In the year 1850, approx. three years before the start of the table-tilt epidemic, an american clairvoyante brought the message of the discovery of an experimental rapport with the spirit world through means of spirit-raps to the knowledge of Ludwig of Guldenstubbe and his intellectual circle of theosophers.
6 months and many experiments with this american woman called d’Abnour from New Orleans and a newly formed circle later, Guldenstubbe achieved such results to bring the mysterious rapping spirits of Rochester and the Psychography (automatic writing) to the awareness of the French society (Guldenstubbe mainly lived in France).
Unsurprisingly from the parties of the teachings of Animal Magnetism many stones were thrown in its path.
The scholars of the “Mesmeric Fluidism”, even those, who called themselves “Spiritual Magnetizers” – but who only were in Guldenstubbes eyes “mean somnambulizers” (sic) – considered the mysterious spirit-rappings as foolery, baublery and musing (sic).
Even Cahagnet, with his celebrated clairvoyante “Adele”, meant, that the contact with the spirit world should only be performed through clairvoyance and did not want in any way be part of Guldenstubbes experiments in spirit-rapping.
Only Roustan and his clairvoyante Mademoiselle Japhet, who later dictated Allan Kardecs Book of spirits, became part in the experiments. Also the well known Abbe Chatel, the founder of the french catholic church, became part of the circle.
List of some highly credible, intellectual and academic witnesses
The American Circles at that time, besides of the moralic standards of the sitters, were entirely based on the differentiation between the positive, magnetic and unreceptive elements on the one side with the electric negative and sensitive elements on the other side. These circles usually were constituted out of twelve sitters, from which six did represent the positive and the other six represented the negative elements.
The distinction between these elements had not entirely based on the sitters gender, although usually the female represented the “negative” and “sensible” characteristics, while the male were attributed with “positive=magnetic” talents. But before the circles were constituted they checked the sitters in their physical constitution, because of tender women, who have more male attributes and strong men, who are in a moralic sight more female.
Those who came out as really outstanding powerful mediums were widely regarded to have usually positiv and negativ features at the same time, again in different grades, some with more positive, others with more negative attributes. So all “spontanous” or “Idio-mediums” had the advantage of a harmonical, physical and morally constitution, what especially empowered them to be mediums for the transfer to/from the spirit-world.
FIRST TABLE EXPERIMENTS
Guldenstubbes experimental circle placed a table into a spacious and airy room and then began to build the “magnetic chain”; the medium was isolated at the end of the table. In Guldenstubbes opinion Madame d’Abnour served through her very passiv, patient attitude and through her contemplative calmness as a preferable conductor for spirit-influences (sic).
The six sensitiv individuals usually were placed to the right of the medium.
Directly beside the medium the most positive or sensitive person was seated, which was identified by its’ hearty benevolence and its sensibility.
The most “positive” or most intelligent person was seated to the mediums left.
To build the chain now all twelve persons had to place their right hand onto the table and their left hand onto the hand of the neighbouring sitter.
The medium was positioned isolated outside the chain.
After several sittings the Guldenstubbe circle obtained first strange phenomena, like “electric blows” pushing the table, what the whole circle recognized in the very moment, when the most intelligent persons tried to contact spirit(s) telepathically.
Soon after the sensitive subjects obtained the ability of “mechanical phychography”. “An invisible power of attraction that controlled the sitters’ arms without their intelligent control to dictate the spirits thoughts”, Guldenstubbe writes.
Other more or less sensible persons in Guldenstubbes circles had collective visions, although they were in a state of wake.
Then “odic fiery spheres of different rainbow-colours” appeared in the room and “changed to a column, from which with the time shadow-like human forms were developing”.
While such phenomena occurred persons recognized an outward influence of a breath or the purring of a slight breeze.
After 20 of their experimental sittings they had achieved the spirit-rappings of the American circles, when the well-known veteran of magnetism, Count d’Durches, became part of.
But the regular sittings had to stop because the reintroduction of the french despotism through the coup d’etat of Bonaparte considered them as subversive activities.
