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Dark Destinations > Locations - S > The Saint Louis Exorcist House

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Availability: Closed to the Public
Filed Under: Mysterious Events > The Exorcist True Story
Added By: TheCabinet
Added On: May 28, 2007 - 09:38 PM UTC
Last Modified: February 23, 2009 - 08:55 PM UTC
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8435 Roanoke Dr, Bel-nor, MO 63121, USA (Saint Louis, Missouri)
8435 Roanoke Drive
A small boy from the Washington D.C. area allegedly took up residence in this house in 1949 as he waited for a very unusual procedure. Based on the child's symptoms, the Catholic Church had suggested that the only possible cure for his ailments was an exorcism. When the word "Louis" appeared above his ribs, they and his family took it as a sign that he needed to relocate to Saint Louis and, as such, took up residence here at the reported home of a relative.  It was in Saint Louis that a grueling exorcism was performed that finally ended on April 18, 1949, when the boy awoke and said, "He's gone." The story would later inspire author William Peter Blatty to write the infamous best-selling novel, The Exorcist, which spawned a blockbuster film of the same name.  The boy's name has never been officially released and we are going to respect his wish for anonymity.

The House's Connection
This house, owned by the boy's paternal uncle, simply served as a temporary residence for the boy before he was moved to nearby St. Louis University (see The Old Rectory at St. Louis Xavier College Church) and later, the psych ward at a nearby hospital (see Old Alexian Brothers Hospital).  Supposedly, parts of the exorcism were performed at this address for two weeks before the boy ended up being moved frequently between the three locations.

Father Walter Halloran, who took part in the exorcism with Father William Bowdern, later gave his recollections to author Thomas B. Allen, who would record them in his 1993 novel, Possessed: The True Story of an Exorcism.  Allen would use a pseudonym of "Robbie" for the boy's name.  The book describes some of the events that took place in this home.  One passage goes like this: "Something now rippled on Robbie's right leg. As Bowdern again commanded the demon to identify himself, red welts formed an image on the leg. It was, the witnesses later said, an image of the Devil."

The House Today
Claims of strange events were allegedly reported by subsequent owners and visitors to the house.  It was put up for sale in 2005 when St. Louis' Riverfront Times ran a long article (see "Related Sites" below) about the history of the residence.  Given its notoriety, it was sure to attract a lot of attention.  However, it is currently unknown whether the house is still open or was purchased.  It would be best to assume that it is again a private residence and that the new owners would rather be left alone.
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Related Sites
River Front Times: Hell of a House
An October, 2005 article about a house in St. Louis, Missouri where a boy lived while undergoing an exorcism in the city. The exorcism was the influence for William Peter Blatty's The Exorcist.
Missouri Paranormal Research: The St. Louis Exorcism
An entry from Missouri Paranormal Research about an exorcism that occurred in St. Louis, Missouri that inspired William Peter Blatty's The Exorcist.
The Haunted Boy: The Inspiration for The Exorcist
A five-part article by Mark Opsasnick that explores the true story behind the inspiration for William Peter Blatty's The Exorcist. The article relies on newspaper reportings at the times, as well as Blatty's own explorations into the case.
Similar Destinations
The Old Rectory at St. Louis Xavier College Church
Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis, MO
Old Alexian Brothers Hospital
See Also on
Dark Destinations in the News (10/10/07)
Blog: The Top 25 for the Month of October 2008 (11/04/08)
Blog: St. Louis Exorcism: 60 Years Later (04/18/09)
Blog: The Dark Destinations Top 50 for Spring 2009 (05/24/09)
Blog: Top 20 Dark Destinations for Month of January 2010 (01/31/10)
Available from
The Devil Came to St. Louis
The Exorcist
The Exorcist (The Version You've Never Seen)
The Exorcist - The Complete Anthology (Original / The Version You've Never Seen / Exorcist II The Heretic / Exorcist III / The Beginning / Dominion)
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The house where an exorcism was allegedly performed in 1949 in Saint Louis - June 2007.
From: TheCabinet
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The above content is for informational purposes only. Before making any travel arrangements, it is highly recommended that you contact those in charge of the property to check for updated availability and hours of operation. While we do our best to keep this information updated, we cannot guarantee that it is completely valid and up to date. Any destination marked "Closed to the Public" is marked that for a reason and we discourage any visits or attempts to gain access to that facility. Similarly, take note of any "Travel Advisory" that may be associated with a destination. Finally, treat any location and its local residents with respect. Any vandalism and/or unruly behavior is completely despicable and only ruins the experience for future visitors.

There are 5 comments in the database.  
User Comments Order by: Most Recent | Originally Submitted
nyk Sep 29 2010, 07:28 AM UTC
I live about 20 minutes away and decided to visit one day because I have an interest in these things. The owner let me in and I looked around and it was a kickass experience to walk through. He told me he has not experienced anything strange there. Cheers to Nick for letting me in.
Edited on: Sep 29 2010, 07:28 AM UTC
megmoo Sep 15 2010, 12:00 AM UTC
hate to break it to the person whom believes they never rebuilt the hospital, but they did. My grandmother lived across the street from the hospital and it was re-built in the 70's. The WHOLE hospital was, it was in horrible shape. Not because of this case, but because of age and in fact the old hospital was back from the street and the new one was built closer.
mbrown2117 Nov 24 2009, 03:58 PM UTC
The hospital was torn down and a parking lot is on the property location. Sources say that a crack is found in the area of the room where the exorcism occured. They have tried to seal the crack but.............. will it ever seal. Demon hole
Edited on: Nov 24 2009, 03:58 PM UTC
zachattack05 Mar 26 2009, 12:09 AM UTC
The house was put up for sale in 2005 because the previous owner forclosed. It was forclosed on June 30, 2005 and was bought by the current owners on December 13, 2005 for $163,000. I believe the owners still live there.

* Source:
Venomous187 Nov 05 2008, 11:28 AM UTC
im sorry to inform everyone but the media/government is lying about Alexian Brothers being rebuilt after the Exorcist, it was never rebuilt, my grandparents and my parents and i have lived here in north st louis since 1944, my uncle owns a house 6 blocks from the hospital, and Alexian brothers was not rebuilt, i was born the year of the exorcism and that same year they blocked off floors 4-6 of alexian brothers hospital, still to this day its in the same spot and no one is allowed to go onto the 4-6 floors due to that Exorcist. They even went as far as to seal the stairway entrances and exits to those floors and they've put metal plates over the numbers 4-6 on the elevators. do not let them fool us they would not rebuild a whole new hospital just because of that, they dont care that much, they will just lock us out of that part of the hospital and save some money. lol. and that is how that cookie crumbled. thanks
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