It seems as though no matter what time of year, haunted houses and are all the rage these days. So, as an homage to the mysterious holiday, we’ve decided to bring you another article featuring one of the most infamous haunted houses in America — the Lemp Mansion.
The Lemp Mansion
Lemp Mansion St Louis Mo
The Lemp Mansion was originally built in 1868 by a man named Jacob Feikert who also just so happened to be the father-in-law of William Lemp Sr. (the patriarch of the family). The hugely impressive and expansive home contained thirty-three rooms at the time it was constructed, however, upon purchasing the property, Lemp made the decision to renovate it quite extensively. Among many things he also constructed a tunnel from the basement through the caves to the brewery he ran. Eventually, once mechanical refrigeration became a thing, parts of these caves were later converted into a natural auditorium and a theater. He also further constructed a large swimming pool and a bowling alley for entertainment.
Although much of the original mansion has been replaced, there are still a handful of features which guests can admire in the haunted Lemp Mansion which still exists today. These include the decorative iron gates, the open-air elevator and the Italian marble mantle located in the dining room which was previously used as an office for one of the Lemp family members. There are also three vaults located at the rear of the home which were used to house the family’s artwork.
Lemp Mansion Tours
Interested parties will be happy to know that there are haunted history tours hosted at the Lemp haunted house, which also include the option for guests to spend the night. The tours are held every other Thursday from December to August including a handful of additional days from September to November. Times vary, but the tours generally begin between the hours of 5:30 PM and 8:30 PM local time.
The $35 ticket price will get you drinks, light appetizers and the use of an infrared camera to record your experience through the various floors of the home. Wanna learn more? Check out their website for further details.
Lemp Mansion Haunted House
Haunted House St Louis
It has been reported that the Lemp Mansion haunted individuals over the years and the paranormal activity has garnered the haunted mansion in Missouri a significant amount of attention. In 1980 Life Magazine named it one of the nine most haunted houses and in 2009 the home was featured on Discovery Channel’s Ghost Lab series.
In 2010 it was the subject of an investigation on the TV show Ghost Hunters and in 2013 it was featured on the Travel Channel series titled Most Terrifying Places in America 2. The channel also later featured it on the tenth season of its popular show Ghost Adventures. In 2016 it was further featured on the Syfy channel series Paranormal Witness and at one point, CNNTravel included it on their list of the “10 Spookiest Buildings in the World”.
So, is the Lemp Mansion haunted? I think it’s safe to say, yes!
Lemp Mansion Halloween
There are several events hosted at the Lemp Mansion available to the public, however perhaps one of the most entertaining of these is the annual Halloween Bash. Tickets for the event cost $70 per person when booked in advance and $80 at the door. With their tickets guests gain access to a 4 ½ hour open bar, live bands, food and a costume contest with cash prizes.
Lemp Mansion Hotel
Over the years the home was converted into everything from offices to a boarding house. Eventually, the Lemp Mansion Restaurant and Inn came about. The hotel is currently up and running and hosts a number of events including weddings, private events, a now-infamous Lemp Mansion mystery dinner, hotel tours as well as annual events such as their popular Halloween bash. If you’re interested in visiting, you can check out the Lemp Mansion menu on their website.
The Lemp Brewery haunted house originally began as nothing more than your average old brewery run by William J. Lemp Sr. The brewery was wildly successful largely in part due to the fact that it was one of the first ones in the United States to introduce German lager to the menu. Under the control of William J. Lemp Sr.’s son, the brewery became even more popular and eventually became the first to establish the distribution of beer nationwide.
MTV featured the brewery and its tunnels as a location on their once-popular reality television show FEAR and in 2011 the site was also featured on the television show Off Limits.
The brewery is now used as a filming location for TV and movies. Location images give quite a peek inside. The facility has clearly been cleaned up abut also left somewhat rundown. They shed light on just how large the place was – an incredible accomplishment this business would be even today, much less in the 19th century.
Lemp Family History
The Lemp Mansion history is quite complicated and tragic. While the Lemp Family was extremely successful, the truth of the matter is that they were also plagued by tragedy due to the fact that three of the family members all committed suicide by shooting.
Johann “Adam” Lemp
Johann “Adam” Lemp was the original patriarch of the family. He was a German immigrant who relocated to St. Louis in 1838. Upon relocating to America, Lemp set up a grocery store where he sold numerous items including his own vinegar and beer. Eventually, by 1840 he transitioned into focusing solely on crafting beer and founded Western Brewery. It was wildly successful due to the fact that it was one of the first breweries to produce German lager in the United States.
William J. Lemp Sr.
William J. Lemp Sr. was was the son who eventually took over Western Brewery after his father passed. Under his control, the brewery grew to be the largest in St. Louis as well as the largest one operating outside of New York with a single owner. However, Lemp suffered two significant tragedies in his life which eventually led to his death. These were the death of his youngest son Frederick as well as the passing of his dearest friend Frederick Pabst (of Pabst beer). Believe it or not, Lemp helped Pabst, Anheuser, and Busch start their businesses. Shaken from the deaths of his son and his closest friends, William was never the same. He tragically took his own life, committing suicide with a shotgun on February 13, 1904.
William “Billy” J. Lemp Jr
William “Billy” J. Lemp Jr. was William Sr.’s oldest son who also followed in the same steps as his father. In 1876 Billy moved into the mansion with his wife and changed the company name to the William J. Lemp Brewing Company in 1892. After his father committed suicide he took over the company. However, he too was plagued with difficulties in life, perhaps most significantly a divorce in which his wife retained full custody of their child. The company eventually began to fall into a downward spiral after prohibition and was ultimately placed for auction and sold for just a fraction of its original value. On December 29, 1922, Billy Lemp shot himself in his office, which is now used as the dining room of the home.
Frederick Lemp was another son of William Sr. and actually the one he had planned on grooming to take over the business. However, Frederick had health issues his entire life and eventually died of heart failure in 1901 at the age of 28.
Charles Lemp was the third son of William Sr. who moved into the mansion in 1929. However, he was plagued by depression as well and in 1941 he sent a letter to a St. Louis funeral home given them instructions on what to do with his remains in the event of his death. On May 10, 1949, Charles shot his dog and then himself in the head. He left a suicide note which read “St. Louis Mo/May 9, 1949, In case I am found dead blame it on no one but me. Ch. A. Lemp”.
Elsa Lemp Wright
Elsa Lemp was the youngest child of William Lemp Sr. who also committed suicide by shooting herself in her bed shortly after she reconciled her marriage with her husband in March of 1920.
Edwin Lemp was left as the only surviving son of William Sr. He worked at the brewery until 1913 and then eventually retired to an estate he built in western Kirkwood named “Cragwold”. After his retirement, he became dedicated to charitable causes and eventually died at the age of 90.