The American Otis family moves into the old English country house Canterville Chase. They are warned that the house is haunted before they move in but are unconcerned at first. They soon accept that the ghost is real but are not frightened by it. The ghost, who had been frightening all those who stayed at Canterville Chase for three hundred years, takes the Americans' unwillingness to be scared by him as a great insult. He grows to despise them all, except for the teenage daughter Virginia, who he feels is different from the rest of her family. At the end of the story, the ghost asks for Virginia's help to lift the curse which is on him and allow him to rest in peace.