Not until early 1853, when the table-tilt-epidemic was grasping for whole Europe Guldenstubbe reinstalled his experiments. With his friend Count d’Durches he claimed to move tables completely without any contact the first time in Paris. “From time to time the tables hovered in mid-air and were transported through the room without any human contact by an unseen power.” Guldenstubbe claims he then had the power to call tables from far positions in a room. They obeyed like an intelligent entity, moving through a mysterious power.
At the same time Count D’Ourches influenced several lifeless objects in Guldenstubbes home, even when he was absent by means of constituting a “magnetic rapport”. Allegedly all existing door bells rang f.e., when d’Durchess was not able to come personally or when he only developed the wish to see Guldenstubbe. The mysterious ringing and moving of the bell-cord was often observed by many other witnesses like the editors of “Le Patrie”, Monsieur Delamarre and Denne or the Dutchman Fremery from the University of Groningen.
Guldenstubbe and his sister soon afterwards began to claim to see d’Durches in etherical form coming into the room or attending the sittings, while the original Count was unable to come because of heavy pain attacks of his gout.
Guldenstubbe thought that the powerful wish of the Count to attend was responsible for this phenomenon of doubleganger visible for the sensitives like him or his sister. At one instance allegedly sixteen observers at the same time saw objects move, controlled by the absent d’Durches, who claimed to stand in magnetic rapport with them.
1854 Guldenstubbe wisited the aged Justinius Kerner in Weinsberg. Kerner had observed similiar phenomena some years ago and now gained hope the German public would maybe re-discover his today well known “The Seer of Prevorst” (“Die Seherin von Prevorst”).
The development of the American Spiritualism strengthened his persuasion that he once actually showed to the unthankful German audience the rightous way of a “new science of the supernatural” with his book.
A POWERFUL MEDIUMSHIP DEVELOPING
In 1855 Ludwig von Guldenstubbe and his sister arrived back in Paris. He claimed that at this time the then many years developed mediumship of both seemed to join forces for the first time.
At the 20th of Jauary 1856 he and his sister made a pianoforte, standing in the opposite corner of the room, tremble heavily, witnessed by the Count Czapary, the Count d’Durches and Doctor Bowron.
The rest of the year Ludwigs experiments very much progressed. Tables followed his will completely and moved in every direction like a living creature. Many offered their names for testimonials to have witnessed the phenomenon. Monsieur de Nancé of Algier, Mons. de Voigts-Rhetz, a Prussian embassy-cavalier, the french philosopher and academic Johann Anton Matter, Count d’Durches, General Ferdinand of Brewern, Prince Dimitri Chakowskoy, Henri Delaage, well known french author, Mons. Wilkinson, editor of the english “Spiritual Magazine” and many others. Wilkinson declared the movement of the tables without any contact whatsoever in daylight or strong lamp-light he even not had witnessed with D.D.Hume.
Actually the Marquise Puget, a psychographical medium, came and transported these tables to many of her table-soirees, because she thought the autonomous power was somehow inside of the table-structure.
Guldenstubbe himself wanted to make the existence of a spirit world much more evidential through further objective, direct, intelligent and at the same time materialistic phenomena.
Already in the year of 1853 Guldenstubbe recognized faintly strange writings on total ly pristine and untouched notepaper, locked in his lectern. But because he could never substantiate these ongoings while the last four years he was very reluctant to talk about with others. His also highly mediumistic sister declared Ludwigs claims for unpossible, mainly because a few years earlier even the celebrated Andrew Jackson Davis considered mysterious writings while the ongoings of the “Strattfort-Phenomena” for unexplainable.
Nevertheless Ludwig further on observates his surroundings in this respect and when one day he had to lend paper-sheets from his sister because his locked away own were again unusable because of unexplainable scribblings of unknown hands (sic) his sister agreed on to begin experiments. Later they called it “the phenomena of Direct Spirit Writing”.
Nr.1: The line “I confess to christs’ incarnation” in the handwriting of a dead friend of Guldenstubbe is the “direct written” answer of d’Durches’ question, if he is a good spirit.
Nr.2: Latin “lapidary script” obtained with many witnesses while an experiment in the roman “Emperors Hall” of the Louvre.
Nr.3: Magical symbol of a “Mithra”, obtained at the sarcophagus of the “Holy Genoveva” in the Church St.Etienne du Mont.
