Page images

fo' you. You's got me goin', Miss Perfumia '''

“How is you gwine git dar?” he asked suddenly, ethereal emotion displaced momentarily by rude realism.

“Oh, I shell come,” cooed Miss Perfumia, “through the air, or in the mist, or mebbe floatin’ on a cloud.”

“Golly!” thought Hosea to himself. “Travelin' in a airship ! Some class! I bet she's got her hooks on one dem raveiators!”

M MTANNIE, Orestes, and Nannette | drove stealthily to the rear of the domicile of Miss Perfumia's employer. Very carefully the two men dismounted and lifted out the ladder. They entered the yard. The high-strung Mannie was nervous. They had proceeded only a few feet when he stumbled over a hydrant and came down sputtering. “Looks lak dey would have de servants' house in de reah,” he grumbled as he arose. “Hit would be bettah fo” stealin' pupposes,” agreed Orestes. “An' eve’ything,” said Mannie, resuming his burden. They placed the ladder against the rear wall of the house and waited expectantly. Mannie mopped his brow with agitation. Still, no Miss Perfumia appeared. From the garden came the mingled scent of many flowers; the moon—that radiant Southern moon, with its sheen of liquid silver—peeped over the tree tops, but the beauty of the seene was lost upon the colored Romeo. Where was Miss Perfumia? “She's awaitin’ fo’ de bridegroom to clim” up an’ tap on de winder,” suggested Orestes. “I’ll be dawg-goned if I do!” exclaimed Mannie in a burst of nervousness. “Ain’ you gwine holp her down?” “Naw. Let her git down de bes’ way she kin. Iffen all free of us git on dat ladder, hit’ll break.” “Look!” whispered Orestes, pointing upward. The window had opened and Miss Perfumia, complete in wedding attire even to window-curtain veil and shower bouquet, was beckoning happily. Mannie made no move. “Shame on you, Mannie,” said his Fidus Achates. “I’s gwine up an’ holp de bride.” “Go on. I'll stiddy de laddeh.” Orestes sprang up the rounds of the ladder like a cat. Miss Perfumia rewarded him with a luscious greeting. “Good evenin', Mistuh Russell. Is you came fo' me?” “Yassum,” whispered Orestes, with but two thoughts—haste and quiet. “Den lemme han’ you my valise.” Miss Perfumia thrust an immense traveling case into the dismayed Orestes's hands. “An' hol’ my bouquet.”

the confidence of the mediums, tells of one who produces floating letters of light and is rewarded by the testimony of “sitters” that the luminous letters have appeared in their laps. When Eusapia Palladino, who stirred two continents and was one of the prime subjects for approving investigation by Sir Oliver Lodge, Lombroso, and other scientists, is caught red-handed in trickery, such men of science are willing to admit the trickery, as far as it is demonstrated, but always take pains to make it clear that those things done which are not uncovered or explained are to be regarded as solemnly as before. Such is their “will to believe.” This “will to believe” caused 75 per cent of the body of students of Leland Stanford University to believe that they could “feel eyes upon them.”— i. e., “feel the sensation of being stared at.” The Coover psychical investigation at this university published its results as a report on the subject of mediumship, mental telepathy, and kindred matters—a report worth reading. Among these results were 14,500 tests of “being

experience in

retreat of the English.

[merged small][ocr errors]

Orestes groaned. The young whale of a woman had paused with feet on the ladder to coquette. “Hurry up! Miss Perfumia—please ma'am!” he urged agitatedly. “Oh, is you in a hurry?” asked Miss Perfumia innocently. Her enjoyment of the drama was so intense that she fain would have prolonged it indefinitely. “I is '' emphasized the suffering Orestes. “Den what is we waitin’ fo’?” she asked naively. “Is you got all my things?” Before Orestes could reply, a window beneath the ladder was thrown open and a white-clad figure leaned out, demanding in stern tones: “What is this?” Orestes's heart turned over completely. Stupefied with sudden fright, he missed his footing, but held on for a moment. Miss Perfumia had already taken her stand on the slippery ladder, back to the rounds, and was easing herself down, woman fashion. At the sudden challenge she lifted her restraining feet and tobogganed the remaining distance to the ground. Orestes, with the baggage, slid wildly after. He could not fall. Wedged in between the bulk of Miss Perfumia and that of the impedimenta, he was comparatively safe. Poor Mannie was the only one who suffered from the precipitate descent. Still steadying the ladder, he caught the full force of the avalanche and lay at the bottom of the heap. But not for long. A formidable rifle barrel was pointed through the window and a shot rent the silence of the night. To the fleeing party it sounded more ominous than the thunders of Verdun. Their scuttling legs consumed the distance to the car. Miss Perfumia led the field.

[blocks in formation]

of the cross-country highway.

the truck rounded the corner on two wheels and hit it up for Mockingbird Lane. “It's damfoolishness!” Mannie. “Suh, Mistuh Blair, you fo'gets yo'se'f,” reminded Miss Perfumia with lifted eyebrows and arch, reproving eyes. “I don't!” said Mannie with acerbity. “I is des came into my remembry!” “You cain't be in earnes'. Is you fo'got yo' li'l Petunia?” “Little!” said Mannie, rubbing his outraged anatomy. “You hit one lak a bale o' cotton l’’ “Oh, my sweet lover!” said Miss Perfumia, throwing her arms around him. “How sorry I is " “Bah!” said Mannie, releasing himself from her voluminous embrace. His admirable ecstasy was over. He had come back to earth with a dull thud. The breach between them was irrevocable, but Miss Perfumia was not cast down. Her thoughts, paraphrasing King Lear, consoled: “Yet have I another lover.” They gained the comparative safety They reached the lake. The moonlight, playing on the undulating wavelets, metamorphosed them into molten silver. It reminded Nannette of her own honeymoon, and she snuggled nearer Orestes in the driver's seat. In the rear one could have driven a covered wagon between Mannie and Miss Perfumia. They had proceeded perhaps half the distance around the speedway, which encircles the lake, when they came upon a stalled automobile. A man in the road flagged them insistently. Orestes brought the truck to a sudden stop, and at the same time recognized the flagman. “Dawg-gone! If it ain’ Hosea! What's de matteh, Hosea?” “Out o' gas. Is you got any?” “Yes, but I ain’ got no way to dreen it off,” answered Orestes. . “What is you doin’ heah, so far from home, dis time o’ night?” But Hosea was not permitted to reply. Miss Perfumia claimed his attention. “Oh, my sweet Hosea!” she exclaimed, clasping her hands rapturously. “You is kept de trust !” Hosea had kept the tryst, but he seemed not to glory in it. The car had run out of gas, and he had waited interminably. Parson Padelford snored comfortably on the back seat. Hosea was tired and impatient. And them to have Miss Perfumia prosaically appear in Orestes's truck, in a crowd, robbed the exploit of its charm. He made no reply to Miss Perfumia's greeting, but turned to Orestes. “Whaffo you ridini’ roun’ in de truck, yo'se'f?”

