There are some that consider Daniel Douglas Home to be the most gifted medium ever to have lived. However his attitude to his gift and the talents of others left a lot to be desired. He actively shut himself off from other people with psychic gifts believing that they could not teach him anything that he did not already know. Instead he mixed with the very cream of high society. He never submitted himself for research and the ‘experts’ of the day have no idea how great his powers were. Though it is said that the feats that he accomplished have not as yet been replicated by anyone.
A Gifted Child
Home (pronounced ‘Hume’) was born in Edinburgh in 1833. It is claimed that he presented his unusual gifts at a very early age, gifts that he is believed to have inherited from his mother. His family members noted how his cradle would gently start rocking as if pushed by some unseen hand. At the tender age of four he predicted the death of his cousin. He was not a healthy boy, his health was so poor that the family sent him to live with his aunt in America where he was diagnosed as having tuberculosis. He was also a very solitary child walking alone in the woods and forever reading his bible. He was convinced that wherever he went he was in the company of the spirits of the deceased.
The Devil’s Hand
His aunt considered the strange events that seemed to surround the boy to be orchestrated by the devil’s hand. She threw him out of her house. With nowhere to live he would travel and stay in various places performing séances, séances which unlike others performed at the time he held in brightly lit rooms. The things that happened in the séances were often shocking to those that attended. Spectral lights, eerie rappings and disembodied hands which would shake hands with the people around the table. Furniture would move around and messages would be spelled out with lettered cards. However the ability that made him the most famous was when he flew.
The Flying Man
Ward Cheney was a wealthy Connecticut businessman, and it was in his home that the séance took place. Also around the table was a journalist intent on finding something with which to discredit not only Home but spiritualism as a whole. However rather than exposing a fraud as he believed he would he wrote something altogether different. He described how Home rose into the air, seemingly in a state of euphoria. The first couple of times he rose only a foot or so into the air until at the third attempt he rose as far as the ceiling of the room. Home himself claimed no knowledge of how it happened only that he claimed to have been raised up by some unseen power. No one since has ever been able to explain just how this remarkable spectacle was achieved nor has anyone been able to replicate it.