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Observations placeholder

Edwin Russell, a well-known deceased Englishman, appears to Mr Reeves the choir-leader



Type of Spiritual Experience

Inter composer communication

Number of hallucinations: 1


A description of the experience

Death and its Mystery: After Death – Camille Flammarion

The " San Francisco Chronicle " gave in the following terms its version of the curious story:

On Friday morning, Edwin Russell, a well-known Englishman, had reached the corner of Stutter and Mason streets, when he had a stroke of apoplexy, and died before noon. He had lived in our city for ten years and was respected in the commercial world. He was a member of the Protestant Episcopal Church and had a magnificent bass voice. For this reason he was a great asset to the choir of St. Luke's Church, and was in constant touch with the Rev. W. W. Davis, rector of the church, and with Harry E. Reeves, the new choir-leader.

It was to Mr. Reeves that the sensational thing happened which people are all talking about. I interviewed him at the home of his sister, Mrs. Cavenagh, on California Street. He told me that he was not a spiritualist, and gave me the following account:

“I had seen Russell on the Saturday before his death. He had come to rehearse. I had asked him where I might find a good cigar, and he had taken me to a cigar store. Then I had invited him to my home-or, rather, to my sister's home, to rehearse, and we arranged to meet on the following Saturday. I thought no more of the matter until Friday afternoon. As it is my custom to look through my volumes of music one or two clays beforehand, for selections to be sung on Sunday, I chose two Te Deums.

I left my room and saw on the landing, which was half lighted as it is now, my friend Mr. Russell, so real, so alive, that I went forward at once to give him my hand in welcome.

He had a roll of music in one hand, and the other was before his face. It was really he. I am absolutely sure of it. Well, he melted away like a cloud which vanishes into the air. I was about to speak to him, but was struck dumb. I sank down against the wall, crying out: 'Oh, good God !'

My sister, my niece, and another person came up My niece asked, ‘Uncle Henry, what's the matter?' I wished to explain, but could not speak. Then my niece said to me, ‘Did you know that Mr. Russell is dead?' I was literally stupefied by this. I saw this Russell three hours after his death as well as I see you in that arm-chair."

The source of the experience

Other religious person

Concepts, symbols and science items



Science Items

Activities and commonsteps