It was in this house, in Hydesville, New York, that modern spiritualism began. On the night of March 31, 1847, according to testimony taken afterwards, Margaret, age 13, lying in bed and accustomed to the presence of an unseen knocker who haunted the house, merrily snapped her fingers and called out,
"Here Mr. Split-foot, do as I do!"
There was an instant response. The unseen rapper replied by imitating the number of the little girl's responses. Then the child raised her thumb and forefinger in silent gestures of communication.
"Oh look, mother," cried the excited child, "it can see as well as hear!"
This phrase was repeated by those blessed with the knowledge of things spirit-related as one of the most prophetic words ever spoken in modern times. The portal between the living and the dead had just opened!

Copyright 1998 Tom Howell Productions Comments about this Web site to: