Do you ever get completely lost in the wormhole that is known as Wikipedia? Researching all kinds of topics until the wee hours of the morning?
Well, there are plenty of the creepy variety that will occupy your time and keep you up at night because they’re so damn creepy.
Here are some terrifying Wikipedia pages based on true-life cults that will really give you the heebie-jeebies.
1. The Holy Rollers
Edmund Creffield started a cult known as The Holy Rollers in Corvallis, Oregon in 1903. The extremist religious group believed Creffield was Jesus Christ (a common theme in cults), and he attracted many female followers. Creffield had many run-ins with the law and was murdered in 1906 by a man whose sister fell under Creffield’s spell.
2. Adolfo Constanzo
Constanzo led a Satanic cult in Mexico and he believed the power of Satan protected him. He was a drug dealer who sacrificed animals and eventually humans. Constanzo and his followers killed victims on a remote ranch in Mexico not far from the Texas border. The high profile murder of a college student named Mark Kilroy attracted a lot of media attention, which eventually led to his downfall in 1989. Police surrounded an apartment where he was staying in Mexico City and Constanzo ordered one of his followers to shoot him.
3. Father Yod and the Source Family
Father Yod‘s real name was James Edward Baker. He owned a successful health food restaurant in the Hollywood Hills and had 14 wives and 3 children. His followers became known as the Source Family. The Source Family also had a band and, of course, Father Yod was the lead singer.
In 1974, the Source Family relocated to Hawaii. It was there, in 1975, that Father Yod died following a hand gliding accident.
5. Chicago’s Ripper Crew
One of the more terrifying groups on this list, the Ripper Crew was a group of men who terrorized Chicago and its suburbs in the early 1980s, all while pledging allegiance to Satan.
The men cruised Chicagoland in a van, abducting, raping, and murdering women. The group is suspected in the disappearances and murders of 18 women.
6. The Family, aka, The Great White Brotherhood
This group was formed in Australia in the 1960s by yoga teacher Anne Hamilton-Byrne. The goal of the cult was to build a perfect race. At one point the group consisted of 500 members.
Hamilton-Byrne’s followers led an isolated existence, cut off from the rest of the word. She would bleach her young followers’ hair and inject them with LSD.
7. Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God
This little-known cult was founded in the African country on Uganda in the late 1980s. The two founders wanted their members to strictly follow the Ten Commandments. The group was specifically concerned with the end of the world.
In 2000, hundreds of members of the cult were killed when their compound went up in flames. Investigators discovered that while some members died in the, most had been poisoned.
8. True Russian Orthodox Church
The True Russian Orthodox Church were led by Pyotr Kuznetsov, a religious zealot who held strange beliefs. The group opposed processed foods and believed bar codes were Satanic symbols.
About 35 members of the cult lived in caves in Russia and threatened mass suicide. Eventually, members left the caves because two of their believers died over the course of a winter.
9. Order of the Solar Temple
The Order of the Solar Temple was founded in 1984 in Switzerland and fashioned their group after the Knights Templar. Unlike other cults, this group was spread out across the glove, and had members in France, Switzerland, and Canada.
The cult gained notoriety for a series of mass suicides and murders in the mid-1990s. One particularly gruesome death was that of a three-month-old child who was believed to be the Antichrist.
10. Aum Shinrikyo
Aum Shinrikyo is a Japanese doomsday cult. Their leader, Shoko Asahara, became a familiar face in the media in the 1990s after he was arrested for releasing poisonous gas in the subway system in Tokyo, killing 13 people.
The group has been designated as a terrorist organization in several countries. Asahara was executed by hanging in 2018 for his crimes in the 1990s.
11. Blackburn Cult
A group founded in the 1920s in Los Angeles, the Blackburn Cult was also known as the Great Eleven Club. The group’s leader, May Otis Blackburn, believed she spoke directly to angels.
The cult sacrificed animals, believed they could raise corpses from the dead, and was suspected of foul play in several disappearances.
12. The Ant Hill Kids
A Canadian cult founded in the late 1970s, the Ant Hill Kids were under the control of their leader, Roch Thériault. He had multiple wives and fathered 26 children. If members attempted to leave the group, they were severely punished. Some were even forced to break their own legs.
Thériault was suspected of physical and sexual abuse of his followers. The group fell apart in 1989, and Thériault was imprisoned for life in 1993 for the murder of one of his followers. In February 2011, Roch Thériault was murdered in prison in Canada by another inmate.
13. Peoples Temple
One of most well-known cults in history, the Peoples Temple was led by the fanatical Jim Jones, a preacher who started his career fighting for racial equality in his native Indiana. Jones moved west to California, and it was there that he grew his church into the Peoples Temple in San Francisco.
Jones transformed from a Civil Rights advocate into a domineering cult leader. His escalating drug problem made his behavior more and more erratic. But Jones’ following grew to thousands of members.
Jones’ followers had no idea that their leader would eventually take them to the South American country of Guyana, where over 900 of them, including Jim Jones, would commit a mass suicide in the jungle in November 1978. The events at Jonestown captured the nation’s attention and are still remembered and studied today.
A rather strange entry on this list, NXIVM is a cult that disguises itself as a marketing company. Actress Allison Mack brought the organization into the headlines, when she was arrested on federal charges, including sex trafficking.
The group formed in 1998 near Albany, New York. Their seminars have been referred to as “expensive brainwashing.” In May 2018, operations for NXIVM were suspended.
15. The Manson Family
Undoubtedly the most-recognized cult in American history, the Manson Family was led by the enigmatic Charles Manson, a career criminal who used his powers of persuasion to control a group of young hippies in the late 1960s.
Manson’s followers were typically young men and women who dropped out of society to experience free love and unlimited drug use. The group lived on different ranches in remote parts of California. The “free love” experiment ended in terror when, over the course of two nights in August 1969, Manson’s followers brutally killed 7 people in Los Angeles.
The recent Netflix documentary series Wild, Wild Country is based on the exploits of the Oregon-based cult Rajneeshpuram. The group was led by Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and attempted to form a utopian community in an isolated area.
17. Heaven’s Gate
Heaven’s Gate gained the attention of the world when 39 members of the group committed suicide in San Diego, California in 1997.
The cult was led by a man named Marshall Applewhite and its members believed that in death they would board an alien spacecraft that was following the Hale-Bopp comet.
18. The Branch Davidians
Yet another doomsday cult that met a violent demise. The Branch Davidians‘ 1993 standoff with federal authorities at their compound ended in the deaths of 76 followers, including cult leader David Koresh.