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7. Physical Mediumship

The Society arrived too late to investigate Daniel Home, the most famous séance medium of the nineteenth century, but did publish some of the work done with him by the scientist William Crookes, also reminiscences by frequent sitters. Material can be found here on later séance mediums (those associated with physical phenomena such as rappings, table levitations, ‘ectoplasm’ and other psychokinetic anomalies). These include Eusapia Palladino, William Eglinton, Marthe Beraud (Eva C), Kate Goligher, Willi and Rudi Schneider, Mina ‘Margery’ Crandon, George Valiantine, Helen Duncan, Florence Cook,  Carlos Mirabelli and Franek Kluski. 

main keywords: physical mediumship, psychokinesis, magic, cheating, slate writing, photography 

HELENA BLAVATSKY

Stack, J.H. ON CONTEMPORARY EVIDENCE AS TO ‘PHANTASMS OF THE LIVING IN INDIA’, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 72-6. Theosophists Colonel Olcott and Mohini Chatterji describe instances of ‘Mahatmas’ projecting themselves in apparitional form. physical mediumship/theosophy/apparitions 

Hodgson. R. et al. REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE APPOINTED TO INVESTIGATE PHENOMENA CONNECTED WITH THE THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY, Proceedings 3, 1885, pp. 201-400. Theosophists’ claims of apports and miraculous writings are comprehensively debunked in this detailed report. Richard Hodgson, who was sent to India to investigate the claims, concluded that their founder and leader Helena Blavatsky was responsible for systematic fraud, aided by mechanical contrivances. Much of the report centres on the testimony of handwriting experts, who concluded that both letters implicating her, and said by her to be forgeries, and the scripts supposed to have been written by unseen ‘Masters’, were both written by her. DISCUSSION, Journal 1, 1885, pp. 420-24, 451-60. Richard Hodgson gives a preliminary report to the Society regarding his researches on Theosophy, and his view that its claims to paranormality are bogus. CORRESPONDENCE, pp 461-4. Exchange between leading Theosophist A.P Sinnett and H. Sidgwick on points arising from Hodgson’s findings. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 2, 1885, pp. 86-7. Sinnett resigns from the Society in protest at the Society’s position on Theosophy. physical mediumship/beliefs/theosophy/magic/cheating 

Hodgson. R. MR SINNET’S CIRCULAR, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 109-113. Controversy following the author’s adverse report on Helena Blavatsky, founder of Theosophy. CORRESPONDENCE: THE ‘HODGSON REPORT’ ON MADAME BLAVATSKY, Journal 45, 1969-70, pp. 188-97. Criticisms of a parapsychologist’s support of the report. See also pp. 314-5. physical mediumship/beliefs/theosophy/magic/cheating 

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: THE ‘HODGSON REPORT’ ON MADAME BLAVATSKY, Journal 45, 1969-70, pp. 188-97. Criticisms of a parapsychologist’s support of the report. See also pp. 314-5. physical mediumship/beliefs/theosophy/magic/cheating 

Harrison, Vernon. J’ACCUSE: AN EXAMINATION OF THE HODGSON REPORT OF 1885, Journal 53, 1985-86, pp. 286-310. Argues that Hodgson’s negative verdict on Helena Blavatsky’s mediumship was flawed by rampant prejudice. The author focuses on his attitude to the handwriting specimens in the Koot Hoomi scripts. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 54, p. 281-3; 55, pp. 40-44; Journal 56 & 57, 1989-1991, pp. 61-2, 63. DISCUSSION Journal 6, 1893, pp. 110-11, 143-4. physical mediumship/beliefs/theosophy/magic/cheating 

END ‘HELENA BLAVATSKY’ 

WILLIAM EGLINTON, HENRY SLADE, FRANCIS MONCK: SLATE WRITING 

Anon. MR EGLINTON’S SLATE-WRITING, Journal 1, 1884-5, pp. 399-400. Brief report on a séance. physical mediumship/slate writing

Vicars, G.R. SLATE-WRITING, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 151-2. Note on séances with Eglinton. physical mediumship/slate writing

Sidgwick, Mrs Henry (Eleanor), (ed.) MR EGLINTON, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 282-334. Favourable reports of the medium’s slate-writing communications are given by a number of sitters. However, Sidgwick argues he is a conjurer. This view generated controversy: see the members’ discussion pp. 339-44, and correspondence, pp. 354-60, which includes testimony from a conjuring expert rejecting the idea that what he observed Eglinton do could be achieved by trickery without detection (354). slate writing/physical mediumship/magic

Lewis, Angelo J. HOW AND WHAT TO OBSERVE IN RELATION TO SLATE-WRITING PHENOMENA, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 362-75. This line is developed in more detail by a second conjuring expert called on by the Society to give an opinion [the first one having rejecting the explanation of trickery in Eglinton’s case]. Lewis points out many suspicious circumstances in slate-writing, notably the medium’s insistence on holding the slate under a table. But he doubts that conjuring tricks could have survived the kind of scrutiny given by many observers of the phenomena. He notes that his own sittings were negative, but that the observations of Eglinton by conjurer colleagues convinced them of the existence of ‘some unknown force’. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 380-83, 406-8. slate writing/physical mediumship/magic

Hodgson, R. ON THE REPORTS...OF SITTINGS WITH MR EGLINTON, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 409-30, 461-7. Hodgson agrees with Sidgwick (Sidgwick, Mrs Henry (Eleanor), (ed.) MR EGLINTON, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 282-334), arguing that the sitters will not be as practised at detecting fraud as the medium is at carrying it out; that they will have been uncritical; and that they will not be capable of writing unbiased reports. He criticises certain of the reports in detail. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 56-60, 71-7, 94-6, 136-8, 153-9, 168-70; Journal 5, pp. 43-4; Journal 6, 1893, pp. 33-47, 86-90. Alfred Russel Wallace (Journal 6, p. 33) argues that Davey, besides being a clever conjurer, must be possessed of mediumistic ability. Hodgson replies. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 86-90. slate writing/physical mediumship/magic

Davey, S.J. MR EGLINTON, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 430-9. Reports of séances. slate writing/physical mediumship

Wedgwood, H. REPLY TO MRS SIDGWICK, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 455-60. Defends Eglinton against Sidgwick. Sidgwick replies pp. 474-84 and continues the attack pp. 467-9. slate writing/physical mediumship

Barrett, W.F. ON SOME PHYSICAL PHENOMENA COMMONLY CALLED SPIRITUALISTIC, WITNESSED BY THE AUTHOR, Proceedings 4, 1886-7, pp. 25-41. The author acknowledges that the bulk of spiritualistic phenomena is unsatisfactory as scientific evidence, but regards certain episodes as inexplicable by any known hypothesis. He describes three such cases from his own experience: raps and movements in the presence of a ten-year old girl; raps and vigorous table movements in the presence of an adult woman; books being ‘handled’ in the presence of a paid medium, Eglinton. A footnote briefly mentions reservations about Slade and definite fraud in relation to Monck (38). NOTE, pp. 42-4. slate writing/physical mediumship/cheating

Lewis, H. Carvill, et al. ACCOUNTS OF SOME SO-CALLED ‘SPIRITUALISTIC’ SÉANCES, Proceedings 4, 1886-7, pp. 338-80. Sceptical treatment of slate-writing séances with Eglinton. Reports considered convincing by spiritualists are shown to be inadequate by editorial notes. A letter and messages written by ‘spirits’ are compared and considered to be written by the same hand. slate writing/physical mediumship/cheating

Barrett, William. ON SOME PHYSICAL PHENOMENA COMMONLY CALLED SPIRITUALISTIC, Journal 2, 1886, pp. 218-24. Barrett describes sittings with two amateur mediums and the professional medium Eglinton, in which at least some of the phenomena appeared genuine. slate writing/physical mediumship

Massey, Charles C. THE POSSIBILITIES OF MAL-OBSERVATION IN RELATION TO EVIDENCE FOR THE PHENOMENA OF SPIRITUALISM, Proceedings 4, 1886-7, pp. 75-98. Defends physical phenomena occurring in the presence of certain mediums as evidence of supernormal phenomena, against the stated view of Eleanor Sidgwick. Contains quoted passages from a German scientist’s report of investigations with Slade; testimony of sittings with Eglinton; and a report from Alfred Russel Wallace on Monck (84) - all on slate-writing. References are given to conjurers endorsing Slade’s and Eglinton’s slate-writing (97). Controversy between the author and Henry Sidgwick follows, concerning the author’s alleged misinterpretation of remarks made by Sidgwick at the Society’s foundation regarding the nature of the proof at which it ought to aim. See also Journal 2, 1886, pp. 338-46: a summary of a reading of the paper is followed by lively controversy over the negative view taken by the Society’s investigators to Eglinton, including a contribution from Stainton Moses, who refers to his own experiences as proof of the phenomena’s genuineness. physical mediumship/slate writing

Hodgson, R. & Davey, S.J. THE POSSIBILITIES OF M AL-OBSERVATION AND LAPSE OF MEMORY FROM A PRACTICAL POINT OF VIEW, Proceedings 4, 1886-7, pp. 381-495. Report of a detailed investigation arising out of earlier controversy concerning the genuineness or otherwise of spiritualistic phenomena. This paper proposes that witnesses of apparently supernormal phenomena seriously underestimate the ease with which they may become victims of misobservation. Hodgson’s introduction (381-404) makes general observations regarding Indian jugglers and slate-writing séances and takes issue with arguments by Massey. Davey (405-95) describes his original encounters with Eglinton and personal experiments with conjuring that changed his opinion from believer to sceptic. He gives a number of testimonials from witnesses at 16 sittings who found his performances convincing, adding notes made by other observers present, including Hodgson and Eleanor Sidgwick, that make their unreliability clear. He declines to reveal his methods. A different version of Davey’s article is printed in Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 8-44. physical mediumship/slate writing/magic

Hodgson, Richard. MR DAVEY’S IMITATIONS BY CONJURING OF PHENOMENA SOMETIMES ATTRIBUTED TO SPIRIT AGENCY, Proceedings 8, 1892, pp. 253-310. Davey’s death removes the main obstacle to revealing the trick ‘slate-writing’ methods which fooled many sitters. Hodgson gives a full explanation of the distractions, substitutions, and sleights-of-hand that Davey employed, also the failure of witnesses to record accurately what they had observed or failed to observe. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 6, pp. 33-47, 86-90. slate writing/physical mediumship/magic/cheating

Davey, SJ. SPURIOUS MEDIUMSHIP, Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 199-207. Reports of a slate-writing medium in Newcastle are thought to refer to Henry Slade, previously exiled to America following a court-case and apparently visiting England under an assumed name. physical mediumship/slate writing

END 'WILLIAM EGLINTON, HENRY SLADE, FRANCIS MONCK: SLATE WRITING'

D.D. HOME

Crookes, William. NOTES OF SÉANCES WITH D.D.HOME, Proceedings 6, 1889-90, pp. 98-127. Notes of a series of 11 séances with the medium that took place in 1871-2. A number of phenomena are described, including raps, table movements, a self-playing accordion, floating objects, the handling of hot coals, the appearances of disembodied hands carrying objects. There is frequent communication through raps with ‘spirits’. Apparatus is used to test tension and changes of weight. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Barrett, W.F. & Myers, Frederic W.H. REVIEW OF ‘D.D.HOME, HIS LIFE AND MISSION’, Journal 4, 1889-90, pp. 101-16. New testimonies of Home’s feats in a biography by his widow are briefly described, with a discussion as to his genuineness or otherwise. Appendices give reactions from legal and conjuring experts and more eye-witness testimonies. See also review of a sequel, THE GIFT OF D.D.HOME, on pp. 249-52 See also a note by F.W.H.Myers on Home’s character in Journal 6, pp. 176-9. book review/psychokinesis/physical mediumship

Browning, E. & R., BROWNING ON SPIRITUALISM, Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 11-6. Reprint of correspondence in the Times Literary Supplement, with letters from the Brownings regarding her acceptance - and his strong scepticism of- Home’s mediumship. physical mediumship

Anon. A SITTING WITH D.D.HOME, Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 76-80. A visible connection between a ‘spirit-hand’ and the medium’s body is proof of fraud to a sceptical witness. Similar cases with other mediums are also noted. See also Journal 11, p. 290. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Johnson, Alice. THE CASE OF LYON ? HOME, Journal 12, 1905-6, p. 332. Note on D.D.Home’s court case involving a woman who accused him of extorting money. physical mediumship

Solovovo, Count P-P. ON THE ALLEGED EXPOSURE OF D.D. HOME IN FRANCE, Journal 15, 1911-12, pp. 274-88. Investigates persistent rumours of an incident that was supposed to have occurred in 1858, involving the medium’s imprisonment and subsequent expulsion from France. New details are offered, but the conclusions as to the report’s veracity remain unclear. physical mediumship

Solovovo, Count P-P. SOME THOUGHTS ON D.D.HOME, Proceedings 39, 1930-31, pp. 247-65. The author returns to a supposed exposure of Home in France, and to the weakness of the control at séances described by the Earl of Dunraven, as reasons for dismissing the bulk of the medium’s phenomena as fraudulent. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 17-18, 109-11 (back). physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Dunraven, Earl of. EXPERIENCES IN SPIRITUALISM WITH D.D.HOME, Proceedings 35, 1926, pp. 1-289. This private anecdotal record by a close friend of D.D. Home, made at the time but published sixty years after the event, is a major source of information about the medium. The author describes how as a young man he befriended Home and, encouraged by his father, closely observed the phenomena that occurred in his presence. Accounts of 78 séances are given. Phenomena include raps, communications by ‘spirits’, lévitations, movements of furniture and other objects, lights and scents, the playing of an accordion. Other phenomena, associated specifically with Home, include the elongation of his body (passim) and the handling of hot coals (133). The séances were often spontaneous, characterised by communication from ‘spirits’ through the entranced medium, giving either information concerning the personal affairs of the medium and others or general religious instruction. The author’s claim that on one occasion the medium levitated out of one upper floor window and in at another excited much controversy, which continues to the present day (155). CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 88-9. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Solovovo, Count P-P. ON SOME ‘CRITICAL’ METHODS, Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 361-8. The author takes issue with the claims of a continental researcher of trance mediums. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 25 pp. 17-18; Journal 26, pp. 77-9. Mattiesen, E. A REPLY, Journal 25, pp. 27-32. physical mediumship/mental mediumship/methodology

Carrington, Hereward. IN DEFENCE OF D.D. HOME, Journal 26, pp. 109-11. No summary given. physical mediumship

Anon. A SITTING WITH D.D. HOME IN 1860, Journal 28, 1933-34, pp. 106-10. Spirit hands, accordion playing and levitations. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Dingwall, E.J. CORRESPONDENCE: D.D.HOME AND THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY, Journal 45, 1969-70, p. 311. Corrects an insinuation about Home’s sexuality, now discovered to be misleading. physical mediumship

Zorab, G. WERE D D HOME’S ‘SPIRIT HANDS’ EVER FRAUDULENTLY PRODUCED? Journal 46, 1971-72, pp. 228-35. Compares testimonies that accepted spirit phenomena as genuine and others that took them to be fraudulent. physical mediumship/cheating

Lambert, G.W. D D HOME AND THE PHYSICAL WORLD, Journal 48, 1975-6, pp. 298-313. A ‘geophysical’ theory used to account for poltergeists is here extended to the nineteenth century medium, suggesting that he was a faker who became adept at concentrating on houses where disturbances caused by such things as underground streams or railways were common. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 414-21. physical mediumship/theory/electromagnetism/cheating

