H. H. Holmes – America’s first serial killer

Today we’re headed to Chicago, cause there’s a man, and his castle that I want to tell you folks about.  This dude was born with the name, Herman Mudgett, which kind of sounds like a Looney Tunes character, I guess he knew that, so he changed his name and became notorious while he was known as, Dr. Henry Howard Holmes.  And Dr. Holmes is said to be the United States very first serial killer.

howardAccording to a recent profile on Holmes, he was the son of a violent alcoholic Father, but apparently the abuse didn’t stop when he was at school.  Because his home life had made him anti social, his classmates tormented the hell out of him.  One time he was forced to stand face to face with a human skeleton when he had admitted that he was terrified of Doctors.  Yeah, the mold of a sociopath is born right!  So the despite all of this, he manages to graduate from the University of Michigan in 1884 get this, he graduates as a Doctor.

Even though he’d earned this prestigious title, Holmes was known to most as a swindler.  So it was no surprise that he decided to build an elaborate hotel at the site of the Colombian Exposition for the upcoming Worlds Fair.  From the outside, it was gorgeous, in fact on the inside it was even more elaborate but there was a lot going on here that the average guy doesn’t notice when they walk in.  Beneath the guise of this fantastic castle was nothing more than an elaborate prison designed to capture, torture and murder his unsuspecting guests.

holmes-hotel-plan-2So, the whole time this place is being built, Holmes would hire, and fire, crews before they finished their tasks.  This way he could both stiff them on their pay as well as ensure that he was the only person than knew the complex layout of his hotel.   There were stairs that led to nowhere, doors that opened to brick walls, doors that could only open from the outside and over 100 windowless rooms with some elaborate yet “unusual” features.

Now, it’s true that Holmes built the joint to cash in on the massive visiting crowds, but as we all know there was definitely a hidden agenda going on here!  and the modern decor of his hotel lured the vacationers into this deadly hotel in freaking droves.  These poor oblivious bastards had no clue of the carefully constructed traps that masqueraded as quiet, comfortable rooms.

hhcorpseHolmes christened the joint with personally invited guests and well, hookers.  They were like his guinea pigs in testing his devices and means.  Other than fulfilling his sadistic urges, there were always financial gains to be had.  So once he finishes tormenting, murdering and dismembering or burning his victims bodies, he robs them.  But sometimes he’d cut out a few internal organs and sell them to nearby medical schools or research laboratories.
I know it all sounds chaotic and macabre, well the macabre part is straight up, that’s for sure but as far as chaos, no way.  This sadistic bastard was as crazy as shit but he was meticulous and each murder was carefully orchestrated from start to finish.

castleSome of his victims were trapped inside a soundproof vault, or a luxury suite, whichever way you want to look at it.  Holmes had some rooms that had metal walls that were painted and trimmed then decorated with wall art and gas lights, once inside, the door could only be opened from outside.  They were screwed.  As they’re suffering through the pains of suffocation, Holmes looked on from specially designed peep holes.  As the oxygen was inhaled, carbon dioxide was exhaled.  They suffered with dizziness, panic and fear all while they lay convulsing.  Their last living moments were consumed with the question of why they were dying this way.

Others victims met their fate locked inside the very rooms they paid to stay in overnight, thinking they’d be safe there resting after spending the day at the fair, not so much….  When they’d return to the hotel to crash for the night, Holmes released gas from hidden lines inside the room, so the guests went to sleep then never woke up.

There were other rooms that were constructed with iron covered walls that actually had hidden blowtorches.   Yeah he’d torch the guests while he stood on the other side of the wall, peeking through those peep holes watching his victims slowly burn to death.  From there they’d be tossed down a hidden trapdoor that opened to a makeshift shaft which led to, the basement of course! In the basement are these two massive incinerators which erased all signs of his dirty deeds, or at least so he thought.

