Blake, Elizabeth (d. 1920)

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Blake, Elizabeth (d. 1920)

Unusually powerful direct voice medium of Bradrick, Ohio. The voices were regularly heard in broad daylight. James H. Hyslop published a favorable report on her mediumship in the Proceedings of the American Society for Psychical Research (vol. 7: 570-788).

Two expert conjurers, David P. Abbott of the ASPR and E. A. Parsons, investigated Blake in 1906 and became convinced of the identity of the spirit communicators. Blake used a 2-foot long double trumpet; putting the small end to her ear and the larger one at that of the sitter, it appeared as if the voices came from her ear. If she covered the small end with her palm, the result was the same. The voices grew from whispers to such loudness that occasionally they were heard at a distance of 100 feet.

The endorsement by David P. Abbott is of particular importance, since he created a wonderful trick in which voices appeared to come from a teapot when the spout was held to an ear; the teapot also answered questions. With his expert experience of such illusions, Abbott would have been expected to discover any similar tricks by Spiritualist mediums.