Creffield and the Holy Rollers made page one headlines from 1903 to 1907. When I was researching Holy Rollers: Murder and Madness in Oregon’s Love Cult I spent months transcribing hundreds of articles. I’m not sure why I was so obsessive. Maybe it was my way of immersing my self into a cult without joining one. Anyway, I’m posting them all for those who are really interested in the story, or are interested the history of journalism, or are interested in how a scandalous story played out in the "media" in a by gone era. Since I no doubt made typos and unconsciously corrected papers' typos, these web pages should not be cited in anything serious (e.g. your dissertation). For such projects they should only be used as starting points and you should refer to the original sources. If you want a shorter version of the story, buy my book. Enjoy.
June 10, 1903: Salvation Army Major Deserts and Joins the Holy Rollers
Sara Robbin & Jon Ashley Hall
as Mollie & Frank Hurt
Corvallis Times 6/10/1903 p3
Desertion From The Ranks
Major Brooks Forsakes the Salvation Army and Joins the Comeouters
Major Charles Edward Brooks who has had charge of the Salvation Army work in this locality for some months has a charge of desertion laid against him by his former associate and ex-comrade who so long marched by the major’s side in pursuance of his duty as a lieutenant of the Corvallis corps. “Yes,” said Lt. Mannes to a Times writer, “the major has deserted us. In his talks on the street you no doubt have heard him declare how certain he was that was saved in the army. At last he concluded that he was not saved and affected to believe that he could be saved only through the Comeouters. He pretends to know now that he is saved and affected to believe that he could be saved only through the Comeouters. He pretends to know now that he is saved, but whether he was lying before or now I can not tell. Ever since months ago so many members of the army here went over to the Comeouters, or Holy Rollers as they are sometimes designated, the work of the army has been very difficult because that organization seems to make a greater effort to win members of other churches than it does to win sinners.” These were the words of Lt. Mannes, spoken in a dejected manner, and he was doubtless much affected by conditions of affairs. Ensign Brown, who has charge of the social work of the army in Portland was here Monday to wind up the affairs of the organization in Corvallis. He gave up the building in which meetings have been held, and the furniture and fixtures were stored for the present in rooms near by. The Salvation Army is to withdraw from Corvallis for an indefinite time. The boom of the bass drum is hushed, and the notes of “Down Where the Living Waters Flow” is silent, possibly forever in Corvallis.
At one time membership of the Salvation Army here numbered about 25, but some months ago they went over almost in a body to a sect established here denominated Comeouters. This new order is apparently very devout, but their customs, rites and formalities are so queer and unusual that the organization has been the subject of much comment from those who do not enter fully into the idea of allowing persons to worship God in the manner that seems to them best. At present the Comeouters are holding a protracted camp meeting on the Kiger Island, and here it was that Major Brooks was converted to their belief. It is said that the conversion of Brooks was quite spectacular; that in his spiritual excitement he saw and described the devil approaching enwrapped in a network of snakes, and having frogs, lizards and other hideous reptiles clinging to his body; that as a means of placating his devilish majesty he tore off his Salvation Army cap and coat and hurled them into the fire. Then he swooned and became oblivious to his surroundings, and incident common to the rites of the sect.
Access to the camp ground and to the services is not enjoyed by the public, presumably for the reason that many wish to attend through curiosity mainly.
Corvallis Times 6/20/1903 p3
James Berry was not able to be on hand for business yesterday morning. Late Thursday evening he started south on the state road on his motor bicycle. He rode swiftly. Out a short distance south of the Smith school house the front fork of his machine broke. A traveler came along afterward and picked James up. There were scratches and bruises about his face, and James was so shaken up that he didn’t quite know what was going on. He was brought to his home at Victor Hurt’s where a good night’s sleep restored him sufficiently to realize everything, save what happened when the wheel broke and for a few hours thereafter.
Dalles Weekly Chronicle 6/24/1903 p3
After raving for several days in the city jail, the young man by the name of Phillips, who was arrested Monday night for running about the streets yelling and disturbing the peace, quieted down and was discharged last night. It was not thought necessary to examine him as to his sanity as it was supposed undue excitement at a holiness meeting caused the temporary unbalancing of his mind.
Corvallis Times 6/27/1903 p4
J. K. Berry--Bicycles
The bicycle has become such an important means of conveyance that the city has not an agency or repair shop for this 20th century vehicle is indeed and exception. Mr. J. K. Berry conducts an up-to-date bicycle store and repair shop and is prepared to give entire satisfaction either in the way of a new wheel, skillful repairing, or in supplying any of its parts. He is the agent for Rambler, Raycycle and Tribune wheels and conducts a bicycle livery in connection. He also handles the California motorcycle and the Fairbanks-Morse gasoline engine, and carries a full line of fishing tackle. In the repair department he does brazing, enameling, and is fully equipped for doing any kind of repairing promptly and skillfully. He also handles guns and ammunition and loads shells to order. Mr. Berry has been in business here for two years and his prices are reasonable and all his work guaranteed. Give him a call.
Corvallis Times 6/27/1903 p3
May Hurt and Grace Starr went to Portland Monday for a visit with relatives.
Corvallis Times 7/22/1903 p3
Frank Hurt and Miss Molile Sandell were married Monday. The ceremony took place at the Hurt home, and was witnessed only by relatives. The knot was tied by Justice Holgate.