burst from

The Will to Believe

Continued from page 12

stared at,” applied to a large group of students. The guesses broke about evenly between right and wrong whether the staring was done by one person or by a whole group of persons. Arthur Machen, an Englishman, published a story of pure fiction called “The Angel of Mons,” in the “Evening News” of September 29, 1914. The story told of St. George and angel bowmen appearing at Mons to aid the Though Mr. Machen, with amusement, denied and denies over and over again that he had been writing anything but phantasy, the popular spread of the story caused serious psychic investigators to offer the fiction as fact. No denial of Mr. Machen has been able to overtake or overcome this “will to believe,” and some of the soldiers and officers at Mons, after hearing the story, testify that they themselves saw the angel bowmen which Mr. Machen invented on a sheet of paper! It is this fault of human nature— “the will to believe,” and the strange tricks that eyes and ears play in the interpretation of that which is seen and heard—which renders human testi

mony as to all matters which are super- ment magicians.

normal in appearance almost worthless. That is, the second weakness of human nature is the inability in such cases, even when making a sincere attempt, to tell the truth. There is a simple sleight-of-hand trick which I used to perform years ago. A ball is thrown three or four times almost to the ceiling and then transferred quickly to the other hand and secreted as the final motion is made upward. Many persons who see this believe that there is something unreal about the ball itself; many have testified that when it vanished they saw it rise into the air. Only the other day I learned that this same trick was performed by a conjurer before one hundred and fifty children, of whom nearly eighty said the ball rose and disappeared in midair. They saw that which they expected to see or wished to see.

Magicians Beat Mediums

ELLAR told me once that those who saw him perform seldom failed to describe, not some trick he did, but one that would have been impossible. Such is the experience of all the promiAnd the difference be

“Dis is a 'lopement,” announced Orestes proudly. “I got de bride an' groom bofe, heah behine.”

“Naw, you ain' got no groom l’” said Mannie, suddenly popping up. “I is change my mine!” He turned to Hosea: “You kin hab her.”

“I doan wants her,” sputtered Hosea with swift decision. “I. is change my mine likewise.”

N this contretemps the surprised Miss Perfumia could think of nothing more fitting than her formula. “Oh, you Southren gen’men,” she wailed. “Don’ none o' you mean a wu'd what you says?” She turned to Orestes: “Mistuh Russell, couldn' you siggest nuttin’?” “No'm, not wid my wife present,” replied Orestes with discretion. “I’ll siggest fo' Rest Ease,” said Nannette, rising in her wrath—“I’ll siggest you git out o' dis truck, Miss Perfumia ''' “Why, Mis’ Nannette,” said Miss Perfumia, “how would I evah get home?” “I ain’ particler,” answered Nannette. “Large ladies what tries to vamp a man right befo' his wife's face deserves to walk!” “Oh, Mis’ Nannette, how you is mistooken me!” “No, you is mistooken me,” corrected Nannette. “Git out! Southren ladies means eve'v wu'd they says!” There was no doubting it. Miss Perfumia slowly climbed over the edge of the truck in silence. Mannie nervously lighted a cigarette. From the distance came the popping sound of a motorcycle. As it came nearer and slowed down to pass, the embarrassed group saw that its sidecar attachment was filled with fishing rods and lines. The motorcycle came to a halt at the impasse in the road. “Hi, what's de trubble'?” asked the rider, standing astride his machine. “Nuttin' much,” evaded Hosea. “Glad to he'p you out iffen I kin,” proffered the man. “I reckum you couldn' he'p none,” said Orestes. “Hit wuz de 'lopement of a large lady wid two culled gen’mens, but bofe de bridegrooms is done change dey mines.” “Po' li'l me,” affirmed Miss Perfumnia in a gay tone altogether inappropriate to a bereft one. At the familiar voice of his lady love the heart of the motorcyclist, who had essayed fishing as surcease, gave a great leap. “Lady,” he said, his voice husky with emotion, “mebbe you would let me tooken dem fellahs' place?” Miss Perfumia's reply came without a moment's hesitation. “Suttinly. I laks yo’ voice. What is yo’ name?” (Continued on page 27)

tween the job of the conjurer and the psychic is that the conjurer is challenged to pull a rabbit from the hat and the medium is helped in any way possible to pull something extraordinary out of the Beyond. Houdini is doing every day wonders of deception which no medium equals. Incredible as it inay seem, I know a college graduate with an inclination toward spiritualism who, in spite of Houdini's frankness in saying that he works without supernormal powers, insists that no explanation can be made of some of Houdini's “stunts” except that of “dematerialization of the human body.” Suppose Houdini had been presented to Sir Oliver Lodge as one who was not only a medium, but a medium who could dissolve his body. Would the testimony have been more

