The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. A boy was diagnosed as being possessed by the devil, and the Roman Catholic Church believed this enough to assign multiple exorcists to this case.  A supposed total of 26 people have been said to have witnessed the horrible things that happened during these exorcisms, and it was apparently so terrifying to those who were involved that books were written about it, and movies were made.It is considered today as one of the scariest movies ever made, and so many stories borrow and steal directly from this story that it is hard to see where one begins and another ends. Also, in my experience from the research I have been conducting over the past year or so, the events which unfurl in the story below seem to coincide with what quite a few books also confirm. There is a book, written by a Father Malachi Martin called “Hostage to the Devil“. This is not a ‘questions & answers’ book or a ‘procedural’ book like the other ones I usually quote. This book tells you five stories in extreme detail about five individual cases of possession. These stories all, in some part or another, bear a resemblance to the story told of “R”. So, with that being said…

This is the true story behind “The Exorcist”.

“The first time I prayed for a truly possessed person, I put the crucifix on that person’s head and they slithered right out of the seat like a snake.”

-Reverent Thomas J. Euteneuer, Roman Catholic Exorcist

The setting is 1949, in Cottage City, in Maryland.  It involved a 13-year old boy called “R”, whose identity has been kept a secret for many decades. It was not, in fact, a female as the movie suggests.  To this day, the boy has never spoken publically about what he went through.

For a little bit of background, neighbors and friends such as a Dr. Alvin Kagey, who lived in this area and went to the same school as this boy, described him as quiet, unpopular, not very athletic, but he was very studious. He was also slightly withdrawn. To the outside world his family was very pleased to be a part of the working class. All in all, Dr. Kagey claims that the family was a plain, old, normal family when all was said and done, nothing to speak of in regards to nuances or peculiarities. But in the summer of 1948, their lived would be forever changed, because it was this summer that the boys aunt decided to teach him how to play with a Ouija board. This in itself does not seem as if anything could happen, but after a few weeks of constantly toying around with this Ouija board, the aunt who had taught the boy unexpectedly died due to what could only be classified as “natural causes”. Keep in mind, this being 1949, that phrase could encompass a very wide array of things. A person could be walking down the street and get hit with a bus, and the coroner would claim death by natural causes because naturally, when you get hit by a bus, you’re going to die. Times that far back had a different sense of logic than they do now, so what this boy’s aunt actually died of may only be revealed through your imagination. Not many people mention how bad messing with a Ouija board it, but from personal experience, I have seen with my own two eyes that sometimes the things you call to talk to you are not friendly, and when you invite them to come talk to you, they definitely view your invitation to them as just that – an invitation.

Shortly afterwards, this boy and even his family started to notice strange occurrences. Unusual sounds, such as unexplained thumping, tapping and banging coming from an otherwise empty upstairs, or objects moving on their own such as the chandelier swinging, or portraits of Jesus Christ banging against the wall as if moved by some invisible force. Additional sounds heard included a frantic scratching and/or knocking from under the floor boards, but in their denial the family blamed this on rodents and attempted to call in pest control, who in turn discovered absolutely nothing.

As time went on, the family began to believe that maybe these strange events were happening because the aunt was attempting to communicate with them from the afterlife. As nights went by, the intensity of these noises only grew and grew, and the house echoed with the noises of what could be described as a large group of people marching. Like a soldiers cadence of sorts. And even after that, events took a shocking and powerful turn – the mother walked in once to find the entire bed, with her son in it, shaking and rattling violently. This changed the entire game. Suddenly, it was not a “fun” or “cute” little communication from the afterlife, and the family began to have doubts that this was from the aunt at all.

This was not the only thing that was recorded, either. Additional pieces of furniture around the house began to move of it’s own free will as well, such as dressers, night tables, coffee tables, etc.  As mentioned above, Dr. Kagey had another story that will make your brain freeze for a second as well. While Dr. Kagey’s father, in 1949, was in this boy’s house, he vividly recalls an instance where the boy was sitting in a chair, and then quickly, without any warning whatsoever, he was thrown completely out of the chair, and landed multiple feet away. This was the first time that someone outside the family had witnessed an event such as this and began to suspect that something abnormal was going on here.

Now, another thing to take into consideration is that back in 1949, you would slit your own throat before you let your personal – negative – information get out around town. People absolutely hated rumors, especially about themselves. So in this time period, people would do everything they could to keep events such as this “hush, hush” so that they wouldn’t be viewed as the town lunatics.

It was also said that once night fell, the boys behavior became dramatically, intensely, and increasingly disturbing.  Marks, bruises, scratches and welts began appearing on the boy’s body without any indication that something had been done to physically react the way his body was. To this day, these markings have and probably never will be explained.

As most people will do, the family of the boy began to exhaust their options. They obviously went to doctors, and then to the county psychiatric evaluation professionals as well. More or less, they were trying to rule out certain aspects of the vast array of things that could potentially be wrong with “R”. Surprisingly enough, shrinks found nothing, so they contacted the Catholic Church as a last resort. There, they were put into contact with a Father Albert Hughes. Father Hughes died in 1980, but close friend of his and a confidant as well, Father Bober has spoken about the events which took place.  Father Hughes first met the afflicted boy in February of 1949, and Father Bober explains that Hughes mentioned to him that upon the moment of meeting the boy, he noticed a very “dark stare, almost as if there were nothing behind the eyes”.  He also noticed that immediately, the boy seemed to be staring hard at the books Father Hughes had placed across the table, one of which being The Bible. This is a classic symptom of possession, as the person afflicted with this seems to have a deep seated aversion or hatred to all things sacred, including the books of scripture, crucifixes, clergy members, idols, icons, medals, and so on. During this event in which the boy stared at the books, Father Hughes’ chair, with him still inside it quite literally lifted up and levitated, forcing him backwards against a wall. It was this exact instant that Hughes knew he was dealing with something preternatural and diabolical, and from that point on, he addressed the situation as properly as he could.

Immediately, Father Hughes asked the boy, in Latin, “What is your name?”. The boys response is classic. He clearly stated “I am legions.” As I have previously mentioned in my dissection of the movie “The Rite”, and cited quotes from Chief Vatican Exorcist Father Gabriele Amorth and exorcist Father Antonio Fortea, it is beneficial to speak to someone who may be possessed in a language that they could not possibly know, such as Latin, or Greek. This way, the actual person is unaware of what the priest is saying. That way, when the Priest addresses or questions the person/demon, if they respond to those questions, then it is a safe bet that the person has a diabolical presence sharing the vessel.  The reason “I am legions.” Is such an intimidating response is because it immediately indicates that there are multiple demonic entities within the same vessel, which means that the priest will have to fight so, so much harder to absolve the afflicted person. Imagine it like this: You, the priest, are walking down a dark alley. You see someone, the demon, in front of you and you prepare yourself for a conflict. But then, you turn and see 5 more people/demons behind you. That is exactly what it is like in the situation I described above. It is perceived at first as an unfair fight, and is extremely intimidating.

While the belief of demonic possession is a shared one that spans many religions and cultures, it is most closely tied to Christianity, and more closely with the Roman Catholics. The actual rite of exorcism is an ancient one. It dates back to officially being formally written in the 16th century, but exorcisms have been performed for thousands of years, most notably by Christ himself. Almost all of the prayers involved are in Latin, though the more I seem to unearth about the topic, the more it seems that successful exorcists follow the “formula”, but slightly modify it in miniscule and often unnoticeable ways. Each exorcist is different, and each one will use different techniques.

At the time that Father Hughes had met this boy, he was not extremely familiar with the rite of exorcism. As a matter of fact, this 13 year old boy would be the first exorcism that Father Hughes would ever perform. The boy was admitted to a hospital in Washington, D.C., run by Jesuit brothers (monks) who oversaw the events.  The boy was already in a violent and volatile state by this point, shaking and rocking, spitting, screaming and having aggressive outbursts. At some point, the nurses at the hospital made the choice to physically restrain him to try to get him under some type of control.  By now, Father Hughes had been reciting the exorcism prayers for 3 consecutive nights, to no results. In fact, the boy became increasingly violent. He would foam at the mouth, shout, insult the priest and attempt to break his constraints. Eventually, “R” succeeded in getting one of his hands free, and with that free hand he reached under the bed, physically broke/ripped off one of the springs under the mattress, and sliced Father Hughes with the spring, in a gash that went from the inside of Hughes’ wrist all the way up to the nook of the elbow when bent. To an untrained eye, it looked as if it could have been an attempted suicide, but there were witnesses who could document this account of attack.

