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Creffield and Doctrine Over Person

"The pattern of doctrine over person occurs when there is a conflict between what one feels oneself experiencing and what the doctrine or ideology says one should experience," Dr. Lifton writes. "Personal history becomes reworked in light of group doctrine. Everyone must fit the doctrinal mode. If some human experience seems to contradict the doctrine an elaborate rationalization will explain the discrepancy and prove that the doctrine is right and the experience wrong."

One of the biggest personal conflicts Holy Rollers had to deal with was the love they had felt for their families before meeting Franz Edmund Creffield, and then after meeting him, coming to believe that those in their families who did not stay in Creffield's church were evil. Some of his followers simply denied that there had been any love in their families in the first place, and that statements others made to the contrary were false.


An excerpt from Chapter Nine of Holy Rollers,
a statement O. V. Hurt, now a lapsed member of Creffield's church, made about his wife

"She wouldn't even take care of the adopted child," O. V. said. " I cared for it in the morning, dressed it and looked after it until I left the house [for work]. Then I took it to a neighbor's and left it there until I returned home.

"My wife and my daughters refused to wash the child's clothing, or to wash its body. They refused to feed it, or to wash the dishes in which the baby's food was prepared. They declared that God would be displeased with them if they had anything to do with the child. Creffield had told them so. . . .

Oregon State Insane Asylum"My wife and daughters came to believe that I was defiled, and that this little one was defiled. At the suggestion of that viper, they talked of making sacrifice of the child; they would have burned her along with their clothing, their furniture and the cats and dogs which they declared to be of this world and unfit to live. They were all crazy--yes, all crazy. . . .

"I was pleading, threatening and trying all in my power to bring my wife and daughters back to sanity, but without avail."

On June 27th [1904], when the sheriff came to take Sarah to the asylum, she put up a fight and tore off all her clothes. O. V. struggled to get a union suit--long johns--on her, and it was wrapped about her neck as she was carried from the house screaming at him, "I hate you, but I love Creffield!"

She was declared insane because she "claims her husband is not related to her, and that God is her husband." O. V. was not a violent man, but now he said he "would like to hurt Creffield with a bullet."


Holy Rollers

Buy Holy Rollers: Murder & Madness in Oregon's Love Cult as an eBook for a measly $3.99 or get an autographed paperback for $15.

Holy Rollers is a story that has everything a good read should have: sex, religious fervor, mass insanity, the downfall of prominent families, murder and sensational court trials.

And it's all true.

John Terry, the Oregonian's 'Oregon's Trails' columnist says of the book: "A dandy piece of research and a good read. Lots more stuff than I was aware of. It deserves an audience"













Holy Rollers Paper Back

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Theresa (T-) McCracken, 890 North Bayview, Loop Waldport, Oregon 97394 (541) 563-3112


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Sample Chapters from Holy Rollers:
Murder and Madness in Oregon's Love Cult


The Cast of Characters
Photos and Bios of the Holy Rollers


Holy Rollers' Asylum Commitment Papers


Info for Book Groups

Book Reviews


1903 to 1907 Newspaper Articles About the Holy Rollers

1906 Editorial Calling for Gun Control
After Multiple Murders Involving the Holy Rollers

Stewart Holbrook Holy Rollers Article

Advertisements from 1893 to 1913


Oregon Insane Asylum
Where the Holy Rollers Were Committed

Creffield, Brainwashing & Thought Reform

Early Cases of Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity

1906 Autopsies Of Holy Rollers
Forensics Before CSI

Holy Roller Bizarre Divorce Decree
Hartley describes trying to kill his wife's lover


Comedians on Edmund Creffield

The Shadow Testament
A Play About The Holy Rollers

How the Fire Fell
A Movie About The Holy Rollers


Life in Corvallis in the early 1900s

Life in Waldport, OR in early 1900s

Heaven's Gate

Facts & Stats about 1906
And How The Holy Rollers Measured Up

Oregon State Penitentiary
Where Creffield Was Incarcerated


Info about Cults

Could you ever be lured into joining a cult?

Share your thoughts about, and experiences with, cults


Creffield's Preachings

Creffield Vs. Crefeld

The Salvation Army Opening Fire in 1886

Holy Roller Theology

Reverend Knapp's Bible Songs of Salvation & Victory
Songs Sung by the Holy Rollers


About the Authors

Theresa (T-) McCracken

Robert B. Blodgett

In addition to writing, McCracken is a cartoonist.

To see some of her 'toons, go to the Home of McHumor Cartoons mchumor.com

McCracken's Blog

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Snail Mail
Theresa (T-) McCracken
890 North Bayview Loop
Waldport, Oregon 97394

(541) 563-3112


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Theresa (T-) McCracken