, or less scientific than it was when he

found that Eusapia Palladino, who was later exposed again and again, produced phenomena “amply sufficient in themselves to establish a scientifically unrecognized truth”? Not only do we get the untruth which comes from seeing that which is not, but also the untruth which comes from not reporting all there is to report. Not long ago a reporter of a New York newspaper came to a gentleman who has some fame as an exposer of mediums. The reporter, a hard, practical, cynical fellow, confessed that he believed in spiritualism. He had just come from Toledo a few days before and was assigned to a spirit-medium story. As he put it: “No one could have known I was coming to New York because I expected to stop off and get a job in Buffalo, and yet the medium greeted me with my name and asked me how things were in Toledo.” It took ten minutes' cross-examination to bring out the fact that a servant, and not the medium, had met him at the door, that he had waited in the parlor, that he had put his hat and coat on a chair, that the servant had hung them in the hall, that the hall door had been closed for a moment “just to let some one pass out,” and that in the hat was the name of a Toledo dealer and in the overcoat a letter addressed to a reporter who has been wondering ever since how a “wise one” could “fall for it.” The lady who told me the other day of a distinguished lady psychic of New York City who knew at once where she had come from in the city, and where she lived when not visiting New York, failed to tell me that she had taken a taxi from her hotel, and was surprised when I asked her other details. Yes, she had seen a man come out of the basement door, and talk to the driver. I asked her whether she would believe me if I told her that a telephone call went to her hotel, which happened to be a small one, saying perhaps that a lady had bought and paid for some millinery and her name had been lost, and would the clerk say whether they had a lady registered who wore black, and was tall and distinguished in appearance, and carried a bead bag, and so on and so on. Finally there is the human testimony that falls with the realm of the white lie. “Suddenly, while Mrs. X. was writing,” said the author of one of last season's most successful plays to me a month or two ago, “there came a new force to her pencil, guiding it into automatic writing containing messages. She had no previous interest in such matters,” etc. Two weeks later I dined with the sister-in-law of Mrs. X.; she told me that Mrs. X. was the most intimate friend of the authoress of one of the best-selling books which are known to the book trade as the “high-society psychic stuff.”

Dazed Scientists

ITH this equipment of recognition of the weaknesses of good old human nature the next step is to know a little of the history of the mediums and psychics who have attracted the most scientific attention and of the score cards of that handful of believing scientists in the worldful of unbelieving scientists, who have lent themselves to belief in spirit communication and particularly to belief in these two mediums. Incidentally these dazed “scientists” have been the cause of crop after crop of plundering whitehaired, frock-coated, benign or motherly crooks, one of whom may be operating right in your community to-day. The two mediums who have stood out so prominently are Eusapia Palladino and Mrs. Piper. The research organizations, which have spent wearisome years in weighing the genuineness of alleged psychic performers that any city detective, professional magician, or true psychological-laboratory method would expose in a week, gave both these mediums world-wide fame. So did Sir Oliver Lodge One of the mediums belongs to the class of so-called “physical performers”: i. e., those who cause the “spirits” to materialize or to be heard, felt, seen, or smelled in some manner other than the mere transmission of messages; the other is a “psychic performer”: i. e., one who merely acts as a medium for messages, oral or written. The first is a plain trickster; the second is

usually either a trickster or one who is

self-deluded because of some abnormal

state of mind. These are their brief stories:

Seven Cold Facts

USAPIA PALLADINO produced spirit rapping, extraordinary knowledge of the affairs of sitters, a cold breeze from the top of her head, spirits playing on musical instruments, table tipping, touching by invisible hands, etc., mostly done, as usual, in the dark or semidarkness! She was an Italian who visited France, England. America. She was exposed in Cambridge, England, in 1895, ending her tests in a tantrum. She was examined in Paris and an adverse report given. She was exposed and caught in fraud in America by a professor of psychology of Harvard and by a committee in the Psychical Laboratory of Columbia University. An American conjurer wrote in reference to an article exposing Palladino, published in Collier's, May 14, 1910: “I gave her $600 for the table she had made for her purposes and have since taught a girl of twelve to do all the tipping in the same manner done by Palladino.” Those who committed themselves to belief in Palladino include such scientists and learned men as Dr. Alfred

Russel Wallace, Lombroso (in his declining years), and Sir Oliver Lodge, who at one time had personal supervision of Palladino's performances in England. All of them later admitted to varying degrees that she was fraudulent. Mrs. Piper, a psychic, not a “physical” medium, in early years was supposed to be neurotic. eighties she was “treated” by a medium. Her “controls”—which, of course, as with all mediums, furnish catch baskets for error, but otherwise appear unnecessary middlemen—have been a French doctor, Phinuit, an Indian girl named ‘Thlorine, Commodore Vanderbilt, George Pelham, etc. Among those who committed themselves to belief in Mrs. Piper were Sir Oliver Lodge and F. W. H. Myers. The interest that Professor William James took in her made her famous. Her performance sometimes is with psychical contact with sitters, but it goes no further than messages given in trance. Her career as a medium has declined, owing, it is said, to ill health. All evidence of genuineness of messages from the spirit world are the intrinsic merits of the messages. An analysis of these messages shows that they are mainly the universal inconsequentialities which cause sensible persons to won der why spirits do not live on a higher plane or send us useful information. To say that Mrs. Piper had been anything but sincere could not be supported without witnesses from the other world, a fact which always makes mere psychic mediumship less hazardous than slate writing or tricks with material things. The history of these two women is the typical history of those marvelous persons investigated by research organizations. A medium or psychic comes into prominence; an investigation, which is usually open to the severest criticism from the point of view

In the .

