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Book Reviews: Physical Mediums

Leaf, Walter. A MODERN PRIESTESS OF ISIS, reviewed by Frank Podmore, Proceedings 11, 1895, pp. 155-62. Adds to the picture of duplicity painted by Richard Hodgson in his expose of Helena Blavatsky. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy/cheating

Garrett, Edmund. ISIS VERY MUCH UNVEILED, reviewed by Frank Podmore, Proceedings 11, 1895, pp. 155-62. Adds to the picture of duplicity painted by Richard Hodgson in his expose of Helena Blavatsky. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy/cheating

Petrovo-Solovovo, M.M. THE SCIENTIFIC INVESTIGATION OF PHYSICAL PHENOMENA WITH MEDIUMS, reviewed by Walter Leaf, Proceedings 15, 1901, pp. 416-22. A survey of physical mediums, including new material on the Russian medium Sambor. The review contains a personal testimony. book review/physical mediumship

Gibier, Paul. PSYCHISM: ANALYSIS OF THINGS EXISTING, reviewed by Frank Podmore, Proceedings 15, 1901, pp. 441-3. A medical doctor describes sittings with mediums, including Slade. The review gives few details, however. book review/physical mediumship/slate-writing

Hubbekkm G.C. FACT AND FANCY IN SPIRITUALISM, THEOSOPHY AND PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, reviewed by N.W. Thomas, Proceedings 17, 1901, pp. 274-5. Popular introduction covering Blavatasky, Home, Piper and others. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Coynart, J.M.Ch. De. UNE SORCIERE AU XVIII SIECLE, reviewed by J. G. Piddington, Proceedings 17, 1902, pp. 416-21. Biography of a self-confessed charlatan. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Maxwell, J. LES PHÉNOMÈNES PSYCHIQUES: RECHERCHES, OBSERVATIONS, MÉTHODES, reviewed by Everard Feilding, Proceedings 18, 1904, pp. 490-501. Study of physical phenomena, mostly observed at séances with Eusapia Palladino. book review/physical mediumship

Carrington, Hereward. THE PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OF SPIRITUALISM, FRAUDULENT AND GENUINE, reviewed by Perovsky-Petrovo Solovovo, Proceedings 21, 1908, pp. 392-404. A researcher describes in detail the methods of deception employed by slate-writers and other mediums. However he also puts on record those cases, like Home and Leonora Piper that he considers genuine. The reviewer’s ideas of what is real and what is false are at variance with the authors. book review/physical mediumship/slate-writing/cheating

Morselli, E. PSICOLOGIA ? ‘SPIRITISMO’: IMPRESSIONS ? NOTE CRITICHE SUIFENOMENIMEDIANICI DI ESUAPIA PALADINO, reviewed by Eleanor Sidgwick, Proceedings 21, 1908, pp. 516-25. Study of the medium by a renowned nerve-specialist and psychologist, concluding that her séance phenomena are mostly genuine, but are to be explained by hitherto unknown psychical forces rather than by the notion of surviving spirits. book review/physical mediumship

Podmore, Frank. THE NEWER SPIRITUALISM, reviewed by M.A. Bayfield, Proceedings 25, 1911, pp. 70-89. Sceptical study covering Myers’s theory of the subliminal self, secondary personalities, Eusapia Palladino, Home, Piper and Thompson, and the cross correspondences. book review/physical mediumship/survival/cross correspondences/multiple personality/theory

Tuckett, Ivor. THE EVIDENCE FOR THE SUPERNATURAL, Journal 15, 1912, p. 256. Superficial debunking, focusing on weaknesses in the evidential material provided by Leonora Piper which the reviewer argues have been fully acknowledged by psychical researchers. book review/mental mediumship/physical mediumship

Carrington, Hereward. PERSONAL EXPERIENCES IN SPIRITUALISM (INCLUDING THE OFFICIAL ACCOUNT AND RECORD OF THE AMERICAN PALLADINO SÉANCES, reviewed by P-P Solovovo, Proceedings 27, 1914, pp. 176-85. Describes some instances of fraudulent mediums, but follows with the author’s personal experience of Eusapia Palladino, who he considers genuine. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Crawford, W.J. THE REALITY OF PSYCHIC PHENOMENA: RAPS, LEVITATION, ETC, reviewed by Eleanor Sidgwick, Journal 18, 1917, pp. 29-31. Describes sittings with a mediumistic circle in Belfast and includes speculations regarding a materialised ‘cantilever’ as the means by which furniture is levitated. The reviewer argues that the lever is in fact the medium’s leg. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 64-7. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Barrett, William. ON THE THRESHOLD OF THE UNSEEN, Journal 18, 1917, pp. 58-60. Describes personal experiences with mediums, including Kathleen Goligher, also ouija board sittings and experiments in telepathy. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Crawford, W.J. EXPERIMENTS IN PSYCHICAL SCIENCE, Journal 19, 1919, pp. 105-7. More detail on the Belfast investigator’s researches on the Goligher circle, and his speculations on a materialised ‘cantilever’, sympathetically reviewed. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

