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The Fox Sisters and the Spiritualism Movement


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Author Topic: The Fox Sisters and the Spiritualism Movement  (Read 1491 times)
Sandra
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« on: October 14, 2009, 12:57:45 am »

Hydesville events

In 1848, the two younger sisters – Kate and Margaret – were living in a house in Hydesville, New York with their parents. Hydesville was a hamlet which no longer exists but was part of the township of Arcadia in Wayne County.[1] The house had some prior reputation for being haunted, but it wasn't until late March that the family began to be frightened by unexplained sounds that at times sounded like knocking, and at other times like the moving of furniture.

In 1888, Margaret told her story of the origins of the mysterious "rappings"[2]:

    "When we went to bed at night we used to tie an apple to a string and move the string up and down, causing the apple to bump on the floor, or we would drop the apple on the floor, making a strange noise every time it would rebound. Mother listened to this for a time. She would not understand it and did not suspect us as being capable of a trick because we were so young."

During the night of March 31, Kate challenged the invisible noise-maker, presumed to be a "spirit", to repeat the snaps of her fingers. "It" did.[3] "It" was asked to rap out the ages of the girls. "It" did.[4] The neighbours were called in, and over the course of the next few days a type of code was developed where raps could signify yes or no in response to a question, or be used to indicate a letter of the alphabet.[5]
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