[blocks in formation]

scientists who “will to believe.” Any person with a real desire to eliminate fraud from spiritualism will want to know that past experience — particularly the history of mediums—has shown by cold, hard facts the following: 1. A succession of exposures. 2. A belief by a number of scientists who in numbers bear about the same proportion to the unbelieving scientists in the world that spirit mediums bear to the total population of the world. 3. Habitual abandonment of the exposed medium by the scientists, who almost at once adopt a new medium. 4. That men like Lombroso, Lodge, Myers, Sir William Barrett, Sir William Crookes, especially as old age comes on, have been fooled repeatedly by fraud (as when Sir William Crookes was weighing spirits while the medium operated the scales with a woman's hair), but when shown beyond doubt that they did not see the cow jump over the moon, as they had supposed, always answer: “No, but you have not proved that when she jumped back it was not a genuine performance.” 5. That the innocence of some of these scientific investigators is almost beyond belief, as when Sir Oliver Lodge, in his book called “Raymond,” says that he went to Mrs. Leonard, the medium for Raymond, “as a complete stranger.” His face is familiar to every professional medium in England. As Edward Clodd says in the excellent book, “The Question,” every psychic in the country, having learned of the son's death, was praying to have the parents come for a sitting and was prepared for it. As a professional medium said to me about Raymond, sighing wistfully: “I wish we could get away with that kind of stuff in Chicago.” 6. That it is not true, as often stated, that these scientific few confine their beliefs to mere psychic phenomena; that they “do not pay attention to mere claptrap performers.” Lodge had faith in Palladino, a player on tambourines, a table tapper, a materialization trickster; Sir William Crookes believed in spirit knocks and raps, levitation of the human body, the playing of musical

happen to have the

instruments by spirit hands, the appearance of spirit hands before the eyes of the sitter, the supernormal power of a medium to hold red-hot coals on the bare flesh, a trick, by the way, known to many medicine men of savage tribes and performed periodically by certain Japanese monks. 7. That in America a number of rich prominent men have committed themselves to serious con- sideration or belief in - mediums who later have > been proved fakers. A 3 famous type writer m a nufacture r was fooled by a medium who produced a secret electrical attachment which operated one of his own machines by “invisible spirit hands.” At the moment this is written one of the most celebrated engineers in the world has in his employ a psychic who counsels him in business and personal affairs; one of the richest men in Detroit, whose name is known to me, supported for years a medium who had established communication with the other world by means of a trick instrument.

Two Kinds of Fraud

ND now as to methods of investigation. The first thing to be learned about fraudulent psychics is that there are two kinds and sometimes a mixture of both. One kind is the plain fraud; the other the self-deluded neurotic. The first, as one medium expressed it to me years ago, sometimes “get to believing in it themselves”; the second, sometimes to support their selfdelusion, will employ the methods of the first. - To most persons it will be a surprise to learn that in the United States there are several manufacturing dealers in spiritualist apparatus. Newly invented schemes, requiring no apparatus for deluding those who want communication with the dead, are dealt in widely, such trade secrets being sold sometimes for several hundred dollars. I have been at one dealer's establishment myself and have been in possession of the catalogue of another. Many years ago, in Boston, I discovered the secret of the best spirit materialization I have ever seen or found described, and the medium told me that she had spent more than a thousand dollars for the apparatus and for alterations in the house. She showed me, incidentally, a “sucker list” containing the names of several well-to-do Boston families who had lost relatives, together with the data she had gathered on each “case,” and told me that she hoped to ensnare the interest of more than one of them. In the meantime the lesser fry were yielding her a fat return on her investment. Some American mediums expend large sums for one effect, as, for instance, the laying of a pipe running from an upper room to a concealed spot under a bush or grass at the gate, so that a “spirit” voice which “comes from nowhere” can give to the victim on his way out the last touch of conviction. By all means, the principal preparation of the fraudulent psychic is in the gathering of information about the victim and about the life of the departed spirit from who m communications are to come. As one medium said to me: “The trend of the profession is away from tricks with material things. Since the flashlight came into use the séance in the dark is always risky because some fresh person may turn on the light. Then another way of catching us is by waiting until the lights are out and then shaking soot or black graph i t e powder over the things that only the spirits are supposed to touch. It makes a medium feel like a fool to have the lights turned on and find her hands or mouth covered with soot, and the only thing I can't understand about these psychical research societies is that they never use these real methods of catching us. It never occurs to them to turn on a flashlight in a dark scene. But, anyhow, the new-style medium has less risk and more chance of catching intellectual well-to-do people by working the data books and the plain psychic powers.”


How They Know So Much

HE data book is the chief asset of a modern psychic. The data may be written down or kept in the mind or even in the subconscious mind. Usually infinite pains are expended to get it. Traveling professional mediums use various methods. Some have advance agents who go ahead to gather data in the place to be visited; others are bold enough to employ for a good round sum a telephone operator, a drug clerk, or anyone who has much information about the people who may come to séances. . The methods of collecting the “dope” by resident psychics are as various as ingenuity can make them. There is the dictaphone in the waiting room and many dodges for examining the effects of the caller. The fraternity of mediums exchange data, ghouls of memory dig up from old city directories, graveyards, birth and death records, files of old newspapers, the facts almost forgotten which may be recalled by the “spirits” even at the first sitting. All that is necessary to make a convert is to obtain one or two facts, no matter how trivial, which the victim almost always says “were not known by anyone but myself.” This is because human nature is such that when a conjurer pulls a rabbit from an empty hat the thing “could be explained if you only know how it was done”; but when a medium, attaching a semireligious atmosphere to magic, does or says that which cannot be accounted for, the victim says: “Surely it can only be explained in one way!” Next to the data-book information, much of which is usually obtained after the first sitting, as appears probable in the case of “Feda,” the “control” men

college, and Allentown College for Women, now called Cedar Crest College, have advanced through vicissitudes to a present solid security. There is good music, in abundance, from local performers, and an excellent chorus of school children. The movies, the performances of the spoken drama, the lawn parties, the sedate talk about table, the reading of good local papers, are all above the average for a city so near an enormously big brother, like Philadelphia. Lamp-posts are ornamented with growing plants. The residence streets are finely shaded. Tablets of historic interest are here and there, one of them relating the hiding of the Liberty Bell. And these phases of Allentown life are revealing; for the city is a place of quiet beauty, of fond reflection on the past, of receptive and inactive leisure, of solid, middle-class content. Stopping here, the reader might well enough look *P and exclaim: “Wy! Dis is Ollentown l’” And Allentown would agree. Because Allentown is Pennsylvania Dutch, and theirs is a race that likes music, and shaded lawns, and sitting down when the work is done, with running water for the stock in the barns whether there is any or not for the womenfolk in the kitchen. What is there else that needs to be said?

