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THE CAST OF CHARACTERS

The Mitchell Siblings, George, Perry, Fred & Phoebe

George MitchellGeorge Mitchell, eighteen in 1903, had doted on his youngest sister, Esther, since their mother had died in 1894 and their father had abandoned them.

After Esther joined the Holy Rollers and told him and his brother, Perry, that they were her brothers “in name only,” George was devastated. “I had my own living to make,” he said, “and you can’t make enough in a lumber mill or a lath factory to give up all your time to such things”--such things as pleading with your bright but deranged sister. He couldn’t eat or sleep. Perry, twenty, told him that if he didn’t quit worrying about Esther, he, “would soon be as nutty as the Holy Rollers” … or his older brother Fred.

Fred, twenty-three in 1903, started acting even more strangely than usual his friends said. He rambled on almost non-stop about God, and then, for no apparent reason, resigned as a motorman for City & Suburban.

The next morning the chambermaid at the Merchants’ Hotel in Portland where Fred was staying, found him lying in a pool of blood, moaning, “I want to die.” He had shot himself in the head with a revolver three or four hours before. The ball went through his scalp and lodged itself under the skin. Fred then fired a shot under his left breast. That ball went under his heart and through his chest.

Asked why he had attempted suicide, Fred spat out, “None of your business. Attend to your own affairs. I’ve troubles of my own.” He was taken to the Good Samaritan Hospital, where it was assumed he would die. But he didn’t.

Phoebe Mitchell signed the papers to have her sister, Esther, committed to the Boys’ and Girls’ Aid Society. Phoebe, twenty-eight in 1903, had followed in her father’s footsteps and joined the Salvation Army and was a Sergeant-Major. Except for field officers, she held the highest position in Portland’s corps.

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The stills are from How the Fire Fell, Edward P. Davee’s movie based on the book Holy Rollers: Murder and Madness in Oregon's Love Cult.

Most were taken by Destiny Lane.

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George Mitchell

George MitchellJason Haines as George Mitchell

George Mitchell

George MitchellJason Haines as George Mitchell

Perry Mitchell

Donna StarrEd Vilderman, Erin McGarry, Tim Crabtree and Jason Haines as Fred, Phoebe, Perry and George Mitchell

Phoebe Mitchell

Esther Mitchell

Brighid Thomas, Tim Crabtree & Erin McGarry as Esther, Perry & Phoebe Mitchell

Phoebe Mitchell

One of Creffield's Followers

Avenge Headline

Ether Mitchell & Her BrothersBrighid Thomas, Jason Haines, Tim Crabtree, and Ed Vilderman as Esther, George, Perry & Fred Mitchell

Murder Illustrated

Ether Mitchell & Her BrothersJason Haines, Tim Crabtree, Ed Vilderman & Brighid Thomas as George, Perry, Fred and Esther Mitchell

Sketches From George Mitchells Trial

George Mitchell

George Mitchell

George & Perry Mitchell

George Mitchell

George Mitchell

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"

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Holy Rollers Paper Back

Get an autographed paperback for $16.95 (that includes postage and handling for U.S. addresses)

Want to write a check instead of using a credit card? I'm trusting. e-mail that you want the book and I'll send you a copy. You don't send a check until you get the book with an invoice.

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

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The Cast of Characters
Photos and Bios of the Holy Rollers

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Holy Rollers' Asylum Commitment Papers

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Info for Book Groups

Book Reviews

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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

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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

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Comedians on Edmund Creffield

The Shadow Testament
A Play About The Holy Rollers

How the Fire Fell
A Movie About The Holy Rollers

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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

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Info about Cults

Could you ever be lured into joining a cult?

Share your thoughts about, and experiences with, cults

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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

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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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