Hughes was forced to take time away from the event to heal. He felt as if he had failed the boy, and the boy eventually returned home. The family remained in a constant state of fear for their son. He continued to exhibit unexplained cuts, bruises, scratches and welts. This had become common, but one night, the boy’s mother thought she saw something astounding – the words “Saint Louis” appeared to be literally branded into the boy’s chest. After that night, the family moved in with relatives who lived within the city. They gave the excuse that they had moved to St. Louis to obtain medical treatment for their son. This would be the exact opposite of good – because at this point, the move was the worst thing that they did. With doctors coming up with zero, the family yet again turned to the church, this time, meeting a Father William Bowdern, a senior priest from St. Louis Diocese. He was a very street smart priest who had spend time in the US Army, and was known for being observant and not easily swayed.

Upon meeting with the boy and the family, Father Bowdern also decided that he believed that the boy was possessed, but decided to approach the situation with caution because he already knew of the outcome of the previous exorcism in which Father Hughes had become seriously injured. He believed that he was going to be the person who would finish the fight that Father Hughes had started.

Shockingly, every single detail of the exorcisms performed over the next six weeks were kept in a detailed diary by the priests. After the events had concluded, an author named Thomas B. Allen published these diaries in their entirety. This book can be found here:

Possessed: The True Story of an Exorcism”, by Thomas B. Allen

At this point, Father Bowdern was having serious doubts about his own ability as well. He was unsure if he could complete the rituals successfully, but in the end, all he wanted to do was help a child fight off the demons who were taking up a residence in his body, quite literally ruining every aspect of life from the inside out. During these exorcisms, Father Bowdern chose to enlist the help of several priests and a young seminarian whose only function would be to help everyone hold “R” down once things intensified during the ritual.

Almost from the start, this child began to forcefully spit at the priests, threatening them with violence, commanding them to leave, and making vulgar sexual propositions towards the clergy present. But not to be deterred, Father Bowdern and his priests recited the exorcism prayers every night straight for a full three weeks. Pinning the boy down frequently due to his violent outbursts was not uncommon, and actually became rather common, in fact. One of the priests recorded in the diary that the blows this boy was physically delivering were far beyond the strength of an ordinary boy of his age. He was seriously injuring large, grown men. As an act of desperation, at times the priests even held a pillow over the boys face to stop him from swearing. In my opinion, this may not have been the best way to go, as I figure “The hell with it, just use a ballgag!”. Before you judge me, it’s actually safer as it leaves the nose completely free. J But moving on from S&M, back to the tale…

The marks continued to appear sometimes forming words, sometimes not. There were more frequently appearing periods of lucidity, when the boy would appear calm and cool, but still calculating. While they were becoming more frequent, they would never last. At this point, the priests all agreed that in order to give the family some peace, they would move the boy again, this time to a hospital run by an ancient order of Catholic monks. This was more of an exile. The boy was confined to a room in where no one could hear him during these outbursts, and where everyone could work as intensely as they needed to without raising the concerns of outsiders. It was in fact the same type of room that a mental patient of the time would be assigned to. The windows did not open, and you could not open the door from the inside. Everything in there was regarded as “safe”, or otherwise unable to assist the afflicted in harming themselves, so on and so forth.

By this point, people were beginning to become concerned with the health of Father Bowdern. It must be noted that priests are also responsible for their daily assignments while they take part in special assignments, so while Bowdern was conducting these exorcisms, often times into the early morning, he was spending most of his time at his “dayjob”, where he ran a parish. He had been losing massive amounts of sleep, he was feeling exhausted both physically and mentally, and at one point he even broke out in boils. This was not turning out how he had hoped, but he still kept at it and continued to put up a good fight with everything he had in him.

There was one night in particular that brings some things into question. A priest had his nose broken by the boy during one of his outbursts. This was a period when the priests were going through a growing sense of doubt and despair, feeling as if they were not able to make a dent in the boys salvation. They decided that the best course of action would be to baptize the boy in an effort to strengthen his resistance through the sacraments. The belief was that once they anointed this boy as a converted catholic, he would be subject moreso to the spiritual power of the Catholic church and its priests, thus assisting the priests with progress towards liberation. When they attempted to force the boy to take communion by accepting the communion wafer, it was said that this was one of the fiercest bouts of resistance that the boy had ever put up, and he fought tooth and nail against this.

Finally, the boy did wind up ‘accepting’ the communion wafer, but the results were not as expected – this only increased the resolve of the demons within. But then, days later, in an event that shocked all those who were present, in the middle of one of the worst displays of violence and hatred the priests had ever seen, “R” for the first time in many days spoke in a clear voice, and declared:

Satan! Satan! I am Saint Michael, and I command you, Satan and the other evil spirits, to leave the body now. “ – “R”

Now, to go into further detail about why this is significant, according to the Catholic belief, Saint Michael is the Chief Archangel in Heaven. He is the angel whom God gave power over Satan, and he is also the angel who threw Lucifer from Heaven and exiled him. He is literally one major bad-ass, but for the side of good. As a matter of fact, in every book I have read on Exorcism, the priests all mention that they pray for intervention from Saint Michael himself because it is quick, decisive, and  absolute. Assistance from Saint Michael is like walking into that alley I described above, finding out that you’re against 6 assailants, and then literally unleashing an entire army against those 6 assailants. Demonic entities do not stand a chance against this archangel. As a matter of fact, for literary purposes, I will post the Roman Catholic prayer of Saint Michael here, for you to read over and review. This is the prayer that you are supposed to recite for protection over any type of evil you may feel building or brewing. For your believers out there, if you have ever experienced a malevolent presence such as a poltergeist or just a spirit/entity which you feel intends you harm, this is the prayer that you are supposed to say, as it alerts the Archangel to your situation.

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.

May God rebuke him, we humbly pray;

and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host –

by the Divine Power of God –

cast into hell, Satan and all the evil spirits,

who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.


I will be posting yet another article to explain to you what made me finally, after 28 years of being alive, believe that there are higher powers out there. I will never force my beliefs on anyone, and other than this blog, I rarely speak about them. I am not posting the article here, right now, because I don’t want it to take away from the story, plain and simple.

After what was believed to be the intervention of Michael, “R” attended mass finally, and for the first time, he seemed at ease.  Only a few days after, the family returned home to Cottage City, and quietly slipped back into the way things used to be, entering their old routines, taking part in their old life, and moving on. The parents were a bit more reserved now than they had before, and things began to get back on track for the family. The boy went back to school, and never exhibited any strange behavior such as what was previously seen again. He eventually went on to work for NASA, and even now, the boy chose and requested the priests and authors to keep his identity a secret. As of the current time, he claims that he does not have any recollection of these events, and this is also common amongst possession victims. This usually means that whatever had control of them was stronger than the average diabolical entity, as only the stronger demons seem to rob the afflicted of the memories which occurred while the vessel was occupied by the diabolical entity.

This is the story of the true ordeal behind “The Exorcist”.  This movie was responsible for spawning an intense debate of religion versus science. It was nominated for 10 academy awards and was a blockbuster hit. While many of the scenes in the movie “The Exorcist” were exaggerated, within the small world of actual exorcists, they all claim that the movie is strikingly accurate. Exaggerations aside, the content and many actions of Reagan in the movie are claimed to be rather identical to some things that real life exorcists have seen, minus the buckets of shooting pea soup and full 360 degree had turning.

I want to be clear on one thing – this entire article is nothing more than a basic summary of the events that conspired. I would recommend for everyone interested in the topic to read the book I mentioned above, “Possessed”. It will give you all of the details you could want about the details in this case. The records kept are meticulous. The detail is something that will blow your mind. But ultimately, the choice about whether or not you believe is completely up to you.

