The historic Lemp Mansion, a 33-room Italianate-style house, is located at 3322 DeMenil Place in St. Louis. It was built in 1868 by Jacob and Elizabeth Feickert. In 1876, after William J. Lemp married the Feickerts’ daughter, Julia, they took possession of the mansion, in which they would rear eight children. The stately home has long been a landmark in its Benton Park neighborhood, where it stands just one block from the now-defunct facilities of the William J. Lemp Brewing Company.
Although many of the original details of the home have been replaced, there are still some remaining pieces. The decorative iron gates from an open-air elevator that once served the Lemps can still be seen in the rathskellar. In a room once used as the Lemp brewery office, there is still an Italian marble mantel. The ceiling in the parlor is hand-painted, and the fireplace mantels are intricately carved from rare African mahogany. The main bathroom includes a glass-enclosed shower that William J. Lemp purchased from an Italian hotel. Three fireproof vaults where the Lemps stored art and other valuables are located in the rear of the home.
The home was the scene of much family tragedy, including Julia’s death from cancer in 1906. In addition, three suicides took place within its walls:
• In 1904, William J. Lemp shot himself in his upstairs bedroom.
• In 1922, William J. Lemp Jr., shot himself in his office on the home’s first floor.
• In 1949, Charles Lemp, another son of William Sr., shot himself in his bedroom.
The mansion was purchased in 1976 by the Pointer family of St. Louis, who immediately launched an extensive renovation effort to restore the historic home to its original grandeur. Today, the home functions as a restaurant and bed and breakfast, and features a small museum of memorabilia once owned by the Lemp family, as well as a number of items from the brewery and its cave system.
Owing to the well-known tragedies that have taken place within its walls, the Lemp Mansion has an infamous reputation as one of the most haunted houses in America. Over the years, dozens of chilling encounters with long-dead Lemps have been reported by restaurant staff and guests, as well as some of the craftsmen employed in the restoration of the old house. The stories range from hearing disembodied voices to the witnessing of full-body apparitions.