Here the Tayloes raised a family of 15 children, eight of which were daughters famed for their beauty and wealth. The Tayloes sold the Octagon in 1855, after Mrs. Tayloe's death. Today, the American Architectural Foundation owns the Octagon House.
Rather piquant; The Octagon is associated with GHOST STORIES. During the War of 1812, one of the Tayloe daughters fell in love with a British officer, and her father, solidly diasapproving of the romance, forbade her from seeing him further. After an illicit meeting with her lover, she snuck back into the house, her father caught her on the stairway and a violent argument ensued and somehow the young woman lost her balance and plunged over the spiral staircase to her death.
There are reports of a flickering candle shadow moving up the stairs, screams and
a thump at the bottom of the stairs! There are reports of Dolley Madison's ghost seen roaming the house after her death, still wearing her elegant clothes and the feathered turban! During the Civil War the place was used as a hospital. People still hear the sobbing and moans of the dead.......................