  1. […] the true story that The Exorcist was based on, the tale of Robbie Mannheim (which can be found on this site) also includes at the beginning of the story a tale of a holy man treating the situation as […]

  2. johnpaul says:

    Reblogged this on Johnpau's Blog and commented:
    just read it…

  3. I’m confused. The title names Robbie Mannheim but a couple of times in the article it says he has remained anonymous. (not criticising just curious)

    • LVCIFER says:

      No problem. The name “Robbie Mannheim” is fictitious, his real identity has not yet been revealed by the church, and most likely won’t be for up to 70 years after his death.

      • Matt says:

        We know who is he. His name has been know for several decades. Unfortunately, He passed away in May of this year.

      • Matthew says:

        We know his name. He just passed away this year. We’ve known who this was for a long time.

  4. Lil C says:

    I read somewhere that Robbie’s aunt, was most likely a medium. He got really interested in what she was doing and also she introduced him to the Ouija board, as you mentioned. I am wondering, if there’s any truth to her being a medium, if this had anything to do with the strange things that were happening and making little Robbie more susceptible to possession.

    Anyways, your site seems to have some very interesting topics. Will be sticking around to read it and probably link from my own.

    • Matthew says:

      She was a “spiritualist. There was rumors surrounding the beginning of this case stating that she had passed away and the “boy” used the board to reach out to talk to her in the spirit world.
      This is unfortunately not true.
      The aunt (People have called her “Tillie” but this is not her real name) was alive and well aware of what was going on to her nephew in early 40′.
      She was living in the St. Louis area at the time.
      However, she did pass away. But her passing wasn’t until march of 49′. I have pictures of her headstone at one of the many cemeteries in the St. Louis area.

  5. pdf says:

    Hey! I know this is kind of off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site?
    I’m getting fed up of WordPress because I’ve had issues with hackers and I’m looking at options for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.

    • LVCIFER says:

      Unfortunately, I’m using WordPress as well. *chuckle*

      I use it for all my sites, including the professional sites I own or write for. Truthfully, WordPress IS the best but you’re right, I’ve been the victim of Russian and Chinese hackers on numerous occasions on my pro sites. I could ask around, talk to other writers and see their opinions of platforms. Let me know.

  6. this was an interesting read

  7. will i am been an enthusiastic of exorcism since i was little read my bible i have read on mark about demon possesed man sounds like a heroion addict but i found my self on a conclusion of studing about lucifer i find interesting storys about the exorcist now i need to know the power of the ouija board and the game bloody mary i fell in love with the devil born 1975 and got saved 2005 i ask my self this question if i did seen exorcism already on other people why did i run and why i kept myself to ask question in how and why he is in the body of the man what is the real purposed
    of being in man

    • Fernando, you will never know the power of the Ouija, it is one of the most deadliest games inviting forces none of us can comprehend, just accept God’s command to stay away from it. Like a good parent who tells children to stay away from a fire, hot stove, boiling water, electricity, swift rivers, etc etc., so is God our Father in heaven warning us to stay away. If you must, and if you must must must know about the Ouija, it is because of your temptation to the evil powers. I was saved when I was very young, and thought I could play with the Ouija and other things out of curiosity, past experience when very young to witchcraft and occult items, and the fact that I was saved I felt “protected”. Worse, I had some bad experiences with the Ouija board and new its power so I came up with a “valid” excuse to play it, I simply “justified” it. By this, I came up with a valid argument with myself to play the Ouija with non-christians and atheist to “prove” God and angels existed. God does not and will not have us do evil and commit sin to further His “will” and His kingdom (note that God can use a sinful action as a learning experience but that is different). Bottom line is, YES, as a christian you are protected to an extent, but playing with evil is unGodly and we become fools who keep running away from God (as He does not leave us, rather we leave Him), He will allow it because He loves us so much that He gave us all a free will as He did with His angels. If, you are like me, extremely, and I mean EXTREMELY interested in this type of activity, run away from it. They know your history, they know your family’s history, they know the pre-history of our world and you want to screw with them? They like to pretend to be family members and will confuse with things only the two of you would know, or bring some type of success, or powers (don’t want to say much and tempt some poor fool by accident). The Bible tells us we have a certain amount of “authority” over them due to the blood of Jesus Christ and further tells us that we absolutely should not be “proud” or “boast” of this authority as it is not our own power but the power of Jesus, God in the flesh born to Mary through the Holy Spirit, conquered life as a human living perfectly without sin, died innocently for our sins, conquered death before the evil ones, rose back from the grave, spent some time on earth, elevated before a population of people into the clouds and was replaced by “one greater than” Jesus, which is the Holy Spirit.

      Now, the reason why you ran is because demons, devils, etc (they have different authority, jobs, rank, assignments, etc like a military)….are absolutely terrifying and horrific in the dullest way to explain their unadulterated, vile, evil, tormented, twisted mines for blood sacrifice and torture. They take great pleasure in tormenting you, your family, your pets, and your grandchildren on through several generations if you screw with them. God is patient, merciful, and patient but He never says you can screw with angels who are greater than us and expect not to get our butts handed to us. If, if, if you must must must be involved, you need a real Christian church who believes in demon possession, and understands how to deal with them. This means you, must read your Bible, replace your TV programs, your listening habits, your reading habits, your eating and drinking habits, and change according to scripture. Even Legion was not cast out by the very prophets of the Bible and Jesus had to do it, and explained why.

      Beg God for mercy, forgiveness, and I don’t mean sitting at your table as if you are going to eat some food…I’m talking about shoving your face into the dirt in tears and crying out to God for your sins…ask for the Holy Spirit to fill you with His presence, and help you seek out everything in your life AND house that offends the Holy Spirit (God). Nudity, pornography, drunkenness, etc etc, and remove it. Get closer to God, and then you will realize by fearing anything but God Himself is sinful and you will know the BIble verse “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world”. God trumps all, Satan found out the hard way along with 1/3 of all angels who fell/were cast out of heaven. Isaiah 37:36 tells us that one angel killed 186,000 military men. One angel, unharmed, killed 186,000 soldiers prepared for war…and you want to call the bad ones to yourself?? This is bad at so many levels, I just hope you’re still alive….Stay in His light. Feel free to contact me at this website

      Lastly, your final question of their purpose of possessing us…are many. They are our tormentors, to defile us, our families, our pets, our objects, mock God, and use the possessed person to cause further damage to others. Rape, murder, child abduction, child sacrifice, blood drinking, suicide, and more. Our evil behavior is their drug. Especially when we worship them as gods and start sacrificing. Blood, spells, chants, are huge at giving them more authority and power of one’s self spinning the person into a deeper abyss of a zombie-like, remote-controlled demon seed.

      • sister in Christ says:

        Excellent! May God bless you and I pray your words stick with those who read them, that this opens people’s eyes and draws them closer to our Lord.amen

      • Matthew says:

        This long winded reply of yours is kinda laughable considering Ouija boards were a staple parol toy here in America from the 1830-1920s.
        So according to the logic you used in your overly lengthy reply, the majority of Americans during this time would have been diabolically possessed.
        Just saying…

  8. Lulu says:

    I’m seriously OBSESSED with this story & movie!! I really wanna watch it with my little sister & my little brother. Neither of them have seen it & I think my brother would love it. Does anyone know if it’s on Netflix?

    BTW this is really interesting…

  9. Pamela says:

    I would really like to see “The Exorcist” remade, and this time I’d like to see the TRUE story of the BOY who was possessed, not a girl. I have never liked the way the truth was not told in Blatty’s book nor in the film that was based on it.

  10. […] Read more on the original 1949 exorcism case of Roland Doe:… […]

  11. Ron says:

    The true story is that the excorcism took place at Alexian Bros Hospital, in the physiatric wing, in St. Louis. I happened to meet one of the original Jesuit priests who showed me many of the relics in their private archives 15 years ago, in Itasca Illinois, in the Alexian Bros hidden archive room. We were their design consultants, and I had met someone on staff that made the introduction because of my historical background & interests. The relics in there goes back to the 1500’s during the Plague. The wing was torn down back in the old days, but several relics still exist in that locked room. The most chilling is the statue of Michael the Arch-Angel, the only thing that was untouched in the room during the “stormy” exorcisms on the poor boy. I reached to touch it and he told me “NO”. It is black in color and he is looking down with a spear on the the demon at his feet. The statue is particularly memorable because of the expression on the angel’s face, and it is from an era of the distant past…

  12. Ron says:

    The priest was in his late 80’s. He told me two unforgettable stories that happened in that famous room in the hospital wing in St. Louis, things that you can’t see in the movie or books, or anywhere. Chilling beyond anything. No blood, no gore. Just real supernatural events that he bore witness to during the actual exorcism sequence. Stuff you can’t make up.

