Barker, Elsa (ca. 1869-1954)

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Barker, Elsa (ca. 1869-1954)

American novelist and poet, born in Leicester, Vermont. She allegedly produced through automatic writing the scripts for Letters from a Living Dead Man (1914), War Letters from the Living Dead Man (1915), and Last Letters from a Living Dead Man (1919). These remarkable communications attracted much attention in England, where they were first published. At the time the scripts were produced, Elsa Barker was new to automatic writing, and was also unaware that the communicator (subsequently identified as David P. Hatch, a Los Angeles lawyer), who signed the communications "X," had passed away. These letters record the impressions of an intelligent traveler in a strange country, his mistakes, prejudices, ideals, and new insights.

Elsa Barker's other publications include The Son of Mary Bethel (1909), The Frozen Grail & Other Poems (1910), Stories from the New Testament for Children (1911), The Body of Love (1912), Fielding Sargent (1922), The Cobra Candlestick (1928), The C.I.D. of Dexter Drake (1929), and The Redman Cave Murder (1930).

Barker died August 31, 1954.


Barker, Elsa. War Letters from the Living Dead Man. London: W. Rider & Son, 1915.

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Barker, Elsa (ca. 1869-1954)

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