Mid-century House
by jimsurbex
June 13, 2021

Recently I was contacted by someone who was close to this house I explored and knew all the history of its previous owners. He reached out to me because he recognised the place in my Instagram story and was willing to tell me the in-depth history of the house. Just be warned, the story starts out wholesome but takes a very dark turn.


The house was custom designed and purpose-built for the Brown family in 1952. Interestingly Alf Brown was the owner and founder of Paramount browns, if you lived in Adelaide and listened to the radio or tv ads you will remember the catchy jingle “YOU’LL FIND IT AT PARAMOUNT BROWNS!!!”. A lot of effort was put into building the house by hand and it was extremely large for the time. Their family was growing quickly and they created their home to service this. The large room on the Far East side of the house was used as a projector room (Pic .1) where Alf Brown would invite everyone in the neighbourhood to watch movies on his 16mm projector. According to many neighbours who attended these movie nights, Alf loved to play Cowboy and western movies starring John Wayne. 


The massive 21-meter long pool on the property was dug by hand because their neighbour refused to remove any of the fence panels to allow equipment through. It was a custom-built pool for professional swimming for the family members who were trying to get into the Olympics. The Browns ended up selling the home to the O’Leary family after only living there for 5 Years. There was not much information on the O’Leary family other than the fact they moved into the home for the sheer size of it. They held the property from the 60s–80s when they sold it to the Alexander family. Unfortunately, the Alexander family is where things take a dark turn.

The father of the Alexander family worked as a doctor and bought the home in the ’80s. He was a GP and had some major legal trouble for masterminding a Medicare scam, as a result of this he lost his licence to practice medicine. His daughter Marie was also a Doctor and it seems as though she followed in her father’s footsteps when she too got into legal trouble in 1996. Marie was fined by the medical board of South Australia and had to repay a family around $46k for “inappropriate conduct”

“Dr Marie Alexander, medical practitioner of Prospect, South Australia As detailed in the court documents, the HIC referred Dr Alexander to PSR in June 1996. A PSR Committee reported that she had engaged in inappropriate practice. The Determining Officer directed that she repay $46,467.12. The HIC eventually commenced action in the District Court of South Australia for recovery of this sum. Dr Alexander then requested review of the Determination by the PSR Tribunal, which was refused on time grounds. She applied to the Federal Court for review of this refusal. The matter was ultimately resolved with a substantial payment by Dr Alexander and discontinuance of both the Federal and District Court actions.”


Unfortunately, according to people who knew her at the time, this was the start of her mental decline. Since the incident, she had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and other mental issues. Along with this, the state of the home declined as she refused any help.


Within the last 8 years, neighbours had reported people coming and going from the home constantly, some people suspected she was involved with drugs. Since nobody had seen her father in years, everyone who knew her suspected he was deceased and she was living alone. One day, a random visit by SA Health officers in the last 4 years uncovered something horrendous.


The SA Health officers found her father, he was not deceased – but in a vegetative state. He was classed (in layman’s terms) as half-deceased and found strapped to the bed as Marie refused to let him leave. His condition had deteriorated so much apparently she had newspaper covering him that had been there for so long it seeped into the skin and they had to peel his body off the bed to remove him. 

When SA health removed Marie from the property & cleared the house, they found $150,000 in cash and a mixture of gold and silver bullion in the ceiling. 


The house was left abandoned and eventually, squatters moved in who lived in the ceiling and cooked methamphetamine in the back laundry for years. Eventually, CIB private detectives started constant surveillance of the property which resulted in court orders putting the property in the hands of the Public Trustee. As a result of this, it was recently sold for over $1,700,000.

Now hopefully the home will be restored to its former glory, however – after seeing its current condition I find it hard to believe that will be the case.


Exploring the house knowing the history was really unnerving and I couldn’t stand to spend more than a couple of minutes in the room Marie kept her dad (Pic .3). It smelt so bad like 20 rats had died there at once. I am sceptical when it comes to the paranormal, however, I was getting constant bad vibes from this place. I hope Marie and her father are now at peace or at least receiving the care they need.


Thanks to my informant for the information! It was great to hear all this history and I would love to write more of these blog posts in the future. If you read this and enjoyed it – send me a message and let me know. 





Abandoned Mines and Dugouts in Coober Pedy

Abandoned Mines and Dugouts in Coober Pedy

Coober Pedy is a Mining town 846km north of Adelaide South Australia, named after the indigenous term "kupa-piti" which means "white fellas hole". As of 2021 the population of Coober Pedy was around 1.5k and over half live underground in dwellings known as "dugouts"....

Bureau of Meteorology

Bureau of Meteorology

After four decades of service in weather data collection and analysis, the Bureau of Meteorology's Kent Town weather station closed its doors. The station, an emblem of Adelaide's meteorological history, was recognised for its unique Brutalist architecture that, while...