Coleman, M. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 53, 1985, pp. 123-6. M. Coleman defends Trevor Hall’s ‘The Enigma of Daniel Home’ against criticisms made in a review by Stephen Braude. See also pp. 244-8, 403-4. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: HOME, Journal 60, 1994-5, pp. 187-8. Also pages 345-6. Controversy over claims of fraud. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: HOME, Journal 61, 1996-97, pp. 126-8. Also pages 351-2. Controversy over claims of fraud. physical mediumship/cheating

END 'D.D. HOME'

STAINTON MOSES

Myers, Frederic. THE EXPERIENCES OF W. STAINTON MOSES 1 & 2, Proceedings 9, 1893-4, pp. 245-353. Also Proceedings 11, 1895, pp. 24-113. Extracts from the notes and diaries of a leading spiritualist are published posthumously in two articles, offering substantial evidence of séance phenomena, automatic writings and trance utterances in the period 1872-83. hi the first, Moses’s life as a curate and teacher are briefly described, also his relationship with Dr and Mrs Speer in whose presence much of the phenomena was witnessed. Testimonials of his honesty and sanity are given. Three types of personalities communicating during the séances are described (257): recently deceased; earlier generations (including a friend of Erasmus); ‘higher spirits’ who call themselves ‘emanations from higher spheres’ (258). Extracts from Moses’s writings and statements from other witnesses describe furniture lévitations (259); apports (266); scents (269); lights (273); sounds (277). Séance notes are given (283); others present include William Crookes and D.D Home (306), when substantial materialisations are recorded. Finally, the author considers the possibility of fraud (340), which he concludes is in the highest degree unlikely. The second article gives more extracts from séance notebooks (26) and a description of automatic writings (64). The rest of the paper concerns the communications as evidence of survival, giving Moses’s own reflections (70) and other apparently convincing evidential communications (96), including one from the recently-deceased Dr Speer involving a pet-name (103). On the other hand the possibility that the ‘higher spirits’ have no identity beyond Moses’s subliminal consciousness is also considered (104). CORRESPONDENCE. Journal 6, 1893-94, pp. 200-7, 214-23, 232-7, 251-6, 265-72. ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 6, 1894, pp. 175-6, 228-30, 261-2, 274-80. physical mediumship/mental mediumship/automatic writing

END 'STAINTON MOSES'

EUSAPIA PALLADINO

Podmore, Frank. EXPERIMENTS AT MILAN WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Proceedings 9, 1893-4, pp. 218-24. Short review of an article by Charles Richet in Annales des Sciences Psychiques 1, 1893, on a series of sittings with Eusapia Palladino in Milan. Phenomena included tiltings and lévitations of furniture, raps, alteration of the medium’s weight while being measured on scales, appearance and contact of hands. Richet and the other investigators were strongly impressed; Podmore adopts a sceptical stance. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Lodge, Oliver, et al. EXPERIENCE OF UNUSUAL PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OCCURRING IN THE PRESENCE OF AN ENTRANCED PERSON (EUSAPIA PALADINO), Journal 6, 1893-94, pp. 306-60. Report, principally by Oliver Lodge, on two series of sittings with Eusapia Palladino in France, the first at Richet’s holiday home on a Mediterranean island, the second at his home near Toulon. Among others present are Myers and the Sidgwicks. Lodge states his conviction that certain phenomena of the type he witnessed are genuine. They include: pushings and pinchings; graspings of an invisible hand; sight of ‘spirit’ hands, faces and other objects; movements and lévitations of heavy furniture; bulgings of a curtain; the playing of musical instruments; raps; paranormal writing; the locking of a door, etc - all performed while the medium’s hands and feet are controlled. The question of cheating is discussed, the author holding that the medium, being of poor education, cannot discriminate what is of interest and what is of not (320), and that inexperienced sitters will draw wrong conclusions. Characteristics are described (325): general features, effect of light, source of energy, effect of lifting, sympathetic movements of the medium. Myers and Sidgwick briefly describe their experiences (336), agreeing with Lodge as to the genuineness of the phenomena. Appendices give excerpts from the detailed notes of sittings, and Lodge’s ideas about suitable apparatus for use in investigating physical mediumship. ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 6, 1893, p. 79. Brief reference to a paper by Richet and others on certain phenomena occurring in the presence of Eusapa Palladino, published in a French psychical Journal. DISCUSSION, Journal 9, 1899, pp. 4-6. Report of remarks by Myers concerning an ‘absolutely convincing’ séance with Eusapia Palladino at the Paris home of Charles Richet. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Hodgson, Richard, et al. THE VALUE OF THE EVIDENCE FOR SUPERNORMAL PHENOMENA IN THE CASE OF EUSAPIA PALADINO, Journal 7, 1895-96, pp. 36-79. Hodgson catalogues the various methods he believes the medium may have used to deceive sitters at the sittings judged successful by Oliver Lodge and others in France. Myers, Lodge, Richet, and Ochorowicz insist that their convictions are sound ly based. (The last two contributions are in French). CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 93-5, 111-2, 178-80. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Johnson, Alice, et al. EUSAPIA PALADINO, Journal 7, 1895-96, pp. 148-59. Sittings held at Cambridge to test Eusapia Palladino are considered to have exposed the medium as fraudulent, following her repeated attempts to cheat. Such phenomena as appeared is regarded as weak and easily within the compass of manipulation by the medium’s hands and feet. DISCUSSION, Journal 7, 1895, pp. 131-5. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 163-4, 210-12, 291-2. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Cassirer, Manfred. PALLADINO AT CAMBRIDGE, Journal 52, 1983-84, pp. 52-8. A defence of the medium. physical mediumship

Cassirer, M. [ARCHIVE REPORT], Journal 54, 1987, pp. 283-4. Points out that the full and detailed records of the Society’s investigation of Eusapia Palladino at Cambridge exist in its archive, unpublished. A transcript is available in the Library. Argues that it does not show Hodgson, one of Palladino’s fiercest critics, in the best light. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Sidgwick, Mrs Henry (Eleanor). REVIEW OF TSICOLOGIA ? ‘SPIRITISMO’: IMPRESSIONI? NOTE CRITICHE SUIFENOMENIMEDIANICI DI EUSAPIA PALADINO’ BY PROFESSOR MORSELLI, Proceedings 21, 1908-9, pp. 516-24. Compares the work of an Italian scientist who endorsed the genuineness of Eusapia Palladino’s phenomena with the abortive Cambridge investigation of the medium conducted by the SPR. Contains some insights into the Cambridge investigation by one of its main participants, who continued to be unconvinced by the medium and by physical phenomena in general. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Feilding, Hon. Everard., Baggally, W.W. & Carrington, Hereward. REPORT ON A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Proceedings 23, 1909, pp. 309-569. This major investigation carried out in Naples on behalf of the SPR by three experienced researchers concluded that Palladino was able to produce genuinely paranormal phenomena. Written mainly by Feilding, it is often referred to as the Feilding or Naples Report and has been widely regarded as providing some of the most convincing evidence in support of physical mediums, at least in the English-speaking world. The report centres on 11 séances held in November and December 1908 in a Naples hotel suite. It begins with a summary of Palladino’s career, the credentials of the investigators, the arrangements for the sittings and the precautions taken to avoid fraud. A general account of 470 occurrences is then given with a discussion of their nature. The phenomena include: movements and lévitations of the séance table; movements of curtains; bulgings of the medium’s dress; raps; bangs on the séance table; noises inside the ‘cabinet’; plucking of the guitar; transportations of furniture and other objects out of the cabinet; touches by unseen finger tips outside the curtain; touches and grasps by a hand through the curtain; appearance of hands outside the curtain; appearance of heads and other objects; transportation of objects by a visible hand; lights; sensation of a cold breeze issuing from a scar on the medium’s brow; untying of knots. Shorthand reports of the séances are given in full, interspersed with comments, and prefaced and followed by notes by the investigators. The pattern of the séances is found to be broadly similar, but the quality varies considerably, with some being highly suggestive of paranormal occurrences, and others producing little of interest. Attempts by the medium to free herself of the controls to her hands and feet are sometimes noted, but are not associated with any of the occurrences witnessed. Hallucination is likewise considered and rejected. In their conclusions the investigators pay special attention to the quality of their reporting and their fluctuating state of mind thoughout the sittings. A watershed, described by Feilding in a much-quoted passage, occurs after the sixth séance (462) when he finds for the first time that his mind, ‘from which the stream of events had hitherto run off like rain from a macintosh’, is at last beginning to accept what he has seen as genuine. The report generated considerable discussion and controversy, which continues to the present day. ABSTRACT, Journal 14, 1909, pp. 115-2. Fielding gives a verbal report to the Society. COMMENTS, Journal 14, 1909, pp. 172-7, 213-44; Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 277-90. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Solovovo, Count P-P. M COURTIER’S REPORT ON THE EXPERIMENTS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO AT THE PARIS INSTITUT GENERAL PSYCHOLOGIQUE AND SOME COMMENTS THEREON, Proceedings 23, 1909, pp. 570-89. Describes, with short extracts, the report of a series of 43 sittings held in 1905-8 and attended by eminent French scientists, notably Pierre and Marie Curie. The scientists are shown to be intrigued by the phenomena, which include the raps, furniture movements, touches, lights and appearance of hands that are expected in Palladino sittings. The investigators use instruments to register the movements, establishing their objectivity. At least some of the investigators incline to believe in the genuineness of some of the pheomena. However, the medium’s crude attempts at fraud are also noticed, and although these are not apparently linked to much of the phenomena they discourage a favourable endorsement. The author criticises the report for failing to reach conclusions after so much work, for failing to enlist the aid of conjurers to decide about fraud, and for failing generally to add anything to existing knowledge. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Anon. EUSAPIA PALLADINO IN AMERICA, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 265-75. Report of claims of exposure by Harvard psychologist Hugo Munsterberg, with extracts from his article and a detailed independent account of the sitting at which he was present. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Krebs, Stanley L. TRICK-METHODS OF EUSAPIA PALLADINO; MAJOR AND MINOR, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 297-317. Sceptical account of sittings in New York. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. SITTINGS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO IN AMERICA, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 329-45. Reports of investigations by Columbia University professors and an edited reprint of an article by psychology professor Joseph Jastrow on his own sittings. Both concluded that the phenomena were created fraudulently. A note by Everard Feilding reaffirms their genuineness. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Anon. DOES EUSAPIA TRICK UNCONSCIOUSLY?, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 386-8. Support for Jastrow’s exposé. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Solovovo, P-P. REVIEW: MR HEREWARD CARRINGTON’S ‘PERSONAL EXPERIENCES IN SPIRITUALISM’, Proceedings 27, 1914-15, pp. 176-85. Criticism of an endorsement of Eusapia Palladino, following sittings organised in New York by a veteran of the Naples investigation. physical mediumship/cheating

Feilding, Everard, et al. REPORT ON A FURTHER SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO AT NAPLES, Proceedings 25, 1911, pp. 57-69. A follow-up to the successful series in 1909, this investigation was partly prompted by the relative failure in the following year of the medium’s appearances in America. The report is brief, owing to the complete failure of the five sittings. The medium claimed to be unwell and such phenomena as was witnessed was, for the most part unhesitatingly, ascribed to fraud on her part. physical mediumship/cheating

Feilding, E. & Marriott, W. REPORT ON A FURTHER SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO AT NAPLES, Journal 15, 1911-12, pp. 20-32. Describes the unsuccessful attempt by investigators to confirm their favourable impressions at the earlier Naples sittings. physical mediumship

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Journal 19, 1919-20, pp. 280-81. See also Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 70-71. No summary given. physical mediumship

Alvarado, Carlos S. NOTE ON SÉANCES WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO AFTER 1910, Journal 51, 1981-82, p. 308. Short note giving essential bibliographical information about literature on the medium. physical mediumship

Cassirer, Manfred. THE FLUID HANDS OF EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Journal 52, 1983-84, pp. 105-12. Explores references in the literature on the medium to the appearance of materialised hands in her séances, and their involvement in the effects observed. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 334-6. physical mediumship

Alvarado, Carlos S. PALLADINO OR PALADINO? ON THE SPELLING OF EUSAPIA’S SURNAME, Journal 52, 1983-84, pp. 315-6. Concludes from her birth certificate and signature that the former, with two Is, is correct. physical mediumship

Wiseman, Richard. THE FEILDING REPORT: A RECONSIDERATION, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 129-52. Argues that an endorsement of Eusapia Palladino often regarded as among the best evidence of directly-observable psi fails to eliminate the possibility of an accomplice concealed in the curtained recess behind her. The author constructs a detailed hypothesis to show how this could have accounted for most of the reported phenomena. physical mediumship/cheating

Barrington, Mary Rose. PALLADINO AND THE INVISIBLE MAN WHO NEVER WAS, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 324-40. A detailed rebuttal of the ‘accomplice’ hypothesis, which the author argues could not have applied in a number of other successful tests of the medium, where entry into the cabinet would have been inconceivable. physical mediumship/cheating

Fontana, David. THE FEILDING REPORT AND THE DETERMINED CRITIC, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 341-50. Argues that the accomplice hypothesis makes impractical assumptions, notably in regard to the faked door panel required to allow access to the cabinet. physical mediumship/cheating

Wiseman, Richard. PALLADINO AND BARRINGTON: TEN MAJOR ERRORS, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 16-34. The author defends his faking hypothesis against criticisms. physical mediumship/cheating

Wiseman, Richard. PALLADINO AND FONTANA: NINE MAJOR ERRORS, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 35-47. No summary given. CORRESPONDENCE: p. 76. Further discussion: Barrington, Mary Rose. PALLADINO, WISEMAN AND BARRINGTON: TEN BRIEF REPLIES, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 196-8. PALLADINO (?) AND FONTANA: THE ERRORS ARE WISEMAN’S OWN, pp. 198-203. CORRESPONDENCE: p. 235-6, 319. Martinez-Taboas, Alfonso & Francia, Margarita. THE FEILDING REPORT, WISEMAN’S CRITIQUE AND SCIENTIFIC REPORTING, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 120-29. More criticism of the ‘accomplice’ hypothesis, focusing on the lack of empirical evidence. The exchange continues, pp. 130-40 & Journal 60, pp. 106-9. Wiseman, Richard. THE FEILDING REPORT: ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 210-17. The author of the ‘accomplice’ hypothesis sums up the debate. physical mediumship/cheating

Alvarado, Carlos S. GIFTED SUBJECTS’ CONTRIBUTIONS TO PSYCHICAL RESEARCH: THE CASE OF EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 269-92. A historical approach to the medium, showing that her relevance to psychical research extends beyond the phenomena she produced to the social and behavioural aspects that followed. The article includes a detailed summary of press and public responses and her involvement with the scientific establishment. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Polidoro, Massimo & Rinaldi, Gian Marco. EUSAPIA’S SAPIENT FOOT: A NEW CONSIDERATION OF THE FEILDING REPORT, Journal 62, 1997-8, pp. 242-56. Authors’ Abstract: This paper presents a reconsideration of the ‘Feilding Report’ but, unlike the similar previous paper by Richard Wiseman, our work concentrates on the hypothesis that all of the phenomena presented by eusapia Palladino during the 1908 Naples seances could have been produced without the help of secret accomplices. It is suggested that her ability to free her limbs via ‘substitution’, the psychological conditions present! at the seances and the gullibility of the experimenters were enough to account for the phenomena. It is proposed that her secret weapon lay in her left foot and various demonstrations being given at the séance are examined in detail to show how this could be so. This paper also examines the psychological aspects of the deceptions supposedly being perpetrated by Eusapia and gives a few suggestions on how better controls might have helped in avoiding being deceived. physical mediumship/cheating

Fontana, David. POLIDORO AND RINALDI: NO MATCH FOR PALLADINO AND THE FEILDING REPORT, Journal 63, 1998-9, pp. 12-25. Author’s abstract: Polidoro and Rinaldi (1998) propose that a combination of Eusapia Palladino’s ability to elude hand and foot controls and the gullibility of Feilding, Baggally and Carrington are sufficient to account for the phenomena witnessed during the Naples séances and described in the Feilding Report. The present paper challenges this proposition, both on the grounds of evidence presented in the Report and neglected by Polidoro and Rinaldi, and the wider knowledge of Palladino’s genuine gifts and fraudulent lapses detailed by numerous leading European investigators. physical mediumship/cheating

Martinez-Taboas, Alfonso. SOME CRITICAL COMMENTS ON THE THESIS OF ‘EUSAPIA’S SALIENT FOOT’, Journal 63, 1998-9, pp. 26-33. Author’s abstract: A critique of Polidoro and Rinaldi’s (1998) paper, where they posit that Eusapia constantly fooled the authors of the Feilding Report with the use of her legs and feet. The main objective is to examine in detail their arguments and data. It is concluded that Polidoro and Rinaldi’s data are mostly anecdotal and that their characterization of Feilding, Baggally and Carrington is highly misleading. The thesis of the wondrous ‘sapient foot’ is unsupported and unconvincing as an explanation of the Feilding Report. physical mediumship/cheating

END 'EUSAPIA PALLADINO'

MARTHE BERAUD (EVA C)

Verrall, Helen. THE HISTORY OF MARTHE BERAUD, Proceedings 27, 1914-15, pp. 333-69. Examines the case of the French-Algerian medium investigated by Charles Richet (the Villa Carmen episode) and later under the pseudonym ‘Eva C.’ by the German psychologist A. Schrenck-Notzing (See Journal 12, 1905, pp. 171-2 for a brief abstract of Richet’s investigation. Richet’s paper was published in the Annals of Psychical Science, translated in a separate volume which can be found in the British Library under his name, entitled CONCERNING THE PHENOMENA OF MATERIALISATION (THE VILLA CARMEN PHENOMENA: EXTRACTS FROM THE ANNALS OF PSYCHIC SCIENCE 1905-1906). Verrall reproduces detailed accusations of fraud given by an Algiers lawyer who had attended several sittings, and criticises Richet for failing to deal with them adequately (see Journal 12, 1906, p. 347 for details of the paper’s publication.) Turning to the later phase of investigations, she searches the reports for opportunities available to the medium of practising fraud. The use of accomplices appears ruled out by the precautions taken; the complicity of a patron would not explain every instance; prior concealment of materials would be eliminated by the precautions; régurgitation would be possible but would not explain every instance (emetics were sometimes administered). The suspicious appearance of some of the manifestations is emphasised and appropriate conclusions drawn, but if fraud is the explanation the author admits being unable to suggest any coherent method.

physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology/theory

Verrall, Helen. DR HYSLOP ON THE HISTORY OF MARTHE BERAUD, Journal 17, 1915-16, pp. 82-4. The author replies to American criticism of her sceptical interpretation of the materialist medium. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/theory

Dingwall, E.J. et al. REPORT ON A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH EVA C. Proceedings 32, 1922, pp. 209-343. A materialisation medium investigated in 1905 by Charles Richet under her own name of Marthe Beraud is investigated in London, having in the interval been endorsed by researchers in France and Germany. The conditions of the séances are described, including the control, which is thought to be satisfactory (219). General conclusions and a detailed report of individual sittings follow. Few phenomena of the quality reported by earlier researchers were observed, and the report declines to draw either positive or negative conclusions. However, in some sittings material is exuded, sometimes showing roughly drawn faces. In a chapter by E. J.Dingwall (309), a researcher with experience of conjuring, régurgitation is considered in detail as the only non-supernormal method capable of evading the control on the medium. Possible failures of control and observation by the earlier researchers are also considered (311). However, to the writers’ evident perplexity no evidence of fraud or régurgitation is found, while the materialisations themselves show aspects which régurgitation does not easily explain. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology/theory

Schrenck-Notzing, Freiherr von. CONCERNING THE POSSIBILITY OF DECEPTION IN SITTINGS WITH EVA C., Proceedings 33, 1923, pp. 665-72. Schrenck-Notzing rejects Dingwall’s suggestion that he may have failed to observe fraud practised by Eva C. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 340-44. physical mediumship/cheating

Lambert, Rudolf. DR GELEY’S REPORTS ON THE MEDIUM EVA C, Journal 37, 1953-4, pp. 380-6. The author is privately shown certain photographs taken by the French researcher which to him suggest fraudulence on the part of the materialisation medium and her investigators. CORRESPONDENCE: Journal 38, pp. 95-8, 155; Journal 55, pp. 301-2; 436-7; Journal 56, 1990, pp. 101-3,254-6. physical mediumship/cheating

END 'MARTHE BERAUD (EVA C.)'

CHARLES BAILEY

Anon. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF MR C. BAILEY, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 77-88. Report on an Australian apport medium. Notes of sittings in Australia are given, also the findings of a report sought from British Museum experts on the genuineness or otherwise of antique coins and clay tablets produced during the sittings. The objects are found to be poor forgeries. Other sittings are described, pp. 109-118. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Baggally, W.W. REPORT ON SITTINGS WITH CHARLES BAILEY, THE AUSTRALIAN APPORT MEDIUM, Journal 15, 1911-12, pp. 194-208. Exposes instances of fraud. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Irwin, H.J. CHARLES BAILEY: A BIOGRAPHICAL STUDY OF THE AUSTRALIAN APPORT MEDIUM, Journal 54, 1987, pp. 97-118. Documents the career of an Australian apport medium active in the early years of the nineteenth century, and examines his influence upon spiritualism and psychical research. physical mediumship/beliefs/spiritualisni

END 'CHARLES BAILEY'

THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE

Sidgwick, Eleanor. REVIEW: THE REALITY OF PSYCHIC PHENOMENA BY W.J.CRAWFORD, Journal 18, 1917-18, pp. 29-31. Sceptical comment on claims by an independent psychical researcher that table lévitations in a Belfast spiritualist circle are caused by an ectoplasmic substance produced from a medium’s body and forming into stiff rods that act as cantilevers. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 64-7; Journal 19, pp. 101-4. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Smith, W. Whatley. ‘THE REALITY OF PSYCHIC PHENOMENA’, Proceedings 30, 1919, pp. 306-33. Describes the author’s sitting with the Goligher circle in 1916 and his subsequent acceptance of the phenomena reported by Crawford in The Reality of Psychic Phenomena as genuine. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Barrett, W.F. REPORT ON DR CRAWFORD’S MEDIUM, Proceedings 30, 1920, pp. 334-8. A brief note on sittings with a Belfast medium. In the first there are striking lévitations and a variety of noises, responding to sitters’ requests. Later sittings fail, apparently because the medium is unwell. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Dingwall, E.J. REVIEW OF DR W.J. CRAWFORD’S ‘THE PSYCHIC STRUCTURES AT THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE’, Proceedings 32, 1922, pp. 147-50. Critical comments on a lately deceased investigator’s work with a materialisation medium in Belfast. physical mediumship/methodology

Dingwall, EJ. REVIEW: THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE BY E.E. FOURNIER D’ALBE, Journal 21, 1923-24, pp. 19-24. Expresses doubts about an exposure of the Belfast circle investigated by W. Crawford. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 56, 1990-91, pp. 101-3, 255. physical mediumship/cheating

Collins, B. Abdy. THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE, Journal 33, 1943-6, pp. 131-2. A note on the Belfast medium’s marriage and withdrawal from sittings following the alleged exposure of her by Fournier d’Albe. Results of subsequent investigations are said to be available in Psychic Science for July 1933, January 1936 and July 1936. The real cause of the Fournier d’Albe debacle, as alleged from the medium’s side, is said never to have been published. The note recommends a perusal of the earlier numbers of Psychic Science, particularly the issue for April 1934 which contains copies of four original photographs of ‘Katie King’ taken by William Crookes and which the author considers convincing. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Barham, Allan. DR W J CRAWFORD, HIS WORK AND HIS LEGACY IN PSYCHOKINESIS, Journal 55, 1988-89, pp. 113-38. Reviews the career and work of the mechanical engineer who investigated the Goligher circle in Belfast in the 1910s and reported on the mechanism of ectaplasmic cantilevers involved in furniture levitations. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Barham, Allan. THE CRAWFORD LEGACY PART II: RECENT RESEARCH IN MACRO-PK WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE WORK OF BATCHELDOR AND BROOKES-SMITH, Journal 55, 1988-89, pp. 196-207. Relates Crawford’s work to modern research on psychokinesis. CORRESPONDENCE, p. 300. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

END 'THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE'

RUDI AND WILLY SCHNEIDER

Dingwall, EJ. PHYSICAL PHENOMENA RECENTLY OBSERVED WITH THE MEDIUM WILLY SCHNEIDER] AT MUNICH, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 359-70. Dingwall accompanies the independent psychical researcher Harry Price to Munich to observe phenomena occurring in the presence of an 18-year-old Austrian medium. These include raps, movements of furniture, a musical box which starts and stops on command, a handbell which is raised up and rung by an invisible agency, a handkerchief held up in the air, and the appearance of a ‘luminous arm-like shape’ (365). The effects are thought to be beyond the capabilities of the medium, who is effectively controlled, and no sign of an accomplice is found. The author considers this case superior to any other of its kind. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Dingwall, EJ. A REPORT ON A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH MR WILLY SCHNEIDER, Proceedings 36, 1928, pp. 1-33. Appraisal by the Society of a young Austrian medium earlier investigated, and largely endorsed, by researchers on the continent. Telekinetic phenomena are seen during a series of 12 sittings, although to a lesser degree than in the medium’s earlier years. The methods are described and details of the séances given. Phenomena are observed, mostly lévitations of small objects and cold breezes. A conjurer is invited to be present and is unable to suggest any normal method for producing the phenomena (22). The author concludes that fraud is ruled out by the stringency of the controls and that results achieved by earlier investigations are confirmed. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: CONDITIONS OF CONTROL AT SITTINGS FOR PSYCHICAL PHENOMENA, Journal 25, 1929, pp. 163-4. Also pages 175-6. Comment on an investigation of Rudi Schneider by the independent psychical researcher Harry Price. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Besterman, Theodore. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF RUDI SCHNEIDER, Proceedings 40, 1931-2, pp. 428-36. Gives the background to an Austrian medium, brother of Willy, and details of French experiments in which an infra-red ray was partially obscured by some substance apparently emanating from the medium. The experiment appeared to offer scientific proof of some supernormal faculty. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology

Hope, Charles, et al. REPORT OF A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH RUDI SCHNEIDER, Proceedings 41, 1932-3, pp. 255-330. Experiments in London, attended by a number of scientists, confirm the partial occultation of an infra-red beam, apparently as a result of some supernormal effect produced by the medium, reported by the Ostys in Paris investigations. The apparatus and its use is described at length (259). Other reports focus on the medium’s physiology, notably a characteristic form of respiration (271), and comment on various types of phenomena observed : infra-red occultations, movements of objects, cold breezes and touches. Precautions against fraud are thought to be generally satisfactory. Full details of the sittings are given. A paper by Hope also deals with charges of fraud publicly made against Schneider by Harry Price, a psychical researcher not connected with the Society, who had earlier conducted extensive research with the medium and endorsed him as genuine. Price’s claims followed his analysis of certain photographs made during sittings which, according to him, showed the medium using a free hand to create ‘phenomena’ fraudulently. Puzzling circumstances in this ‘exposure’ are described by Hope, who concludes that the affair is more damaging to the researcher than to the medium. Other researchers concur (291). physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology/cheating

Brown, William. ON A SITTING WITH RUDI SCHNEIDER, Journal 27, 1931-32, pp. 286-9. Reprint of two letters to The Times by a doctor, confirming his impression that physical phenomena witnessed at a sitting with the Austrian medium were not contrived by fraud. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Raleigh, Lord. ON A METHOD OF SILHOUETTE PHOTOGRAPHY BY INFRARED RAYS FOR USE IN MEDIUMISTIC INVESTIGATIONS, Proceedings 41, 1932-3, pp. 89-98. Description of an apparatus for infra-red photography similar to that used successfully in recent experiments in Paris with Rudi Schneider. physical mediumship/photography/methodology

Besterman, Theodore & Gatty, Oliver. REPORT OF AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE MEDIUMSHIP OF RUDI SCHNEIDER, Proceedings 42, 1934, pp. 251-85. A largely technical report on a series of sittings organised by the Society. No clearly paranormal effects were obtained: the article describes the methods adopted; the trance and respiration (258); the control personality Olga’ (261); the infra-red apparatus (265); temperature tests (280). physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology

Hope, Charles. A NOTE ON THE RECENT EXPERIMENTS WITH RUDI SCHNEIDER, Proceedings 42, 1934, pp. 310-15. A veteran of many sittings with Schneider writes to correct any impression that earlier successes with the infra-red experiments have been nullified by this series. He adds comments on the medum’s respiration and describes certain effects observed by sitters, among them senior academics, at a series of informal séances. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology

Besterman, Theodore. REFLECTIONS ON THE MEDIUMSHIP OF RUDI SCHNEIDER, Journal 29, 1935-36, pp. 32-3. A critic hesitates to accept the genuineness of the medium’s phenomena as fully established. physical mediumship

Besterman, Theodore, et al. RUDI SCHNEIDER: RECOLLECTIONS AND COMMENTS, Journal 39, 1957-8, pp. 206-15. Investigators present at some of the Austrian medium’s seance’s recall him and his work, on the occasion of his death aged 48. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Gregory, A. CORRESPONDENCE: ANITA GREGORY ON HARRY PRICE, Journal 50, 1979-80, pp. 40-47. Defends her criticisms of the independent psychical researcher’s allegedly fake exposé of the medium Rudi Schneider. Other contributions follow. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 53, 1985-86, p. 336-7; Journal 54, pp. 84-5. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

END 'RUDI AND WILLY SCHNEIDER'

MINA ‘MARGERY’ CRANDON

Dingwall, E.J. THE ‘MARGERY’ MEDIUMSHIP, Journal 22, 1925, pp. 60-62. Preliminary note: the author is impressed by the materialisations he has witnessed in sittings with the medium but considers the conditions too uncertain to permit a definite endorsement. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology

Anon. CONCERNING THE ‘MARGERY CASE’, Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 24. Letter from Walter Prince, one of the principal investigators of the American medium and sceptical of claims made about her. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Crandon, Dr. [MARGERY], Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 186-93. The husband of the American medium gives a summary of her work, the conditions of the sittings, and the type of phenomena that occur. These include materializations, independent ‘direct voice’ and apports. Methods of photography are described. The contentious question of thumb-prints supposed to be of the medium’s ‘control’ Walter is also discussed, with background details regarding the development of this feature (191). physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology

Dingwall, E.J. A REPORT ON A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH THE MEDIUM MARGERY, Proceedings 36, 1928, pp. 79-158. This major report followed attempts by the Society to investigate Mina Crandon, a medium in Boston who had been the subject of a highly controversial Harvard investigation under the pseudonym ‘Margery’. Phenomena are observed at 29 sittings held at the medium’s home, mostly movements of objects, direct voice communications and the apparent materialisation of some substance from the medium’s body, sometimes crudely shaped like a hand and cold and clammy to the touch. The materialisations are the main focus of interest, and close analysis of the incidents, some of them photographed, leads to the author eventually, and somewhat hesitantly, to prefer the hypothesis of some normal method of production. In a short appendix the medium’s husband rejects the investigator’s analysis. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Feilding, Everard. REVIEW: MR HUDSON HOAGLAND’S ‘REPORT ON SITTINGS WITH MARGERY’, Proceedings 36, 1928, pp. 159-70. The author of the Naples Report on Eusapia Palladino criticises an investigation of ‘Margery’ by Harvard graduates, including certain aspects of their behaviour which appear deceitful. The investigators claimed to have discovered trick methods and that a private sitting took place during which the medium effectively admitted acting fraudulently while in a genuine trance. Following letters in which the investigators clarify their position, Feilding withdraws his criticisms (414-32). The letters include fulsome details of the private sitting which, in a later statement (515-6), the medium denies ever took place. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Woolley, V.J. & Brackenbury, E. THE MARGERY MEDIUMSHIP AND THE LONDON SITTINGS OF DECEMBER 1929, Proceedings 39, 1930-31, pp. 358-68. A demonstration by the medium’s husband convinces the Society’s researchers that the methods of control are insufficient to prevent the medium obtaining phenomena by normal means. The focus of the article is chiefly on the use of dental wax to make ‘spirit’ impressions. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Cummins, Harold. NOTES ON ‘WALTER’ THUMBPRINTS OF THE ‘MARGERY’ SÉANCES, Proceedings 43, 1935, pp. 14-23. Argues, contrary claims notwithstanding, that certain thumbprints supposed to have been obtained supernormally as belonging to ‘Walter’ in ‘Margery’ sittings are in fact identical to those of her dentist. Refers to examples obtained in London. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Sidgwick, Eleanor. BOSTON SOCIETY FOR PSYCHIC RESEARCH, BULLETIN XVIII, Proceedings 41, 1932, pp. 115-20. Brief review of articles throwing doubt on the ‘Walter’ thumbprints. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Anon. PROFESSOR CUMMINS’S NOTES ON ‘WALTER’ THUMBPRINTS, Proceedings 43, 1935, p. 545. No summary given. physical mediumship

END MINA ‘MARGERY’ CRANDON'

GEORGE VALIANTINE

Woolley, V.J. AN ACCOUNT OF A SERIES OF SITTINGS WITH MR GEORGE VALIANTINE, Proceedings 36, 1928, pp. 52-77. Description of sittings with a direct voice medium. A number of voices are heard, apparently belonging to different ‘spirits’, and are thought by the investigators to be beyond the medium’s ability to fake, at least without an accomplice (56). One of the communicators claims the identity of Feda, the control of the medium Mrs Leonard, but bears no resemblance to her (56). Others are relevant to the investigators, but not always convincing (59). The atmosphere of the sittings is somewhat confused and sometimes heated. physical mediumship

Salter, Mrs W.H. THE HISTORY OF GEORGE VALIANTINE, Proceedings 40, 1931-2, pp. 389-410. Gives the background to an American direct voice medium involved in recent experiments by the Society and frequently discredited by allegations of trickery. Evidence of xeneglossy is considered to be tainted by the witness’s lack of experience and ability. physical mediumship/xenoglossy/cheating

Hope, Charles. REPORT ON SOME SITTINGS WITH VALIANTINE AND PHOENIX IN 1907, Proceedings 40, 1931-2, pp. 411-27. Voices are heard at sittings with Valiantine and a Glasgow medium, both direct voice, some speaking in foreign languages including Greek and Chinese. The author suspects trickery in certain instances and in the case of Phoenix feels that a favourable witness, a linguist, may have been susceptible to suggestion. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 27, 1931-32, pp. 328-9. physical mediumship/xenoglossy/cheating

‘THE CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALIST’ AND THE SPR, Journal 22, 1925, pp. 130-33. The Society replies to criticisms of its negative verdict on Valiantine. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 87-91 (back), 148-56 (back). physical mediumship

Anon. REVIEW: ‘TOWARDS THE STARS’ BY DENNIS BRADLEY, Journal 22, 1925, pp. 12-6. Review of a book by an investigator of George Valiantine. book review/physical mediumship

END 'GEORGE VALIANTINE'

HELEN DUNCAN

West, Donald. THE TRIAL OF MRS HELEN DUNCAN, Proceedings 48, 1946-49, pp. 32-64. An account of the controversy surrounding a well-known materialisation medium from Aberdeen, Scotland. Various incidents are described, where fraud by régurgitation or some other method, although strongly suspected, is found not always to be compatible with the degree of control claimed. Régurgitation is found to be more strongly established in investigations by Harry Price (380). Incidents in the medium’s professional career are recorded (40). Two prosecutions resulting in conviction for fraud are described, one in Scotland in 1933, the other at the Old Bailey, London in 1944. The latter was a major trial, extensively reported in the national press, and led to the medium being sentenced to 9 months in prison under the 1735 Witchcraft Act. Some of the defence testimony is quoted (46). The trial is described in detail (51). Attempts to change the law are described (62). physical mediumship/cheating

Cassirer, Manfred. HELEN VICTORIA DUNCAN: A REASSESSMENT, Journal 53, 1985-86, pp. 138-4. Support for the controversial materialisation medium, with references to defence testimony at her trial and a sympathetic report of a séance. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 333-6, 401-3. physical mediumship/cheating

Cassirer, Manfred. AN AMAZING SÉANCE AT BOURNEMOUTH, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 39-42. Discussion of a 1931 séance with the materialisation medium Helen Duncan. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 221-2, 283-4; Journal 59, pp. 76, 233; Journal 60, p. 287. physical mediumship

END 'HELEN DUNCAN'

FLORENCE COOK

Medhurst, R.G. & Goldney, K.M. WILLIAM CROOKES AND THE PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OF MEDIUMSHIP, Proceedings 54, 1963-66, pp. 25-157. An historical examination of testimony concerning physical mediums. This detailed paper followed the publication of a book in which Crookes’s sensational endorsement of the materialised form ‘Katie King’ is explained as a cover for his illicit liaison with the 16-year-old medium Florence Cook (Trevor Hall, The Spiritualists). The authors argue that this view is artificial, achieved only by selecting facts and ignoring many contrary indications, which they here describe. The authors briefly consider some complexities involved in the testimony and its interpretation before describing the ubiquitous spirit controls ‘John and Katie King’ and Crookes’s early sittings with mediums. Crookes’s favourable testimony on Home, Herne and Williams is given (37); also favourable letters from Francis Galton to Charles Darwin (41); and other favourable testimony on Williams by Cox (44). The early career of Florence Cook is described (48); testimony on her involvement with the medium Herne (49); an ambiguous incident with Cook on the Isle of Wight (53); the appearance of ‘evil influences’ in Cook sittings described by Stainton Moses (55); the intrigues of Cook’s rival Mrs Guppy (57). Sceptical conjectures, particularly regarding Cook’s relationship with her wealthy patron, are argued to be false (63, passim). Eye-witness testimony of materialisations in Cook sittings is given by Crookes’s wife (69). Differences between Crookes and Cook’s patron are discussed (71). The mediumship of Cook’s sister Kate is described, and the doubts of some contemporaries (74). Testimonies regarding Cook’s later career are considered, including the Sitwell exposure (80). Crookes’s investigation of Mrs Fay is described, with his testimony on tests involving the use of an electrical circuit to establish control of the medium (89). The complex case of Rosina Showers is discussed, her confession of fraud to Crookes, the ensuing scandal, and the implications concerning Cook’s mediumship (105). Crookes’s concern at a denunciation of mediums published by Daniel Home is described in a letter by his wife (121). Crookes later interest in mediums is described, including successful experiments with spirit photography (124) and a 1917 sitting in which an ectoplasmic form of his wife was said to be present (125). His attitude to the survival hypothesis is considered (127). In their conclusions the authors draw attention to the difference in outlook between then and now, referring to the question of spirit ‘drapery’ (133); the accordion-playing materialised form at a Home séance (136); and Crookes’s reliance on personal reputation at the expense of proper reporting (137). Against Hall’s implication, they argue that Crookes’s experiences with other mediums were no less remarkable than those that produced ‘Katie King’, and that special motives proposed for the latter will not help to explain the former (138). Claims that Cook admitted to fraud and an affair with Cook, a focus of Hall’s case, are rejected by them as unreliable gossip (139). Others of the sceptic’s points are dismissed (140). Crookes’s competence as an observer is discussed (141). Testimonies by others besides Crookes are cited (Stainton Moses, Feilding, Baggally and Carrington, Charles Richet) (143). A note on photographs of ‘Katie King’ and a chronology of Crookes’s pyschic investigations follows, together with an index and references to the ‘Anderson Testimony’ on the claimed Crookes-Cook liason. physical mediumship/cheating

Broad, C.D. CROMWELL VARLEY’S ELECTRICAL TESTS WITH FLORENCE COOK, Proceedings 54, 1963-66, pp. 158-72. A discussion of a galvonometer test by Crookes’s Royal Society colleague that is held to establish the medium’s independence of ‘Katie King’. The author here considers claims by Hall and an earlier sceptic, Frank Podmore, that the claim is unjustified. He doubts that the readings support the contention that she might have inserted a coil of the appropriate resistance to escape the circuit. He also suggests that the test was in any case designed not as a means of control but to compare readings: those observed while the medium was performing certain movements were absent when ‘Katie King’ was doing the same thing (169). However he reaches no conclusions and suggests further experiment. physical mediumship/methodology

Stephenson, CJ. FURTHER COMMENTS ON CROMWELL VARLEY’S ELECTRICAL TEST ON FLORENCE COOK, Proceedings 54, 1963-66, pp. 363-417. This detailed analysis begins by quoting the Varley testimony in full and follows with an electrical analysis. It concludes that the test was not as infallible as Varley believed, and that the readings are compatible with forms of cheating not hitherto considered. However, it also argues that Cook probably remained in circuit throughout the séance, and that the electrical evidence does not lend support to the fraud hypothesis. physical mediumship/methodology

Zorab, George. FOREIGN COMMENTS ON FLORENCE COOKE’S MEDIUMSHIP, Proceedings 54, 1963-66, pp. 173-84. Comments from foreign observers regarding Cook’s mediumship. The Russian A. Aksakoff describes a séance in which he is able to verify that the medium is bound and entranced in the cabinet while ‘Katie King’ is present. Similar testimony by others is alluded to. Claims by German sceptics are discussed (177), and similar controversy in France (179). The article concludes with references to favourable remarks by continental researchers, the French physiologist Charles Richet and the Swiss psychologist Theodore Flournoy. physical mediumship/cheating

Brookes-Smith, Colin. CROMWELL VARLEY’S ELECTRICAL TESTS, Journal 43, 1965-66, pp. 26-31. Technical points tending to show that the tests applied to the mediums Florence Cook and Mrs Fay were not infallible. physical mediumshp/methodology

Medhurst, R.G. FURTHER LIGHT ON THE ANDERSON TESTIMONY, Journal 43, 1965-66, pp. 143-6. Crucial aspects of certain reminiscences concerning Florence Cook’s alleged promiscuity are shown to be unreliable. NOTE p. 227; CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 441. physical mediumship/cheating

Zorab, G. A DUTCH EYEWITNESS OF ‘KATIE KING’, Journal 43, 1965-66, pp. 383-5. No summary given. physical mediumship

Coleman, M.H. ‘WILLIAM CROOKES TO CHARLES BLACKBURN’: ANOTHER LETTER, Journal 47, 1973-4, pp. 306-14. Argues that Trevor Hall’s case against Crookes as a party to the deceptions of Florence Cook is based on ‘a very selective assembly of the evidence’ (313). The author proposes instead that she deceived Crookes equally with everyone else. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 466-9. physical mediumship/cheating

END 'FLORENCE COOK'

CARLOS MIRABELLI

Besterman, Theodore. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF CARLOS MIRABELLI, Journal 29, 1935-36, pp. 141-53. The author pays to have sittings with the famed Brazilian medium and finds the performance unimpressive. He argues that trickery is likely but does not rule out the possibility of ‘a certain narrowly-defined paranormal faculty, round which he has erected, for commercial purposes, an elaborate structure of fraud’ (153). CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 169-70, 183, 202-3, 235-6. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Playfair, Guy Lyon. MIRABELLI AND THE PHANTOM LADDER, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 201-3. A photograph showing the Brazilian medium apparently levitating is shown to be faked: the area underneath his feet has clearly been retouched. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 407-9. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

END OF 'CARLOS MIRABELLI'

FRANEK KLUSKI

Weaver, Zofia. THE ENIGMA OF FRANEK KLUSKI, Journal 58, 1991-92, pp. 289-98. Discussion of the Polish materialisation medium, with details of phenomena witnessed in séances and the paraffin moulds of ‘spirit hands’ obtained by the French researcher Gustave Geley. (See also, Suggestions for Further Reading, below.) CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp.73-4, 232. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Coleman, M.H. WAX-MOULDS OF ‘SPIRIT’ LIMBS, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 340-46. A historical summary of the use of plaster casts in spiritualists séances. The author points out that skin hairs were observed in the melted wax and argues that the method was part of the fakery employed by so-called mediums. He describes methods by which the casts can be made. physical mediumship/cheating

Barrington, Mary Rose. THE KLUSKI HANDS, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 347-51. In reply, Barrington argues that the work done by a French investigator ‘cannot be reconciled with the production of moulds made by fraud, but the hairy moulds can be reconciled with genuine materialisation...’ (351). See earlier correspondence, Journal 55, 1989, pp. 428-9; Journal 56, p. 104, 255-6. See also Journal 60, 1994-5, pp. 98-106, 183-5, 286, 348-51; Journal 62, p. 80. physical mediumship/cheating

Fontana, David. SPIRIT MOULDS: OBSERVATIONS ON KLUSKI AND HIS CRITICS, Journal 63, 1998-9, pp. 43-6. Lists various reasons why demonstrations that moulds of hands obtained during Kluski séances can be faked do not amount to a total refutation of paranormality in Kluski’s mediumship as a whole. 1) The moulds obtained by Geley in Kluski sittings were significantly thinner and more fragile than those created in recent attempts; 2) many of the Kluski moulds were of feet rather than hands, while the wax bowl was on a raised table and Kluski’s feet were controlled; 3) many of the moulds were of children, although no children were present at the sittings; 4) Kluski’s hands were controlled during the sittings; and 5) moulds were obtained by Geley working with Kluski in his own laboratory, where no confederate could have been present. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 63, 1999, pp. 189-90, 243-4; Journal 64, 2000, pp. 55-7, 190-92. physical mediumship/cheating

Beloff, John & Playfair, Guy Lyon. PEIXOTINHO: A LATTER-DAY BRAZILIAN KLUSKI, Journal 59, 1993-94, pp. 204-6. Photographs of plaster casts, similar to those supposed to have been made of the hands of spirit visitors to Kluski’s séances, are found in relation to the work of a Brazilian medium. physical mediumship

END 'FRANEK KLUSKI'

Sidgwick, Eleanor. RESULTS OF A PERSONAL INVESTIGATION INTO THE ‘PHYSICAL PHENOMENA’ OF SPIRITUALISM, WITH SOME CRITICAL REMARKS ON THE EVIDENCE FOR THE GENUINENESS OF SUCH PHENOMENA, Proceedings 4, 1886-7, pp. 45-74. Investigations fail to provide conclusive evidence of supernormal phenomena and, in the view of the author, encourages suspicions of fraud. Inconclusive encounters with American mediums Mrs Jencken (Kate Fox) and Eva Fay are briefly described. Several series with the Newcastle materialisation mediums Miss Wood and Miss Fairlamb are given at more length, involving the author and her husband Henry Sidgwick, Myers and Gurney (48). Figures are sometimes seen but the efficacy of the restraints imposed on the mediums is never regarded as complete. Séances with a more obviously fraudulent medium, Edward Bullock, are described (54); also inconclusive encounters with Mr Williams (56). The author’s report often séances with Dr Slade in 1876 is given, mostly concerning slate-writing, with strong suspicions of cheating on the part of the medium but a failure to discover the exact method. A sceptical second-hand account of materialisations in the presence of the medium Mrs Guppy-Volckmann is given. In a general discussion the author rejects hallucination in favour of conjuring as explanations of the majority of physical phenomena. physical mediumship/slate writing/cheating

Sidgwick, Eleanor. RESULTS OF A PERSONAL INVESTIGATION INTO THE PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OF SPIRITUALISM, Journal 2, 1886, pp. 266-8. Sidgwick discusses her own experiences of investigating mediums, in which deception was often detected, and briefly examines issues of erroneous interpretation by sitters and the lack of proper precautions (report of a reading). physical mediumship/methodology/cheating

Gurney, E. & Myers F. STATEMENT OF THE LITERARY COMMITTEE, Journal 3, 1887, pp. 1-8. Gurney and Myers describe their work in assessing reports of physical phenomena. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 61-3. physical mediumship

Keulemans, J.G. [CORRESPONDENCE], Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 120-8. Criticisms of credulity towards physical mediumship in spiritualist circles. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 159-61, 170-3, 192. physical mediumship/beliefs

Wallace, Alfred Russel. ACCOUNT OF A SPIRITUALISTIC TEST, Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 273-88. Wallace defends certain American mediums against scepticism from the Society. Testimonies on both sides include claims of exposure and of the materialisation of spirits, including George Washington (288). CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 302-4, 312-8. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. THE FOX SISTERS, Journal 4, 1889-90, pp. 15-16. Notes on an attack against spiritualism and mediumship by Margaret Fox. physical mediumship/spiritualism

Wallace, Alfred, R. & Lewis, Angelo. [DR. MONCK]. Journal 4, 1889-90, pp. 143-6. Conflicting views on the medium’s performances. physical mediumship

Myers, Frederic W.H. ON ALLEGED MOVEMENTS OF OBJECTS, WITHOUT CONTACT, OCCURRING NOT IN THE PRESENCE OF A PAID MEDIUM PART 1, Proceedings 7, 1891-92, pp. 146-98. Having earlier come to negative conclusions about the claims of paid mediums such as Eglinton, the Society is less certain about phenomena arising in situations where there is no apparent motive for deceit and the people involved are of good reputation. Myers here examines reports by individuals, including one where nine servants bells rang repeatedly through no visible agency and a Brazilian spiritist circle where a table ‘acted like a restless, living creature endowed with human intelligence (175), together with instances of raps, automatic writing and clairvoyance. In another case, a table turning session reveals that the instigator of certain haunting phenomena is a recently deceased occupant of the house, who later appears to provide proof of her continued existence by fulfilling an arrangement to overturn a chair during the night (194). physical mediumship/psychokinesis/poltergeist

Myers, Frederic W.H. ON ALLEGED MOVEMENTS OF OBJECTS, WITHOUT CONTACT, OCCURRING NOT IN THE PRESENCE OF A PAID MEDIUM, Proceedings 7, 1891-92, pp. 383-94. Disturbances in a workshop are described. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/poltergeist

Sidgwick, Eleanor. ON SPIRIT PHOTOGRAPHS: A REPLY TO MR A.R. WALLACE, Proceedings 7, 1891-2, pp. 268-89. The Society responds sceptically to a claim by the noted biologist and spiritualist that spirit photography represents crucial evidence of survival. Sidgwick argues that those individuals on whom the claim largely rests - Hudson, Mumler, Parkes and Buguet - are too tainted with accusations of fraud to be taken seriously. The ability of witnesses to recognise the features of dead friends and relatives is regarded as unreliable (277). Experiments by Beattie, singled out by Wallace and others as especially convincing evidence, are rendered unsatisfactory, in the author’s opinion, by the likelihood of fraud practised by one of his associates (284). CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 5, 1891-92, pp. 153-60, 177-9, 237-9; Journal 6, 1893-94, p. 31. DISCUSSION, Journal 5, 1891, pp. 82-4. Discussion by Eleanor Sidgwick, Frank Podmore and others on fraudulent spirit photography. physical mediumship/photography

Anon. [MRS ABBOTT], Journal 5, 1891, pp. 168-9. Discussion in which members speculate on the case of a performing medium Mrs Abbott, arguing that her feats are easily duplicated by muscular pressure. physical mediusmhip/cheating

Anon. EXPOSURE OF THE MEDIUM HUSK, Journal 5, 1891-92, p. 46. Brief details of fraudulent materialising medium. physical mediumship/cheating

Barrett, William. SPIRIT PHOTOGRAPHY, Journal 7, 1895-96, pp. 165-71. A normal explanation is provided for a ghostly photo. See also Journal 9, pp. 138-43, 177-94, 232-6, 251-2. physical mediumship/photography

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: MR PODMORE AND THE ‘PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OF SPIRITUALISM’, Journal 8, 1897-8, pp. 181-3. Discussion of the views of the Society’s leading sceptic. physical mediumship

Anon. AN EXPOSURE, Journal 8, 1897-8, pp. 33-7. Communications through a ticking clock are found to be caused by deliberate fraud. physical mediusmhip/cheating

Smith, J.G. SOME CASES RECORDED IN THE ‘ANNALS DES SCIENCES PSYCHIQUES’, Proceedings 14, 1898-9, pp. 115-27. Includes a case of slate-writing, which the English editor views with some doubts. physical mediumship/slate writing

Gale, Harlow. A STUDY IN SPIRITISTIC HALLUCINATIONS, Proceedings 15, 1900, pp. 65-89. Detailed account of American séances said by the participants to attract Jesus and other religious figures. The author compares the claims to the visions of Stainton Moses. physical mediumship/mental mediumship/beliefs

Krebs, Stanley L. A DESCRIPTION OF SOME TRICK METHODS USED BY MISS BANGS, OF CHICAGO, Journal 10, 1901-2, pp. 5-16. A slate-writing medium is suspected of using an accomplice to clandestinely read sealed messages to spirits. physical mediumship/slate writing/cheating

Anon. AN EXPERIENCE WITH A SLATE-WRITING MEDIUM, Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 8-11. An unfavourable report. physical mediumship/slate writing/cheating

Newcomb. THE GEORGIA MAGNET, Journal 11, 1904, pp. 169-70. Refutes the published suggestion of a sceptic that F.W.H. Myers attributed supernormal powers to a public performer. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 242-5. physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Anon. SITTINGS WITH MR CHAMBERS, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 197-203. The Society’s investigators expose a dubious materialising medium. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Anon. EXPOSURE OF MR ELDRED, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 242-52. Tricks of a materialising ‘medium’ are comprehensively exposed. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. EXPOSURES OF MR CRADDOCK, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 266-8. See also pages 274-7. A medium refuses to be searched after arousing suspicions of fraud. physical mediumship/cheating

Taylor, G.L. Le M. REPORT ON VARIOUS SPIRITUALISTIC PHENOMENA, Proceedings 19, 1905-7, pp. 50-61. Describes various kind of séance effects witnessed at first hand. The phenomena include: the sitters’ chairs moving up to eight feet from the table (52); lights (54); raps replying to mental questions (55); evidential information (58). physical mediumship/mental mediumship/psychokinesis

Solovovo, Count P-P. THE SLATE-WRITING OF MRS FRANCIS, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 293-95. Exposé of an American medium. physical mediumship/cheating

Schiller, F.C.S. COMMENT, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 163-7. Comment on Harvard psychologist Hugo Munsterburg’s sceptical critique of mediums and survival. physical mediumship/beliefs

Johnson, Alice. REPORT ON SOME RECENT SITTINGS FOR PHYSICAL PHENOMENA IN AMERICA, Proceedings 21, 1908-9, pp. 94-135. The author describes a series of sittings she has attended at which raps are heard and movements of furniture observed, sometimes without any apparent human contact. The raps communicate intelligently, but their claim to be spirits of deceased humans is dismissed when their evidence is shown to be unreliable. The author rejects outright fraud as an explanation, preferring unconscious ‘automatism’ by certain of the sitters. ABSTRACT AND DISCUSSION, Journal 13, 1907, pp. 3-8. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 42-4. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Solovovo, Count P-P. THE HALLUCINATION THEORY AS APPLIED TO CERTAIN CASES OF PHYSICAL PHENOMENA, Proceedings 21, 1908-9, pp. 436-82.  Attempts to demonstrate the inadequacy of ‘illusion’ as a mil explanation for séance phenomena. Various incidents are analysed, with particular reference to D.D.Home’s ‘spirit-hands’ and other instances of materialisation. The author stresses the objective character of the phenomena, in leaving permanent physical traces and being observed by several witnesses collectively. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/apparitions/theory

Johnson, Alice. THE EDUCATION OF THE SITTER, Proceedings 21, 1908-9, pp. 483-511. Counter-arguments to Solovovo emphasising the inconsistent nature of the observers’ testimony. The author prefers suggestion, inaccurate observation and fraud as explanations of Home’s phenomena. A note by Solovovo briefly replies (512-15). See also the discussion of hallucination in the Feilding Report. physical mediumship/theory/methodology

Baggally W.W. SITTINGS WITH CARANCINI, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 193-211. Report on investigations of physical séance phenomena by an Italian medium. Sitters included E. Sidgwick and W. Crookes. The phenomena are considered to be fraudulently produced and are adversely compared to those of Eusapia Palladino. physical mediumship/cheating

Lodge, Oliver. THE EDUCATION OF AN OBSERVER, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 253-60. Comments on Alice Johnson’s paper (Johnson, Alice. THE EDUCATION OF THE SITTER, Proceedings 21, 1908-9, pp. 483-511). physical mediumship/theory

Lodge, Oliver. ON A SITTING WITH MR AND MRS TOMSON, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 365-70. The author rejects the mediums’ claim that he endorsed their physical phenomena, concluding from his own experience that they are fraudulent. physical mediumship/cheating

Solovovo, P-P. LES PHÉNOMÈNES PHYSIQUES DE SPIRITISME: QUELQUES DIFFICULTÉS, Proceedings 25, 1911, pp. 413-46. A critical discussion of physical mediumship and the difficulty of accepting it as genuine. The author rehearses the arguments: the phenomena are a priori very unlikely; séance conditions are favourable to fraud; the phenomena can be achieved by conjurers; almost all mediums have been caught in fraud; etc. physical mediumship/theory

Lodge, Oliver. ON THE A PRIORI ARGUMENT AGAINST PHYSICAL PHENOMENA, Proceedings 25, 1911, pp. 447-54. A physicist recalls that scientists have imagined, for theoretical purposes, beings with superhuman powers whose mode of action could not be discerned by ordinary humans. He warns against assuming that seemingly sensational aspects of mediumship are a priori impossible. physical mediumship/theory

Jong, K.H.E. THE TRUMPET-MEDIUM, MRS S. HARRIS, Journal 16, 1913-14, pp. 266-70. A fraudulent medium is exposed. physical mediumship/cheating

Feilding, Everard. NOTE ON THE ENGLISH SITTINGS WITH MISS TOMCZYK, Journal 17, 1915, pp. 28-31. Report of a Polish medium Stanislawa Tomczyk, who appears to have a psychokinetic power but not related to spiritualism. The author describes experiments in which a small object resting on a table between her hands, with a gap of up to four inches on each side, is seen to move. When she lifts her hands at the end of the experiment, the object is seen to rise above the table. Other phenomena in her presence include the production of lights, effects produced without contact on photographic plates or on a galvanometer, sudden precipitation of chemical substances held in a solution, and vision through an opaque screen. The author describes a number of visits in Warsaw prior to the present series in London, the former being far more successful than the latter. The medium herself discounts any spiritualistic interpretation, attributing them instead to an unknown energy emanating from her nervous system, a view possibly influenced by the Polish investigator Ochorowicz. This is seemingly supported by the state of nervous exhaustion which follows a manifestation. psychokinesis/physical mediumship

Rayleigh, Lord. PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS, Proceedings 30, 1919, pp. 275-90. Includes a description of personal séance experiences with Mrs Jencken (Kate Fox) and recalls the belated acceptance by scientists of the reality of meteorites. physical mediumship

Price, H. A CASE OF FRAUD WITH THE CREWE CIRCLE, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 271-83. The independent psychical researcher Harry Price describes a test with the ‘spirit’ photographer William Hope in which a sitter’s plates seem clearly to have been switched. See also Journal 21, pp. 4-10, 190-200. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

Broad, C.D. A NEGLECTED METHOD OF PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 251-2. Proposes the use of a dictaphone to facilitate research in cases of direct voice. physical mediumship/mental mediumship/methodology

Dingwall, D.J. EINER NIELSEN, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 327-8. Expresses doubts about allegations of fraud against the Danish materialising medium. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. AN EXPERIMENT WITH THE CREWE CIRCLE, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 335-8. Positive results apparently achieved with William Hope. physical mediumship/photography

Feilding, Everard. AN EXPERIMENT IN FAKING ‘SPIRIT’ PHOTOGRAPHS, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 219-23. A test suggests that faking may be easier than many people suspect. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 259-66. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

Lodge, Oliver. ON THE MARKING OF TEST PLATES BY PREVIOUS EXPOSURE, Journal 20, 1921-22, pp. 370-71. Note on ‘spirit-photography’ experimental methods. physical mediumship/photography

Dingwall, E.J. TELEKINTETIC AND TELEPLASTIC MEDIUMSHIP, Proceedings 34, 1924, pp. 324-32. Comments on a study of the Austrian medium Willy Schneider by the German researcher Schrenck-Notzing, the controversy of such research in Germany, and his own observations of the materialising medium Eva C., also one of Schrenck’s subjects. physical mediumship

Anon. THE STRANGE AND INSTRUCTIVE CASE OF MR ?’, Journal 21, 1923-24, pp. 249-53. Sceptical view of Russian apport ‘medium’. physical mediumship

Anon. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF MISS STELLA C., Journal 21, 1923-24, pp. 297-9. Harry Price’s description of psychokinetic phenomena in the presence of a medium briefly described. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Anon. CASE: DREAM PREMONITION OF A PHOTOGRAPHIC PHENOMENON, Journal 21, 1923-24, pp. 343-5. A woman with an interest in spirit photography dreams that her son will stand behind her at a sitting and put an arm on her shoulder. Subsequently she attends a sitting where six plates are exposed, of which one, when developed, shows a hand appearing to rest on her shoulder. The episode appears to the author to provide some evidence of supernormality. physical mediumship/photography/precognition

Dingwall, Eric J. THE CASE OF THE MEDIUM PASQUALE ERTO, Journal 21, 1923-24, pp. 278-80. Fraudulence debunked. physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. THE CASES OF MR MOSS AND MR MUNNINGS, Journal 23, 1926, pp. 71-75. The activities of obviously fraudulent mediums described. CORRESPONDENCE, p. 113. physical mediumship/cheating

Besterman, Theodore. REPORT OF A PSEUDO-SITTING FOR PHYSICAL PHENOMENA WITH KARL KRAUS, Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 388-92. A self-confessed trickster gives a ‘sitting’ to demonstrate how people can be taken in by his performance. However, the control is loose and the author is not convinced that he would have survived a genuine investigation. physical mediumship/methodology/cheating

Solovovo, Count P-P. NOTE ON AN EARLY EXPOSURE OF GUZIK, Journal 24, 1927-28, pp. 368-70. Doubts about a Polish physical medium. physical mediumship/cheating

Woolley VJ. & Dingwall, EJ. LUMINOUS AND OTHER PHENOMENA OBSERVED WITH THE MEDIUM JANUS FRONCZEK, Proceedings 36, 1928, pp. 34-51. Describes the Society’s attempt to discover the nature and origin of small lights that are produced, apparently supernormally, by a young Polish medium. The phenomena are seen at two out of nine sittings and are thought to be consistent with some normal method of production achieved with the use of apparatus that escaped the investigators’ detection. physical mediumship/cheating

Solovovo, Count Perovsky-Petrovo. NOTE ON AN EARLY EXPOSURE OF GUZIK, Journal 24, 1928, pp. 368-70. Argues that a Polish psychic, of great interest to continental researchers, is fraudulent. psychokinesis/cheating/physical mediumship

Besterman, Theodore. REPORT OF A FOUR MONTHS’ TOUR OF PSYCHICAL INVESTIGATION, Proceedings 38, 1928-9, pp. 409-80. The author remains unimpressed after visits to a number of continental mediums. Mme Kahl-Toukholka (413); Mme. Briffaut (433); Rudi Schneider (433); Maria Silbert (434); F.A. Rondon-Veri (449); Tibor Molnar and Lajos Papp (450); Zakariâsné Papp (465); Lujza Ignath (466); Anna Karlik (472); Peter Johanson (472); Ludwig Kahn (473); Pascal Forthuny (474); René Daumal (476); the Dog Zou (479). Of these, encounters with Mme Kahl-Toukholka in Paris, Maria Silbert in Graz, Austria, and Molnar and Papp in Budapest are described fully; the rest in passing. (The Dog Zou’s ability to calculate is attributed to cueing by the owner). physical mediumship/animal psi/cheating

Lambert, Rudolf. THE MEDIUM FRAU SILBERT, Journal 27, 1931-32, pp. 112-18. An assistant editor of the ZEITSCHRIFT FUR PARAPSYCHOLOGIE makes detailed allegations of fraud against the Austrian medium Silbert and subsequently loses his job (see pp. 167-8). physical mediumship/cheating

Walter, W.H. THE RELATION BETWEEN PARAPSYCHICAL AND PARAPHYSICAL PHENOMENA, Journal 27, 1931-2, pp. 268-74. Probes the quality and character of the evidence from two types of mediumship, the physical and the mental. physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Besterman, Theodore. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF TESTIMONY IN RELATION TO PARAPHYSICAL PHENOMENA: REPORT OF AN EXPERIMENT, Proceedings 40, 1931-2, pp. 363-88. An experiment shows that sitters in an artificial sitting for physical mediumship correctly describe only two thirds of the events they witnessed. Besterman’s experiment provoked some indignation but also support from fellow-researchers. See CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 27, 1932, pp. 277-8, 290-91, 304-10. physical mediumship/experiments/methodology

Besterman, Theodore. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF TESTIMONY IN RELATION TO PARAPHYSICAL PHENOMENA: REPORT OF AN EXPERIMENT, Proceedings 40, 1931, pp. 363-88. A séance is simulated in front of 40 ‘sitters’ with the object of finding out how accurately they recall what they have seen. Tendencies include: underrating the number of persons present; ignoring apparently irrelevant disturbances; inability to report with which hand a movement has been performed; inability to describe the conditions of visibility; inaccurate reporting of auditory conditions; underrating and exaggerating a short period of time; inability to accurately report on a scene revealed by flash. physical mediumship/experiments/methodology

Lambert, R. ZEITSCHRIFT FUR PARAPSYCHOLOGIE, Journal 27, 1931-2, pp. 213-4. An assistant editor of the German Journal is dismissed following the publication of a critical article on the medium Frau Silbert in Journal, 27, 1931, alleging fraud. physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Barlow, Fred & Rampling-Rose, W. REPORT ON AN INVESTIGATION INTO SPIRIT-PHOTOGRAPHY, Proceedings 41, 1932-3, pp. 121-38. A former believer in the genuineness of spirit photography changes his mind when he discovers the deceit of a practitioner he once took seriously. Here he focuses on the faking methods of one of the best known spirit photographers, William Hope. Brief reference is made to another medium, Mrs Deane (131). A photographer involved in ‘spirit-photography’ sessions with Hope describes the procedures and his scepticism about the results. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 28, 1933-34, pp. 111-2. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

Anon. CORRESPONDENCE: SPIRIT PHOTOGRAPHY, Journal 28, 1933-34, pp. 45-6. Physical objections to the genuineness of spirit photography. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

Herbert, C.V.C. SOME RECENT SITTINGS WITH CONTINENTAL MEDIUMS, Journal 29, 1935-36, pp. 222-33. Accounts of 14 sittings with Rudi Schneider at his home in Austria, at which at least some of the telekinetic phenomena seen by other sitters are confirmed by the author. Attempts at photography failed. Experiments with the Polish clairvoyant Ossowiecki produce only slight success, marred by incomplete precautions against fraud. Sitting with the Polish clairvoyant Sabira fails to bring any evidence of paranormal faculty. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 275-7. physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Maby, J.C. ‘THE FLOWER MEDIUM’: MISS HYLDA LEWIS, Journal 29, 1935-36, pp. 303-4. Summary of a paper on a medium specialising in apports and materialisations of fruit and flowers, but here suspected of fraud. physical mediumship/cheating

Solovovo, Count P-P. MY EXPERIMENTS WITH S.F. SAMBOR, Journal 30, 1937-38, pp. 87-90. Describes sittings with an impressive Russian physical medium who was active between 1893 and 1902. The methods used to control the medium, which the author considers satisfactory, are described in detail. physical mediumship/methodology

Rayleigh, Lord. PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS: THE PROBLEM OF PHYSICAL PHENOMENA IN CONNECTION WITH PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, Proceedings 45, 1938, pp. 1-18. Discusses the investigations into physical mediums and the conclusions that can reasonably be drawn. Includes Home, the Goligher circle and Rudi Schneider. physical mediumship/theory

Herbert, C.V.C. SHORT EXPOSURE PHOTOGRAPHS OF A JUMPING MODEL, Proceedings 45, 1939, pp. 196-8. A photographic experiment disposes of the claim that photographs published in the press purporting to show mediums in a state of levitation could not be faked. physical mediumship/photography/cheating

Solovovo, P-V. INCIDENTS OF BYGONE DAYS, Journal 31, 1939, pp. 79-81. Brief description of psychical phenomena witnessed by the author, including visits to mediums such as Eusapia Palladino and Eva C., poltergeists and apparitional incidents, and Indian fakirs. psi/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Solovovo, Count P-P. NIKOLAEFF: A LITTLE-KNOWN RUSSIAN PHYSICAL MEDIUM, Proceedings 47, 1942-45, pp. 261-6. Details of a materialisation sitting, where a medium, well-controlled by academic investigators, produced a luminous cloud which formed into the shape of two human arms flying around the room, rapping violently on the furniture and throwing objects. ‘All these phenomena were of so sharp a nature that it became superfluous to talk about their being forged, since it was obvious to all the persons present that the medium was sleeping in the sight of them all’ (265). physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Anon. THE FOX SISTERS AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF SPIRITUALISM, Journal 34, 1947-48, pp. 271-86. An historical overview of the events at Hydesville in 1848 and the subsequent development of the new religion of spiritualism. The article is occasioned by the publication of a new book on the Fox sisters by a member of the family. It emphasises the importance of the eldest sister Leah who, though not as powerful a medium as the other two, was largely responsible for bringing them to the awareness of a wider public. It also describes the later careers of Margaret and Kate and discusses the progress of spiritualism in Britain, referring to a 1947 Gallup poll on belief in life after death. physical mediumship/spiritualism

Anon. THE RESULT OF THE PRIZE OFFER TO PHYSICAL MEDIUMS, Journal 34, 1947-48, pp. 153-4. An award of £250 offered to physical mediums who pass a test with a new ‘infra-red telescope’ brings prevarication, evasion and outright refusals. The few that attempt the test are unconvincing or appear fraudulent. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 226-30. physical mediumship/cheating

THE FRAUDULENT MEDIUMS BILL, Journal 36, 1951-2, p. 476. New legislation is passed to update 18th century anti-witchcraft laws finally discredited with the trial of Helen Duncan. physical mediumship/cheating

Salter, W.H. REVIEW: THE SPIRITUALISTS BY TREVOR HALL, Journal 41, 1961-62, pp. 372-7. Critique of a book by a sceptical member in which an endorsement of a famous nineteenth century materialising medium by an equally famous scientist is considered to be a front for an adulterous love affair. The thesis is based on a claim that the medium had herself admitted this. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 388-92. See also pp. 437-42; Journal 42, pp. 31-3, 93-7, 140-47, 203-8, 370-75; Journal 43, pp. 46-9, 283-4. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Anon. HARRY PRICE AND THE ‘ROSALIE’ CASE, Journal 42, 1963-64, pp. 370-73, 420-22. Also Journal 43, pp. 327-9. The authors of the critique of the Borley Rectory haunting are taken to task for their further claims of fabrication against Harry Price in his book Four Modern Ghosts (Duckworth, 1958), this time concerning séance phenomena. apparitions/physical mediumship

Medhurst, R.G. HARRY PRICE AND ‘ROSALIE’, Journal 43, 1965-66, pp. 201-9. Defends the independent psychical researcher against allegations that he invented the account of a materialisation séance described in one of his books. During the séance he claimed to have witnessed the materialisation of a six-year-old girl, a regular visitor to séances attended by her mother. See also pp. 327-9, 382-3. physical mediumship/cheating

Batcheldor, K.J. REPORT ON A CASE OF TABLE LEVITATION AND ASSOCIATED PHENOMENA, Journal 43, 1965-66, pp. 339-56. Many of the physical phenomena reported at spiritualistic séances are experienced at private sittings organised by a psychologist. Frequent table lévitations are confirmed with the use of electrical circuits. Other effects include raps and noises, ‘glueing’ and cold breezes. See also Journal 44, pp. 44-5. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 50-51. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Cassirer, Manfred. ‘SPIRIT HANDS’: FACT OR FRAUD?, Journal 49, 1971-72, pp. 875-80. Discusses recorded examples of materialising hands, especially those produced by the Schneider brothers and described by Schrenck-Notzing (877). physical mediumship

Canning, Judith. [VOICEPRINTS], Journal 46, 1972, pp. 101-2. Discusses the use of voiceprints, a technique for identifying voices for psychiatric and criminal investigation, as a means of testing the authenticity of spirit mediums. physical mediumship/mental mediumship/methodology

Nisbet, B. TABLE TURNING, Journal 47, 1973-4, pp. 96-106. Gives the historical background to a past-time popular in the early decades of spiritualism. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Chari, C.T.K. REGURGITATION, MEDIUMSHIP AND YOGA, Journal 47, 1973-4, pp. 156-72. An Indian perspective on régurgitation as a potential means of faking ectoplasmic mediumship. Although sceptical about materialisation mediums the author doubts that they used régurgitation. Reference is made to Indian cases, including Sai Baba (166). physical mediumship/cheating

Owen, A.R.G. [PHILIP], Journal 47, 1973-4, pp. 391-2. Brief description of a Canadian experiment, in which sittings for physical phenomena are held and communications are received through raps from an entity called ‘Philip’. However, the communicator conforms in most respects to the identity of a fictional entity dreamed up by the experimenters. The experiment has been widely quoted as support for the reality of PK but damaging to claims of spirit survival. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/experiments/methodology

Anon. [Survival] CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 52, 1983-84, pp. 156-7. Announces the initiation of a large-scale, long-term survival research project by Arthur S. Berger. physical mediumship

Anon. [Fraud] CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 53, 1985-86, pp. 478-9. Also Journal 54, pp. 158-63. Discussion of the Society’s attitude to fraud by mediums. physical mediumship/cheating

Gissurarson, Loftur R. & Haraldsson, Erlendur. THE ICELANDIC PHYSICAL MEDIUM INDRIDI INDRIDASON, Proceedings 57, January 1989, pp. 53-148. Study of an Icelandic medium investigated by local researchers between 1905 and 1912. Indridason was a 22-year-old apprentice when he was found by experimenters to be the focus of a range of powerful spiritualistic effects. Sitting exclusively for the experimenters, he was later investigated in depth by a highly-regarded Icelandic scientist, who subjected the Proceedings to strict controls. Few opportunities for fraud were thought to exist and fraud was not observed. The phenomena included communications through direct voice, trance speech and automatic writing; lévitations and knocks; lights and flashes; clairvoyance; and apports. Striking full-form materialisations of the kind reported by sitters with other European and American mediums are also reported. Violent poltergeist phenomena over a period of several days is described. The study refers to investigators’ notes and contemporary articles to describe the nature of the phenomena and the kind of precautions taken. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 56, 1990, pp. 107-10, 178-83, 306-10. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Mulacz, W. Peter. OSCAR R. SCHLAG, Journal 60, 1994-5, pp. 263-6. Notes on a German physical medium, contemporary of Rudi Schneider and subject of study by the German researcher Schrenck-Notzing. physical mediumship

Keen, M., Ellison, A. & Fontana, D. THE SCOLE REPORT, Proceedings 58, 1999, pp, 150-392. Book-length account of an investigation into the genuineness of a range of physical phenomena associated with a mediumistic group in Norfolk, England (October 1995-August 1997). The authors write: ‘This report is the outcome of a three-year investigation of a group claiming to receive both messages and materialised or physical objects from a number of collaborative spirit communicators. It has been conducted principally by three senior members of the Society for Psychical Research. In the course of over 20 sittings the investigators were unable to detect any direct indication of fraud or deception, and encountered evidence favouring the hypothesis of intelligent forces, whether originating in the human psyche or from discarnate sources, able to influence material objects, and to convey associated meaningful messages, both visual and aural.’ The report begins with a description of the Scole Group, led by Robin Foy, the founder of the Noah’s Ark Society dedicated to the practice of physical mediumship. The authors state that, neither at that time nor subsequently, could they find anything in the background of members of the group ‘to support prior doubt about either their motives or their probity’ (162). They give an overview of the genesis and development of the mediumship, in which ‘spirits’ had the avowed aim of bringing about spiritual enlightenment ‘by providing firm evidence of the reality of the spirit world, its concern for humanity, and its capacity to affect both our consciousness and our physical environment...’ (168). Seven principal spirits communicated through two entranced mediums. The authors describe attempts to record paranormal phenomena by means of Polaroid photographs and the appearance of apports; the layout of the experimental séance room; the keeping of records; and their background as investigators. The second chapter briefly looks at the character of sittings, the lack of light and the use of luminous wristbands, then describes the various personalities that communicated in initial sittings, which include ‘a wide variety of entities and accents’ (182). Verbatim examples of dialogue are given. Chapter 3 describes the phenomenon of displays of lights, listing their characteristics, and the appearance of forms, shapes and touches, with more examples of dialogue given here and throughout. Chapter 4 gives more examples of exchanges, some by ‘direct voices [that] appeared to originate from above the central table area... ‘ (202). Among a variety of topics emerging during conversations references are described to Frederic Myers, Lord Raleigh, Oliver Lodge, Mrs Holland, and other deceased individuals involved in psychical research. Chapter 5 describes early attempts by the ‘spirits’ to impress images on photographic film, and the appearance on some of handwritten ‘messages’ in foreign languages. This and the following chapter also describe the mechanics of the process. Sixteen pages of colour plates follow, showing prints and strips of film with images and writing, together with some originals these are said to refer to. Chapter 7 describes attempts by the investigators to confirm claims by the communicators, supported by photographic ‘evidence,’ regarding amendments by the poet Wordsworth to an early poem. Chapter 8 describes attempts to record ‘spirit’ voices paranormally on audiotape. Chapter 9 to 14 describe attempts to penetrate a riddle posed by a photographic message referring to Louise Dageurre, some apports and unsolved riddles, sittings in a house in Ibiza, a paranormal recording of part of Rachmaninoff s Second Piano Concerto, and the image of a man recorded, apparently paranormally, on video film. Chapter 14 defends the investigation against claims of possible shortcomings, such as: why did the communicators, if they were truly spirits of the deceased, not provide information that would allow their identity to be checked? Why could they not create a permanent paranormal object? Why, if they were concerned with elevating mankind’s spiritual consciousness, did they bother with ‘trivial’ physical phenomena? Why did the controls not include body searches, infra red or electrical circuit-breaking equipment, etc? Chapter 15 defends the investigation against claims that the participants may have been practising fraud. In a final summary, the authors acknowledge serious shortcomings that would incline sceptics to reject the evidence, notably the lack of the light and the prohibition on infra-red technology, but argue that a balanced assessment would include the phenomena are genuine. Appendices list details of the séances; add details to specific episodes; two sittings of the group in California, attended by a number of well-known parapsychologists and astrophysicists, in which lights, touches, noises, table movement, and direct voice were witnessed; the testimony of Ingrid Slack, a psychologist and experienced investigator of mediumship (this includes a description of a ‘glowing orb’ that caused her to feel ‘an overwhelming feeling of gentleness and love’ (360) ); and a discussion of doubts about specific aspects of the physical phenomena. West, D. J. THE SCOLE INVESTIGATION: COMMENTARY ON STRATEGY AND OUTCOME, pp. 393-6. Finds the report ‘sadly unconvincing,’ arguing that when secure methods were substituted, the phenomena virtually ceased. Cornell, A.D. SOME COMMENTS ON THE SCOLE REPORT, pp. 397-403. Argues that normal explanations can be given for many of the phenomena, raising doubts in particular about the lights supposed to have been captured on Polaroid film, and the newspaper apport. Gauld, Alan. COMMENTS ON THE SCOLE REPORT, pp. 404-24. Raises detailed objections to certain of the images captured on film, and argues that although there is no direct evidence of hoaxing there is ‘quite a lot of indirect evidence for it,’ while at the same time there is too little good evidence that defeats the ‘hypothesis of production by normal means’ (420). Keen, Montague and Ellison, Arthur. SCOLE: A RESPONSE TO THE CRITICS, pp. 425-39. Keen and Ellison give a detailed rebuttal of the objections, pointing out that their critics have not been able to point to ‘a single example of fraud or deception’ (427) and dissecting the logic of the argument that the film images were fabricated. They also argue strongly against the notion that the conditions were favourable for creating tricks and illusions. Fontana, David. SCOLE: ADDITION RESPONSE, pp. 440-47. Argues that the incompleteness of safeguards against fraud cannot alone annul the suggestion of paranormality. While agreeing with Gauld’s comment that ‘we can never know enough about people’s motives, character, etc. to rule out the hoax hypothesis,’ he points out that ‘in practice social and professional life, to say nothing of our legal system, depends upon sifting the evidence for motive and character, and making judgements accordingly’ (447). Grosse, Maurice. COMMENTS ON AN EXAMPLE OF TRADITIONAL RESEARCH, pp. 448-9. Briefly supports the authors against the critics. Knox, Crawford. REFEREE’S REPORT AND SOME SUBSEQUENT COMMENTS, pp. 450-52. Gives details of the referee’s initial, broadly positive response to the report, and criticism of Gauld’s reliance on the fraud hypothesis, which he argues is ‘not appropriate to the Scole report’ (452). See also Foy, Robin P. IN PURSUIT OF PHYSICAL MEDIUMSHIP, reviewed by Mary Rose Barrington, Journal 61, 1996, pp. 268-70. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 66, 2002, p. 125. physical mediumship/psychokinesis/methodology/cheating

Randall, John L. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF STELLA CRANSHAW: A STATISTICAL INVESTIGATION, Journal 65, 2001, pp. 38-46. Author’s abstract: Stella Cranshaw gave three series of sittings to various groups of people between 1923 and 1928. The observed phenomena included raps, flashes of light, lévitations of objects and breaking of furniture. The author assigned a number (the ‘activity index’) to each séance according to the degree of physical violence displayed. He found a significant correlation between the activity indices and the recorded falls in temperature during Series I, together with a significant decline effect. Series II showed no decline effect. There was a significant increase in activity during Series III. Light flashes were more common in séances with a high activity index, but the effect was only marginally significant. Sittings in which women sitters outnumbered men, or in which the numbers were equal, showed higher levels of activity than sittings in which men outnumbered women. This effect was independently significant in all three series. It is suggested that PK might be regarded as some kind of interpersonal field effect, and that interactions between the sexes may be important in its generation. physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Section 08 : Spontaneous Apparitions and NDEs

Material on spontaneous apparitions, also partially included in the section dealing with Spontaneous Phenomena (01), is quite extensive. Reports of ghosts and apparitions, particularly identifiable apparitions of the dead or seeming to communicate at the time of death or a crisis ("crisis apparitions"), formed the basis of much of the work of early researchers. Advertised appeals brought an abundance of material, much of it reported in the Proceedings and Journals, leading in 1886 to the publication of the voluminous Phantasms of the Living. This was followed by a landmark Census of Hallucinations, whose findings were published in the Society’s Proceedings in 1894.

With few exceptions researchers felt that the veridicality of many of the reports - that is, their content of unexpected, detailed information unknown to the percipient but later found to be true - indicated a genuinely paranormal process. Several researchers undertook the time-consuming task of interviewing witnesses, but the main analysis was done by Edmund Gurney and published in Phantasms of the Living. This work tended to approach the apparition as a telepathic episode whose origin lay in some crisis in the affairs of the appearing ‘agent’; the vision was seemingly intended to inform the ‘percipient’, in most cases a close relative, of the agent’s impending illness or death. Hence the title of the book, implying that apparitions can largely be explained as a psychic episode involving the living, and as such are not automatically indicative of survival of death.

This approach to apparitions as telepathic events tended to inform researchers’ attitudes in preference to the traditional notion of ghosts possessing an objective, quasi-material existence. It was developed in more detail in the later work of G.N.M. Tyrrell. Another influential theory, put forward by the Oxford philosopher H.H. Price, suggested a state in between the material and the purely mental which he called the ‘psychic ether’, in which images could attain a sort of objectivity and survive for centuries. However, papers devoted to philosophical debate on survival in general are grouped in Section 11 (Survival Theories and Speculations); this section presents mainly evidential and methodological material devoted to the topic.

The phenomenon of near-death experiences, i.e., visions and impressions with similar features which were being reported by people who came close to dying, only began to come to public attention in the 1970s with the work of Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and Raymond Moody. However the Society’s publications contain a few early examples of reported NDEs, and these are included here. Death-bed visions by terminally ill but conscious patients were also occasionally described in the Society’s early publications. Although NDE and OBE phenomena bear many common features, NDEs have been included here in view of their possible relevance to survival research. For ease of reference, they have been grouped together at the end of the section.

The section also includes reports of a sense of presence and other phenomena interpreted by the experients as indicative of survival of a particular person. It also covers seemingly psychic dreams and hallucinations that appear to carry veridical information or provide hints of survival of death. Although electronic voice phenomena (evp) are not, strictly speaking, apparitions, they are included here because of their interpretation by some experients as attempts at communication by the dead.

(main keywords: appariions, hauntings, near death experiences, evp)

Barrett, W.F. et al. FIRST REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON ‘HAUNTED HOUSES’, Proceedings 1, 1882-3, pp. 101-15. Introduces the Society’s research into reports of ghosts. Its methods are described and examples are given of what constitutes unsatisfactory evidence. Two cases are described that seem to warrant attention, involving repeated sightings of apparitions by different witnesses. (However, one of these cases was later withdrawn, having been found to be unreliable: see Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 2-5). hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Barrett, W.F. et al. FIRST REPORT OF THE LITERARY COMMITTEE, Proceedings 1, 1882-3, pp. 116-55. Describes the Society’s work in collecting accounts of spontaneous psychic communications supplied by the public in response to advertised appeals. Categorises the types and gives several examples: three children are ‘visited’ by their absent mother who at the time is dying some distance away (121); an army officer killed in the Crimea appears to his brother in England with a bullet wound in his head (124); family members are ‘visited’ by relations who are dying elsewhere; and others. Concludes with a general discussion of the difficulties of the research and its purpose. hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Barrett, W.F. et al. SECOND REPORT OF THE LITERARY COMMITTEE, Proceedings 2, 1884, pp. 43-55. Describes the work undertaken for the forthcoming book Phantasms of the Living, involving follow-up interviews with witnesses and their friends and relatives aimed at substantiating the original reports. An appendix gives a single example. ABSTRACT, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 3-4. Report of a reading of the paper. hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Stack, J.H. ON CONTEMPORARY EVIDENCE AS TO ‘PHANTASMS OF THE LIVING IN INDIA’, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 72-6. The theosophists Colonel Olcott and Mohini Chatterji describe instances of ‘Mahatmas’ projecting themselves in apparitional form. apparitions/theosophy

Anon. SPECIMENS OF THE CLASSIFICATION OF CASES FOR ‘PHANTASMS OF THE LIVING’, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 77-83. Discussion of apparitional cases in which there is ‘a clear impression of the agent’s personality’. apparitions

Barrett, W.F. et al. THIRD REPORT OF THE LITERARY COMMITTEE - A THEORY OF APPARITIONS PART 1, Proceedings 2, 1884, pp. 109-36. Justifies the scientific investigation of apparitions and attempts to provide a theoretical background to the work done so far. Topics include: the polarity of public opinion (111); involvement of the public in research (112); unscientific and scientific objections (113); statistical aspects (116); weakness of a priori objections (117). The implications of telepathy are also considered as a preliminary study to apparitions: a few reports of telepathic impressions are given, some experienced by scientists (122). ABSTRACT, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 37-8. hauntings/apparitions/theory

Bushell, W.D. et al. SECOND REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON HAUNTED HOUSES, Proceedings 2, 1884, pp. 137-51. Points out the difficulty of carrying out firsthand investigations and the resulting dependence on second-hand accounts. Lists characteristics from an analysis of 65 such cases (139-40): lack of sensational features or fixed times; manner of movement and dress; possible origins (suicide, locality). Two examples: the apparition of an old woman is seen on three separate occasions by three different people; a vicarage is plagued with bangings, human footsteps, etc. ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 1, 1884, pp. 35-7. Report of discussions on apparitions and hallucination. hauntings/apparitions/hallucinations/methodology

Barrett, W.F. et al. FOURTH REPORT OF THE LITERARY COMMITTEE - A THEORY OF APPARITIONS PART 2, Proceedings 2, 1884, pp. 157-86. Broaches the class of visual telepathic impressions, giving examples of people experiencing waking visions of the scene of an accident involving friends and relatives at a distance. The implications are discussed in terms of physiology, and a connection with telepathy is established (168-70). The possibility of perceptions being influenced by suggestion and prior knowledge is considered (171). Examples of death imagery (coffins etc.) in apparitional episodes are given (173); also a possible case of collective percipience (180). ABSTRACT, Journal 1, 1884, p. 76. hauntings/apparitions/theory

Myers, F.W.H. SPECIMENS OF THE CLASSIFICATION OF IMPRESSIONS AND APPARITIONS AT MOMENTS OF DEATH OR DANGER, Journal 1, 1884-5, pp. 54-6. Cases are described that illustrate the telepathic theory adopted by researchers. The subject is continued on pages 77-83, 94-103, 114-30, 142-52, 157-65, 182-93, 213-20, 238-45. Criticisms of the vagueness of dates and other details in the reports is given on pages 400-407, followed by a detailed rejoinder. hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Anon. APPARITIONAL CASES, Journal 1, 1884-5, pp. 245-53. See also pp. 282-4, 292-310, 325-67, 376-98, 433-48, 469-88. No summary given. hauntings/apparitions

Newcomb, S. & Gurney, E. ON PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, Journal 1, 1885, pp. 268-74. Reprint of correspondence in Science between a sceptic and leading psychical researcher, on whether crisis apparitions can be explained as chance coincidence. hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Sidgwick, Mrs Henry (Eleanor). NOTES ON THE EVIDENCE, COLLECTED BY THE SOCIETY, FOR PHANTASMS OF THE DEAD, Proceedings 3, 1885, pp. 69-150. Considers anecdotal episodes that suggest the agency of deceased human beings. Hoaxing and exaggeration are discussed briefly, and illusion and mistaken identity (73, 83) more fully, with examples. Telepathic hallucinations are considered as potential explanations of collective percipience (86). Reports of various other kinds of veridical hallucination are given and possible non-psychical explanations given. Reports of hauntings are given and the lack of evidence noted of certain recurrent themes in ghost stories: connection with only old houses, significant anniversaries, crimes or tragedies, apparent purpose or intelligent action. Varieties of conditions of light, sounds, mode of appearance and disappearance and character of percipients are also observed. Four general explanations are discussed (146), two involving spirit agency, with the notion of non-material hallucination inspired by the deceased agent viewed as more plausible than the popular belief of the ghost as a material entity. Telepathic hallucination and material influences in particular localities are also briefly described. The author acknowledges the difficulties involved in explaining veridical hallucinations, but concludes that they are too few to ascribe to anything other than chance coincidence and that other evidence is likewise inadequate at present to establish the reality of apparitions as deceased humans. A later reinterpretation of the case discussed on p. 115 is found in Journal 42, 1963-64, pp. 273-82. ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 1, 1884-5, pp. 261-2, 371-4. Detailed summary, with comments by Myers and others. hauntings/apparitions/methodology/theory

Anon. RETRACTIONS AND ALTERATIONS OF VIEW, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 2-5. Edmund Gurney explains why two cases analysed and published by the Society have been found to be unreliable and are being retracted. hauntings/apparitions/methodology

Anon. CASES, Journal 2, 1885-6, pp. 7-25. See also pp. 38-56, 64-80, 98-108, 131-50, 171-82, 208-13, 249-62, 272-80, 334-5, 347-53, 375-9, 385-404. No summary given. hauntings/apparitions

Gurney, E. & Myers, F.W.H. COLLECTIVE HALLUCINATIONS, Journal 2, 1886, pp. 154-8. Discussion in which, among other things, Gurney points to evidence of collectively seen apparitions as suggesting that telepathic transmission of information may be made to more than one person simultaneously. Myers states his objections to this approach. hauntings/apparitions/methodology/theory

Wedgwood, Hensleigh. ‘PHANTASMS OF THE LIVING’, Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 82-5. Comment on the book and on the author’s personal experiences. book review/apparitons/hauntings/methodology

Anon. CASES, Journal 3, 1887-8, pp. 85-94. See also pp. 100-108, 115-20, 132-6, 207-12, 241-56 (322-32), 265-72, 292-7, 307-12, 333-42, 535-60. No summary given. apparitions/hauntings

Gurney, Edmund & Myers, Frederic. ON APPARITIONS OCCURRING SOON AFTER DEATH, Proceedings 5, 1888-9, pp. 403-85. Describes a class of ‘transitional ghosts’ midway between those that appear within 12 hours of death, classed as ‘phantasms of the living’, and hauntings associated with particular localities. Twenty-seven cases of apparitions appearing up to one year after the death are quoted at length. Features are categorised (473) with brief discussion. This paper was begun by Gurney and completed by Myers following his colleague’s unexpected death. ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 4, 1889, pp. 52-4. apparitions/hauntings

