Date of Discovery
The original dating of the chair is unknown, however, in the early 1950s, the Glatzel family came into possession of it.
The Devil’s Rocking Chair
The chair is simple in style having a columned back, rounded arm ends, and two beige cushions for seating comfort.
Who built the chair and where it originally came from is still unknown to this day, but its origin began when an American family, the Glatzel, came into owning the rocking chair.
What started as begin a simple household piece of furniture soon became the center of a tragedy for the Glatzel family, and became one of America’s most notorious exorcisms. The youngest member of the family, David Glatzel, was believed to be possessed by a demon in the summer of 1980. He claimed to be having nightmares of a man with black eyes, thin animal-like face, jagged teeth, pointed ears, horns, and hooves was visiting him. After seeing him visibly shaken by these nightmares the family noticed his behavior change, he was becoming more withdraw and quiet. Hoping to get David out of this “depression” the family sent him to live with his sister and her fiancée, Debbie and Arne Johnson. This however led to more nightmares about the dark-eyed man coming for David’s soul. Scratches and cruises began appearing on the boy’s body while he was sleeping, unexplainable noises began in the attic, and soon after David reported seeing the beast while awake now.
This beast-like man seemed to only be seen sitting in the family’s rocking chair by David, the family would see the chair rocking back and forth on its own. Fearing the worst, the Glatzel family called a priest to bless the house, which seemed to make things much worse. The unexplained sounds in the attic were growing stronger, David’s visions increased, as well as the boy hissing and speaking in tongues to his family members. During the night he had strange seizures every 30 to 45 minutes which caused the family to watch him constantly though-out the night. The rocking chair was now moving about the house on its own, disappearing and appearing in different rooms or places, even levitating on numerous occasions.
The Glatzel’s now fully believed the Devil was battling to steal their son’s soul, the family turned to Ed and Lorrain Warren who began regularly visiting the home. Multiple exorcisms were performed on David, who was sitting in the rocking chair. There were many witnesses to the rocking chair moving on its own, jerking, and even levitating on numerous occasions during these exorcisms. During the final exorcism, David was freed of the demon, however, Arne Johnson was said to be takin over by the demon. David showed signs of improvement and his behavior was becoming regular again. Johnson had started to show similar behavior changes as David once did. He ended up killing his landlord, Alan Bono, with a pocketknife and stood trial 8 months later. His plea was not guilty due to demonic possession was the first time in American legal history; however, it didn’t work to his favor. The jury found him guilty of first-degree murder and served 5 years out of the 10- to 20-year sentence.
Since the 1980s tragic events, the chair sat in storage and causing problems within the Glatzel family. Anyone who sat in the chair was stricken with sciatica or abnormal back problems, some were lesser cases others required surgery. Today the Devil’s Rocking Chair is at Zak Bagan’s The Haunted Museum, where it is displayed as safely as it can be. The museum workers have reported large numbers of experiences within its walls; terrifying some and attaching others closer in.
Modern Pop-Culture References
- Ghost Adventures (2016)
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