It was a warm rainy day. We were sweating, tired, and hungry. But, Jacob and I were determined to find Disney’s Cursed Wedding Ring while visiting the Haunted Mansion in the Magic Kingdom. Unfortunately, the task proved harder than we imagined.
You see, I’d heard a story about a diamond wedding ring embedded in the concrete outside the Haunted Mansion. In an effort to keep Jacob, my fifteen-year-old, interested in visiting the park along with his younger brother Connor, I shared the story and vowed that we would find the ring.
After much searching and even taking the tour of the Haunted Mansion, we were still empty handed. About to give up, we ran into cast member Mayrim who was working outside the Mansion. After telling her of our quest, she quickly guided us around people waiting to enter the mansion, crossing roped boundaries, then through a gate, and finally to the ring. No way could we have found it on our own.
But, give it a try if you dare.
There are many versions of the legend of the wedding ring. Keep in mind, the legends were not created by Disney. They were created by Disney fans. We’ll get to how it began in a minute.
Some versions of the story say that Master Gracey, angry at his bride for cheating on him, threw the ring from the mansion in a fit of rage. Horses then trampled the ring into the concrete.
Other versions say that when the young bride flung herself from a window of the mansion, her body forced the ring to become embedded in the concrete.
But Mayrim’s favorite version, as handed down from devoted Haunted Mansion fans and workers, is of Master Gracey angry and reeling from his bride’s death, an apparent suicide, throwing the ring from the mansion while vowing to give away his worldly possessions to the masses outside. The ghosts inside never forgive Master Gracey, for they wanted the ring and possessions for themselves. Hence, their eternal anger with him.
So how did this story begin?
Once upon a time, in a Magic Kingdom far, far, away, there was a turnstile located at the exit of the Haunted Mansion. This turnstile was removed some years later. But, a portion of the turnstile that was anchored in the concrete was cut off even with the ground. This cut off pipe looked somewhat like a ring.
Over time, rumors spread by fans and staff surfaced that the pipe was the wedding ring of the bride trapped in the attic of the Haunted Mansion.
If you are standing in line for an hour or more just to get in, you have plenty of time to make up all kinds of scary stories about the Haunted Mansion ride you are about to enter.
In 2011, the cemetery outside the mansion was extended and the original wedding ring was covered up. Fans were outraged.
Didn’t Disney realize that this bit of pipe had created a little more magic, inspiring fans to hunt for the treasure and for some to even propose marriage over the ring (hopefully without thoughts of death or murder as the Haunted Mansion suggests).
Disney officials, in deference to these fans, created an “Official Ring” that is now embedded somewhere near Captain Culpeppers tomb (hint).
And now, as a new fan, you can find it if you dare.