    We were only in that back archive room in Itasca for maybe 5 or 8 minutes. It wasn’t like a museum, it was more like a dark storage room. No one really went in there. It was a back room connected to the main archive, locked separately. The archive room itself had a lot of medical instruments, priest robes, all kinds of of stuff dating back to the 1500’s. I think it all has been subsequently moved.

    One of the things that they saved from that hospital room where it all happened were the exterior window panes and frames by the boy’s bed. They were stacked and leaning against the wall. I was told to touch nothing in this room, and it didn’t.

  13. ellie Gonzalez says:

    a priest from a Catholic Church are not the only one who could do a exorcism I’m a christian on my pastor did an exorcism on one of my family member who was possess and whatever he did it work so I believe not just a priest from Catholic Roman Church are the only one who could do an exorcism

    • LVCIFER says:

      Hello Ellie. Actually, the Roman Catholic Church must approve any exorcism, and it is always done by a priest – but this only applies to the Catholic / Christian religion. Most Christians will perform a lesser ritual called a “Deliverance”, which is why a lot of them choose the words “deliverance ministry” within their church’s description or name. Only a properly trained Roman Catholic Priest-Exorcist can perform an exorcism on a Catholic / Christian. Just as in the Hebrew religion, only a properly trained Rabbi can perform an exorcism upon a Jew, and in the Islamic religion, only a properly trained Imam can perform an exorcism on Muslims. Ceremonies performed by “unauthorized” people are considered “lesser rituals”, but they can also be extremely effective as well.

      • cik ubi says:

        Just discovered this blog. Reallyinteresting! Thanks for the info on the real story behind the movie. And u were right. In Islam, only trained Imam is encouraged to do exorcism but this is only due to the fact that if one is untrained, the demons might possessed the Imam. But there are incident where a lesser ‘trained’ imam will have to do. 🙂

  14. Robbie says:

    Wow. You are ALL very naive. Read the EXCELLENT investigative journalism piece that Mark Chorvinsky wrote. It’s the cold hard facts about this “possessed” boy and the story behind it. Here’s the link if you want the truth…

    • Bobby says:

      Regarding the Chorvinsky article, all of the stuff can be explained with naturalistic causes, with the exception of the appearance of branding on the skin before the priests’ eyes. The diary and Halloran both state the marks appeared before their eyes with the boy’s hands plainly in view. Halloran doesn’t state he doesn’t believe it’s not supernatural, but neither is he willing to claim it is supernatural. He just doesn’t have an explanation for what he observed. He also mentioned the bed moving and pushed back on the suggestion that the boy was able to do it. He also mentions a vase moving across the floor for which he doesn’t have an explanation.

  15. That is so crazy it makes you think….. is this fake or is this real? Well at first I didn’t know if it was real! But…..then when it said that after the exorcism happened in 1949, that is why they wrote books about it and once they said that’s why they made that exorcist movie is because its based off of the true and real live exorcism. That’s when I thought this is real what happened in 1949. I mean this happened way before the movie was made. I mean come on this is not about the movie this is reality. And before I read this I thought ok this is fake exorcism is not real they just say that to scare you. But once I read this it completely blew my mind. Now I know there is another world outside these walls.

  16. an_ok_joe says:

    there were a lot of inconsistences in Allen’s book which i do beleive to be true and “R” account wrappings as opposed to Ouija board etc. I’m guess roland/Robbie was abused in some way phyically or sexually the Ouija is one means of possession but i think soemthing has to be a profound effect i’m sure his family didn’t go to church your body is a vessell you decided what you want to fill it with

  17. saimir says:

    There is One GOD, ALLAH THE ALMIGHTY, you make me sick with your false religions . anyway your veil shall be remmoved when you die and you will know the truth then, but will be to late in that day , so return to the true religion .

    • Jordan says:

      You fool! Catholic is the first religion. Its been around crenturies before “ALLAH” existed, so “fake” doesnt seem a nessasary word to describe the worlds first known religion. Roman catholics are the religion that your precious karan stole its scripture from. Get a religious history lesson twit or dont comment on here

      • LVCIFER says:

        Actually, Christianity and Catholicism were also built upon the Hebrew faith, which came first as well. Paganism was around before the monotheistic religions, as well. AND even before that, there were the Assyrians, the Babylonians, etc… So, aside from polytheism being much older, on top of it all, Christianity / Catholicism is a “new religion” by comparison.

        Oh, to the other poster, and regarding Islam, even the Djinn can worship other religions. IN ISLAM, your people also recognize Christ as a prophet, just not the Son of God. So maybe before you talk shit about Him and His religion(s), you should delve deeper into your own religion before blaspheming against your own faith as well… Just sayin’.

      • nassa says:

        The meaning of Allah is god we al believe In the same god but we quarrel about which religion is the true religion.

      • Eddie says:

        Catholicism/Christianity were created long after ancient religions. The ancient Egyptians, Hindu’s, and a few others religion dates back to 1200 years BC. Most religions all agree upon the same beliefs, a creator, a savior with disciples, ect. Islam is unique because the Quran says Jesus was a prophet but not the son of God. Personally, I think all these religions worship the same God or creator, whether they’re referred to as Yaweh in Judaism or Allah in the Islamic faith. There’s very little differences between all these religions whether you’re willing to admit that or not, and calling someone a fool for their religious beliefs is not only ignorant but rude.

    • cik ubi says:

      Hi Saimir. I’m a muslim, and in Islam there is a verse that states “there is no compulsion in religion (of Islam)”, which means that u can’t force the non Muslim to submit. U may preach the beauty of Islam to them, but never curse them, or hate them or even defame them. Please be careful in whatever u say, coz like it or not, our actions will reflect back on the religion.

    • Sarah Schultz says:

      You must be very careful with such dark spiritual things! Believe me! You never, never ever want to encounter the real thing!!! If you do, go immediately to the Catholic Church and be persistent! This is NEVER to be taken lightly as you are This really did happen. You can go to St. Louis to see for yourself. Do not touch anything that happened to be involved in this exorcism!!! Very spiritually dangerous!!!

  18. valerie says:

    what the real name of this film please??

    • LVCIFER says:

      Hello Valerie:

      There are actually two of them. The first one was “The Exorcist”, and the second one was a Showtime original movie called “Possessed” from 2001.

  19. Mike A. says:

    In 1978 a Carmelite priest showed us 8 mm movies of an actual exorcism. while the footage was very shaky, the young boy “peed” a grand piano through a wall. The priest who shared the video with us was a classmate of the priest who assisted in the exorcism. Both priests received injuries form the young boy that required hospitalization. Knowledge of ancient languages, multiple voices, … knowledge of things that the person cannot have knowledge of, inhuman strength, the ability to move objects with the mind, levitation, … along with other “signs”, are all considered proof of possession. I was told that the movie the exorcist was, in part, based on the experiences of these two priests, but that the boy was changed to a girl, and a number of other things were changed to prevent direct correlation with the actual events.

    What I saw was very compelling in that what was displayed was exceedingly realistic, and was beyond anything I viewed until many years later with the creation of CGI. By comparison with the movie the Exorcist, the movie looks fake and contrived.

    Joliet Catholic High School (Now Joliet Catholic Academy) in Joliet Illinois was where I viewed the film. Perhaps there are other classmates who will be willing to collaborate this. Fr. Kevin McBrien was the priest who shared the film with us.

  20. Laughing Out Loud says:

    Dude, it’s called a spell check. Find one before publishing this amateur crap.

