An excerpt from

SÉANCE: Spiritualist Ritual and the Search for Ectoplasm

Shannon Taggart

Sample photographs from the book:

Table-Tipping Workshop at Rev. Jane’s House, Erie, Pennsylvania, 2014

First Photo Anomaly—Dorothy Pries with a purple orb that she interprets as her deceased husband Bob’s presence, Lily Dale, New York, 2001

Fifth generation Spiritualist medium Gretchen Clark laughs as her deceased brother interrupts a client reading to tell her a joke, Lily Dale, New York, 2001

Inspiration Stump, a sacred spot in Lily Dale where mediums have given messages since 1879, and the place where my grandfather’s message was received, Lily Dale, New York, 2012

Rev. Jean heals Jennifer, the Healing Temple, Lily Dale, New York, 2003

Planchette for automatic writing, Arthur Findlay College, Stansted, England, 2012

Séance trumpets with celebrity spirit guides, hand painted by medium Sylvia Howarth, Reeth, England, 2013

Orb Hunting, Sette Fratelli Mountains, Sardinia, Italy, 2015

Medium Kevin Lawrenson in Trance, Montcabirol Centre for Physical Mediumship, Mirepoix, France, 2014

Smoke scrying experiment with medium Susan Barnes, Arthur Findlay College, Stansted, England, 2016

Medium Kai Muegge with ectoplasm, Cassadaga, NY, 2013