Rives Mansion is haunted by a woman who rented the 3rd story bedroom. For some weird reason, they call the room the "Ball room" and people rent the mansion now-a-days for a pretty penny, but the mansion has sadly fallen into gross disrepair.
    People driving past the Rives Mansion have made claims that they see a pale woman's face, with brown wavy hair on the 3rd floor windows. She vanishes silently as one drives past. Nobody knows why she appears and disappears.
    An old lady heard me talking about this mysterious woman and the old lady says it was the maid who died there years and years ago under unexplained circumstances. She was a young woman, employed as the maid, but she had fallen in love with a man who could not claim her as his own, so she did herself in on the 3rd floor one night and her remains weren't found for 3 days.
    It was a sad case and everyone living in the house was shaken badly.
    Anyhow - - - the Rives Mansion has seen better days. I hope a rich person buys the home and restores it to it's former glory.


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