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In our opinion the Moore house is not now, nor has it ever been haunted.

After spending dozens of hours filming in the house for the documentary at all hours of the day and night, we have no paranormal experiences to report.  In addition, we have interviewed and/or received e.mails from every former resident of the Moore house between 1936 and 1993 and they all say the house was not haunted.  While friends and neighbors thought living in the murder house was a bit spooky, residents found their fears somewhat amusing.

Before ghost hunters from Nebraska declared the Moore house haunted in 1999, if a visitor had asked a Villisca resident for directions to the "haunted house," they would either have been directed to the wrong house or the local wouldn't have known what they were talking about.  Before 1999, the Moore house never had a reputation as a "haunted house."

Berdine Miller lived in the murder house with her family from 1936-1942.  Her father was a night watchman and her mother sold Avon.   The rent was $8 per month.  We interviewed Berdine in 1994 about her experience living in the Moore house.

Berdine: I was 18 at the time. I had just graduated from high school '35. My sister was 16, and my brother was 20 and a my father was on the police force. And we had no qualms about living in this old Moore murder house. It was just home to us.

Tammy: So, you hadn't heard any ghost stories or anything?

Berdine: Naw. My sister and I would be up town some evenings after school and so forth and we'd be coming home from town and our friends would say "are you going down and sleep in that old Moore murder house tonight?" But they was just kidding us. And my sister could never have a a slumber party because her girl friends didn't want to go down and sleep in that old murder house. So, that kinda got us. But we didn't pay too much attention.

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Above--Berdines parents, Bertha and Frank, seated serenely on the front porch of their home: Villisca axe murder house.


Perhaps it is only a coincidence that the house became "haunted" in the wake of the popularity of The Sixth Sense (a movie we enjoyed as fiction).  A wave of media attention followed the announcement that the house was haunted and much of it was reported without any reference or context within the known historical record.

What's frightening about the Villisca axe murders is the notion that someone could enter your home (the place where you feel most secure), murder you and your entire family and two guests while you're asleep (the time when you are most vulnerable), and get away with it.  That's what's really scary about the Villisca axe murder story.

Is the Moore murder house haunted?  In our opinion, no.

Hit & Myth: Your One-Stop Guide to Villisca Axe Murder Fact or Fancy

Info on the upcoming Sci-Fi Channel "Proof Positive" Villisca Episode

Info on Fox Family Channel's "The Scariest Places on Earth" Villisca Episode

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