"Ghosts?" I said, my voice laced with derision. My companion peered into my eyes, a smile playing on his lips. He took my hand and we trudged up several flights until we reached the attic.
He opened the door to the musty room and I froze. I could not make my body move past the threshold. My chest felt heavy, my throat dry. Moving ahead, he shined the flashlight at the walls, then under the eaves where the illegitimate son of William Lemp II, a Downs Syndrome child, had died at the age of 30--after enduring a lifetime of imprisonment in this attic.
We heard a pathetic cry, "Help me."
My companion jerked the flashlight around the room, shooting the light at every sinister corner, but nothing showed itself. He raced out of the room and we stumbled down the steps. A ghastly smell like sewage assaulted our noses, growing stronger through the mansion as we reached the lower floor and came closer to the "Gates of Hell," the doors that led from the basement to the underground caves, once used for brewing, then philandering.
We ran to the dining area, where a wine glass lifted and flew across the room, crashing against the wall.
I shrieked. Grabbing my companion's hand, we fled through the front door into the black, windy night. Sensing I was being watched, I turned. A motion from the attic drew my attention to one small window. A boy's face stared back.
This story is taken from accounts of visitors to the Lemp Mansion in St. Louis, Missouri, known as one of the ten most haunted places in America. Once the proud possession of wealthy brewery owners, it became the site of four suicides, a poor house, insane asylum, and a medical school where "body snatching" cadavers was encouraged by the resident doctor. Which of these instances encouraged the ghostly happenings? Maybe all. Or none.
The mansion now houses a bed and breakfast. Guests are shown their rooms, but no staff stay overnight.
A twentieth century woman froze to death in below-zero temperatures. And didn’t die.
Where’s the mystery? Any guesses? Leave a comment.
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