  21. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. A boy was diagnosed as being possessed by the devil, and the Roman Catholic … […]

  22. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. … They gave the excuse that they had moved to St. Louis to obtain medical … […]

  23. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. … As a matter of fact, this 13 year old boy would be the first exorcism that Father … […]

  24. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. A boy was … It was not, in fact, a female as the movie suggests. To this day, the … […]

  25. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. A boy was diagnosed as being possessed by the devil, and the Roman Catholic … […]

  26. […] The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist” – Diabolical …2011. 2. 16. – The movie “The Exorcist” was based on a true story from 1949. A boy was diagnosed as being possessed by the devil, and the Roman Catholic … […]

  27. Steve Erdmann says:

    (Edited and Updated Comments on the 1949 St. Louis Possession Case)
    Steve Erdmann

    The outreach to darken and besmirch this man’s character, family history, innocence – not just in his adulthood but also as a child – continued with innuendo and incantations.

    Do you believe that the boy in the book and the movie ‘The Exorcist’ was possessed? I understand his real name was mentioned on the Net and that he later worked for the space program. What do you hear?

    My history on this case goes back much earlier when I first discovered the case around 1973. The late Father Eugene Gallagher of Georgetown University sent me a copy of an original “The Exorcist Diary”. Consequently, I wrote about three articles (One article: “The Truth behind the Exorcist,” FATE Magazine, January, 1975) and one booklet (“Anatomy of a Demon Possession”: available from Luminist Publications, P.O. Box 20256, Minneapolis, MN, 55420. info @ based on my initial encounter with the environment back in the 1970s. Through the years, I attempted to be impartial as I could, though I had previous knowledge of poltergeist and other paranormal incidents which tended to sway my sympathies. Later scientific findings seemed to confirm these feelings. Two books, among a few, have stood out in the library: People of the Lie, M. Scott Peck, M.D., 1983 and Evil: Satan, Sin, and Psychology, Cooper and Epperson, 2008.
    (An aside: words in ‘quotations’ may be for journalistic ‘emphasis,’ and may not be a direct quote; in another case, we are talking about a paraphrase of the critic’s quote, i.e., about the relatives’ ‘chatting’ on an Internet blog. This would have been an “unofficial” remark from my [poor] memory. [The direct quote will be forthcoming].)
    I had personal experience with a male nurse from Alexian Brother’s Hospital psychiatric ward who worked around the ‘boy’ in 1949; I will go into that briefly.
    The remainder of my comments would center around the media, in general, but also concern a few selected media “hounds” that had ulterior and hidden agendas in tracing down and, more or less, ‘intruding and almost badgering’ the ‘victim’ in the possession case. There are some investigators that fell into a “Good, The Bad and the Ugly” ranking, in as much as some media comments have been fair and sober and even scientific. Others were suspect because of certain inherent treatments and fallacious attitudes that actually meant (despite their outward structure) the 1949 “victim” psychological and emotional harm.
    My experiences in this case were similar to what you had heard in the media. The case had been fairly well covered; and “some” of the press had torn into this man’s private life like alley-dogs fighting over trashed meat. Do ‘I’ believe in demon-possession? It depends on several factors. I have known the ‘boy’s’ name for some time. In the earlier years, many writers refrained from openly mentioning the “victim’s” name out of some respect or humility concerning his privacy. What bothers me are the wide-eyed ‘investigators’ that just want to hound him to death and try to get bits and pieces of dirty little secrets about his past and present life. They appeared to view him as a criminal or a dirty little lab specimen (I noted one writer’s attitude and comments meandered from outright accusatory hostility towards the ‘victim,’ on the one hand, and seeming placation and conciliation, on the other). The lyrics of Don Henley’s “Dirty Laundry” can be good background music. (The fact that our “victim” has not [as far as I know, to date] come out with a tell-all book to gain some monetary goal, might be considered interesting.)
    While many people exhilarated beneath the on-going discovery of sensational and personal facts in the life of “the boy” and his family, the public should be equally aware, or, at least contemplate, some of the hardships this mongering may have created for the family.
    (I will be alternating between speaking of some skeptics collectively and specifically of one particular skeptic as a special example.)
    I actually started out with one of these ‘hounds’ on an investigation of ‘the boy’ because I thought the investigator was sincerely objective. I thought he wanted to conduct a ‘scientific’ investigation – only to find out he was a classical debunker who wanted to make a name for himself and replicate another debunker who made a name for himself – which will probably lead to another (on and on)…he sort of tricked me somewhat. He later vacillated between remarks that he might get the man to “confess” and somehow acknowledge that the “victim” was influenced by his relatives (to fabricate), or that he was a teenage hoaxer (or some confused combination of the above). Nice.
    I did not gather the “full” status of this critic’s cynical approach and background until, up unto, and more recent when I examined the various stages of his career and his inquiry into this and other matters.
    I did not “refuse” to work with him, rather, I let my somewhat sympathetic views on demons, and my realization as to what Christ said on that matter, be known to him (which he resented somewhat, as it was not part of his ‘mission’), and that led to a gulf in cooperation. I did suggest a committee or panel of “experts” or “professionals” get together and plan a trek to Maryland and various connected sites to investigate.
    However, I also suggested that this investigation be done in a rather objective and impartial way (having read and being concerned about the mentality of die-hard debunkers); that idea did not go over so well, to say the least, as that did not fit into his pattern of inquiry.
    (It was no wonder this critic had a hard time working with me, in as much as I was not a dedicated cynic and debunker in matters parapsychological, paranormal or religious [it worried me some times that he referred to me as a ‘partner’ in his research, in as much as I could not endorse his entire approach]. I had no radio show promoting ridicule of various religious ideas. More recently, this critic had visited almost every name connected with the case, often, I suspect, in hopes of gleaning pieces and comments of information that he could use to bolster his cynical premise [probably unbeknownst to his interviewees].)
    His latest pieces on the topic were a long list (a composite of other ‘hounds’ who searched out the victim and contributed gossip and pulp) of ‘dirty laundry’ about the man (once the ‘boy’), prying into the man’s girlfriend’s life, relatives’ lives, parents’ secrets and besmirching him and his family; Innocent until proven guilty? These skeptics shrouded themselves beneath descriptions of being “scientific” investigators, “skeptical” rectifiers, or some other type of lone wolf private eyes. In addition, there were a few other media tormentors in which I had to question their intentions (the heralding of the Constitution, as some did, as to its allowing, those to rampage about in the private lives of individuals, did not seem correct; and what if their privacy became obtusely invaded?). Were these “’investigators’” backgrounds were so pristine, holy and perfect that they could set themselves up as Papal authorities to judge this man and his family? Sounded like evil intentions also.
    The other problem or area was the question: what ‘is’ EVIL? These debunkers said the kid was just a mean, snotty, bully of a kid who hoaxed it: but by their very descriptions of him, they described someone that was mentally ill, sadistic, cruel and—evil. It seemed like the pot calling the kettle ‘black’.
    I suggested to this ‘researcher’ that an independent, open, scientific, objective and impartial panel – not a monger-headlines-group – be set up to check out the facts. He said he did not want to set around with a bunch of psychic mumbo-jumbo. That kind of talk sounded more dark than light to me; I had in the past (post 1975) – and I was afraid now – of people crashing into the life of this man – now nearing 80 years-of-age – like a bunch of snarling wolves; which they did.
    They also left out many ‘facts’ that needed to indicate something paranormal happened – and they used only statements and opinions that would support their apriori and preconceived belief. This is why I felt that experts that are more fair-minded should handle the inquiries…including other information such as…
    The male nurse who attended the boy’s room at the time and saw many strange things…it does not fit their ‘pattern’ so they say it is a fiction…but I heard this man lecture on his involvement!
    My first wife, myself, several St. Anthony of Padua church parishioners, Father Steve Yxxxxx and another priest, attended a monthly religious discussion group at the home of Vxxxxxx and Nxxxx Axxxxxxx, parishioners. Another parishioner (I called a Mr. “Schaffer” in my booklet) was also attendant and very quiet. When a speaker eventually finished speaking on the topic of the myth of Satan (it was a ruse to see if they could get a reaction from Ernest), Ernest became quite upset and fidgeted, telling the group that what the speaker was saying was not true. Ernest said that he had been kept to a vow of silence on the matter but that he would speak out that one time because he felt the speaker was not truthful. Ernest then went into a telling of what he physically saw and did in the time he worked at Alexian Brothers’ (Psychiatric) Hospital, and his encounters with the supposedly possessed boy. As far as I know, Ernest never spoke on it again up to the time of his death.
    Ernest spoke of the ‘boy’ demonstrating some paranormal abilities and leaving an unusually large amount of bodily fluids, similar to classical poltergeist activity in other noted cases.
    Latest advances in quantum physics and neuroscience, indicate indeed there are chemistries involved that transcend our ‘accepted’ or ‘known’ world.
    I told this person, at one time, that I did not really believe in demon-possession. I misspoke! What I really was trying to say was: I rather ‘not’ really believe in it! However, after seeing some cases up close and personal – and realizing that Christ, Himself, treated Satan and demons as very real – I cannot say I have a total disbelief. This debunker claimed to be Baptist and a firm Bible student, yet he failed to see his own encounter with this evil in his own life. He tended to switch, back and forth, from saying, the boy was a cruel and mischievous “hoaxer” (a favorite theory of his “hero”), to a boy that had a mental illness, or some combination of both, rather than being evil incarnate. In addition, while I did not totally exclude a critical or skeptical approach to the incident, I did think the topic should also include symmetrical evidence from all avenues. From the tone and demeanor of this lone wolf, he was not out to be fair.