The initials L.B. became a meaning, when 4 weeks later the priest “Louis Berger” killed the archbishop of Paris, Gibour, in the same church.
Nr.4: Old-greek “lapidary script”: Death where is thy sting, Hell where is your victory? obtained the fourth of Octobre at the residence of Guldenstubbe, 74, rue de chemin de Versailles, with many witnesses like Prof. Georgii of Sweden or the Count Voigt-Rhetz
EXPERIMENTS IN DIRECT SPIRIT WRITING
They placed pristine papersheets and a pencil, a Bleifeder (a historical very fine “lead-pencil” to sketch or chart something) in a sealed box made out of wood and overhanded the key regular vistors like for example the old but not dotile Count d’Durchess.
Beginning the first of August already at the 13th they succeeded. Ludwig of Guldenstubbe declares the day from his sight as “eternal memorable”. At that day a set of experiments produced thirty unexplained and unknown writings through placing paper-sheets onto a glass plate and to direct magnetic powers upon them.
Guldenstubbe explains the writings always developed on the side lying on the glass-plate and not where the pencil was placed.
In this respect Guldenstubbe noticed a very important opinion, that was widely respected under the Animists and Vitalists of the time, that the eye-own magnetic power blocks the development of the writing oftentimes instantly in the middle of a letter or word.
Regardless of this Guldenstubbe achieved it that many could witness the direct development of the scribblings before their own eyes by clear daylight or very bright candlelight, like those presented in the list of witnesses in above images.
Under them the poet La Boulaye of Autun allegedly saw the writings developing on his rock or on paper-sheets pinned on a wall like at the 20th of January 1859.
Mons. Larcordaire, brother of the well-known dominican and then director of the Gobelin’s of Paris, saw on sheets of paper, that were sprinkled with holy water by two attending priests and then pinned at the wall, a huge cross quickly developing. Abbe Meurice after that enclosed it in glass as a reliq.
In the sealed experimental box, after the key was with Count d’Durchess in Vienna at the 14th of August 1856 Ludwig found ten writings in his fathers hand writing in estonian, a language he was not capable of but into which his dead father once had translated german religous texts.
Nr.5: English script with a devoured M. and S. like “Mary Stuart” under the line “I am the life”, obtained while an experiment at the column “Franz, the Second” inside the Cathredral St.Denis. The column itself was a present of Mary Stuart to her first husband.
Nr.6: First obtained writing in estonian from the 12th of September 1856, in the handwriting of Ludwigs father, who translated textes into estonian. The line says: “Leaveth, children, to the city of Jerusalem and confide in our Lord.”
Nr.7: Friendly words of a deceased young women, whose attending relatives confirmed characteristics of her handwriting obtained under the observation of many witnesses the 30th of January 1857
After several comparising writings, often signatured in the original hand-writing of the known person, Guldenstubbe called the “Direct Spirit Writing” an obejctive, material and intelligent phenomenon, that not only proves the existence of the spirit world but also the identity of the spirits by means of graphological identifications of (spirit-)writers.
In the years 1856 until 1869 Guldenstubbe did more than 2000 experiments in “Direct Writing”. Mainly after his “Positive Pneumatology” was published hundreds of new witnesses reported their experiences, like the famous Dale Owen, who experimented with Guldenstubbe 1858 at historic places like the kings’ crypt of St. Denys.
The Napoleonian government under the pressure of the catholic church forbid 1859 once more Guldenstubbes experiments at public and historic “powerful” places, like the “Louvre” or the chateau “Versailles”.
Nr.8: Obtained “Direct Writing” from a sympathetic spirit motivating Ludwig and his experimental group to experiment in the cathedral of St. Denis.
Nr.9: 28th of September 1856, several witnesses watched the letters slowly developing under their eyes. The German text was allegedly identified as from a deceased friend.
Nr.10: Produced in the “Dianen-Gallery” of “Fontainebleue” d’Durches immediately recognized the usual signature “H.” of “Heinrich the Fourth” the 20th of December 1858
Nr.11: “Direct Writing” obtained while a sheet of paper was placed onto the steps of the main altar of the Church of St. Médard. Before the writing appeared vehement “Spirit Rapping” could be heard by many witnesses.