Myers, Frederic. ON RECOGNISED APPARITIONS OCCURRING MORE THAN A YEAR AFTER DEATH, Proceedings 6, 1889-90, pp. 13-65. Testimony is given relating to veridical apparitions occurring some time after death is given. These examples contain instances of apparent purpose on the part of the apparition, and some have been widely quoted. A man sees a vision of his dead sister in a hotel bedroom and notes a red scratch on her cheek, which only his mother knew of, having accidentally caused it after the girl’s death and then covered it up (17). A woman lying in bed sees an apparition and wakes her husband, who recognises his dead father, apparently intending to warn him against a course of action which would have proved harmful (26). A man charged by a dying man with the care of an elderly relative is visited some time later by the man’s apparition to complain that he has not kept his promise; investigating, he finds that arrangements he made earlier have been altered (29). A persistent unpleasant impression leads a farmer to dig in a particular spot: he finds the skeleton of a man who used to occupy his room and who disappeared suddenly, possibly murdered (35). And others. apparitions/hauntings

Podmore, Frank. PHANTASMS OF THE DEAD FROM ANOTHER POINT OF VIEW, Proceedings 6, 1889-90, pp. 229-313. A sceptical approach, focusing on weaknesses and inconsistencies in testimony and the purposelessness of apparitions, which together suggest an ordinary explanation. The author argues that narrators tend to introduce assumptions regarding survival into what may in most cases be no more than casual hallucinations. The result is a series of artificial constructions arising from misperception and mis-remembering. Regarding hauntings, the author argues that inconsistency in the reports as the apparition’s form suggest a predisposition in the witnesses to hallucinate (243). Cases of collective percipience are accounted for by telepathy (285). ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 4, 1889, pp. 171-4, 204-7. apparitions/hauntings/hallucinations/theory

Myers, Frederic. A DEFENCE OF PHANTASMS OF THE DEAD, Proceedings 6, 1889-90, pp. 314-57. A rebuttal of Podmore’s case. Myers suggests that Podmore’s reliance on telepathy as an explanation of certain classes of apparitions is mistaken, depending as it does on unproven assumptions about its character, while the fact of its existence opens the door to a wide range of similarly unknown phenomena, of which apparitions are one. He argues against exaggeration and wrong assumptions about the alleged lack of purpose or about what constitutes a subjective hallucination. He criticises over-reliance on theories of the transference of hallucinations from one individual to another, put forward in Myers’s and Gurney’s earlier work, particularly as regards hauntings, where he implies Podmore’s explanations are strained. apparitions/hauntings/theory

Newbold, W.R. REVIEW: ‘APPARITIONS AND THOUGHT-TRANSFERENCE’ BY FRANK PODMORE, Proceedings 11, 1895, pp. 149-54. Book review offering a critique of Podmore’s anti-survivalist interpretation of apparitions. book review/apparitions/theory

Anon. CASES, Journal 4, 1889-90, pp. 7-15. See also pp. 26-31, 39-47, 55-7, 67-76, 88-94, 138-43, 157-62, 179-84, 191-9, 210-15, 220-9, 239-43, 253-7, 268-76, 286-94, 304-316, 319-328, 334-46. No summary given. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 199-200, 243-8, 262, 294-9. apparitions/hauntings

Anon. ARE APPARITIONS OBJECTIVE, AND DO ANIMALS SEE THEM?, Journal 4, 1889-90, pp. 94-6. Noises accompanying an apparition are plainly heard by the percipient’s companions and dogs. CORRESPONDENCE, p. 150. apparitions/hallucinations

Sidgwick, Henry. DISCUSSION, Journal 4, 1890, pp. 283-5. Henry Sidgwick expresses disappointment at the small interest shown by members of the Society in the census of apparitions, and gives preliminary results. apparitions/hallucinations

Anon. CASES, Journal 5, 1891-92, pp. 5-15. See also pp. 35-43, 52-64, 68-77, 86-93,105-10, 134-43, 147-52, 161-4, 172-7, 191-5, 204-9, 221-7, 239-48, 250-60, 268-76, 302-308, 322-4. No summary given. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 228-32. apparitions

Kirk, J. EXPERIMENTAL THOUGHT-TANSFERENCE FROM A DISTANCE, WITH APPARITION OF AGENT, Journal 5, 1891, pp. 21-30. See also pp. 111-26. The writer describes the success of experiments in which he attempts to telepathically ‘impress’ a female acquaintance with certain actions, at a distance. The subject reports seeing his apparition performing these actions at the time the experiments were undertaken. Greater detail, with tables and illustrations, is provided in two subsequent papers: Journal 5, 1891, pp. 111-26; Journal 5, 1892, pp. 182-89. apparitions/telepathy/experiments

Myers, Frederic. ON INDICATIONS OF CONTINUED TERRENE KNOWLEDGE ON THE PART OF PHANTASMS OF THE DEAD, Proceedings 8, 1892, pp. 170-252. A number of detailed cases are given tending to indicate continuity between the apparition or spirit and the life of the person it represents. A letter informing the intended recipient of the death of a spouse is mislaid and appears to emit ticking noises to encourage percipients to deliver it (218). A proof of survival is offered by experimental test (248). The paper is especially interesting for two detailed episodes of the type later described as ‘near-death experiences’: one involves a complex series of events in an out-of-body state, popularly called ‘astral travelling’ (180); in the other, an incident often referred to in near-death literature, a mountain climber gains veridical information concerning the actions of his companions while out of the body (195). ABSTRACT & DISCUSSION, Journal 5, 1892, pp. 215-7. apparitions/survival/near death experiences

THE CHELTENHAM GHOST

Morton, R.C. RECORD OF A HAUNTED HOUSE, Proceedings 8, 1892, pp. 311-32. Much-quoted account of a ghost in a Cheltenham house, recorded by a principal witness. The figure, a woman dressed in widow’s black and holding a handkerchief to her face, was frequently seen and by a number of different people, sometimes collectively. The figure could be followed around the house and garden, with characteristic slow and even footsteps, and would take up a position by the drawing-room window. It would not respond to communication and evaded touch by disappearing. Threads fastened in its path would be left undisturbed. Dogs appeared to react to it. Short testimonials by other witnesses are also given. apparitions/hauntings

Lambert, G.W. THE CHELTENHAM GHOST: A REINTERPRETATION, Journal 39, 1957-8, pp. 267-77. The proponent of a ‘geophysical’ theory of poltergeists applies similar reasoning to the Cheltenham haunting reported 60 years earlier. He argues that the noises heard by a number of witnesses were probably caused by a stream passing under part of the house, and that these noises were magnified by subjective factors into the appearance of a visual hallucination, experienced by only a few. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 334-41. apparitions/hauntings/theory

Huby, Pamela M. NEW EVIDENCE ABOUT ‘ROSE MORTON’, Journal 45, 1969-70, pp. 391-2. Biographical note concerning the identity and credentials of a key witness in the ‘Cheltenham ghost’ episode. apparitions/hauntings

MacKenzie, Andrew. CONTINUATION OF A HAUNTED HOUSE, Journal 55, 1988-89, pp. 25-32. The celebrated Cheletenham ghost reappears in four separate incidents between 1970 and 1985. The witnesses describe an apparition similar to the one seen in the earlier reports as well as poltergeist activity. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 170-74, 302-4. apparitions/haunting/poltergeist

END THE CHELTENHAM GHOST

Anon. CASES, Journal 6, 1893-94, pp. 9-16. See also pp. 22-30, 52-76, 82-6, 101-6, 115-20, 129-40, 144-51, 163-72, 179-87, 210-14, 230-31, 249-51, 280-5, 290-6, 365-74. No summary given. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 223-4. apparitions

Anon. CATALOGUE OF UNPRINTED CASES, Journal 6, 1893, pp. 171-2. Brief abstracts of apparitional cases. apparitions

Sidgwick, Henry et al. REPORT ON THE CENSUS OF HALLUCINATIONS, Proceedings 10, 1894, pp. 25-422. The fullest survey of its kind ever undertaken, of interest to psychologists as well as to psychical researchers. Primary aims were to discover the incidence of hallucinations generally and place the work on telepathic and veridical hallucinations into a clearer perspective. Four hundred collectors polled 17,000 answers to the question, ‘Have you ever, when believing yourself to be completely awake, had a vivid impression of seeing or being touched by a living being or inanimate object, or of hearing a voice; which impression, so far as you could discover, was not due to any external physical cause?’ About 1,700 answered yes, ten percent of the total. Chapter headings and page references are given in the contents at the front of the volume and there is a useful synopsis-summary starting page 395. The method adopted is described and tables of results given, broken down into categories of visual, auditory, tactile and various combinations of these. Possible sources of distortion are considered: deception, refusal to answer, bias by collectors, forgetfulness; and adjustments are made to allow for a more true estimate of the incidence of hallucinations by respondents. Main features are then described, examples given and the conditions favourable to the occurrence of hallucination identified. Headings include: pseudo-hallucinations; illusions; form and development; physiology; age, sex, heredity, nationality, and health; recurrent hallucinations; mental and nervous conditions; expectancy and suggestion; organic effects accompanying hallucinations. The report then deals with hallucinations that appear not to be entirely subjective. Apparitions coinciding in time with the death of the person seen are found to be the most numerous: after ample allowance for all possible sources of error is made the number is found to be ‘far greater than the hypothesis of chance-coincidence will account for’ (393), confirming the conclusions reached for the evidence of telepathy in such cases in Phantasms of the Living. Collective apparitions are discussed and telepathy and suggestion proposed as explanations (303). Hauntings are described (338), but no strong reasons are found for attributing them to the deceased. Stronger evidence of survival is adduced from death coincidences and apparitions of people known to be dead, discussed in the final section. A small class of experimental apparitions is discussed in which, typically, an individual succeeds in projecting an apparition of him/herself to another person at a distance (29, 270). For later analysis see Broad, C.D., Lectures on Psychical Research. apparitions/hauntings/hallucinations/methodology/theory

Anon. CASES, Journal 7, 1895-96, pp. 7-15. See also pp. 25-8, 79-80, 96, 99-111, 120-6, 138-42, 162-3, 173-8, 188-196, 238-44, 250-9, 266-74, 282-91, 329-39. No summaries given. apparitions

Anon. Miss X. A PASSING NOTE ON A HAUNTED HOUSE, Journal 8, 1897, pp. 20-25. Describes attempt to investigate stories of hauntings in a country house near Guildford. apparitions/hauntings

Johnson, Alice. A CASE OF INFORMATION SUPERNORMALLY ACQUIRED, Proceedings 12, 1896-97, pp. 116-26. Russian case: two brothers are warned by a ghost to return a fur coat which will otherwise infect the wearer with a deadly disease. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 7, 1895-96, pp. 319-24. apparitions

Anon. CASES, Journal 8, 1897-8, pp. 10-16. See also pp. 41-8, 74-80, 120-132, 134-147, 161-3, 192-6, 227-8, 238-244, 277-80, 298-300, 308-16, 318-22, 326-30. No summaries given. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 8, 1898, pp. 159-61, 171-9, 186-92. apparitions

Smith, Arthur. NOTE ON ‘FISHER’S GHOST’, Proceedings 14, 1898-9, pp. 111-4. An Australian case: the apparition of a farmer who has mysteriously disappeared indicates a creek where his body is later discovered. apparitions

Anon. CASES, Journal 9, 1899-1900, pp. 12-16. See also pp. 47-8, 58-61, 73-80, 87-9, 104-12, 122-8, 134-8, 150-58, 195-7, 227, 241-51, 280-6, 298-308, 331-2. No summaries given. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 9, 1899, pp. 158-9. apparitions

Podmore, Frank. MISS A. GOODRICH-FREER AND THE MARQUIS OF BUTE’S ‘THE ALLEGED HAUNTING OF B— HOUSE, Proceedings 15, 1900-1901, pp. 98-100. Brief review of a published case not investigated by the SPR. apparitions/hauntings

Anon. CASES, Journal 10, 1901-2, pp. 2-32. See also pp. 38-47, 78-80, 134-42, 161-72, 232-4, 263-7, 274-9, 298-303, 308-20. No summaries given. apparitions

Anon. CASES, Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 25-36. See also pp. 58-68, 80-84,103-112, 113-116, 118-27, 135-41, 157-9, 177-9, 181-91, 223-8, 269-72, 315-324. No summaries given. apparitions

Stephenson, Augustus K. GHOST STORIES OF 100 YEARS AGO: A WARNING TO ‘GHOSTS’ AND TO PSYCHICAL RESEARCHERS OF THE PRESENT DAY, Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 214-20. A man who shoots and kills a practical joker pretending to be a ghost is tried and condemned for murder, then reprieved. apparitions

Anon. [RIDER HAGGARD DREAM], Journal 11, 1903-4, pp. 278-90. The well-known writer dreams of his daughter’s dog, lying injured by a stream. The dog is later found to have gone missing and is discovered floating in the river, having been run over by a train. psi/dreams

Anon. CASES, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 14-15. See also pp. 17-23, 54-63, 99-101, 118-22, 173-6, 184-8, 193-7, 290-4, 302-13, 317-28, 340-3. No summaries given. apparitions

Anon. THE JOURNALIST AT LARGE IN PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, Journal 12, 1905-6, pp. 65-8. Criticisms of newspapers’ treatment of ghost stories. apparitions/hauntings

Crichton-Browne, James. REPORT OF A CO-COGNITIVE DREAM, Journal 12, 1905, pp. 145-56. A woman gains knowledge of a fatal accident to her son during a dream vision. dreams/apparitions/psi

Anon. COLLECTIVE (?) APPARITION, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 27-30. Account of a hallucination apparently shared by a dog. apparitions/hallucinations

Anon. HAUNTED HOUSE, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 52-64. Detailed description of occurrences in an Elizabethan manor house, whose occupants independently and on several different occasions observe a figure, hooded and dressed in black drapery, who could not be accounted for. hauntings/apparitions

Anon. DREAM ROMANCES, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 90-96. Report of a Russian woman who describes having been visited regularly as a child by a female apparition. The visitor is dressed in the style of Louis VI and the narrator subsequently experiences frequent dreams of Marie-Antoinette. During a visit to Versailles the narrator claims to have been able to guide friends round the Queen’s apartments, finding them to correspond exactly to her dreams. apparitions

Anon. COLLECTIVE APPARITION, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 103-10. Anglers on holiday in Scotland see a boatman known to both of them, but in a place and at a time when he should have been elsewhere. The man is subsequently found to have fallen into the water and drowned while on his way home. apparitions

Anon. HAUNTED HOUSE, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 156-8. The apparition of a woman dressed in black is seen on different occasions by a number of independent witnesses. hauntings/apparitions

Anon. APPARITION SEEN SOON AFTER DEATH, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 228-34. A man who is rejected by the woman he loves shoots himself, and his apparition is seen by a younger relative in a vision. See also Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 166-72. apparitions

Anon. APPARITION AT TIME OF DEATH, Journal 13, 1907-8, pp. 234-40. A young man is seen unexpectedly by his fiancée standing in her office and is later found to have died at about the same time. apparitions

Anon. APPARITION, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 41-6. Report of an apparition seen on separate occasions by different people. apparitions/hauntings

Lang, Andrew. ‘SPIRIT HANDS’, SUGGESTION AND DOGS, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 65-72. Report of an incident in which, during a visit to a Norwegian cathedral, the author’s niece sees the shadowy form of a pointing hand and arm. She later finds her vision corresponds to a similar incident that took place some years earlier. Apparitions seemingly perceived by dogs are also described. apparitions/hauntings

Anon. DREAMS, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 72-7. An earthquake is precognised; a woman has a dream vision of her mother amid singing voices and soon after receives a telegram of her death. apparitions/precognition/dreams

Piddington, J.G. HALLUCINATION, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 136-43. A woman giving birth sees an apparition of her father who died a year earlier. apparitions

Podmore, Frank. TELEPATHIC HALLUCINATIONS: THE NEW VIEW OF GHOSTS, Journal 14, 1909-10, pp. 290-92. Review of the SPR researcher’s book, in which he argues that apparitions, although clearly not mere subjective hallucinations, can be explained by telepathy of the living. book review/apparitions/hallucinations/telepathy