    (It was interesting to note that this particular critic said he was a devout Baptist and believed in Satan and the Bible: but I believe this was a ruse to get more information out of me. There was some doubt that this critic was as grounded in real religious reality as he was saying. I discovered later that his past and some current actions denoted his non-benign and even cruel remarks on religion. From time to time, he had made comments about his religiosity and paranormal belief, though other mentions he made [see below and other] would tend to contradict and question that.)
    This skeptic, instead, was avidly trying to follow in the shoes of a fellow skeptic who he worshipped and wanted to create his own trail of publicity like his ‘hero’. This “wannabe” went so far as to misquote me about information he witnessed of the boy’s relatives on an Internet “chat room” [I will quote in a few paragraphs forward; an aside, more recently, this critic began splitting thin-hairs as to whether he used the words ‘chat room’ or just mentioned seeing the relatives talk on an Internet ‘blog’. Please note: the expression “chat room” was my best recollection, spoken colloquially, about his remark on tracing a conversation down from the family on the Internet [which did happen and he did mention {see below} ]).
    What is important here is that, in essence, the relatives “were” mentioned by the skeptic as making comments on a blog on the Internet and that he did mention this to me, and then said that I, mysteriously, was the one who invented the remark. (Now, in a November, 2014 email, this critic stated he “did” speak of seeing the family converse on the Internet and he “did” mention it to me: “…Axxxx Bxxxx posted a public message for RH on the ZabaSearch message board (it has since been removed, but it did confirm that all RH’s Hxxxxxxx cousins were still alive at that time).…I never participated or interfered with the message except to print it out (maybe I sent you one?) and the blog.” (When he originally spoke of it in 2007, he merely referred to a chat session on the Internet without all the identifying details. Without those details, it was hard for me to speak correctly and scientifically about it.)
    In the critic’s letter of September 18, 2007, he “did” tell of the family trying to converse on the Internet:
    “Secondly, I’ve tapped into an attempted line of communication from Axxxxx to Rxx. I discovered this fact accidentally – she used a public, on-line bulletin board to leave the message. She may not have known that her message could be seen by the general public. So much for her ‘privacy’…”
    As already mentioned, not having this quote directly in front of me at one time (and buried out of sight, stored deeply away in a garage), I remarked to him in 2007 that he had mentioned a ‘chat room’. I colloquially misspoke: An online “bulletin board” is not necessarily a private chat room; though there is some Internet, similarities (see footnotes). Having captured me in an awkward misquote, our flamboyant “hound” used it against my veracity. The remark, however, was a casual remark and used in private, unofficial conversation; the importance of my outlining this “sparing” came clearer as one explored his background and his attacks on religiosity.
    The impetus behind this debate, at that juncture, was his reluctance to send copies of his printouts and emails (he spied the relative’s email address on the Internet), as we had agreed upon. Perhaps I wanted to see if all this was true. However, as one can see from his November 2014 quote, even ‘he’ was unclear as to what he actually did and what he actually sent to me.
    (In the early stages of his investigation, I did much to help him with copies and photos of the late aunt’s gravesite and her house [and a lot of other data, addresses, and information]. None of these endeavors had I received credit for, but discovered, belatedly, his disparaging, somewhat condescending, erroneous and fallacious remarks about my mentioning the boy’s family speaking in a “chat room” {which, as shown above, he actually did speak about. It was no invention}.)
    Yet, it is ironic and quizzical that he pivoted around, usually in private correspondence, and paraded himself as some crusader for decency or decorum if he felt it would topple, block or chastise those who are critical of his comments.

    Because a majority of the people who were attracted to this critic’s websites had no real knowledge of the similar paranormal cases, or the other details involved in this case, most would have no real complaints with the critic. People with intimate knowledge of parapsychology would probably take issue with many aspects of the debunking more readily than the public; perhaps this is one reason the critic said he was taken to task very seldom or hardly ever-received criticism. Having seen the various “stages” of his inquiry–and his formation of how he accepts evidence or rejects it (most recently, he has rejected any corrections from me on his erroneous statements, outright, and tends to shy away from support of any paranormal theory)–a person, such as myself, would be more adept at spotting his modus operandi.
    So also did the family relatives suspect his “inquiring mind” when Axxxxx (Hxxxxxxxx) Bxxxx said on April 18, 2007: “You say you are not writing or publishing anything, yet you say that some of pictures you sent were taken as early as 1975. I would be interested in knowing just why this research is so important to you and/or others. Do you have a connection with these families? What ARE your intentions for requesting this information?
    “Younger family members such as my nephew, Gxxx Hxxxxxxxx, also have very little knowledge on this subject. He told me that you had written him as well, but he said he is not going to reply to your letter at all. I would request that you refrain from contacting other relatives on the subject because you will not obtain anything new.
    “Family problems or secrets are meant to stay that way. The years have not changed the information you have gathered. Further information that you have requested is not and will not be available to you or others who are looking for sensationalism or monetary rewards. The family does not wish to dredge up old stories from yesterday that may be hurtful to the younger generations today.”
    What was also interesting, upon reception of that letter, that, unrelentingly, our “hound’ went on to analyze this ladies’ handwriting; he even attempted to diagnosis that she had an unspecified illness (of course, needless to say, our ‘hound’ was trying to gather information for publication and publicity, despite what he told the “boy’s” relative).
    It remained somewhat surprising to me that in his letters of May, June and September 2007 (and others), he “chastised” me for being critical of his style of investigation (I was being hostile), but practically in the same breath, made suspicious, curious and unkind remarks about the family.
    Letter after letter, he meandered over the families’ private, psychological and intimate situation when there is no way he could possibly have that kind of knowledge of their personal affairs, nor did he have an expert or clinical background to make those judgments. The victim’s father was a “whimp,” “a weakling,” that the victim’s grandfather was also “henpecked,” (“…and let those two women run all over him.”). He commented that a daughter referred to her mother by her first name and that meant a sinister connotation (stated in a series of 2007 letters from our superfluous biographer). He spoke intimately and fluidly about members of the family contributing to child molestation, abuse, and other private family problems. Our amateur biographer alluded to family situations that he said allegedly indicated foul play by the parents or relatives. In general, he claimed personal knowledge or insight into the families’ background (often in the above-mentioned disparaging and mocking tones) which, in no way, he could have had such accurate or intimate knowledge; other than vainglorious gossip and rumor, no one could.
    Also in his 2007 letters, said investigator laid out plans to entice family members, often with seeming compliments, in order to obtain their confidence and sympathy so that they would give him private and personal information. Several times, he mentioned to the family or about the family that he had no intention to write a book or article: yet, in essence and effect, the multiple websites he created on the topic served the same purpose (one had a visitor-counter).
    “I’d kind of like to know how long the molestation was going on; I guess we might be able to figure that out if/when we learn how long Oma…Axxxx stayed with the Hxxxxxxxs. A clue might be derived if I can find out when Jxxxx Cxxxxxx died….” (January 24, 2007) In addition, the marauding continued.
    Our “biographer” recently sucked-up some new gossip that would tend to dispel the child molestation theory: “Regarding Axxxxx: not to me (but I can’t reveal to whom she told this), but she confirmed that her mother, in the last years of her life, had crippling MS and was confined to a wheelchair. Therefore, she would not have even been able to sexually manhandle RH (as has been theroized in the past).” (Emphasis added.) ( 6:27am. November 7, 2014.)
    Interestingly, sexual abuse may not have been prohibited by a physical ailment on the part of a perpetrator (in this case, the suspected Aunt Tillie), as capability would extend beyond not only “healthy” people being capable of doing this type of crime. The further question is: why is our mongering inquisitor dabbling into the private life of the ‘victim’ in such a brazen way? He was not an authentic journalist in the full sense of the word, nor a professional detective or physician.
    (The last “exchange” between this particular critic and myself resembled a Tic-Tac-Toe game of traded insults, with this “investigator” insisting his comments were error-free and my comments were totally faulty [and deluded] and that he was refusing any further discussion, often because he saw disagreement as some type of furious, personal anger by his opponent. Some examples:
    – The critic mentioned the awesomeness of standing in the Bel Nor, Missouri house where some of the activity took place: I countered, to point out his extravagant thinking, as to why it would be so ‘awesome’ if the “boy” was just an ordinary prankster and liar? The critic took that remark to mean that I somehow held “jealousy” of his having entrance to the house.