HOLMES_06In 1894, the police investigated a tip from a custodian of the hotel that led to Holme’s arrest. The janitor told the authorities that he was never allowed to clean the upper floors.  A month-long investigation revealed secret passageways and torture chambers.  These atrocities paled in comparison to the mound of human remains like, bones and hair that were found in the basement.  The walls, floors and ceilings were covered in dried blood. Based on the human remains, missing persons reports and testimony of hotel workers who saw Holmes escort women into the hotel but then were never seen leaving, it’s estimated that he killed around 200 people, mostly women and often blonde.  Wait! say what!

Holmes was found guilty of masterminding the horrific events and evil attacks that occurred inside the hotel’s walls, which had then earned the tag of “Murder Castle.”  He was sentenced to death, ya think!  He did his damnedest trying to lie his way out of it, but at the end, he did admit to 30 murders, even though we know there were way more, I guess standing in his shoes, what difference does it make, he’s gonna be a dead man too.

In response to his atrocities, he was quoted as saying, “I was born with the devil in me. I could not help the fact that I was a murderer, no more than the poet can help the inspiration to sing…I was born with the evil one standing as my sponsor beside the bed where I was ushered into the world, and he has been with me since.”

hangH.H. Holmes was hanged on May 7, 1896.

Murder Castle suffered destruction from several unexplained explosions prior to Holmes’ death in an apparent attempt at an insurance scam. His partner, Mrs. Quinian, confessed to an un-awarded policy and the rest of the castle was demolished.

A Post Office was built on the site in 1938 and guess what! Folks start reporting paranormal activity!  Ghostly apparitions, strange noises and even reports that dogs will run across the street to avoid walking near the building.  Postal workers have reported hearing screams and cries for help, they believe are the tortured spirits of  Holmes’s victims.

 

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Urban Legends – Resurrection Mary

So I was asked to dig into the Resurrection Mary legend, and guess what!  I found a lot of crazy details, check this out!   The back story goes something like this: The most accurate version is about this chick who was killed while hitchhiking in Chicago on Archer Avenue in the early 1930’s.

Apparently, she had been hanging out one evening at the O Henry Ballroom with a boyfriend.  At some point, they get into an argument and, of course, he did, or said something stupid and pissed her off.  So, Mary storms out of the joint leaving the boyfriend looking like an asshole, which I’m sure he was, because she knew it was freezing outside.  If she was willing to walk home in the sleet and snow, trust me the dude was definitely an asshole.  So she starts walking up Archer Avenue, but she didn’t make it very far.  All of the sudden a speeding car comes flying toward her, hits her and then leaves the scene, Look everybody! another asshole!  well ya’ll, the reports say that she hadn’t been killed on contact, she actually laid there in the icy slush for a while before she died from her injuries.

1  A few days later, her grieving parents buried her in Resurrection Cemetery, wearing a white dress and her dancing shoes.  Ever since then, her spirit has been spotted all along Archer Avenue.  Encounters and sightings of Mary started in the middle 1900’s, most folks said that they saw Mary being struck by a passing car.  And then there were drivers that swore a young girl in a white gown had ran out in front of their car.  Some said that she vanished on impact, but sometimes, she’d bounce off of the car, landing in a crumpled pile on the side of the road.  You know these driver’s are already shitting a brick because, in their mind, they just ran this girl over.  So, they pull over and rush to see if the chick is dead or alive and they find out that she’s neither, cause she’s not there, anywhere.

Ok, are you relieved to know that you didn’t kill somebody, or are you freaking the hell out because you just realized that you’ve had an encounter with the ghost.  I’d be relieved that no one was dead, not freaked out about a ghostly encounter but a little concerned that the ghost may be pissed off at me for hitting them with my car, but that’s just me!  Well, apparently Resurrection Mary doesn’t have time to be pissed off, because she’s a very busy girl, check out the history of documented appearances:

In 1973, Mary shows up at least twice at a nightclub called Harlow’s on Cicero.  Witnesses say that she was wearing a white dress, dancing alone in a corner.  Now, the bouncers had checked the I.D.’s of everyone who came through the door, but no one ever saw the girl enter or leave.  Later that same year, an annoyed cab driver entered Chet’s Melody Lounge, located across the road from the Resurrection Cemetery, he was looking for a fare that had skipped off without paying.  The young blond woman, in a white gown, that he picked up was nowhere to be seen.  The manager explained that there had been no blonde woman in the bar that night.

