Artist House

Located in Key West, Florida
Located at the old East Martello Fort, this museum holds all sorts of artifacts and historical records of Florida Keys history. The eeriest of displays is Robert the Doll, dubbed as “the original Chucky.” Robert the Doll was given to artist Robert “Gene” Otto in 1904 by a poorly treated servant, probably of Bahamian or Hatian descent, when he was a small child. Gene gave the life-sized doll his first name, and blamed it for his bad behavior and anything that went wrong. Gene had been an ill-tempered person all of his life, and Robert the Doll is said to be a reflection of him. Robert the Doll and Gene lived in Artist House until Gene died, and is now housed at East Martello Museum. Supposedly, Robert the Doll is possessed. He often prevents his photo from being taken, moves his toy lion from one knee to the other, and even taps on his display case.
The structure known now as The Artist House was built in 1898 by Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Otto. The home of Robert Eugene Otto is haunted by two spirits. One is a malevolent spirit of Robert the Doll. Many people claim to have seen Robert the Doll sitting by the window waving at them as they would pass by the home. Also Eugene’s wife’s spirit is believed to be trapped in the Turret room where Robert was kept. Visitors who stay in either the turret or attic rooms often report strange occurrences and sounds, as though someone is pacing the floor or watching them while they sleep. Robert is now displayed at The East Martello Museum in Key West.

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