[blocks in formation]

tioned in Sir Oliver Lodge’s “Raymond,” the most useful asset of a psychic is a quick mind. All kinds of facts about a sitter, his tastes, his physical and mental condition, are open to any sharp observation. “Fishing” is the term used by the profession to describe the process of getting the victim unwittingly to disclose facts which he himself immediately forgets he has disclosed. A record experiment, made with a hard-headed business man as the sitter at a séance, resulted in his testimony that “he had said absolutely nothing to the medium.” A dictaphone had disclosed that he had laughed derisively twice, exclaimed in surprise several times, assented once, and spoken seven distinct sentences. No one knows how near to impossible it is for human beings not to react, even by speaking aloud, than the mediums themselves. Those psychics who are quick in perception have no difficulty in learning

from the reactions of sitters, the right.

and wrong direction of “spirit information.” If on the wrong track, the quick-witted medium switches to another subject; if on the right track, she or he pursues it.

The Value of “Violence”

NE of the first rules of professional

mediumship is to “break up the

séance” when “conditions are not right for communication.” Reading of a transcript of psychic messages, such as have been taken down by the English and American psychical research societies, shows that sittings are ended by the medium the moment embarrassing questions are asked or humiliating mistakes have been made. Every green medium learns as a first lesson the value of “violence.” If anything goes wrong, the first rule of the medium is to “cut up a fuss,” as one said to me. Palladino used to do this in volcanic style, afterward regretting that she had buffeted some inquiring old gentleman in the face, “even when not herself.” “Violence” always comes as a surprise to the sweet-natured and shocked investigator, and it covers a multitude of errors and many exposures. Its rude

ness may always be attributed to another sphere. “The one thing all mediums fear is being deceived themselves,” says a well-known medium. “If you will take the cases of all the psychics who have been boosted by Lodge and those Englishmen, you will see that whenever any sitter or investigator succeeded in lying to them, or deceived them about identity of persons, or furnished a lot of false data, the spirit world was fooled just as badly as the medium. It is a wonder to me that anyone who wants really to test psychic powers doesn't begin that way—by ‘planting’ the psychic. I remember going to a small city in Ohio. I had all kinds of facts about the mayor's wife and all her ancestors and relatives. Somebody brought in a lady who was introduced as the mayor's sister. I told all I knew, and it was no success because the woman was the sister of an ex-mayor.” During the war a “society medium” —one who perhaps is deluded herself, but who has written a book which sells rapidly to those who want to explore a new world of truth or mere “hearsay” reading—was consulted by the mother of a boy reported killed in the Argonne. This psychic brought messages from the spirit of the boy in heaven which he later had the privilege of reading when he got out of the embarkation hospital. In that case fate, rather than commonsense human intelligence, had given the medium the only real test of her ability to communicate with the spirit world that she has ever had. Finally, one set of questions is worthy the contemplation of anyone. Why is it that mediums always prescribe the conditions of their séances? Why is it that the mass of communication from spirits is of the stuff described as drivel by men like Professor Shaler of Harvard, Professor H. E. Armstrong of England, Dr. G. Stanley Hall, and the great body of learned men who have been willing to inspect the evidence?— the kind of drivel which the control Feda in “Raymond,” by Sir Oliver Lodge, exemplifies by reporting certain conditions in heaven in these words: “It’s

Allentown, a Courageous City

Continued from page 13

[blocks in formation]

N lieu of these usual essentials to self-respect, the Pennsylvania Dutch have sunk holes into the limestone, going below the well levels. By some geological arrangement down there, the sewage of thousands of families is then drained away without contaminating the water supply. To this date, I believe, no neighbor community has protested. Indeed, nobody seems to know where the waste goes. If there is any outlet to the surface, it has not been found. Under such circumstances many a town would have done, perhaps, as this town has done. And it may be the folk of Allentown are justified in asking: “How are we worse than a city like Troy, that floats its sewage past Albany, only seven miles away?” The answer is that Troy makes its own people reasonably safe, while Allentown subjects its own people to

serious risk.

That risk is now to grow less with every day, and the reader will have interest in knowing that the city government found the required support for the change mainly in two men— President Samuel W. iro and Sec

retary James R. Kinsloe of the Chamber of Commerce. It is necessary to cut beneath the pleasant surface to open up another trouble: Allentown makes its city government live on 51.9 cents, where other cities of like size spend a dollar. The 48 cents is saved impartially, some of it on police, fire protection, and the maintenance of highways; some of it on charities, hospitals, and corrections; some of it on schools, libraries, and play; and some of it on money that should long ago have been borrowed for permanent improvements. Catch up with any branch of the government and observe how parsimony holds it back. Here is a library foot-bound in a little building without a rod of grass about it. Here is a heated discussion—finally ended rightly—whether it will “pay” or not to take over spacious fair grounds, near the very center of the town, as a recreation space for eleven months in consideration of remitting the taxes. Here is a beautiful soldiers' monument, instead of standing in an appropriate park setting, blocking traffic at the intersection of two of the busiest thoroughfares. And here, to go somewhat outside the

municipal offices, is a subscription to

finance a home-building corporation with one lone name upon it, and no more.

NE department of Allentown life has been given more money than any other, relatively. That is the department of religion. I do not mean that the churches there are sufficiently financed. That is not

not the same as on the earth plane, but they were able to manufacture what looked like a cigar. He [meaning Raymond] didn't try one himself because he didn't care to; you know he wouldn't want to. But the other chap jumped at it. But when he began to smoke it he didn't think so much of it: he had four altogether; and now he doesn't look at one. Some call for whisky sodas. Don't think I'm stretching it when I tell you that they can manufacture even that.” (Bad news for the prohibitionists!) And why is it that no sum of money ever offered for a proof of spirit communication that would pass with any average jury has ever been collected?

