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.

December 22, 1903: Linn County Holy Rollers


Sarah Hurt & the Holy RollersCorvallis Gazette 12/22/1903 p3

Linn County Holy Rollers


A colony of Holy Rollers has started in to make Linn County and Albany famous having permanently located in a house on the Anna Beach place in the hop yard, just over the river from the ferry.


Parson Creffield, the old-time leader, returned on Friday last and is now in command. Mr. Campbell and West Seeley, with the two Seeley sisters and Miss Sandal are with the party. Frank hurt and wife have also taken up their residence with the Linn county squad.


Up to the present time very little disturbance has been caused, the party carrying on their worship with but little noise.


But events are likely to occur in a few days if the Rollers become in any way aggressive, that will put a stop to any further proceedings on their part. Mr. Creffield will be provided with a nice, warm coat, that will fit him as closely as the paper on a wall, and that will contain more feathers that the wings he promises himself when he reaches the place where the holy roll is kept. He will also be given a walking pass out of this locality, and a warning about returning that he will do well to heed.


This is the program outlined by some desperate and determined men in this vicinity, and there is no doubt that it will be carried out.


Albany Democrat 12/25/1903 p2

Corvallis has shipped the Holy Rollers to their annex this side of the river and seem to think that is a good one on Linn County.



Albany Democrat 12/25/1903 p3

Holly Rollers in Linn County


Corvallis, Dec. 22 - Benton County has turned over to the Holy Rollers to Linn County, and I really believe they need aid. It may be advisable for Judge Palmer to locate them. They left Corvallis and now occupy a building on the Beach opposite the city, twelve in number. The apostle Creffield is with them. Rolling is now going on. I think they could be induced to go to Albany with the proper inducement.



A Corvallis man who is in the city today says there is a barrel of tar ready for them if they continue their doings. He says it is a regular free love establishment, a law unto themselves and the people are tired of the disgraceful arrangement.

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