    – The critic mentioned that 97% his website audiences approved of his remarks and that he felt his writing was as ingenious as Peter Blatty’s. As a point of protest and irony, I increased his complimentary readers to 99% and said some were probably “selected”. Whoops, he didn’t like my sarcasm or the point I was making. He closed off all future discussion. Point-Counter-Point debate only worked well if you feel you have complete control.
    Our critic had opened several websites on the Internet (in an unchivalrous pursuit of publicizing and parading his interest in the 1949 case) all of them garnered to his private style of trashing the background of “the boy” and, sometimes, religion in general. One website referred to itself as a big blog to be read on a rainy day just for fun, and warned readers that the reader will encounter the critic’s “flippant” opinions; and that if you don’t like it he will show you the door (2010).
    The websites usually were decorated by his regular mischievous and scornful comments. He had a dictionary of favorite jabs: “childish, contradictory”, etc. Yet it is he who instituted websites full of sardonic bards (referring to the 1949 victim as “Ronnie,” “the Ron-ster,” “little-puke”, and other persons’ comments as “thingies”: hardly mature and stoic, scientific comments). True to his “style,” our biographer referred to a world-famous and bestselling author on UFOs as “whack-ass” (January 22, 2014).
    (Our critic, in continued glimpses through the demonstrated performances and formats on his late radio show [headlined by The Three Stooges: “Continually fulfilling your need for all things stupid” {from the promotion marquee}], used ridicule and attack on a host of paranormal and religious beliefs, denoting a bias and preference for sacrilege that prefaced his media mentality. This was 2007, and aimed at a somewhat sympathetic audience [those who are entertained by such carnival sarcasm], but the same ribald attitude and comments were available on his Facebook sites and other of his dialogue [often in reference to ‘farting’ and other, sometimes erotic, anatomical exercises. I noted that a “spasm” of carnality by his readers on the ‘art’ of ‘farting’ {about April 11, 2014} has either been removed or hidden]. On his Facebook Timeline [December 2, 2013] he heralded Benny Bell’s recording of “goosing”, and Tony Cabanell spoke of “I am nostalgic for brain sandwich farts” (September 19, 2014). The “farting” joking-fad was, in part, due to the 1949 ‘victim’s’ forensic act of smelling foully while under alleged demonic attack [if not just rabid humor on our biographer’s part]).
    Placards and slogans that typified his sardonic approach headlined the radio program:
    “Where good music goes to die…The Wonderful World of Stupid…The Splatting Nun! Vintage Idiocy…House of Whacks…Songs for Fart Lovers!”
    The following are just a few notations and excerpts from a “composite” of previous radio broadcasts (which filled almost the entirety of his regular broadcasts):
    – 6:28 a.m., CST, “Satan Call”, October moon song “Son of Satan”: having sex on the altar to a “one-eyed goat,” missionary style.

    – 6:57 a.m., CST, Sound-tract: a drive-in “Facts of Life” featured Madonna. Co-host mentioned erotic areas of a women’s body and said, “Honey, let’s play windshield wiper.”

    – 7:05 a.m. CST, The host Played Gilbert O’Sullivan’s song Alone Again, meshing it with conversation about razor blades and suicide. 7:10 a.m., the host said to his audience: “You shouldn’t be surprised I’d play something like that.” The host asked his audience if they had gotten out their razor blades yet. “I’ll talk you down, I’ll talk you down” (7:14 a.m.)

    – 7:20 a.m., CST, song Why You Love Me – anywhere we could, in the front yard, in the woods, in the rear, long and hard – going into various erotic descriptions.

    – 7:34 a.m. CST. Announcer began the topic about Rat stomping. Switched from talk of Steve Austin’s movie Condemned to talk about the missing pilot, Steve Fassett: “Frankly, I don’t care what happened to him…go down the drain….so what, he’s got money.” The host said he could care less if Fassett disintegrated.
    A review of the many months of radio transcripts would show a plethora of such dedicated bias:
    The “I don’t care” attitude was prevalent through several of his remarks, such as this one in 2014: “You can say or think what you want about what I say or have written in the past…I can’t say, truthfully, that I really care what people think. I lose no sleep over it one way or another.” The critic’s basic approach is one of carnival and sardonic ridicule of religious and Sacred Cow beliefs (and there probably “is” an exclusive audience for this type of approach and spectacle. I have noted the critic is happiest around this sympathetic audience).
    (The ‘male nurse’ mentioned above was not the late Brother Greg Holwinski, but an entirely different hospital employee.)
    (Troy Taylor’s book and video production seemed to be an objective rendering of the case, quoting psychoanalyst Professor Terry Cooper and others, though Taylor tended to deal in exclusivity. As a paranormal researcher, to his great credit, however, Taylor was too professional to damn all parapsychological happenings.)
    (I confessed to having fallen into the ‘monger’ syndrome back in 1973-1975, when having been sent Father Eugene Gallagher’s copy of the “diary,” it led to a ‘spree’ of published articles on the diary by Steve Erdmann. I did not feel such an ‘event’ should be singled out to one and only one publication [against the wishes of an editor that wanted complete and total control], and I wrote about it in two other magazines.)
    The topic of the Demon Possessed boy of 1949 was a cat well “out of the bag” for some time now. It had raised some questions in my mind as to the welfare and true caring for “the victim” by me and other extravagant media mongers. It had raised the question of privacy, publicity and human caring in my mind, several times; some media agencies, more than others, have fared better in delicacy and balanced promotion. I had planned some time back to try to gather a cross-section of the comments on the case and sometime before, or, on my deathbed, to present the file to historical societies here in St. Louis.
    The late Father William S. Bowdern, S.J., wrote author William Blatty on October 17, 1968, and I quote: “My hesitancy in giving you the details of the case of possession is due to two facts. First, Archbishop Ritter (later, Cardinal Ritter), who delegated me as the exorcist, instructed me not to publish the case. I have been faithful to his instructions. Secondly, it would be most embarrassing, and possibly painfully disturbing to the young man, should he be connected in any way with a book detailing events that took place in his life some years ago…I can assure you of one thing: the case in which I was involved was the real thing. I had no doubt about it then and I have no doubt about it now.”
    It had been many years since I ventured into this topic. If I am to gather files together on this topic, this would seem to be the best time. What information have you uncovered? Can you download to me? I am preparing a paper promised to a Historical Society; any contributions are welcomed. Do have an email address I can download some files to you? (You can reach Steve Erdmann at or You can friend him at Facebook or visit the Dissenter/Disinter Group at!/groups/171577496293504/. His Facebook email is
    (Feel free to publish or use the above, provided you make appropriate grammar and spelling corrections.)

