Student Voice


February 26, 2024




‘The Conjuring’ based on real-life events

October 24, 2013

The thrill of a good horror film is based on knowing the gory, creepy events depicted on screen could never happen in real life, but what happens when the events were taken from a true story?

Moviegoers flooded theaters on opening weekend of “The Conjuring” this past summer. The hype of a true horror story created a box-office frenzy.

The conjuring is a horror story about a family in Rhode Island.
The conjuring is a horror story about a family in Rhode Island.

“The Conjuring” is based on a small suburban family’s worst nightmare.

The Perron family moved into a home in Burrillville, R.I., in the early 1970s. Soon after moving in, the Perron family began experiencing a series of strange events. A distinct smell filled the home at odd times during the day. Doors were opening and closing independently. It was frigid cold in certain areas of the house.

The five Perron daughters were claiming to have heard other children’s voices while playing games in the house. One daughter even saw a ghost.

“When we got the phone call to come check it out, I knew this wasn’t a hoax. They had all the indicators of an evil spirit living in their home,” said Lorianne Warren, a world-renowned working clairvoyant.

Warren and late husband Ed were the first responders to the Perron family. As shown in “The Conjuring,” the Warrens were professional ghost hunters. They walked into many homes that claimed to be haunted; one, most notably, was the Amityville Horror house.

Warren, born with a psychic sense, was able to distinguish good and bad based on an individual’s aura. To Warren, people have an extra glow to them.

“Sometimes that glow shines brighter, other times it is just dim. If it’s dim, it’s bad,” Warren said.

Ed also had a duty to fulfill when called to haunted dwellings. He was the first demonologist recognized by the Catholic Church. “He was allowed to assist in exorcisms,” said Tony Spera, the Warren’s son-in-law.

What makes the Warren duo unique is their commitment to challenging evil in the world. “Soon into our investigation of the Burrillville case, Mrs. Perron was almost completely possessed,” Warren said. “Something had to be done.”

According to Warren, a woman named Bathsheba, who dabbled in Satanism in the early 19th century and lived on the same property that the Perron’s home stood, possessed Mrs. Perron.

Warren’s husband relieved Perron of the evil spirits. The Perron family’s entire story is told in the book, “House of Darkness, House of Light.”

Warren continues to investigate hauntings today with the help of her son-in-law. They also began to allow visitors into Warren’s home to hear her stories and see her haunted objects that she kept from famous cases in her Occult Museum.

Many of the people who visit her museum have seen “The Conjuring” and are interested in learning more about a real-life clairvoyant.

“You just can’t touch anything when you walk through the museum,” Spera exclaimed. “The evil they carry is real.”

The many haunted items in the Occult Museum hold many unique stories, most at the cost of several human lives. The Occult Museum is the only one of its kind.

“I feel comfortable telling people it is the most haunted place in the world,” Spera said.

Those interested in learning more about Warren and the Occult Museum are urged to visit her website at

Emily Van Ort is a student at UW-River Falls majoring in journalism.