….Listening to the story of someone who has!
by Keith J. Clark
In September of 2014 I happened to make a random off-the-wall visit to a website of which I was previously very active in, dedicated to physical mediumship. This website currently has over 2,700 members, I believe it is run by the well known Robin and Sandra Foy. Obviously, with that number of members, it likely includes many of the mediums and other participants in the field of physical mediumship.
As equally well-known is Stewart Alexander, a physical medium in England. After only a few minutes on the site I came across mention of a CD by Stewart Alexander, similar to the post HERE. On this two CD set are the memoirs of sitters who recount their personal experiences via audio recordings. This memoir project began back during the days of the Noah’s Ark Society, of which all of the aforementioned people in this article (and more) were a part of.
The people giving these recollections personally sat with mediums including Helen Duncan, Gladys Osborne Leonard, Ronald Strong, William Olsen, Frank Havard, Millicent Benedict, Alec Harris, and Queenie Nixon. (there may be more) The words you hear are from their lips, spoken directly from the individual who had the experience.
Here’s a few quotes that will give an idea of what exactly is on the CD’s
“A hand came through (the curtains) palm down and immediately a little dwarf appeared on the hand dressed in green and red, just as we imagined them to be.”
“When suddenly I felt a nudge and I happened to look to the floor, and there at my right foot was a white substance the size of a golf ball. And I exclaimed ‘Ooh something is happening!’ and as I spoke it started to grow in size…..”
“If such as this happened years ago, it can happen again today. And you individuals are to be commended on helping to revive this form of phenomenon. Keep up your good work.”
Having an interest in and also feeling quite compelled to assist in the preservation of historic data from the bygone era, I established contact with Stewart and obtained a copy. Honestly I found it extremely interesting, divulging all kinds of information that I had not heard before, and it helped to broaden my understanding of physical mediumship.
The Purpose: Educational and Historical
In Stewart’s own words, he states: “My absolute intension regarding the Album is to honour the intention of all the contributors (now all long gone) to have their physical séance room stories heard by contemporary and future Spiritualists.”
When taking the time to record these memoirs the intention was to preserve the experiences of these “Senior Spiritualists” so that this information would be passed on for future generations. With the assistance of Lew Sutton, it appears Stewart is now making good on this intention, and the time is right. In addition, there is much more preserved material – Stewart has stated that he hopes to be able to release more in the future.
After receiving and listening to the CD I can tell you that it is a very important piece of history, of which I am very glad I found, acquired, and absorbed. I can also confirm that it is quite apparent that the intent is not to profit, but to share this information with the world. It’s not a commercial effort, each CD set is hand-made, the result of tedious effort and passion. (they were originally recorded on tape!) The CD goes directly from Stewart’s hands to yours.
If you have an interest in physical mediumship, especially if you’re new to the topic and have not attended a physical mediumship séance before – I recommend checking this first volume of Physical Séance Room Recollections out.
Please scroll farther down to read Stewart’s introduction to this CD set and how it all came about.
The only way to learn from history, is to first know history. ~ Keith
The cost of the Album is £12.50 (Sterling). Shipping determined by location. Click HERE to email for more information. Payment is easily arranged via PayPal worldwide.
***Disclaimer by Keith: I have not yet met Stewart Alexander as of the date of this posting, and my first communication with him was regarding this CD. This is not a paid endorsement – nor was one asked for. Stewart has given permission to assist in disseminating this information that it may reach a wider audience.
More information on the Noah’s Ark Society, courtesy of Victor Zammit.
The following from Victor Zammit’s Website:
Noah’s Ark Society for Physical Mediumship (NOW DISBANDED- archived site 2004) The Noah’s Ark Society for Physical Mediumship was established in England in 1990 and had a membership of 1700 people and 150 member circles worldwide. This site (now only accessible in part through the internet archive) contained information on many great physical mediums from the past as well as information on the results of recent experiments.
Stewart Alexander’s Article regarding this CD Album BELOW
PHYSICAL SÉANCE ROOM RECOLLECTIONS
In the 1990’s I was, for some years, the Archives officer and for a while the President of the now defunct Noah’s Ark Society for Physical Mediumship. Prior to that, over a period of several years, I had been most fortunate to meet, on a number of occasions, elderly Spiritualists who some years earlier had sat with legendary Physical Mediums who by then we could only read about. However, when relating to me their experiences it was almost as if they were telling of séances which they had attended the previous night as against 10/20/30/40 and in one case, 50 years earlier. Such had been the impression made upon them by what they had witnessed that those séances had been indelibly stamped into their memories.