Some Ammunition

NYONE with a sincere desire to eliminate fraud from spiritualism should read “The Question,” by Edward Clodd; “Fact and Fable in Psychology,” by Professor Joseph Jastrow; “Behind the Scenes with the Mediums,” by David P. Abbott; the Pennsylvania University Report of the Seybert Commission for Investigating Modern Spiritualism, which found that every medium under observation was a fraud; the Coover “Experiments in Psychical Research” at Leland Stanford University, which, after 11,000 tests of thought transference, made with psychics and nonpsychics, revealed results exactly even with mathematical chances in plain, old-fashioned guessing; “Spiritism and Religion; Can You Talk to the Dead?" by Baron Johan Liljencrants, with forewords by Cardinal Gibbons, Dr. John A. Ryan, and Maurice Francis Egan—an exhaustive scientific examination of the evidence accumulated. Upon some humble citizen or group in every community will fall the duty— and, if the experience proves to be like mine, the great entertainment—of investigating all alleged spiritualist mediums so that the fraudulent and silly may be eliminated. This article can § lay the foundation for work which will save the poor and the weak and the aged from plunder and false hope.

true anywhere. I mean that Allentown has given money enough to the tangible demands of religion to raise up a score of imposing church structures. Here, in this Pennsylvania Dutch city on the Lehigh, the sky line is graced by lovely towers. For such a company, of such folk, what is the outlook? Never bankruptcy. Never starvation. Never burning to death in the white heat of zeal. Beyond this the answer rests with the new generation. Muhlenberg holds one hope. Cedar Crest College another. The public schools, now being redeemed from the starvation rations of earlier years, another. Pastors like William E. Brooks, bringing from the war a spiritual appeal, that, is nigh to the supreme simplicity of love for humanity, are another.

T}; hopes must grow into helps if Allentown is to loose her sacred purse strings and rise from her seat of supreme Pennsylvania Dutch content. These and one thing more, a certain fire of the soul that Dr. Brooks prays may express itself in: “Hard work, hours and hours of hard work that you might have spent in making money for yourselves . . . abuse and calumny and the misunderstanding of your motives. . . . More than any of us realize, our own happiness is bound up in the happiness of the whole.” The Pennsylvania Dutch are the Pennsylvania Dutch. They have hands strong as any among humans. How they could move forward the city of Allentown if they were once to take in those hands the resistless lever of service

learned she was married to a captain of this steamer line. And downstairs to-night I see her making the same plays at table that she used to make with me when I first met her.”

“Downstairs to-night? Who you talking about?”

“Captain Grint's wife. She was the woman who divorced me. And as long

as she lives—” He don't finish it.

TAKE a stroll, then, to the wheelhouse, expecting to see Herbie there. But he's not there, and he's not eating below, so I look him up in his quarters. There was a little wait after I knocked on his cabin door, and then comes the word: “The captain is busy. Who is it?” I sing out who it is, and the door is opened. Herbie is there sitting in his big chair, and he says: “You aboard my ship all this time, Alec, and not come near me till now? That's not friendly at all. Meet my first officer, Mr. Willis. And my third officer”—telling them the same time about me being the man who taught him most of what he knew about sailorizing. “And now,” says Herbie, “let’s have that drink,” and the third officer hops lively and hauls out glasses and a demijohn from a locker, and pours out two drinks, the first mate and myself not taking any. It is brandy they’re drinking, and when they have it down the first mate, who it was plain was doing the worrying for all hands, asks for instructions for the night; and Herbie says: “We don't make our schedule, Willis, and we ketch hell from the company, don't we? Well, fog or no fog, keep her hooked up.” The first mate goes out, and pretty soon the third mate, with a terrible yawn, says he guessed he'd go to his room for a little sleep against his going on watch at midnight. He was a good-looking, plump sort, a good deal the same kind Herbie was when I used to know him—with a curly, little mustache and lovely white teeth behind the mustache, which he showed when he smiled going out the door. Herbie notices me looking after him: “You don't look’s if you liked him, Alec 2" And I said: “I don’t like him—his hull, or his rig, or the wake he leaves behind him. # he'd smiled at me the way he did at you, I'd 've speeded his good night with the toe of my boot.” “There's something about him lately I don't like myself,” says Herbie. “But, as my wife says—she owns a lot of stock in the company—we can have any officer shifted any time we want to on this line.” He stops and then he goes on: “I was third officer of this same steamer when I first met Venie. It was to a dinner her first husband gave—” “Her first husband?” “Didn't you know she was married before? Sure. He was manager and part owner of the line. There was some talk when he died, but that was only his relations who didn't get his money. Venie explained all that to me.” “I expected to meet your wife here, Herbie. Where is she?” “She’s gone below. I'd send for her, only she don't like to be disturbed once she turns in below.” I look around his cabin with its fine, big loafing room and fine bedroom and a fine bathroom, away ahead of any crowded passengers' quarters, and say: “What's wrong with her turning in here, Herbie?” “Too noisy for her up here, Alec. Men running around deck kept her awake nights, she's told me many a time.” He has a yawn for himself then, saying: “I wish I could keep awake, but I guess I’d better turn in too.” “It looks like a fog coming up, Herbie.” “Does it? Well, maybe I ought to stay up, but I ain't as tough as I used to be, Alec.” And he pours out a glass of brandy and looks at me, saying: “I have to take a ball pretty regular now to keep me going. We had a party —some friends of Venie's-till five o'clock this morning. And four o'clock the night before that. She likes it lively once in a while.”

Grint, and go hunt up Gray.