    Chat rooms and Bulletin boards:
    “An online discussion forum for a particular topic via keyboard (see chat). Everyone who is logged in sees what everyone else is typing, although two people can decide to break off and have a private chat. Individual Chat Sessions: Chat rooms hosting general discussions often run continuously; however, chat sessions between two parties are often initiated as needed for customer service.” (
    “Unlike bulletin boards, live chats provide immediate live communication. Depending on the need, chat rooms can be open all the time or at only scheduled times. Just like bulletin boards, chat rooms have varying degrees of moderation, privacy, and feature controls. Chat rooms can be a bit risky, but the payoff can be high. The risk is in the open, live nature of the communications, which allows the presentation of any topic in any language.” ( (Stephen Erdmann’s added emphasis)

    Personal Debate:
    Philosophical and political debates often ran in “either – or” circles; some in “Mine – no other” type of arguments. It made one wonder if there was a loss of humanity somehow in the debates. One would only hope – as our “victim” approached the end of his life — that the public would view him in a more fair-minded and accurate light. From what I have learned, he has remained a productive and even religious man and been kind and loving to his family and their children. I do not believe he had had any criminal history (as if that should have any importance when it comes to forgiveness). Is there another human being that spoke for him? I wonder if, in everyday life, we all are just a thin hair away from the microscope vision of our neighbor if not our government.
    I visualized – and shuddered in doing so – of the media circus that might ensue at the time of this 1949 ‘victim’s’ funeral.
    My comments, herein, were promoted primarily in self-defense. I very belatedly discovered – almost by accident – what our critic had said about me. I obtained the further haunting feeling that our “victim” may never get a fair hearing {or even was aware of some of the cruel and questionable comments about him} in this lifetime; in addition, when do the ‘judges’ become “judged”?
    (As a caveat: be sure to constantly guard every word you use in front of him, even in casual, colloquial conversation with him, as, should there arise some debate, you will find yourself in his world of “confessions”, “contradictions,” and “I’ve got you on this one” adolescent parlance.)
    I had been sympathetic to our “critic’s” stance on authority and the government, he appeared as an iconoclast at times; but then there were crueler elements that I questioned.
    Fortunately, I have viewed equitable and sober comments on the case by other ‘reviewers” (such as those by the late Ian Stevenson in The Journal of Parapsychology, March 1, 1995.) that appeared kinder and more balanced.
    Copies of the 1975 FATE Magazine article mentioned above are available from me for a small $.50 copying charge.
    I am in the process of developing a list of items I will be happy to mail out soon and in the future..

  28. emerson says:

    Demonic possession is described as a being control by the devil or by his henchmen, after being used for destructive purposes for himself and others.

  29. Anais says:

    Mo soeur a deja eu sa en nos famille ne savais rien ma soeur etait tres malade ma mere lu enmene chez un docteur ils penser qui’il et malade me elle atrape sa en lui en fait beaucoup des priyer pour lui mes sa ne manche pas un jour ma mere lui enmene chez un posari pour retirer sa ma mere quand elle su qui’l etait poceder avec sa elle a comance a pleure elles vient a la maison maman explique nous 1ou2 jour ma soeur et gueri

  30. I’ll love to read other post & comments but I also have this question; Why are people worshipping Jesus more than they suppose to worshipping God. I’ve reason 4 asking this so please msg me.

  31. john says:

    There is a real Exorcist in Ethiopia, I have seen a lot of people who couldn’t get cure for their disease being cured, I saw a girl who have been blind for so many years got her vision back (what actually blinded her was the Satan inside her), and so many miracles… Demonic Possession isn’t only as you guys think … I just can’t write you here every thing… find and watch the videos on youtube, search [Memihr Girma Wendimu (መምህር ግርማ ወንድሙ) that’s name of The Exorcist]… You may not understand the language(contact me or the Uploader of those videos, ተአምረ ፅዮን studeo) ….Exorcism is actually real. Really!!!

  32. John says:

    How Exorcism Works
    by Julia Layton
    There is a real Exorcist in Ethiopia, I have seen a lot of people who couldn’t get cure for their disease being cured, I saw a girl who have been blind for so many years got her vision back (what actually blinded her was the Satan inside her), and so many miracles… Demonic Possession isn’t only as you guys think it is… I just can’t write you here every thing… find and watch the videos on youtube, search [Memihr Girma Wendimu (መምህር ግርማ ወንድሙ) that’s name of The Exorcist]… You may not understand the language(contact me or the Uploader of those videos, ተአምረ ፅዮን studeo) ….Exorcism is actually real. Really!!!

  33. […] heard of Roland Doe? The boy who The Exorcist is based on? Read about him here. They say he was probably just “a spoiled, disturbed bully who threw deliberate tantrums to […]

  34. I totally and absolutely believe in the case of ‘R’ because I have together with about 100 young men witnessed levitating and violently shaking double decker beds with people still on it during a stint in the military. It was around 5.30am in the morning and still pitch black when screams were heard in the bunks. But although I believe in the situation mentioned, I do not agree in the prayer for Saint Michael. We should always go straight to Jesus Christ because He alone is our teacher and counsellor. Only through His Spirit can we live and do anything. Michael can help, but our requests must be made to God Himself. I believe people have again mis-directed their attention. “I am the Truth the Way and the Life. NO MAN goes to the Father except through Me.” – Jesus.

  35. yeshu das thevar says:

    Truly a great story ……and I believe everything is true thank you for putting this article

  36. […] movie screenplay having been adapted by the author. The novel in turn was based on the real-life exorcism in 1949 of a boy (‘Roland Doe’, about fourteen years old at the time) who allegedly […]

  37. […] para ayudar a un niño. Nadie sabe el verdadero nombre del joven, conocido sólo como Roland Doe o Robbie Mannheim. Cualquier nombre usted decide ir con, la historia es la […]

  38. Yup the whole story is prob true.Demons are a problem but I believe the boy was set free because they only answer to Jesus.Serpentsbon tbw other hand only answer to themselves and are their own authority.where have all the good exorcists gone??hmmmm

  39. Lattimer Christine says:

    Entities really do exist. I was 4 or 5 and one night when my mom and aunt were up late talking about their past as kids we kept getting a knock at our front door. When I would go to check who was there, no one was. At one point my mom called the police who came out to check around the property for prank kids. The second time the police came they told her it was probably raccoons. This went on from about 10 pm till 12am. It finally seemed to stop. Then all of a sudden the knock came at the door again but this time it was accompanied by knocking on every window and for in the house at the exact same time. I went running thru the house trying to catch who was doing the knocking. It went on and wouldn’t stop. Finally my mom stood in the middle of the living room and started to pray. After a few minutes everything stopped. It never came back. In that form. Strangely I was never afraid. C.L.

  40. Preston Allen Snelson says:

    This is an amazing read! I do believe in demonic possession, though I’ve never witnessed such an event,however I like true stories about exorcism, and movies based on true stories about exorcism. I’ve always believed in such things even though I don’t go to church, but do believe in God and Jesus and the Devil. Great story! Very easy to read and understand! Thanks Friend…… Oh and no one will ever catch me screwing around with a ouija board lol

  41. […] help a young boy. Nobody knows the real name of the young boy, only known as either Roland Doe or Robbie Mannheim. Whatever name you decide to go with, the story is the […]

  42. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  43. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  44. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  45. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  46. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  47. […] The fact: The Exorcist was adapted from the 1971 novel of the same name. The book was based at least partially on the story of an unidentified 13-year-old boy who exhibited signs of possession in Cottage City, MD in 1949. (source) […]

  48. […] The True Story Behind The Exorcist The Entire Case History of Robbie Mannheim: The Real-Life Story That Inspired “The Exorcist&#8… […]

    • Jan says:

      I’m 86, and went to Camden Catholic high school, in New Jersey. When I was a freshman, the whole body of students were called to the auditorium to listen to a guest speaker. The priest who spoke came to warn us not to use the ouija board, as it could lead to demon possession. He spoke about a boy they were trying to expel a demon from. He told us that the boy was thrown to the ceiling, by an unknown source, and then fell back to the bed. I recall being frightened, as we never heard of possession, or demonic activity. I believe that priest was one of the those involved with the exorcism of Robbie. It certainly left an impression in my mind.

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