Why the Warren Occult Museum Closed Down

Annabelle

Getty The Warren Occult Museum, where the Annabelle doll is located, has been closed to the public since 2019.

The Warren Occult Museum, where the Annabelle doll is located, has been closed to the public since 2019. The museum was started by paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, with Ed working as a religious demonologist and Lorraine functioning as a medium. The museum is listed as permanently closed by Altas Obscura.

The Warren Occult Museum is located behind the Warrens’ former home in Monroe, Connecticut, The Cinemaholic wrote. The Warrens’ work inspired the horror films Annabelle (2014), Annabelle: Creation (2017) and Annabelle Comes Home (2019). The movies are based on the real-life Raggedy Ann doll, who Lorraine said was “evil.”

Some people became worried on Friday, August 14, as the doll’s name became a top-trending topic online after rumors swirled that Annabelle had escaped the museum. The hoax has since been debunked.

The Warrens’ son-in-law Tony Spera, who is now the leader of the New England Society for Psychic Research – NESPR, posted a YouTube video where he confirmed Annabelle never left her glass enclosure.

Here’s what he said:

I’m here to tell you something, I don’t know if you want to hear this or not, but Annabelle did not escape. Annabelle’s alive—well, I shouldn’t say alive— Annabelle’s here, in all her infamous glory. She never left the museum. Remember, I have high-tech security here. If she had left the museum I’d have instantly know if something happened or somebody broke in. I have good alarm systems here and the police are good to respond. They respond within a couple of minutes, maybe, if that.

But Annabelle’s here. She didn’t go anywhere. She didn’t take a trip. She didn’t fly first class and she didn’t go out to visit her boyfriend. So here she is. Let’s put the rumors to rest, guys.

I appreciate all the concern. I’d be concerned if Annabelle really did leave because she’s nothing to play with.


Why Did the Museum Close?

The museum was closed in 2019 over zoning violations, The Monroe Sun reported.

“It is not a museum. It is a residential house. The street is a very narrow public roadway, inadequate for parking for any commercial enterprise,” the town’s Police Chief John Salvatore told The Monroe Sun. “And the traffic generated by the home inconveniences neighbors.”

Spera said he had tried to cooperate. “I have been in compliance with the town’s order and have added more signage in an attempt to quell curious visitations from fans,” Spera told the publication in an email.

Spera planned to add more security cameras and lights. “I have done everything to the best of my ability to stop the intrusion of unwanted guests,” he told the publication. “I am not happy with people crawling around the house at all hours either, and the burden placed on neighbors and the local police department, who do a fantastic job of checking on and clearing the property.”


The Museum Contained Artifacts That Had Been ‘Touched by Evil’

The Occult Museum was first opened in 1952 and the Warrens continued to add items that had been “touched by evil” to their collection, as noted by Atlas Obscura.

The Warrens locked the trinkets away to keep them safe from the public. While there were plenty of knick-knacks locked away in the Occult Museum-including an alleged Vampire’s coffin and demonic masks–the most popular totem housed in the museum was the Annabelle doll, who sat in her own glass case. Annabelle, who looks nothing like the doll from the Hollywood films, is said to have caused a man’s death.

There’s a reason why Annabell’s appearance was changed. Superstitious Times revealed the doll’s look had to change to avoid copyright infringements.

Spera agreed to do an episode of Ghost Adventures with host Zak Bagans, something he later regretted. Bagans claimed something happened to his car after he meeting with Annabelle.

“It was all an act for the camera … He was saying stuff like, ‘I want to hug her. I feel sorry for her. I feel a connection to her’,” Spera told the Superstitious Times about Bagans. “They cut it out.”

Still, Spera said something about the experience terrified Bagans. “The problem is it doesn’t have to happen right away … The devil doesn’t have to do what you want it to do,” he told the publication. “It may happen a year from now and he won’t attribute it to the doll. They’re sly. They’re cunning. They hate you.”

READ NEXT: Annabelle Doll Escaped From Warren Museum Hoax Debunked


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