But after the first edition from 1857 many national and international experimenters published their outcomes, like the Count Linanges of Nassau, the spiritistic society of Carcassonne or the German Count Mons. In Germany also achieved Dr Berthelen of Zittau, publisher of the “Psyche”, positive results, even as the “Chemnitzer Spiritisten”. Berthelens “Direct writings” were once produced 200 times a day under the agency of his medium “Luise”.
In Paris also a row of spiritistic mediums succeded in getting the “Direct Writings” and in the UK and America the mediums Hume, Foster and Marshall produced the “Direct Spirit Writing”.
How often later on the originally genuine psychokinetic phenomenon achieved through Guldenstubbe with absolute scrutiny and honesty eventually was produced by fraudulent means, we do not know.
The mediumistic powers of Guldenstubbe developed further and in the year 1861, while the so called “sunday-sittings”, often in front of more than 20 witnesses, “huge direct figures” walked through the room and seemed to try to talk or to contact one or another sitter. The witnesses saw these phantoms gradually developing and disembodying in the bright light of 30 candlelights burning.
Years later Guldenstubbe hypothezises:
“The sympathy, that morally power of attraction, is the priory motive of the spirits to come in contact with humans. It is like on the earth-plane, where we only like to come together with people who are sypathetic.
We can differentiate two types of sympathetic spirits:
– Dead relatives, even as contemporaries
– those spirits that are connected with us through the same morally or ethical view, through same interests in art and science.
It seems to be clear, the higher educated the mediums and experimenters are, the more higher spirits from the past or the world history come near to us!”
Nr.12: Latin lapidary script, appearing while an experiment in the Louvre with many attending witnesses the 30th of May 1864, saying: The more powerful evil may occur, the more powerful we have to fight it”
Nr.13: Greek writing in the “ionic dialect” obtained on a sheet of paper Robert Dale Owen observed, while the writings appeared by unknown means
Nr.14: A “Pythic tripod” obtained while an experiment in the Louvre the 4th of November 1856
Nr.15: Under the presence of two invited Russian friends the words: Faith, Love, Hope with the signature of the russian poet Puschkin appeared in Russian the 20th of November 1856
Nr.16:The 10th of December 1864 a “spirit writing” was obtained saying: Morality is more than wealthiness or an elitist birth
Nr.17: In Italian the 16th of February 1857 was written: “Look, there appears Jerusalem”
Nr.18: Identical handwriting of the well-known “La Valliere” (later “Merciful Sister Luise”), the 29th of December 1856, with many witnesses
Nr.19: Very interesting text from a deceased friend, died two years earlier, in his own handwriting, explaining that he is establishing the contact from the other side and stressing the wonder of the phenomenon of the existing spirit world. The text stops right in the middle, because one of the many witnesses touched the paper, while the writing was developing and Guldenstubbe explains, that the human magnetic power blocked the spirit-influence “as usual”.
Nr.20: Latin lapidary script, obtained the 6th of March in the Louvre.
Nr.21: Magic symbol and Greek “Current-Script” telling a.o.: “Death will no more be”, obtained at the residence of Guldenstubbe under the observance of Mons. Senior of Berlin and the Count d’Durches, the 28th of Octobre 1856. At the same time the attending medium of the group saw the deceased brother of Ludwig in etherical form entering the room. She described the brother in detail while another writing appeared that stood in close connection with Ludwigs brother.
Nr.22: Egyptian Hieroglyphus, obtained the 30th of August 1856
Nr.23: The relatives of the deceased young female writer of this friendly letter immediately identified her handwriting, when this text appeared the 20th of February 1857
Nr.24: The handwriting of the deceased godfather of Ludwig was so strikingly identical, that even years after the appearance of the writing his former friends at the government agency, where he was president of, talked passionately about the incident.
Nr.25: at the first of September 1865 these words developed letter by letter observed by Ludwig and several other witnesses. There is a frappant alikeness with the signature of Marie-Antoinette and Ludwig went to the library of the Gobelin-Gallery wherre he could verify that.
Nr.26: obtained the 3rd of September in Greek the word “Apollonius” in the “Glyptothek” of Munich
Nr.27: at the same date the word “Hannibal” received at the “Glyptothek”
Nr.28:the name “Livia” obtained at the Louvre