Corvallis Gazette 7/24/1903 p3
The marriage of Mr. Frank Hurt and Miss Mollie Sandell was solemnized at the home of the groom’s parents of this city last Monday afternoon. The ceremony was performed by Justice Holgate in the presence of relatives and a few invited guests. The groom is a well known young man of this city. His bride came here from Seattle, where her parents reside, for a visit last March. With another young lady, she had charge of the work of the Salvation Army here about three years ago. Mr. and Mrs. Hurt will remain in Corvallis until fall when they will go to Seattle to reside.
Corvallis Gazette 7/31/1903 p3
The marriage of Mr. a. H. Sharp and Mrs. Sarah E. Dennis was solemnized at the home of the bride’s daughter, Mrs. Oscar Starr, in this city yesterday morning at 10 o’clock. Rev. Nobel officiated. The happy pair took the morning train for Albany, from which point they will proceed to Portland. After a few days at the metropolis they will return to Corvallis to make their home.
Corvallis Gazette Fri 7/31/1903 p3
J. K. Berry went to Portland Tuesday to secure an Oldsmobile, which will be placed on exhibition at his bicycle factory. He is expected home tomorrow.
Corvallis Times 8/1/1903 p3
A marriage license was granted Wednesday to A. H. Sharp and Sarah E. Dennis.
The Marriage of Bert Sharp and Mrs. Dennis occurred at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Starr Thursday. The ceremony occurred at 10 o'clock and Rev. Noble of the Baptist church officiated. Mr. and Mrs. Sharp left on the 11 o’clock train for Albany where the bride has relatives.
Corvallis Times 8/5/1903 p3
The automobile that has been spinning about town the past two days is the property of James Berry. He brought it from Portland, arriving here Saturday evening. It is an Oldsmobile, which is one of the handsomest styles manufactured in that it exhibits no ungainly housing. All machinery is encased in what might be an ordinary jump-seat buggy box arranged for two persons. Its speed capacity is 30 miles per hour under favorable conditions. It is claimed that it can be propelled up any hill road which wagons ordinarily traverse. The price of this machine in Corvallis is $690.
Corvallis Gazette 8/7/1903 p3
Early peaches are ripe in the Kiger orchard. Mr. Kiger has kindly remembered the Gazette man with a box of this luscious fruit, and our thanks are hereby expressed.
Corvallis Gazette 8/7/1903 p3
The Gazette man is indebted to J. K. Berry for his first spin in an automobile. He didn’t ride far. The ethics of his profession do not permit of enjoyment to the point of satiety. But the exhilaration; the pulse quickening strange sensation of even a short excursion on an Oldsmobile machine beats the tintinnabulation of the sleigh bells and the--see how easy it is to lapse into poetry when there’s inspiration. This machine is the one referred to in this paper a week ago. It is a handsome vehicle capable of making 30 miles an hour and is propelled by a four-horse motor. It is valued at $690.
Corvallis Times 8/8/1903 p3
J. M. Ingle took a ride on an auto the other day, but not without temporary and preliminary difficulties. He climbed into the Berry machine on the apron in front of the brick livery stable. He sat down with an air of satisfaction with the world and expectation of a delightful ride. From some cause the machine seemed to start off so briskly that John lost his balance. His feet flew up, and the late candidate for congress rolled out over the cushioned seat and dropped all heels up on the walk a couple of feet below. He was not hurt, and gathering up his hat Mr. Ingle climbed in again and with the wisdom of experience braced for the start, and the outfit glided away with speed and grace ...
The speed, ease and grace with which the Berry and Fisher autos glide through the streets and out into the country make on-lookers sigh for a ride, or for the wherewithal to own a machine. Prevailing opinion is that the auto is to be largely the conveyance of the future, and in time the buggies, even for general use will be largely superseded. Even then, however there will have to be lower priced machines so that the man with the hoe can take his turn at ownership. Even on Benton county roads the local machines make a speed of fifteen or twenty miles an hour without sensibly shaking up the rider.
Corvallis Times 8/12/1903 p3
Last Sunday Wm. Hartley and a friend strolled out on Mary’s river flat and the former approached a pony which was staked there. Mr. Hartley liked the looks of the animal and began caressing him. “I like the looks of this little fellow very much” said Mr. Hartley. “I should like to buy him. He appears so kind and gentle.” Mr. Hartley passed his hand down the pony’s hind leg to discover any blemishes. Like a flash the animal smote the hand that caressed him, and wheeled and kicked viciously with both hind feet sending Mr. Hartley’s hat high in the air. The gentleman essayed to retaliate in kind, but he was soon compelled to retreat the length of the stake rope only saving him from utter annihilation. Since the encounter Mr. Hartley has not been able to work on account of a lacerated hand and probably a number of in apparent injuries which he does not care to disclose. He is endeavoring to find the owner of the pony, not for the purpose of buying the animal, but with the intention of presenting a claim for damages.
Corvallis Times 8/22/1903 p3
J. K. Berry thinks he knows who is digging potatoes in his garden on Second Street between Adams and Washington, but he offers $5 reward for conclusive evidence. Somebody better “look a little out.”
Corvallis Gazette Fri 9/4/1903 p3
J. K. Berry has sold his interest in the bicycle business heretofore known as Berry Bros., and will leave shortly for the East. The business will be carried on by Berry and Carl, both young men expert in the business.
Corvallis Gazette 10/2/1903 p3
Warren B. Hartley came down from Bohemia Tuesday and will remain several days.