2During the mid 70’s, the number of Mary sightings began to increase.  Tons of folks, from cab drivers to ministers  all said they had picked her up and had given her rides only for her to vanish when they drive past the cemetery.  Curiously, it was during this same time that the Cemetery was undergoing some major renovations.  I’m thinking that the activity near her grave caused Mary some unrest.

On August 12, 1976, Cook County police officers were called to the site of a reported hit and run.  The officers get there and they find this chick in tears, she’s wigging out because she had just witnessed this whole thing go down.  So the cops asked her where the body of the victim was and she points to a wet grassy area.  There in the wet grass was a depression, that matched the shape of a human body.  The girl said that just as the police car approached the scene, the body vanished!  There was another run in just like this in 78.  This young couple was driving down Archer when a girl suddenly runs out in the road in front of their car. The driver swerved trying to avoid her but knew when he hit the brakes that it was already too late.  So they’re bracing for impact, and the car passes right through the girl! The girl then runs into Resurrection Cemetery, right through the cast iron gates.

Another man was on his way to work early one morning.  He looks up and sees the body of a young girl lying on the ground in front of the cemetery gates.  He slams the brakes, jumps out of the truck and runs toward the body.  He sees that she was badly injured, but seemed to be alive.  So he jumps back into his truck and hauls ass to the nearby police station and tells them what’s going on.  They call for an ambulance and then the dude leads the officers back to the cemetery.   When they get there, there’s no girl, but, the outline of a body was still visible on the dew-covered pavement.

3In August 1980, Mary was seen by dozens of people, including the Deacon of the Greek Church on Archer Avenue. The phones at the police station were ringing off the freaking hook, so they start sending cars.  But when they get there, there’s no blonde girl in a white dress anywhere, there were however tons of witnesses.  They’re all flagging the cops down trying to tell them about this hit and run and they’re all freaking out because the girl had just disappeared.

On September 5, this dude was leaving a softball game and he’s driving down Archer Avenue.  He looks up and sees this chick in a white dress standing on the side of the road.  So he stops the car and offers her a ride.  So the girl gets in the car and asks to be taken further down Archer.  Well, while old boy’s driving, he starts trying to carry on a conversation with her, this dumb-ass even jokes with her and tells her that she looks like “Resurrection Mary”  Well, the girl’s ignoring him, her eyes are focused straight ahead and she says nothing.  So, he keeps on even offering to stop for drinks, still no kind of response at all.  So he’s getting a little bent, because his mack daddy routine is failing miserably.  As he’s driving past the cemetery, he turns to look at her just as she vanishes into thin air.

In October of 89, two women are driving past Resurrection Cemetery when all of the sudden this girl, in a white dress, runs out in front of their car.  The driver slams on the brakes, but she knew she was going to hit the girl.  Her hands are locked on to the steering wheel and she’s standing on the brakes but there was no impact.  Both she and the passenger were absolutely baffled, because there was no one, including a girl in a white dress, any where in sight.

4During the 90’s, Mary encounters slacked off, but they didn’t stop.  Most of these encounters happened near Chet’s Melody Lounge, it’s located pretty much across the road from the cemetery gates.  Chet’s is open into the early morning hours, so it’s usually the first place these freaked out drivers go to look for the girl in the white dress that they just ran over.  This is the same place that the cab driver went in 73 looking for that skipped fare.  I think Chet’s would be my first choice too, but I’d be looking to order a few shots of something, and I’m betting these folks were too.

In July 2001, an unnamed witness stated that he and his girlfriend had spotted Mary along Archer Avenue.  Here’s the kicker, the statement was made through a translator.  The witness was from Lithuania and spoke only broken English.  She had no knowledge about the legend of Resurrection Mary.

Here’s another story,  this couple was driving along Archer Avenue, they spotted a figure lurking around the Cemetery gate.  The witness said that, just before seeing the figure, he spotted a police officer who had pulled somebody over on the left down a side street.