Always, as I listened, it had invariably struck me that I was as close to living history as it was possible to be.
When, therefore, I became the Societies Archives Officer, I determined to appeal to such people to come forward – to make contact with me and arrange to leave on record audio recordings of those wonderful inspiring sittings that, in past years, they had been privileged to attend. Now, no matter how harsh this may seem, the fact is that one by one our forebears were leaving this earth and taking with them their recollections and one by one their experiences – their stories – were being lost to our movement.
So – in an effort to address that situation and catch them whilst there was yet time, I placed, on behalf of the Society, an advertisement in its monthly Newsletter and in various Spiritualist publications inviting and imploring them to send in their invaluable accounts. Pleasingly many responded and eventually I was too select a number of them which I grouped together onto a single cassette under the heading; ‘The Physical Phenomena of Spiritualism – Archives Compilation Tape 1 – (1995)’ and this was subsequently marketed by the N.A.S. for its members and understandably proved to be extremely popular.
However, with the later collapse of the Society that single cassette was to be the only one produced with the result that so many voices from the past were for many years to remain silent and unheard upon my library shelves.
Then, one day, two years ago, I was working at my computer when my eyes fell upon those cassettes and suddenly, like a bolt from the blue, it struck me that I had been guilty of failing to fulfil the wishes of all those contributors. Inadvertently, I had been singularly responsible for failing in my duty to them to keep their inspiring memories alive.
Thereupon I decided to select a number of them – take them with me to my next Seminar, and allow the attendees to hear those voices from our movements past. Imagine then my absolute horror when, on the occasion of my seminar talk, with the first cassette loaded into the machine, and everyone eagerly waiting to hear it, I pressed the play button and the tape snapped. However, what seemed at the time to be a literal disaster actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise for I -realised then that all such tapes in my supposedly ‘safe keeping’ would, with the passage of years, have been similarly deteriorating!
Enter; Lew Sutton (friend of many years) who, with the necessary equipment, graciously volunteered to take on the project of transferring all the cassettes onto CD and, in the process, clean up the sound quality which, on some of the tapes, was far from good. Anyway, it was when Lew was working on the old Ark compilation cassette that he telephoned to say that unfortunately the final accounts would not fit onto the one CD and in consequence they would have to be carried over onto a second one. Instantly, it then occurred to us both, that if we made a further selection of accounts to follow on beyond the Ark recording we could fill up the second CD and perhaps issue and make available to anyone interested in Physical Mediumship a double CD album.
Now – following months of work – months of engineering by Lew and the recording of new applicable introductions etc. the project has at last been completed with a lovely Review of it being published within the October issue of the Psychic World.
To the best of my knowledge, with the single exception of that Ark cassette, I know of no other such multiple recording within or outside of our Movement. I therefore believe that not only is this present album historic but it is also unique and it is my absolute intention to make it widely available both in this country and abroad. I believe it to be ‘that important’!
To me this is a duty to keep faith with those contributors who, prior to their own transition, took the time and the trouble to record their verbal accounts for posterity so that they would not be lost to our present day and our future movement. It is my firm belief that what these Spiritualists of yesterday have to tell us will prove to be educational, fascinating and extremely interesting to all listeners and hopefully this album will be followed by others. Listeners will enter into the séance rooms of mediums such as; Helen Duncan, Alec Harris, Frank Havard and William Olsen etc. and the past will once again live as the contributors tell of their wonderful experiences.
Little wonder then that I entertain the hope that all interested parties – Spiritual or otherwise – will take the opportunity to hear of these past séance room wonders from the people who personally witnessed them for I am of the opinion that to give yesterday’s Spiritualists a voice in our movement today is extremely important to our contemporary movement which sadly, remains largely ignorant to the séance room wonders of the past.
And finally, the albums can be individually ordered at the retail cost of £12.50 plus postage and packing and they are also available at a discount price to any church or organisation who would like to stock them for their members and these would, when required, be provided along with an advertising poster. Additionally, by request, I would always be happy to consider visiting venues to present talks in respect of the album and what motivated their production.
Also included (when applicable) would be the story of my own 45 years within the Spiritualist movement, which I hope, will prove to be interesting, educational – and – dare I say; entertaining!
Additionally brief details of my many experiences within the Physical séance room and also my gradual development of physical mediumship over a fifteen year period plus a brief account of my public work this past 20 years. The talk would last either 90 or 120 minutes whichever is preferred!
‘Physical Séance Room Recollections’ can be ordered from; Con-Psy Publications, PO Box 14, Greenford, Middlesex, UB6 0UF. Tel; 0208 903 1993