Not Down in the Log

Continued from page 8

“Most of us do,” I says. “But does she have to get up early next morning and tend to business?” He looks at me and from me to his glass of brandy, and then, like he's afraid I'll stop him, he throws it down his throat. I leave him with my mind on Mrs. He’s in the smoking room, and so is the man who'd been with the girl in the dining room, and he's telling a story about himself and the girl—Maisie, he called her—and when he gets through and we don't laugh, he looks at us surprised, saying: “You don't seem to catch the point!” I tells him I can see the point all right, and then I go out with Gray, and we're walking the deck together when the fog begins to roll in. Gray asks if there's much danger to the boat in the fog, and I tell him if they keep a lookout and their whistle blowing every minute or so, there oughtn't to be. “We’re not blowing ours every minute,” he says with his watch out. Which was true, and I go forward and have a look into the wheelhouse, which is one of those closed-up and glassed-in arrangements like I never see anywhere else on big-sized steamers except our Atlantic Coast and Long Island Sound lines; and a bad scheme, I'll say, for large boats carry1ng passengers. Besides the second mate and the man to the wheel there were two passengers in the wheelhouse, the passengers taking it easy with the mate on the transom. It was nice and cozy to look at, but what with cigar smoke and the steam from their bodies clouding up the windows I was wondering how far past the bow of the ship the man at the wheel could see. I come away and tell Gray what's going on in the wheelhouse, adding on : “But when the captain of a ship lets down, everybody under him is almost sure to let down too, and there's what too much drink does.” “That's so, no doubt. But who drove him to drink?” says Gray. “Oh!” I says. “He’s no infant. There's nobody forcing it down his throat.” “Nobody would ever force it down your throat, captain, that's sure. But I say again what I said this morning —you're a lucky man in the woman you met first, and make allowances, will you, for men not so lucky?”

DON'T answer; but all the time while we're walking the deck after that I haven't much else on my mind but Herbie and his wife till by and by we hear a steamer's whistle. We're standing forward at the time –Gray and myself—and the next thing we see is a light like a green eye come winking out of the fog, and a green light in a thick o' fog means a stranger pretty close aboard. We hear her whistle. Another whistle right after that must've woke up out second mate, for our wheelhouse window comes down with a bang and then—a little slow, maybe from his eyes being too long in the light, the second mate yells to port the wheel, which was a proper order if the other fellow'd been anchored. But green lights don't shine from anchored ships. We start to swing, and the green light starts to swing, and we swing back and the other fellow swings back, and we're still swinging and she's swinging when she comes chopping up and down through the fog and don't stop chopping till her bow chops straight through our creampuff topsides. Through our rail and deck and hard up against our wheelhouse windows her bow came. The two passengers in the wheelhouse could’ve climbed out through the wheelhouse window and onto the stranger's bow if they wanted to, but I guess they didn't. Out of the wheelhouse door and toward the stern of the

ship they go in long leaps, the one with a pint bottle in his hand showing the course to the other. “Poor Herbie! There goes your master's license,” I say to myself, and hurry to his quarters. He's about half awake; and before he can do anything more he says he'll have to have a drink. I pour him out a good one. He drinks it and begins to find himself, and his next word is: “My wife— Venie! Twenty-one is her room—three decks below, port side amidships. Will you go down, Alec, and get her to hurry on deck?” I step out and bump into Gray, who's waiting for me. I tell him to get Miss Creamer and her mother up on deck, but keep them clear of any wild rushes and to wait, for me on that same spot. He goes. By then Herbie was out on deck and yelling for the lifeboats to be cleared away. “Better hail the other fellow to keep her bow jammed in to our side till you get your people off, hadn't you?” I call into his ear. “D'ye think I ought to?” he says, and while he's thinking it over the stranger backs clear of us; and when she does the sea begins to pour into the big hole she left in our side. Herbie yells again to clear away the lifeboats; and the deck hands overhaul the boat falls and start to hoist the lifeboats; but the lifeboats 've been so long in the chocks that they're set there like in cement and won't budge. As I go below I hear Herbie calling somebody with a maul to knock the lifeboat chocks away, and somebody with a sheath knife to cut their canvas lacings.

HREE decks down I find Room 21 and knock. No answer. I knock again—pretty loud. No answer. I try the door. It is locked. I brace my back against the other wall of the passageway and push with my foot till the door caves in. The room was dark. I switched on the light. She was not there. Nobody had been sleeping there that night. All this time I can feel the ship settling under me, but I stop and think a minute. Then I run to the third officer's room. I knock and get no answer. There's no narrow passageway where I can brace my back, but there's an emergency ax in a glass case. smash the glass case, grab out the ax, and smash it through the door. A voice—the third officer's voice—calls out: “Don’t break in that door—we're coming.” I ran up to the deck, and there were the lifeboats still in the chocks because nobody could find a maul to knock the chocks from untier them, and there was Herbie yelling for the crew to let be the lifeboats and launch the life rafts, which was maybe the most sensible order he could give to deck hands who weren’t much on seagoing, for no matter how a life raft is hove over the side it floats right side up. But women hanging onto rafts in cold water don’t get much fun out of it, so I take the ax I’d brought on deck with me and I chop the lacings and knock away the chocks to a lifeboat, and put Mrs. Creamer and her daughter into it, and with Gray I lower it into the sea. The ship's lights are by then out of commission, and the ship's been settling so fast that we could've stepped from a lower deck right into our boat as it hit the water if we'd been on a lower deck. Gray slides into the boat, and I slide in, cast away the falls and shove off from the ship's side. “Some people still aboard — we'll wait a while here,” I says, thinking of Herbie's wife and the third mate; and with an oar I hold our lifeboat close up to the stern of the ship, which by then is most down to her boat deck. The ship that ran into us is poking her way along by a searchlight we can just see through the fog. Shooting it around, she was onto our rafts drift