As they drove past, both of them spotted a girl walking on the road with her back toward them.  She was wearing a white gown.  As they drive by, he remembers the story about Resurrection Mary and he starts telling his girlfriend, the passenger, the story and he also called his sister on his cell phone.  So the girlfriend wants to turn around and see if the Mary was still there.  So the dude turns the car around and they start looking for Mary, seconds later they pass where the cop has the car pulled over, Mary was nowhere to been seen, but then out of nowhere, Mary is standing along the shoulder of the road, only a few feet from the pavement and facing them head on.  She was dressed in a faded and discolored gown and was carrying what appeared to be a bouquet of dark flowers.   The witnesses stated “She wasn’t looking at us, she was just staring down the road with the most blank expression on her face”

5And then there’s this encounter from the early 2000’s.   So it’s a freezing ass cold night and this cabby’s driving down Archer Avenue.  It’s sleeting and and the roads are all shitty.  As he’s passing by the old ballroom, he sees this pale, blurry figure on the side of the road.  He can’t see good though the wet and icy windshield.  So as he’s straining to make the figure out he realizes that it’s a young girl in a white gown with a shawl over her shoulders.  Thinking that this chick’s gonna freeze to death, he pulls up beside her and offers her a ride.  So she opens the back door and gets in.   The cabbie looks into the rear view mirror and asks her where she wants to go, tells her the ride is free.

The girl asks him to keep driving down Archer Avenue.  So he pulls back onto the road, then looks in the rear view mirror again and sees that the girl is shivering so he turns up the heater.  He comments on the weather, trying to make conversation, but she doesn’t answer him at first.  So, he thinks maybe she’s drunk or strung out on something, cause that would explain a lot right?!   Well, finally, she answers him, her voice is kind of weak, almost fearful.   She says “”The snow came early this year,”  the driver didn’t really know if she was talking to him or talking to herself, he’s figuring that he’s got himself a nutcase in the back seat now.

So he agrees with her, then attempts to make more small talk.  She just sits there quietly, looking straight forward into the distance.  Suddenly out of nowhere, she screams at him, demanding that he pull the car over right there. that this was where she needed to get out.  The Cabby’s startled by her sudden outburst, he slams on the brakes and pulls to the side of the road, as soon as the car stops he looks up and sees the gates of the cemetery.  He says, lady you can’t get out here, this is a cemetery, then he looks up into the rear view mirror to see that the girl was gone.  The car door had never opened she had just vanished and all that remained was the damp imprint on the leather seat where she had been sitting.

 

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Dead Serial Killers that linger on…..

So we all like serial killer stories here, we’ve talked about a ton of these sick bastards and their gruesome deeds but I don’t think we’ve ever discussed that fact that some of them refuse to leave, despite the fact that they’re deader than Hell.  Oh yeah, I’m talking about the demented ghosts of serial killers, let’s line them up!

bundyTed Bundy was one of the most prolific serial killers in American history!  This twisted individual admitted to murdering 30 women across 6 states, but he hinted that there were more.  We may never know how many victims Bundy kidnapped, assaulted and raped both before and after he hacked their heads off, we can only hope that he can’t figure out how to kill anybody else while he’s dead.  Yeah they fried this twisted bastard in the electric chair in  January of 1989, but he came back.  In fact, almost immediately after his body was removed and his toasted remains scrubbed away, he was seen sitting casually in the electric chair with a knowing smile pasted across his lips.  Bundy was seen so frequently in the chair that the warden was hard pressed to find anyone that would go into the chamber alone.

But the chair isn’t the only place that prison guards see him, he still pops up in his holding cell and apparently he’s a bit on the chatty side.  More that a couple of guards have heard him sarcastically state, “I beat all of you, didn’t I” while he’s still wearing that all knowing grin.  It’s assumed he’s telling them he beat death, and well, it seems that he may have done just that.  Bundy’s quite the traveler too, folks have claimed to encounter his spirit in some of his other old stomping grounds as well.  He’s been spotted at Chi Omega Sorority house, where he earned two of his life sentences.  He brutally beat and raped his victims, two of which actually survived.

