Scary Thoughts: A Weekend at Lemp Mansion

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This past weekend me and my two best girlfriends went to St. Louis for a girls weekend. It was a last minute trip and we were having trouble booking a hotel or B&B. In the crazy mix of emails I got my wires crossed and booked us at the Lemp Mansion.

I did not know it was a haunted mansion.

The Lemp Family Legacy started in St. Louis in 1838 when Johann Adam Lemp moved to STL from Germany. Their fortune was built on beer. While they had luck building their fortune times changed and events took a turn.

Suicide #1- William J. Lemp Sr. shot himself in the head after the death of his favorite son.

Suicide #2 – Elsa Lemp shot herself in the heart after having some issues in her marriage.

Suicide #3 – William Lemp Jr. shot himself in the heart  after the brewery fell on hard times.

Suicide #4 – Charles Lemp shot himself.

All four suicides were committed in the mansion. There are also a handful of natural deaths that also occurred in the mansion. All these events seem to be why The Lemp Mansion is one of the Top Ten Most Haunted Places in America.

Night One: We arrived late about 9:30pm. Dinner theater was in full swing on the first floor, restaurant level. The mansion was beautiful, old and elegant. They checked us in and lead us to the second floor where our room was. The second floor was much more eerie. It was strangely quiet compared to the boisterous cacophony in the restaurant. Our room was The William Suite which shared a Bathroom with The Charles Suite. The second floor was full of paintings and mirrors as was our bed room. It was very comfortable and spacious. There was a mood about the place however and we had to go to the bathroom in pairs. We all got ready for bed together and all slept in the King bed. As soon as the lights were off. It all got a bit creepier. It was an old house so some noises were expected but that doesn’t mean it didn’t put our senses on alert. I fell asleep easily though. Only later did a realize that, though the mansion was sold out, we had not seen or heard another guest.

When I woke up the next morning my immediate thought was to not open my eyes. I was super nervous something would be looking back at me. I could hear the other two girls still sleeping. Keeping my eyes closed lulled me back to sleep and I woke up later when Kelsey got out of bed. I walked to the bathroom and found the house unnaturally still. I ended up having another girl go with me. Showering was a disturbing experience, though my clothes were just cotton fabric they felt like protection in the old house. We left by the light of the sun, wary of shadowy corners as we made our way back out the back door.

Night Two: We were out all day. When we returned for the evening we arrived after hours and had to enter from the back. At first the key would not turn. We were nervous and creeped out but as we continued to struggle with the key we all just lost patience. Entering the dark building it was again eerily quiet. We arrived at the Charles Suite our bedroom for the evening excited that it was closer to the bathroom. This room had a door that opened across a hall from the bathroom, another door to the nursery, which is not a rentable room but a maintenance closet of sorts and a third door that opened onto the hall with the main stairs. As I curled up on the couch with a door near my feet and my head made me a bit edgy, but again I fell asleep.

I slept until the light shone through our windows. I showered all by myself, though I kept sneaking glances out of the shower curtain to make sure I was really alone. And we left in the morning with out incident.

We did look on the third floor as well as basement but renovations have changed the mansion in the last 10 years. Kelsey had been on a tour in the Lemp mansion once before and remembered a drop stairs to the attic. We were unable to find this. There are articles that mention tunnels to the brewery in the basement. The basement was all kitchen and dinning space there was one server station that was rounded that might possible be “tunnel-esque” but it was blocked.

All in all nothing terribly frightening happened, but it is undeniable that there was a temperature and ambiance about the place.
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Obvious Child: Q + A

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Grace asked Mia:

1. When and how did you first get interested in this movie? Did you know ofthese actors before this movie?

I watched the trailer for it and recognized Jenny Slate as “Mona Lisa” from
Parks and Recreation. Also, it being billed as an “Abortion Comedy” spiked
my attention despite the filmmakers’ aims to disassociate from that
tagline.

2. How did the movie make you feel? Did it impart any feeling or message
upon you?

I appreciated that there wan an absence of message. The film, in my
opinion, was really about the struggles of a woman in her late twenties and
this “thing” happens to her and we follow this emotionally charged journey on how
she deals with life’s obstacles.

3. Do you feel the movie was trying I send a message?

No.

4. Are you familiar with this screenwriter? What other works of
theirs have you seen?

The filmmakers behind this indie hit are all first time, feature length
writers, directors and producers. Obvious Child was based on a short film
(which most full length films are these days) and collaboration between
these professionals

5. How do you feel about abortion? How do you feel about how NY was
portrayed in the film?

I “feel” that abortion is a choice. New York, or rather, Brooklyn
was fairly represented. I enjoyed the subtle comedy of Brooklyn vs.
Manhattan, rent, independent bookstores, and obscure comedy clubs in
Williamsburg.

Mia asked Grace:

1. Describe the audience where you saw this film.

I viewed the movie at the Tivoli Theater in St. Louis. We walked in right as it was starting so I don’t remember the other movie goers. I think there were 6-8 other people plus us three. My friend Kelsey remembers two older ladies behind us. I remember seeing a young couple in front of us.

2. Was it difficult to find a theater where this film was showing?

Yes! The AMC in KC said they would have it but kept changing the date. The Tivoli here did have it but only offered 3 showings and only one I could make after I got off work at five in the afternoon. Also the Tivoli in KC is pretty far from my house in suburbia so I have to make a serious effort to get out there.

3. What was your initial reaction to the abortion scene?

There was a palpable tension as we were watching. I kept expecting something, I am not sure, more unpleasant but it was so matter of fact and Donna and Max were so cute that it relaxed the whole situation. The scene where she is sitting with all the other women after the procedure is interesting though. I felt ambiguous about it. I think I was waiting for the characters reactions and she didn’t seem to feel strongly any one way.

4. Did your perspective change at all after seeing this film?

About abortion? Not really? Maybe I feel more comfortable about it if I have to have one? I am not sure I will know how I really feel about abortion until I am in that situation where I have to make a decision.

5. What is your biggest praise and complaint on Obvious Child.

OMG! (yes, I just oh my god-ed) Max and Donna were super cute! I love their quirky relationship. She kept doing strange bizarrely hilarious things and he liked her more for them! My biggest complaint was all the awkward jokes in her comedy routine. I am terrible with awkward humor. It makes my chest hurt with awkwardness.

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