McCabe, Joseph. IS SPIRITUALISM BASED ON FRAUD? THE EVIDENCE OF SIR A CONAN DOYLE AND OTHERS DRASTICALLY EXAMINED, Journal 19, 1920, p. 268. Debunking of mediums, criticised for inaccuracy and obvious omissions. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship/cheating

SCHRENK NOTZING, A. Von. PHYSIKALISCHE PHEAENOMENE DES MEDIUMISMUS, STUDEN ZUR ERFORSHCUNG DER TELEKINETISCHEN VORGÂNGE, reviewed by F.C.S. Schiller, Proceedings 32, 1921, pp. 144-6. Report by a German investigator on phenomena witnessed with Stanislava Tomczyk and Eusapia Palladino, including a discussion of Crawford’s work with the Goligher circle. book review/physical mediumship

Crawford, W.J. THE PSYCHIC STRUCTURES AT THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE, reviewed by ‘E.J.D.’, Proceedings 32, 1921, pp. 147-50. The third of Crawford’s books on the Goligher circle, published posthumously. The reviewer welcomes new photographic material, but regrets the lack of systematic detail in his reports. book review/physical mediumship

Grunewald, Fritz. PHYSIKALISCH-MEDIUMISTISCHE UNTERSUCHUNGEN, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 20, 1922, pp. 286-90. First steps in setting up equipment for the controlled investigation of mediums. book review/physical mediumship/experiments/methodology

Home, Mme Dunglas. D D HOME: HIS LIFE AND MISSION, Journal 20, 1922, p. 208. New abridged version of the 1888 original, with an introduction by A. Conan Doyle (see original Journal 4, p. 101). book review/physical mediumship

D’Albe, E.E. Fournier. THE GOLIGHER CIRCLE, Journal 21, 1923, pp. 19-24. Record of investigation in which the author claims to have exposed the Goligher Circle, studied and brought to notice by Crawford, as fraudulent. The reviewer, a fellow researcher with a particular interest in materialism, criticises the account as incomplete, inconsistent, and lacking in evidence. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Keyserling, Graf H. DAS OKKULTE, Journal 21, 1923, pp. 94-5. Account of a German medium ‘H.B’. book review/physical mediumship

Schwab, F. TELEPLASMA AND TELEKINESE, Journal 21, 1923, p. 108. Account of sitting with a Berlin medium, Frau Vollhart. book review/physical mediumship

Faria, Nogueira de. ? TRABALHO DOS MORTOS, Journal 21, 1923, pp. 120-22. Account of a Brazilian materialisation medium, Madame Prado. book review/physical mediumship

Bisson, Juliette Alexandre. LE MEDIUMISME ET LA SORBONNE, Journal 21, 1923, p. 122. A French investigator responsible for bringing Eva C to the attention of a committee of Sorbonne professors castigates them for their superficial approach. book review/physical mediumship

Trethewy, A.W. THE CONTROLS OF STAINTON MOSES, reviewed by Eleanor Sidgwick, Journal 21, 1923, pp. 142-7. Study of the medium’s phenomena, fully discussed by the reviewer. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Bradley, Dennis. TOWARDS THE STARS, Journal 22, 1925, pp. 12-6. Record of personal investigations with spiritualist mediums, including Valiantine and Leonard. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Schneider, Karl et al. [AUSTRIAN PUBLICATIONS], Journal 22, 1925, pp. 29-30, 95-6. Publications of the Vienna Parapsychic Institute on metaphysics, hypnotherapy, and luminous phenomena at séances. book review/physical mediumship/healing/hypnosis/psi/theory

Gruber, Karl, et al. [GERMAN PUBLICATIONS], Journal 22, 1925, pp. 110-12. German discussions of mediumistic phenomena. book review/physical mediumship

Curnow, Leslie. THE PHYSICAL PHENOMENA OF SPIRITUALISM: A HISTORICAL SURVEY, Journal 22, 1925, pp. 111-12. Articles tracing the history of alleged physical phenomena. book review/physical mediumship

Hoagland, Hudson. REPORT ON SITTINGS WITH MARGERY, reviewed by Everard Feilding, Proceedings 36, 1926, pp. 159-70. The author’s accusations of fraud against the medium ‘Margery’ are contested by the reviewer. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 414-32. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Gulat-Wellenburg, W. Von, et al. DER OKKULTISMUS IN URKUNDEN 1, ed Max Dessoir, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Proceedings 36, 1926, pp. 333-40 (in German). Critical survey exposing flaws in mediumistic research. book review/physical mediumship

Schrenk-Notzing, A. et al. DIE PHYSIKALISCHEN PHÂNOMENE DER GROSSEN MEDIEN, reviewed by EJ. Dingwall, Proceedings 36, 1926, pp. 387-92. German researchers defend the work done on mediums: Goligher, Guzik, Nielsen, Silbert, Palladino, Eva C., Tomczyk and Willy Schneider. book review/physical mediumship

Geley, Gustave. L’ECTOPLASMIE ET LA CLAIRVOYANCE, Journal 21, 1924, pp. 300-302. Gives the facts of the authors investigations of clairvoyants and mediums, including Eva C and Kluski. See also Journal 24, 1927, pp. 91-2, brief announcement of English edition. book review/physical mediumship/clairvoyance

Houdini. A MAGICIAN AMONG THE SPIRITS, Journal 21, 1924, pp. 339-40. The conjuror’s self-described ‘valuable chapter in the crusade for truth’ is found to be riddled with errors and ignorance. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Bird, Malcolm. ‘MARGERY’ THE MEDIUM, Journal 23, 1926, pp. 140-41. Account of the ‘Margery’ sittings by a sympathetic witness. book reviw/physical mediumship

Hellwig, Albert. OKKULTISMUS UNO WISSENSCHAFT UNTER BESONDERER BERUCKSICHTIGUNG DER TELEKINESSE UNO DER MATERIALISATIONEN, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 24, 1927, p. 32. Study of psychokinesis and materialisation, with attacks on Eva C and Willy Schneider. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Verweyen, J.M. DIE PROBLEME DES MEDIUMISMUS, reviewed by F.C.S. Schiller, Journal 24, 1928, pp. 261-2. German professor indicates his belief in the genuineness of mediumistic phenomena, describing sittings with continental mediums, but gives indications of being easy to impress. book review/physical mediumship

Nordmann, Charles. L’AU-DELA: FACE AU PROBLEME DE L’IMMORTALITE, reviewed by P-P. Solovovo, Journal 24, 1928, pp. 287-9. Survey of the physical universe by an astronomer, with a chapter debunking spiritualistic ectoplasm. book review/physical mediumship/beliefs/theory

Hack, Gwendoline Kelley. MODERN PSYCHIC MYSTERIES, reviewed by Theodore Besterman, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 10-14. Account of physical phenomena, mainly direct voice and apports, occurring at Millesimo Castle in Savona, Italy. The evidence is strongly endorsed by an Italian researcher, Ernesto Bozzano, in an introduction and accompanying articles. However it is refuted by Besterman, who makes detailed criticisms of the claims to paranormality. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis/cheating

Moll, Albert. PSYCHOLOGIE UNO CHARAKTEROLOGIE DER OKKULTISTEN, reviewed by P-P. Solovovo, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 32-5 (2). Severe attack on Schrenck-Notzing and other German psychical researchers. book review/physical mediumship

Schrenck-Notzing, A. von. GESAMMELTE AUFSATZE SUR PARAPSYCHOLOGIE, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 37-8. Collected papers by the German researcher of mediums. book review/physical mediumship

Besterman, Theodore. SOME MODERN MEDIUMS, reviewed by W.Whately Smith, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 122-5. Critical study of five mediums: Piper, Silbert, Eva C., Kahl-Toukholka (a Parisian professional clairvoyante), and ‘Margery’, largely aimed at demolishing their claims to paranormality. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship/cheating

Price, Harry. RUDI SCHNEIDER, reviewed by V.J.W., Journal 26, 1930, pp. 125-6. Detailed account of investigation sittings with the Austrian medium, endorsing the paranormality of the phenomena observed. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 139-41. book review/physical mediumship

Anon. MENSAGENS DO ALEM [CARLOS MIRABELLI], reviewed by Theodore Besterman, Journal 26, 1930, pp. 142-4. Communications through the Brazilian medium, mainly in Portuguese but also in Hebrew, Greek, French, German and Italian, some purporting to come from figures such as Oliver Cromwell, Isaac Newton, the Italian researcher Cesare Lombroso, etc, claims doubted by the reviewer. book review/mental mediumship/physical mediumship

Doyle, Arthur Conan. THE EDGE OF THE UNKNOWN, Journal 27, 1931, p. 9. Articles by the celebrated novelist on aspects of spiritualism, including one in which he insists that the conjuror Houdini is sometimes aided by spirits. book review/physical mediumship/spiritualism/beliefs/magic

Roberts, C.E. Bechhofer. THE MYSTERIOUS MADAME: A LIFE OF MADAME BLAVATSKY, reviewed by W.H.Salter, Journal 27, 1931, pp. 120-21. Short biography of the founder of Theosophy, inevitably affected by the confusion about the details of her early life. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 138-9. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Price, Harry. REGURGITATION AND THE DUNCAN MEDIUMSHIP, reviewed by V.J. Woolley, Journal 27, 1931-2, pp. 187-90. Argues that the Scottish medium faked materialisation by regurgitating cheesecloth and paper. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Schrenck-Notzing, A. Freiherr. DIE PHANOMENE DES MEDIUMS RUDI SCHNEIDER, reviewed by Theodore Besterman, Journal 28, 1933, p. 134. Partial publication of the records of the German investigator’s sittings with Rudi Schneider. book review/physical mediumship

Ernst, Bernard L.M. & Carrington, Hereward. HOUDINI AND CONAN DOYLE, reviewed by K.E.Watkins, Journal 28, 1933, pp. 148-9. Documents the unlikely friendship between the stage conjuror and sceptic Harry Houdini, and the English novelist and convinced spiritualist Arthur Conan Doyle. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Duncan, V.G. PROOF, reviewed by H.B., Journal 28, 1933, p. 149. Record of many sittings with two direct-voice mediums in Glasgow, in which convincing messages were received from many relatives and friends. book review/physical mediumship

Blavatsky, H.P. COMPLETE WORKS, reviewed by C.E. Bechhofer Roberts, Journal 28, 1934, pp. 210-11. Complete writings of the founder of Theosophy, revealing her early interest in spiritualism. book review/theosophy

Barbanell, Maurice. THE TRUMPET SHALL SOUND, reviewed by S.R.W. Wilson, Journal 28, 1934, p. 292. Account of direct voice sittings with Estelle Roberts, at which celebrities such as Arthur Conan Doyle were said to speak. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Hare, H.E. & Hare, W.L. WHO WROTE THE MAHATMA LETTERS, reviewed by W.H.Salter, Journal 29, 1936, pp. 295-6. Close comparison between Blavatsky’s letters to a theosophical colleague Sinnett and letters received by him, supposedly supernormally from Indian Mahatmas living in Tibet, show common authorship. The author’s analyse Blavatsky’s motives for the fraud. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Wyndham, Horace. MR SLUDGE, THE MEDIUM. BEING THE LIFE AND ADVENTURE OF DANIEL DUNGLAS HOME, reviewed by P-P Solovovo, Journal 30, 1937, pp. 42-5. Sceptical study of Home and other mediums, with some mistakes but much useful material, according to the review. book review/physical mediumship

Evian, Adalbert. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF MARIA SILBERT, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 30, 1937, pp. 62-4. Study of the controversial Austrian medium, regarded by members of the Society as fraudulent. The value of the book to the reviewer is mainly as a ‘picture of the believer’s mind’. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Joad. C.E.M. ADVENTURES IN PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, reviewed by W.H Salter, Proceedings 45, 1939, pp. 217-22. Articles describing the author’s experiences at sittings by the mediums Helen Duncan, Eva C., Rudi Schneider and others are criticised by the reviewer for discrepancies with other records which suggest that he was not actually present. book review/physical mediumship

Warrick, F.W. EXPERIMENTS IN PSYCHICS, reviewed by Fred Barlow, Journal 31, 1939, pp. 99-100. Detailed survey of spiritual photography based on the author’s own investigations. The author’s claim that the phenomenon is genuine is doubted by the reviewer on the basis of the evidence presented. CORRESPONDENCE, pp. 112-3. book review/physical mediumship/photography

Carrington, Hereward. PSYCHIC SCIENCE AND SURVIVAL, reviewed by C.C.L.G., Journal 31, 1939, pp. 115-6. Condensed account of the author’s views on psychical phenomena, which as a result of his own investigations, including the Naples sittings with Eusapia Palladino, he judges to be genuine. book review/physical mediumship

Edwards, Harry. THE MEDIUMSHIP OF JACK WEBBER, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 31, 1940, pp. 199-200. Anecdotal account of a physical medium’s feats: ectoplasm, apports, trumpets, lévitations, etc. book review/physical mediumship

Hamilton, T. Glen. INTUITION AND SURVIVAL, reviewed by W. H. Salter, Journal 33, 1943, p.15. Full account of investigations carried out by a Canadian doctor with a physical medium, Elizabeth M, in which ‘ectoplasmic’ material similar to that produced by Eva C., was observed. book review/physical mediumship

Dingwall, EJ SOME HUMAN ODDITIES, Journal 34, 1947, pp. 27-8. Six portraits of psychical feats: Home, St Joseph, Deacon Paris, Angel Anna, etc. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Burton, Jean. HEYDAY OF A WIZARD: DANIEL HOME, THE MEDIUM, Journal 34, 1948, pp. 250-2. Biography of the medium. book review/physical mediumship

Carrington, Hereward. THE INVISIBLE WORLD, Journal 35, 1949, pp. 156-7. A investigator of mediums describes his experiences. book review/physical mediumship

King-Hall, Magdalen. THE FOX SISTERS, Journal 35, 1950, pp. 348-9. Fictional treatment of the Fox family, taking the view that the ‘knockings’ were fraudulent. book review/physical mediumship

Rinn, Joseph, F. SIXTY YEARS OF PSYCHICAL RESEARCH: HOUDINI AND I AMONG THE SPIRITUALISTS, Journal 36, 1951, pp. 431-8. Debunking of mediums and psychical research by a New York businessman, amateur conjuror and friend of Houdini. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship/psi/magic/cheating

Nielsen, Einer. SOLID PROOFS OF SURVIVAL, Journal 36, 1951, pp. 505-6. Personal memoir by a Danish materialisation medium. book review/physical mediumship/apparitions/survival

Findlay, Arthur. WHERE TWO WORLDS MEET, Journal 36, 1952, pp. 726-30. Verbatim record of séances with John Campbell Sloan, a Glasgow direct voice medium. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Tocquet, Robert. TOUT L’OCCULTISME DÉVOILÉ, Journal 37, 1954, pp. 288-9. Study of early spiritualist mediums, genuine and fraudulent. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship

Rinn, Joseph F. SEARCHLIGHT ON PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, Journal 37, 1954, p. 291. Paperback edition of Sixty Years of Psychical Research by a New York amateur magician and friend of Houdini. ‘.. .it would still be difficult to find its equal in this field for one-sidedness, smugness, and general ignorance of what psychical research really is’. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Carrington, Hereward. THE AMERICAN SEANCES WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO, Journal 37, 1954, pp. 387-9. Account of Eusapia Palladino’s séances in America, by the investigator who arranged them. book review/physical mediumship

Edwin, Ronald. CLOCK WITHOUT HANDS, Journal 38, 1956, pp. 221-4. Memoir by physical medium whose feats, according to the reviewer, were ‘patently fraudulent’. book review/physical mediumshp/cheating

Amadou, Robert. LES GRANDS MEDIUMS, (The Great Mediums), reviewed by E. J. Dingwall, Journal 39, 1958, pp.188-90. ‘.. .fascinating and very valuable study’ of early mediums: Home, Fox sisters, Cook, Goligher, Crandon, Palladino, Eva C, etc. book review/physical mediumship

Gerloff, Dr Hans. MATERIALISATION.   DIE PHANTOME VON KOPENHAGEN. EIN BILDERBUCH and DIE PHANTOME VON KOPENHAGEN. DAS MEDIUM EINER NIELSEN, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 40, 1959, pp. 31-3. Study of Einer Nielsen, a Danish materialisation medium whose phenomena were seemingly strong but never successfully submitted to scientific scrutiny. book review/physical mediumship

Wood, Edward Cope. DEATH - THE GATEWAY TO LIFE, reviewed by E. J. Dingwall, Journal 40, 1959, pp. 190-1. Description of materialising mediums in America, criticised for lack of objectivity. book review/physical mediumship/beliefs

Tocquet, Robert. PHÉNOMÈNES DE MÉDIUMNITÉ, reviewed by E. J. Dingwall, Journal 40, 1959, pp. 371-2. French study of psychic phenomena, with the focus on Home, and European mediums. book review/physical mediumship

Gerloff, Hans. DAS MEDIUM CARLOS MIRABELLI: EINE KRITISCHE UNTERSUCHUNG, reviewed by E. J. Dingwall, Journal 41, 1961, pp. 80-82. German translation of Brazilian study of the Brazilian materialisation medium. book review/physical mediumship

Hall, Trevor H. THE SPIRITUALISTS: THE STORY OF FLORENCE COOK AND WILLIAM CROOKES, reviewed by W. H. Salter, Journal 41, 1962, pp. 372-7. Controversial study of the investigation by a leading nineteenth century scientist of a young materialising medium. The author uses statements made in 1922 by a former lover of Cook to argue that the investigation was a cover for an affair between the two principals. book review/physical mediumship

Feilding, Everard. SITTINGS WITH EUSAPIA PALLADINO AND OTHER STUDIES, Journal 42, 1964, pp. 353-60. Original account of the SPR investigation of Palladino in Naples, in which Feilding and two other investigators endorsed some of the phenomena they had witnessed as genuine. Plus five short articles and an introduction by E. J. Dingwall. book review/physical mediumship

Herbert, B. (ed.) REPORT No 1 OF THE PARAPHYSICAL LABORATORY, Journal 43, 1965, p. 217. Includes papers on PK and physical mediumship. book review/psychokinesis/physical mediumship

Fornell, Earl Wesley. THE UNHAPPY MEDIUM: SPIRITUALISM AND THE LIFE OF MARGARET FOX, reviewed by E. J. Dingwall, Journal 43, 1966, pp. 321-2. Detailed historical narrative of early Spiritualism arising from the events surrounding the Fox sisters. book review/physical mediumship/spiritualism

Hall, Trevor H. NEW LIGHT ON OLD GHOSTS, reviewed by R. G. Medhurst, Journal 44, 1967, pp. 94-100. Debunking of famous cases, including Home’s supposed levitation from an upper storey window, negatively analysed by the reviewer. book review/psi/physicalmediumship/hauntings

Podmore, Frank. MEDIUMS OF THE 19TH CENTURY, reviewed by Simeon Edmunds, Journal 44, 1967, pp. 201-6. Sceptical survey of spirit mediums by a leading early member of the Society. The review gives a useful summary of Podmore’s career and thought. book review/physical mediumship

Dingwall, Eric J. THE CRITICS’ DILEMMA, reviewed by Alan Gauld, Journal 44, 1968, pp. 250-5. Supports Trevor Hall’s sceptical claims regarding Crookes’s investigation of Florence Cook. The review criticises Dingwall’s judgment and impartiality, but acknowledges the ‘good deal of miscellaneous information about the Spiritualist scene of the 1870s’ that he provides.book review/physical mediumship

Waterman, Adlai E. OBITUARY- THE ‘HODGSON REPORT ON MADAME BLAVATSKY, reviewed by Robert H. Thouless, Journal 44, 1968, pp. 341-9. Critical examination of Hodgson’s debunking of supposed paranormal feats by the founder of Theosophy, which in the reviewer’s opinion picks holes in the original researcher’s arguments but does not give grounds to alter his general verdict. book review/physical mediumsip/theosophy

Brown, Slater. THE HEYDAY OF SPIRITUALISM, reviewed by Alan Gauld, Journal 46, 1971, pp. 68-9. ‘.. .probably the best account of early American Spiritualism since the first volume of Podmore’s classic work’. book review/physical mediumship/spiritualism

Tabori, Paul & Raphael, Phyllis. BEYOND THE SENSES. A REPORT ON PSYCHICAL RESEARCH IN THE SIXTIES, reviewed by Andrew MacKenzie, Journal 46, 1971, pp. 193-5. Popular introduction to sensational cases, including the ‘Rosalie’ spirit materialisation case. book review/physical mediumship

Pearsall, Ronald. THE TABLE RAPPERS, reviewed by G. W. Lambert, Journal 46, 1972, pp. 212-3. Sceptical review of Victorian spiritualism. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Olcott, Henry S. PEOPLE FROM THE OTHER WORLD, Journal 46, 1972, p. 215. Account of personal investigation by a noted follower of theosophy of the Eddy brothers, well-known materialisation mediums in New England. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Price, Harry. STELLA C. AN ACCOUNT OF SOME ORIGINAL EXPERIMENTS IN PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, reviewed by Anita Gregory, Journal 47, 1973, pp. 265-7. Record of sittings with a physical medium. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis

Tietze, Thomas R. MARGERY, reviewed by Andrew MacKenzie, Journal 47, 1974, pp. 375-8. Sceptical account of Mina Crandon, the Boston physical medium known as ‘Margery’ and subject of controversial investigations in the 1920s and 1930s. book review/physical mediumship

Owen, Iris & Sparrow Margaret. CONJURING UP PHILIP, reviewed by Frank Spedding, Journal 49, 1978, pp. 460-64. A group of Canadian experiments succeed in creating typical séance phenomena such as raps and table movements, as well as receiving communications from a ‘spirit’ whose identity they created themselves. book review/physical mediumship/psychokinesis/experiments

Zorab, George. D D HOME - IL MEDIUM, reviewed by Emilio Servadio, Journal 49, 1978, pp. 542-3. Full biography of the nineteenth-century medium, praised as ‘the most complete contribution published so far about an exceptional character... ‘. book review/physical mediumship

Lamb, Geoffrey. VICTORIAN MAGIC, reviewed by Brian C. Nisbet, Journal 49, 1978, pp. 619-20. Account of the lives of some better known Victorian conjurers, with a chapter devoted to the Davenports and D.D.Home. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Gregory, Anita. ANATOMY OF A FRAUD, reviewed by Alan Gauld, Journal 49, 1978, pp. 828-35. Detailed examination of investigations of an Austrian medium, Rudi Schneider, focusing on a claim by one of the most committed, Harry Price, that his subject practiced a fraud on him. The author argues that Price’s claim was itself a fabrication: the reviewer takes issue with her statements. CORRESPONDENCE, Journal 50, 1979, pp. 40-47. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Dean, Kathryn F. (compiled). REGISTER OF THE THOMAS GLENDENNING HAMILTON COLLECTION, reviewed by Leslie Price, Journal 51, 1981, pp. 107-8. Prominent doctor and politician (1873-35) who ran a mediumistic research circle well-known for ectoplasmic phenomena. book review/physical mediumship

Houdini. MIRACLE MONGERS AND THEIR METHODS: A COMPLETE EXPOSÉ, reviewed by Denys Parsons, Journal 51, 1981, p. 178. Reprint of the stage magician’s debunking of psychical incidents. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Jenkins, Elizabeth. THE SHADOW AND THE LIGHT, reviewed by E.J. Dingwall, Journal 52, 1983, pp. 143-7. Biography of the nineteenth century medium D.D. Home. ‘It is one of the best written and most original of the biographies, since the author not only writes as a believer in the genuine nature of the phenomena occurring with Home, but stresses the importance of dealing with Home as a person rather than simply as a medium and exposes the unworthiness of those who, when he was alive, sought to denigrate both him and his work... ‘. book review/physical mediumship

Brandon, Ruth. THE SPIRITUALISTS: THE PASSION FOR THE OCCULT IN THE NINETEENTH AND TWENTIETH CENTURIES, reviewed by Brian Inglis, Journal 52, 1983, pp. 209-12. Sceptical discussion of investigations into mediums such as Home, Florence Cook and Eusapia Palladino. The reviewer argues that the author twists the evidence and suppresses important points in order to further her arguments and maintain her own disbelief. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Hall, Trevor H. THE ENGIMA OF DANIEL HOME, reviewed by Stephen E. Braude, Journal 53, 1985, pp. 40-6. Hall offers a detailed and determined attempt to find the medium guilty of fraud. Braude criticises it as ‘a profusion of hearsay, innuendo, irrelevant detail, and fallacious arguments’ (40). book review/physical mediumship

Snel, F.W.J.J. (ed.) IN HONOUR OF G.A.M. ZORAB, reviewed by D.J. West, Journal 54, 1987, pp. 68-9. Festschrift for a veteran parapsychologist whose particular interest is nineteenth century mediums. Includes a summary by John Beloff of the Crookes-Cook investigations, pointing out the implausibility of sceptics’ suggestions of fraud. Other essays: paranormal healing, sexual sublimination and creativity, psi and mathematics, etc. book review/physical mediumship/healing/personality/psi

Gilbert, R.A. A E WAITE, MAGICIAN OF MANY PARTS, reviewed by M.H. Coleman, Journal 55, 1988, pp. 101-3. Biography of a seeker after of mystical wisdom, that includes descriptions of the subject’s many encounters with mediums, including Monck, Eglinton, Williams and Husk, and Rita. book review/physical mediumship

Zorba, G. KATIE KING, EEN GEES IN MENSELIJKE GEDAANTE [KATIE KING, A SPIRIT IN HUMAN FORM], reviewed by J. Michels, Journal 55, 1989, pp. 297-9. Study of the Crookes-Cook investigation, examining alternative theories and concluding that Florence Cook was a genuine medium. The reviewer is unconvinced that the evidence presented in the book justify that conclusion. book review/physical mediumship

Owen, Alex. THE DARKENED ROOM: WOMEN, POWER AND SPIRITUALISM IN LATE VICTORIAN ENGLAND, reviewed by Emily Williams Cook, Journal 56, 1990, pp. 167-9. Historical study of female mediums, including Florence Cook, Mary Rosina Showers, Catherine Wood and Annie Fairlamb, and other significant figures in the early Spiritualist movement. The author argues that the real significance of mediumship lies not in its genuineness or otherwise but in its role as a power strategy in the ongoing struggle to define and change gender norms and relations. The reviewer wonders how valid historical interpretations of events can be made when their nature is still unresolved. book review/spiritualism/physical mediumship