He also turns up on the front porch of a small wood framed home in Tennessee that he rented under an alias but mysteriously, never copped to any murders while in this area.  The bulk of Bundy’s slaughtering spree took place in Washington state.  Bundy’s remains were cremated and scattered over Washington state’s Cascade Mountains, perhaps so he can also lurch about on their high peaks, as he surveys the shallow graves of some of his still missing victims.

dahmerAh and then there’s Jeffrey Dahmer, we’ve definitely talked about this demented freak on some past shows.  Remember? this is the sicko that that raped, tortured, murdered, dismembered and then ate at least 17 male victims between 1978 and 1991.  Dahmer was sentenced to a total of 957 years in prison. The first year he spent in solitary for his own safety, after that he was moved to a less secure unit with a population of inmates that weren’t quite as nasty, but they were nasty enough.  These dudes were constantly beating the hell out of Dahmer, sometimes stabbing him.  It wasn’t that they were against murder, cause well, they all got there mostly due to violent offenses themselves.  The prisoners all had a problem with the fact that Dahmer had eaten pieces parts from off of his victim’s corpses.  Eventually they got the best of him and he wound up beat to death on November 28, 1994.

Now, unlike Bundy, Dahmer didn’t stick around the prison, his spirit returned to his childhood home, also the site of his first murder.  Dahmer lured a hitchhiker home with promise of drugs and booze, then after smashing him in the head with a dumbbell he drags the body into the crawlspace beneath the house and dismembered it so that he could bury him in the woods.  Well, there have been some ghost hunts at Dahmer’s old boyhood home but it’s impossible to get the equipment to work long enough to document things.  Cameras and EVP recorders just stop working or their batteries are completely drained within moments of entering the home.  We know why don’t we folks.

gacyAnd here’s another one, John Wayne Gacy, definitely talked about this twisted bastard too.  This is the dude that found his cure for ED in murdering young boys.  Gacy doubled as Pogo the clown, luring little boys to a tragic and despicable fates.  33 kids died at his hands some were raped before he murdered them, others after, some got it twice.  Gacy buried their mutilated corpses in the crawl space of his home or out in the yard.  So many bodies were exhumed there that the house had to be demolished and for years after, nothing would grow on the vacant lot, not even a weed.  Another home has been built on the lot since then, i can’t help but think that there’s some crazy wicked shit going on in there, but for now let’s talk about this freaks lingering spirit.

Gacy was put down by lethal injection on May 10, 1994.  The death chamber where he drew his last breath is where he likes to spend most of his time.  There is a video on youtube from where some investigators went in with EVP equipment.  Gacy was otherwise occupied and irritated by their presence, In the video you can hear and understand him quite clearly, he’s even tells the investigators to get out because he’s trying to masturbate, I shit you not, the dude is still fighting that ED thing I guess, but at least he won’t be murdering anymore children to get his jollies.

jackAnd this one is from way back, Jack the Ripper is still making appearances as well, kind of.  It’s actually the ghost of one of his victims that he is seen with.  Kind of makes you wonder if the victim is summoning him each time that she relives her brutal death.  Maybe she’s still trying to finger the asshole that murdered her.  Annie Chapman was one of 5 hookers that died at his hands in 1888, she appears at 29 Hanbury street, the same place where she was murdered.  Her headless apparition is sometimes seen sitting in the back yard but sometimes she’s seen walking down Hanbury street in the company of the shadowy figure of a man.  Too bad no one can get a good look at his face before the two of them vanish.

We know there are a ton of other notorious serial killers, some of these monsters are still alive too like David Berkowitz and Ronald Defeo, yeah, they’re classifying Defeo as a serial killer, I guess technically that would be right, he did kill his entire family, 6 people I’d say is enough to tag someone a serial killer.  But we know what really happened there.  Even though Defeo was under the influence of demonic possession, he still had some sense of responsibility.  Demonic infestation and possession don’t get crazy insane like this over night, precautions could have been taken, but weren’t.  With the tainted soul this dude is lugging around, just imagine the spirit that he could leave behind, and then, there are those that he has left behind.

 

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