Dr. Thomas Glendenning Hamilton (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, 1873-1935)

Conan Doyle's Return (enlarged detail of photograph shown below)
Gelatin-silver print of unknown date from negative taken June 27, 1932

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died in 1930, a firm believer in the survival of the spirit after death--and in spirit photography. In this image, the great writer returns from "the other side of the veil" through the mediumship of Mrs. Mary Marshall. Doyle is seen in the upper portion of the "ectoplasm" shown exuding from the medium's nose.

 

The photographer, Dr. T. Glen Hamilton, was a prominent physician and political leader from Winnipeg who conducted research into psychic phenomena between 1918 and 1934. During this period, Dr. Hamilton was elected to the Manitoba legislature, became a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, and served for a time as President of the Manitoba Medical Association.

 

While Doyle might have had no objection to being seen in such an unpleasant-looking mass of nasal ectoplasm, out of deference to the sincerity of his beliefs and his contributions to literature, we will close this part of our story with an obituary notice from the August, 1930 issue of Psychic Research, the Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research. The author was Harry Price, the investigator who drew Doyle's wrath by exposing his friend, spirit photographer William Hope, as a fraud:

"The passing of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle at 9:15 a.m. on July 7th, 1930 removes the greatest personality spiritualism ever possessed -- or is ever likely to possess. By sheer personal determination he raised the subject of psychic phenomena into the arena of acute controversy -- and kept it there."


 

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Information on Dr. Hamilton courtesy
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections

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