The Spiritualist movement, like jazz, was purely an American invention. Although the idea that man was able to communicate with spirits had existed already for centuries, modern belief in such a practice came about in March 1848 in Hydesville, New York. The movement, which would come to be known as Spiritualism, would remain strong for nearly a century, enjoying its greatest revival after the Civil War. The practice was founded on the belief that life existed after death and that the spirit existed beyond the body. Most importantly, it was believed that these spirits could --- and did --- communicate with the living. Troy Taylor's GHOSTS BY GASLIGHT series takes a in-depth look at the history of Spiritualism, those who practiced it -- and the scientists, magicians and researchers who investigated the claims of those who said that the dead still walked among us. For everyone who has ever read a ghost book or watched a paranormal television show, the dawn of the Spiritualist movement is where it all began! To truly understand the history of ghost research, we have to look back to its beginnings. It has been said that if we do not understand our history, we can never learn from it, so we invite anyone with a passion for ghost research to discover where the field truly got its start.
GHOSTS BY GASLIGHT #1: ... AND THE DEAD KNOCKED
The Rise of the Dead in Nineteenth Century America by Troy Taylor
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The first book in Troy Taylor's GHOST BY GASLIGHT series delves into the earliest days of the Spiritualist movement, from the knockings in Hydesville, New York to the rise of the movement in the middle years of the nineteenth century. Few can fathom today how the belief in Spiritualism swept across America, creating converts to a belief in spirit communication from every walk of life -- man and woman, rich and poor and even to the front door of the White House. Discover the lives of the pioneers of the movement and how belief in talking to the dead spread from coast to coast. Find out who held the very first séances in the America White House -- and why! See how Spiritualism affected daily life, politics, newspapers and the great literary works of the nineteenth century! And then see how the Civil War -- and Abraham and Mary Lincoln -- saved Spiritualism and helped to create its "golden age" after the Civil War! This is a fascinating look at a little-known period in American history and one that will fascinate even the most jaded readers of historical research into ghostly phenomena -- told by one of the most acclaimed historians of the supernatural writing today. Don't miss it!
GHOSTS BY GASLIGHT #2: RISE OF AN AMERICAN ORIGINAL
The Groundbreakers of Spiritualism from D.D. Home to the Davenport Brothers by Troy Taylor
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The second book in Troy Taylor's GHOST BY GASLIGHT series reveals the mediums, strange stories and amazing feats that helped propel the popularity of the Spiritualist movement into the years of the Civil War and beyond! The book delves into the mysterious Stratford Knockings, a Connecticut haunting that earned newspaper coverage all over America, and includes the weird tales of the Koons family's "Spirit Room" in Ohio -- which seemed to defy all explanation. Discover the secrets of the legendary Davenport Brothers and see what effect they had on the way that séances were conducted. Were they mediums or magicians? And finally, plunge into the mystery of D.D. Home, dubbed "the greatest medium who ever lived." In all of his years of startling feats, he was never exposed as a fraud -- even when witnesses claimed that he could actually fly! The author's fascinating look at this little-known era in American history continues with a second volume and continues to fascinate even the most jaded readers of historical research into ghostly phenomena. Don't miss it!
GHOSTS BY GASLIGHT #3: BEHIND THE CURTAIN
Women in the Séances Room by Troy Taylor
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The latest entry in Troy Taylor’s GHOSTS BY GASLIGHT series reveals the deep spiritual connections behind the emerging women’s rights movement of the middle nineteenth century and the rise in interest in Spiritualism and communication with the dead. At a time when women were considered second-class citizens and literally the property of their husband, women in the Spiritualist movement were becoming business and religious leaders, changing public opinion and offering advice to the most powerful men in history—even the president of the United States. The author pulls aside the curtain and reveals some of the most influential women in Spiritualism, from the popular trance speakers of the 1800s, to women like Florence Cook and her spirit guide, the mysterious Katie King; Eusapia Palladino and even Pearl Curran, who channeled the intriguing spirit of Patience Worth. This is another compelling look at another largely unknown facet of American history and it’s sure to please anyone with an interest in ghosts and the supernatural – don’t miss it!
HOUDINI: AMONG THE SPIRITS -- The Mysterious Life, Death & Spirit Investigations of Houdini!
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By Troy Taylor

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On Halloween 1926, the Curtain Closed for the Final Time of the One of the Greatest Magicians in History… Or Did it? Harry Houdini was a man obsessed with death… In his spectacular shows, he committed feats of daring that cheated death time and time again. He desperately searched for a way to contact his dead mother and some believe that Houdini actually reached out from beyond the grave to make contact from the other side – cheating death once again! In this long-awaited book from Houdini and Spiritualism buff Troy Taylor, he examines the life, death and mysterious afterlife of the famed illusionist and escape artist. Not merely a biography of Houdini, this is a revealing look at Houdini’s fascination with the spirit world, starting with his own days as a fraudulent medium with a traveling circus and continuing on to his exposures of fake Spiritualists, his psychical investigations, his “death pact” with fellow magicians and the legendary Houdini Séances, which are still being held today. Included in the book are chapters on Houdini's early life; his rise to stardom; his time as a Spiritualist with a traveling circus; his brushes with death; the creation of his death-defying escapes; his obsession with the death of his mother and contact with her on the other side; his strange and haunted friendship with Spiritualist and author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; his Spiritualist-debunking stage show; his investigations of mediums, including the famous "Margery"; the eerie premonitions of his death; the Houdini Séances; and much, much more!