Braude, Ann. RADICAL SPIRITS: SPIRITUALISM AND WOMEN’S RIGHTS IN NINETEENTH CENTURY AMERICA, reviewed by Mostyn Gilbert, Journal 58, 1992, pp. 275-8. Study of nineteenth century spiritualism, with a focus on the relevance to women. Heavily annotated. book review/physical mediumship/mental mediumship/spiritualism

Johnson, Paul. IN SEARCH OF THE MASTERS: BEHIND THE OCCULT MYTH, reviewed by Vernon Harrison, Journal 58, 1992, pp. 391-3. Aims to present the Masters of Blavatsky’s Theosophy as historical individuals rather than imaginary, semi-divine beings. Useful, although overburdened with detail. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Stein, Gordon. THE SORCERER OF KINGS: THE CASE OF DANIEL DUNGLAS HOME AND WILLIAM CROOKES, reviewed by Mary Rose Barrington, Journal 60, 1994, pp. 45-50. Claims to expose Home’s mediumship as tricks and contends that while Crookes was fooled by Home, he was party to the deceptions of Florence Cook. A detailed review contests these notions. book review/physical mediumship/cheating

Imich, Alexander, (ed.) INCREDIBLE TALES OF THE PARANORMAL, reviewed by Mary Rose Barrington, Journal 61, 1996, pp.170-75. Studies of mediums: the Brazilian Mirabelli, Palladino and more recent Italian mediums, the Icelander Indridi Indridason, the Poles Matylda S. and Franek Kluski, Kulagina and other Russians, psychic phenomena in China. ‘Well-researched summaries of carefully-executed research’. book review/physical mediumship

Cassirer, Manfred. MEDIUM ON TRIAL: THE STORY OF HELEN DUNCAN AND THE WITCHCRAFT ACT, reviewed by DJ.West, Journal 61, 1996, pp. 265-7. Describes the case of the materialisation medium from Aberdeen who was tried and convicted under the Witchcraft Act, soon after repealed. book review/physical mediumship

Foy, Robin P. IN PURSUIT OF PHYSICAL MEDIUMSHIP, reviewed by Mary Rose Barrington, Journal 61, 1996, pp. 268-70. Subjective and largely uncritical account of the author’s attendance at physical mediumship circles, leading to the foundation of the Noah’s Ark Society and then his own Scole Experimental Group. book review/physical mediumship

Wilkinson, Margaret, (ed.) AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF EMMA HARDINGE BRITTEN, reviewed by Alan Gauld, Journal 62, 1998, pp. 365-8. Autobiography, first published in 1900, of a Victorian actress, medium, traveller and lecturer. Offers ‘numerous hints about the social and religious background against which early Spiritualism made its way with such remarkable success...’. book review/physical mediumship

Harrison, Vernon. ? ? BLAVATSKY AND THE SPR: AN EXAMINATION OF THE HIDGSON REPORT OF 1885, reviewed by Leslie Price, Journal 63, 1999, pp. 124-6. Reprint of a 1986 paper (J’ACCUSE: AN EXAMINATION OF THE HODGSON REPORT OF 1885, Journal 53, 1986, pp. 286-310) criticising ‘grave procedural irregularities’ in the report by Richard Hodgson concluding that Helena Blavatsky, the founder of Theosophy, acted as a fraudulent medium. Includes further analysis of the report, together with the results of study of other materials associated with the subject. book review/physical mediumship/theosophy

Citron, Gabriel. THE HOUDINI-PRICE CORRESPONDENCE, reviewed by Tony Utting, Journal 64, 2000, pp. 120-22. Brings to light a correspondence between the psychical investigator Harry Price and magician and paranormal debunker Houdini on ‘Margery’, Willy Schneider and other mediums. book review/physical mediumship/magic

Crossley, Alan E. THE STORY OF HELEN DUNCAN - MATERIALIZATION MEDIUM, reviewed by Denise Iredell, Journal 65, 2001, pp. 151-2. Reissue of a 1975 study aimed at rescuing Duncan’s reputation following her conviction and imprisonment for ‘pretending to conjure up spirits.’ Said to be less authoritative however than Manfred Cassirer’s Medium on Trial (1996). book review/physical mediumship

Gaskill, Malcolm. HELLISH NELL: LAST OF BRITAIN’S WITCHES, reviewed by Donald J. West, Journal 66, 2002, pp. 116-21. Well-researched biography of Helen Duncan, a Scottish materialising medium, by a Cambridge historian. The review gives a brief synopsis of her career, including her various encounters with hostile investigators and the law. book review/physical mediumship