ing along with the tide and making ready to take the people off them. The Bay Shore's stern is settling pretty fast, so I start to scull the lifeboat away from her, and as I do we hear a man's voice calling for help. And then another man's voice calling. Then a woman's—two women's volces. When it's quiet and foggy at sea a voice travels pretty good. They must've heard the voices on the other steamer, because her searchlight comes swinging around and rakes the Bay Shore fore and aft, like, lighting up the full length of her top deck before it passes on. “You see them?” calls out Gray. He's standing forward and I'm aft in the lifeboat. “You see 'em, captain— a couple to one side of the ship and a couple to the other?” “See who?” I says. “The captain's wife and the third mate.” “Which side the ship are they?” “Port side. And you'll have to hurry.” “You're a good deal of a man at that!” I think. But to him I say: “Sure they’re to port?” “Sure. And hurry—hurry and save her ''' I was hurrying. I was giving all I had to the big oar, and the lifeboat was moving forward about as well as one moderately husky man could expect it. “Captain' Oh, Captain Corning— you're going the wrong side of the ship !” was the next thing I heard from Gray. “Didn't you say port side?” “Port side—yes.” “Then I’m taking the right side, and be quiet now !” I said. Along the side of the sinking hull I drove the lifeboat. It was a couple of hundred feet to her midship quarters. The searchlight had passed on and there was nothing to see when I got there. But we could hear somebody flopping around in the water near us. “There's a woman,” says Miss Creamer, and with her mother and Gray she reaches over and pulls in somebody who's pretty near all gone. It was the girl Maisie. “I’m here-—here—me—gg-g—here !” comes a squeak from under the gunnel. It was Maisie's man, and I grab him myself and bounce him—shedding water like a fat seal he was –I bounce him hard into the bottom of the boat. There's a roar and rush of waters— oh, not so loud—and a swishing like something big diving into the sea. And there's an upheaving and humping

of the sea with the lifeboat bobbing

up and down — oh, not so much – all of which meant that the Bay Shore was at last gone under. The searchlight of the other ship comes swinging back and this time they hold it steady while I drive the lifeboat across the spot where the Bay Shore's hull had gone down, But there's nothing on the other side, nothing but a few gurgles and bubbles to mark where she'd been.

Y and by the other steamer picked up all the drifting rafts and the lifeboat; and we're in Bay City before morning; and that evening a Bay City paper tells how that seasoned seafaring man—Captain Alec Corning— had gone to the wrong side of the ship with the only lifeboat in the water, and so missed the chance to save Captain Grint's wife. Says the paper: “Captain Corning's explanation was that most shoregoing men speak of the left-hand side of the ship looking toward the stern instead of toward the bow as the port side of the ship, whereas, it turned out, Mr. Gray knew a little something of ships, and had it right. “‘A terrible mistake! It cost my wife's life!” said Captain Grint of the Bay Shore.” That was printed in what they called “The Log of the Bay Shore” in the evening paper. But they don't get everything down in a ship's log. I didn't make any mistake. It was for me, not Gray, to choose whom to save. And I chose.

A Unique Refractory Service—All Over the Map!

In over one hundred cities you will find leading dealers in building
and similar materials who are authorized Distributors for The Na-
tionally-Known Laclede-Christy Refractories.
all standard shapes of L–C Fire Brick in various grades, Fire Clay

Tile, Fire Clays, Sewer Pipe, etc.

The L-C Distributor in your vicinity is equipped to handle your entire Refractory business quickly and efficiently. He not only sells a famous make of Refractories, but he has the ability to recommend


[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Chicago, 1366 Peoples Gas Bldg.,

They carry stocks of

[blocks in formation]
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

New York, 504, Fifty East 42nd St.,

Lincoln, Western Brick & Sup. Co.
Omaha....... McCaffrey Bros. Co.

Buffalo. . . . . . . . . . Globe-Plaster Co.

Buffalo... Robinson Clay Prod. Co.
New York, Robinson Clay Prod. Co.
Niagara Falls,
Empire Bldrs. Sup. Co.
Syracuse.. Robinson #NA" Co.

George M. Norwood Brick Co.
Cleveland... . . . . . . Robert L. Beck

Columbus, Columbus Fire & Face
Brick Co.
Dayton.... Dayton Bldrs. Sup. Co.
Steubenville, Building Material Co.
Toledo, Toledo Plaster & Sup. Co.

Altus. . . . . . . . Wm. Cameron & Co.
Chickasha....Wm. Cameron & Co.
Oklahoma City...... A. M. De Bolt
Tulsa....... Interstate Supply Co.
Portland. . . . . . F. T. Crowe & Co.

Erie, A. M. Cobbe Brick & Tile Co.

Sioux Falls. . . . . . . . H. T. Parmley

Ocoee Brick & Stone Co.

[ocr errors]

E- #. - fi 3. A Business INSTITUTIONE FOUNDED EAA S7. A O L//S

All that

Get in touch with this L-C Distributor-cash in on his knowledge and experience—invite him to come and tell you all about LacledeChristy Refractories, whose uniformly-high quality and perfect suitability to the work in which they are used, makes them the most economical refractories you can secure.

Chattanooga. ... Sloan & Company
Memphis, Fischer Lime & Cem. Co.


Beaumont. . I. I. Wilson IIdw. Co.
Dallas... Briggs-Weaver Mach. Co.
Dallas....W. L. Macatee & Sons
Dallas. . . . . . . . . Moore & Company
El Paso. . . . . . . . . . . . . Rathbun Co.
Ft. Worth....Wm. Cameron & Co.
Galveston. . . . . . . . Wm. Parr & Co.
Houston....W. L. Macatee & Sons
Orange. . . . . . . . . Sabine Supply Co.
Paris...... W. F. Dulaney & Sons
San Antonio, San Antonio Mach.
: Sup. Co.
Sherman ..... ! Iardwicke-Etter Co.
Waco. . . . . . . . Wm. Cameron & Co.
Waco......... Nash Robinson Co.


Seattle. . . . . . . . . T. T. Crowe & Co.
Tacoma. . . . . . . . T. T. Crowe & Co.


Eau Claire, W. H. Hobbs Sup. Co.
Green Bay. . . . . . . . F. Hurlbut Co
La Crosse. ... La Crosse Boiler Co
Madison. . . . . . . . . . . . . C. F. Cooley
Monroe, Henry Solomon Coal &
Iron Co.
Milwaukee. . . . . W. H. Pipkorn Co.
Wausau............... W. A. Paff


Toronto, Wayne Forge & Mach. Co.
W. & F. P. Currie & Co., Ltd.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »