As it is that book number two, Portraits from Beyond: The Mediumship of the Bangs Sisters is at the publishers being set up as I write this, I want to add that I have now started another book. I have put my work on the Davenport Brothers on hold (40,000 words in) and have now started another work that I feel is necessary to add to the records of Historic Spiritualism and Mediumship, taking all priority. All I want to say for now is that it is, of course, based on my research using only rare, source material as always, not based on armchair theories or surface Wikipedia type social media. I go for the original eyewitness reports and try to stay away from reports passed along by many people who, in many instances, color the results as they see fit. For now, all I can say is that the medium who is the focus of the book, one who I have been researching for years, I would consider, hands down, the greatest Physical Medium for trumpet phenomena, also termed Direct Voice, of all time. She passed away around 1920. I am not one to just sit at a computer and write entire books, I need to travel to the area where the mediums lived and practiced, no matter how long after they have transitioned to spirit. There is no past or present, there is only now. Everything is vibrational layers existing at once, so one can still get a feel for a vicinity, a street, a house, etc. This spring I will make another journey, this time to the very area where the medium I referred to above lived and practiced her manifold gifts. I have already contacted historical societies, local libraries, universities, etc., and to top it off I have found three elderly people that are quite aware of who the medium was I am researching. They were born after the medium passed, but knew all about her when they were kids and referred to her home as the ” Spirit House by the River. ” The book will be filled with eyewitness accounts and seance memoranda, another suggested reading list about trumpet mediumship, and many sources. I will keep everyone informed of the books progress.
Nature, the very force of this great and boundless Universe, the origin and beginning of all events, has provided that most individuals will not have the direct experience of sitting with a genuine, life altering medium for direct spirit communication. Thus, we have the WRITTEN WORD, the trail itself forged by witnesses to the century of wonders between 1848 & 1948. If we are to question the unimpeachable integrity of testimonies regarding positive proof of life after death as demonstrated by genuine, tried and true mediums, and documented by numerous individuals, then we must in turn question the very validity of human testimony in ALL SUBJECTS of life. A person can either wait their entire life and, possibly, never have a chance to experience a genuine mediumistic experience, or they can take it upon themselves to study the subject and, at least vicariously, benefit from the great truths born from it. Aside from the subject of World History itself, there is no greater subject on this earth more witnessed and documented than Historical Spiritualism. Doctors, lawyers, physicists, Kings and Queens, world renowned scientists knighted by the British Empire for their achievements, philosophers, teachers, common farmers, laborers and regular everyday folk, and the list goes on and on of those who have seen and experienced wonders and have written about it. I write, edit and compile these works concerning the great and authentic spiritual mediums so that their work will live on, and the teachings that have manifested as a direct result of it will enable all who are naturally drawn to this subject, to benefit in mind, via conscience and knowledge and in turn, as a result of this, know fully that there is nothing wasted in this life’s journey; every thought, word and action has a profound meaning….is an energy that exists, lives and breathes in the Universe forever. Knowing and believing these truths, an individual can be clear in mind, confident and fearless, once and for all, on their journey through eternity and hopefully as a direct result benefit mankind, here, there & everywhere because of it.
I apologize it has taken me so long to have an update about THE MEDIUMSHIP OF THE BANGS SISTERS: PORTRAITS FROM BEYOND. Owing to the many illustrations involved, it will take some time to typeset things, as expected, and I feel confident in saying that this Summer it will be published. I have utilized rare, source material throughout the book with numerous eye-witness accounts of the phenomena of independent slate writing and, of course, the precipitated spirit portraits. Laid out in precise detail, using the very words of their harshest critics, namely Hereward Carrington and David P. Abbott, I have provided the facts and the readers can decide for themselves what to believe. One of my missions with doing this research-in general-is to separate the facts from the fiction and by so doing uphold the integrity and honor of the mediums involved. The surface, easy, quick look at Wikipedia or Google concerning many of the great, past physical mediums will only give you the short, sensational material, and most times this leads to that writers intimation of, or conclusion of fraud. The Bangs Sisters phenomena of precipitated portraits was so mind staggering and dramatic that of course, the magician and conjuring fraternities of that day were determined to try and duplicate this wonder on stage to enhance their own performances. The highbrow, condescending attitude of those ” illusionists ” was that if they could duplicate the Bangs phenomena on stage, then it would conclusively prove fraud on the part of the mediums. This worn out, Houdini type, demeaning long standing theory is crushed to dust by the Bangs Sisters; many of their loudest critics never attended a Bangs seance. I have said it before and will say it again, that UNDER THE SAME CONDITIONS, their phenomena has never been duplicated by anyone from the conjuring world. Their enemies came, they tried, and they failed. I will extend this also to the subjects of my next book, The Davenport Brothers: The World Renowned Spiritual Mediums: Their History, Travels and Manifestations. They were attacked their entire career, at times, their lives in such peril that without the aid of their spirit helpers, namely John King, they would have perished, but they triumphed in their cause to prove the reality of a spiritual world beyond this physical existence. To this day, beyond more than a century of time, in this researchers opinion, they stand Pre-eminent as American Physical Mediums. More on all of this later.
I am now contracted with White Crow Books, they will publish on e-books ( Amazon, etc.) and paperback my first book, The French Revelation, and now, within the coming year, The Physical Mediumship of the Bangs Sisters-May & Elizabeth, same format. The Bangs sisters were mediums from Chicago who’s gifts were precipitated spirit portraits and independent writing. Their ” heyday ” fits into late 19th & early 20th century. I consider their work with spirit portraits, with no hands ever touching the canvas & usually done in minutes, one of the wonders of the world. In full light, with the sitters right there witnessing the precipitation a foot ot two from their faces, a portrait of their loved one would slowly precipitate on to the canvas. The media used by the spirit artists has never been scientifically discovered. It is not pastels, crayon, ink, charcoal, paint, etc. Having seen and examined more than thirty of these glorious works of art, I agree that it is a fitting description that the material used for precipitation resembles the fine dust of a butterfly’s wings. The portraits are more than 110, 120 years old, and yet they look as fresh as if they were done yesteday. The photo above is of James A. Stone, from the James A. Stone Memorial LIbrary, PA., precipitated by the Bangs Sisters at The Lily Dale Assembly, NY., around 1909. Of course, back then, the conjuring and magician fraternity’s were on high alert when it came to mediums and physical phenomena that they assumed could be duplicated by magic on stage. I have carefully and slowly dismantled most of their theories in my book, showing that although they tried to duplicate the mediums phenomena their conditions were, in the words of Admiral Usborne Moore, ” as different as a teapot is to a locomotive. ” The magicians, in my opinion, were more interested in stealing the ideas of what mediums represented, to use those ideas for their elaborate stage performances. In other words, having a more or less ” burlesque ” version of the actual spirit manifestation.
The book will be illustrated with numerous color photos like the one above, and rare black & white photos, articles, and as much material as I could find on these two wonder workers. It will be the first complete work, specifically on the Bangs Sisters ever published. All primary source material that I have located from other rare publications will be included, which means first-hand accounts, instead of second-hand, repeated material, infused with too many ‘arm chair opinions. After the Bangs Sisters, I am completing my next work on The Davenport Brothers. Similar to the Bangs Sisters, and Mrs. Emily French, the book will be another dedicated, involved work devoted-this time- to two, mind blowing physical mediums. As far as raw, spirit manifesting power, the Davenport Brothers in this researcher’s opinion, stand preeminent. Their story is absolutely incredible.
In this writer’s opinion, one of the most definitive & important books ever written separating fact from fiction concerning the old world religions & Christianity is The Rock of Truth, published in 1933, by J.Arthur Findlay. Findlay, who passed to spirit life in 1964, was a noted author of psychic subjects, economics and of course World Religions, and was the recipient of the Order of The British Empire. He also had the supreme opportunity to have sat for more than ten years with the Direct-Voice medium, John C.Sloan of Glasgow, the experiences of which are embodied in Findlay’s books, On The Edge of the Etheric, Where Two Worlds Meet, and The Way of Life.
The Rock of Truth should be read by every thinking individual. The Bible is a book of psychic wonders and the Ascended Master, Jesus, was probably the greatest medium who ever walked the earth. Much of the Bible is mythology, put together in pieces over centuries. See what Findlay has to say about this timeless subject.
” Truth, whether in or out of fashion, is the measure of Knowledge. Whatever is beside that, however authorized by consent, is nothing but ignorance or something worse. ” -Locke
Adventures in Survival by Belle Turner Daiches, Aries Press, 1949
Opening The Psychic Door by F.W.Fitzsimons, Hutchinson & Co., 1933
Materialized Apparitions, by E.A.Brackett, Colby & Rich, 1886
Dawn of the Awakened Mind, by John S.King, James A. McCann Co., 1920
People From the Other World, by Henry S.Olcott, American Pub.Co, 1875
The Phenomena of the Seance Room, by Dr.Edwin F. Bowers, Rider & Co., 1930
Glimpses of the Next State, by Admiral W. Usborne Moore, Watts & Co., 1911
The Voices, by Admiral W.Usborne Moore, Watts & Co., 1913
Broadcasting From Beyond, by A.E.Perriman, Spiritualist Press, 1952
A Southerner Among the Spirits, by Mary Dana Shindler, Southern Baptist Publication Society, 1877
Biography of the Brothers Davenport, by Dr.T.L.Nichols, M.D., Saunders, Otley & Co., 1864
The French Revelation now has an e-book format also and can be purchased through Amazon for Kindle (White Crow Books). It has been edited and includes more reviews and comments. This is a great way to read for people on the go who especially like to travel. It is a pleasure to make available the great work of the American Independent Voice medium, Emily S. French.