Dora Hahn,

 Medium Dora Hahn

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It was on December 30, 1904, and the Medium was a young woman called Dora Hahn. I am sorry to hear that she passed over six years ago, and that I shall not have the pleasure of meeting her again on this plane of consciousness. She had never seen or heard of me in her life. We sat down opposite to one another in the dark. She first described a form near me, and gave the earth name of Iola; then went into trance, and an Indian girl called "Lark" assumed control. Lark, accompanied by Iola, then went on a voyage for me; the particulars I shall describe in their proper place in another chapter. After about half-an-hour or so Lark departed, and the psychic came out of trance. The lights were lit, and I produced a packet of fourteen cartes-des-visite from my pocket, laid it down on the table and retired sufficiently far away to avoid giving any suggestion by looking at the pictures. I said "Please pick out the portrait of Iola; you described her to me before you went into trance." She took some time over this; but while she was looking through the photographs she took up one and brought it to me with an air of perfect confidence, saying "Iola says this is your wife; and she tells me that, among these others, there is another one of your wife. I will get it." She then returned to the table. I followed her back, and she handed out a second portrait of Mrs. Moore. Both were correct.

Remark the following particulars. These two portraits had been taken, one in 1865 and the other in 1871; the former was as a little girl in a short frock. When she was on earth Iola not only knew these pictures well, but she knew all the cartes in the pack except one, as she was closely associated as a young woman with my wife. I had no one in my mind at the time but Iola.


I have discussed this incident with many people, and tried to spoil it; it is wise to do this after an apparent manifestation by invisible intelligence’s. But in this care everyone who attempted to give a normal explanation asserted something which is more incredible than the spiritual hypotheses. To me there is only one rational explanation: Iola was in the room, and impressed the psychic to pick out these two photographs and to present them to me as those of my wife. The portrait of Iola herself was not selected at first shot. Two were brought to me first; one of those was a near relative, and considered by the family to resemble her.



(1) I may have to return to Maggie Gaule presently. In the meantime I will attempt to describe a visit which I paid the following day to Miss Dora Hahn, a trance medium in New York. I was, of course, absolutely unknown to her. We sat in the dark, about four feet apart. She gave me a precise description of my state of health, and the precautions necessary, which I believe were correct, but would not interest my readers. She then accurately described certain spirits around, some of whom I had not given a thought to for years, and she gave their names. She then went into trance, and was taken possession of by an Indian spirit called "Lark" who, in a voice quite different that that of the Medium said, "Where do you wish me to go to?"

"Is the spirit of Iola present?"

 Lark: "Yes; she is here with me."

"Well, go to the house of my mother."

Lark: "I will go to the house of your mother. It is a long way, ever so far off, across the ocean; it is not in London but near it." (Then followed a description of the house and the members of the family attending upon my mother, which was correct.)

Lark: "Where shall I go now?"

"Go to my house at Southsea."

Lark: Where is Southsea? B--- Square, R--- Square? (London).

"Why do you say R--- Square?"

Lark: "Well, Iola says she lived there are one time, but the bog hotel on one side was not there then. Some buildings have been pulled down, and the hotel has been built in their place." (Correct).

"Now Lark, what is the Square like? You have squares here---Madison square and so on. Describe R---- Square."

Lark: "It is a sort of park."

"Any trees?"

Lark: "Oh yes! Plenty; and you have to open the gate with a key." There were further details all of which were correct.

"Now Lark, go to Southsea, near Portsmouth; you know, the naval town."

Lark: "All right; I see plenty of ships and soldier about. You have something to do with them. Golly! What a lot of cars! You are getting on in the old country. A good description of my house followed; also a good account of my son-in-law, my daughter and their children, who lived in a neighbouring street.

"All the information given in this interview" the sceptic might say, "was obtained from yourself. Dora Hahn told you nothing you did not know before you entered the room." This may possibly be true; but, remember, we were in the dark. But now to close the seance.

The light was lit. I laid a packet of fifteen photos on the table, and, taking care to get out of view of them, asked the medium to pick out the portraits of any Spirits she had seen on this evening. While she was considering she handed me a photograph of my wife, saying: "Iola has just told me that this is your wife, and she says there is another one of her here". She then gave me a second picture of Mrs. Moore. I should like to know how any theory of telepathy can explain this away. Could the Medium have obtained this information except from the source she claimed---that is to say, Iola?

The next day I visited Mr. and Mrs. Hermann, two psychics in a remote part of New York. They discovered my name pretty quickly. I tried the photograph test. Mrs. Hermann gave a convulsive movement, and shouted: "Who is the little girl? A spirit is saying in my ear ‘Give him the little girl.’ " There was only one little girl in the collection of photographs; it was the carte-devisite of my wife at the age of fifteen, in a short dress.

Good tests were given at this seance, but that just mentioned was one of the best. Knocks were going on all around the room, and vigorous taps on the table testified to any true piece of information. No person who had been present could have failed to recognise the activity of intelligence’s which do not belong to this state of existence.



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