The Brutally Haunting Story of the Unsolved Villisca Axe Murders

Tucked away in the small Montgomery County, Iowa town of Villisca, sits an old white-framed house at the end of a quiet little street. At first, the house looks like a normal two-story house that you might see in the middle of nowhere. But then comes the terrifyingly haunting history.

Long before serial killers and mass murders had become a way of life, two adults and six children were found brutally murdered in their beds in the small Midwestern town of Villisca, Iowa. During the weeks that followed, life in this sleepy little Iowa town changed drastically. And yet, to this day, the murder remains unsolved, and the murderer unpunished.

The Monday morning of June 10, 1912 was cloudy and somewhat humid, the small bustling town of Villisca, Iowa was stirring to life. Yet the Moore house, was completely silent.

This was very unlike them, because the household was normally lively. Josiah B. Moore would’ve been off to work on a normal day, and his wife, Sarah Montgomery Moore would be out in the yard tending to her chores, and the four children, 11-year-old Herman Montgomery Moore, 10-year-old Mary Katherine Moore, 7-year-old Arthur Boyd, and 5-year-old Paul Vernon, should’ve been playing together in the yard.

But today, the house was eerily quiet. Katherine’s friends, 8-year-old Ina Mae Stillinger, and her sister Lena Gertrude Stillinger spent the night with the Moores the night before the murders, but didn’t make it home.

You can take a tour of the haunted house from now until October 31, and then again in the Spring. The house offers both daylight tours and overnight tours. Prices for daylight tours $10 per person 12 and over, and seniors 65 and over are $5 with no reservation needed.

Overnight tours of the Villisca Axe Murder house for 2021 will be available for booking starting October 21, 2020. Nighttime tours normally begin around 4:00 p.m.

After a walkthrough tour of the house and grounds, the guides will simply turn over the key and head on home. Overnight tours are by reservation only.

Guides suggest that your group is of 10 or less people. The overnight tour is not for the faint of heart. Enter if you dare.