Yesterday, during dinner, I set aside my usual YouTube fare of ancient advanced civilizations, UFO's, etc. to watch a 1996 interview with James W. Loewen, who had recently published his book, "Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong." Over the years, one picks up bits of history that either were omitted from, or white-washed in, the history that one learned in school. But literary history was always taught as though they were quite certain about all of these attributions. No teacher ever said "Edgar Allan Poe's alleged poem, 'The Raven,'" or "Charles Dickens' alleged book, 'A Christmas Carol,' which he supposedly wrote in a 6-week frenzy during a period when he was, suspiciously, afraid of going into debt." Or, "Dickens subtitled this story as 'A Ghost Story of Christmas,' and had no use for Spiritualism, even though the "Carol," itself, contains genuine Spiritualist concepts--something he never duplicated in subsequent Christmas offerings."
But I don't want to go any further with that, today. I recommend the interview, and I can only add that his observations about the way history is taught, do indeed extend to literary history. My "claims," inasmuch as they have to do with that subject (leaving reincarnation out of it for the moment), are not outrageous, at all. They are probably typical. Judging from what I have seen in my own little sphere of study, as many as half of the attributions we learned in school may be false. Where the piece in question was published anonymously, and then claimed by or for someone after the fact, I'm guessing the percentage is much higher. And Mathew Franklin Whittier always published anonymously, with a very few exceptions.
In recent entries, I have been examining the correspondence between my paranormal data, and the deep historical record which I used to verify it. The paranormal data came in the form of psychic readings; hypnotic regressions; and "spontaneous" memories or feeling-impressions; as well as evidence seemingly brought into my orbit by my astral partner, Mathew's first wife, Abby Poyen. I did not make a distinction between memories that she might have triggered in my consciousness, and memories I retrieved unaided. Sometimes there may be an overlap, but I would have no definite way to distinguish.
The "deep historical record," as I have coined the phrase, is simply that portion of the historical record which isn't immediately accessible. That portion which is not "official." For this, one has to get into primary sources, like diaries, private correspondence and period newspapers. This is far easier, and more efficient, with the aid of the internet. I could not have afforded the travel, or the army of distant researchers, required to do it otherwise. Not only that, but one can stumble upon obscure references far more easily using the internet, than one can in libraries. With the internet, for example, it was relatively easy to find that Francis A. Durivage, who stole Mathew's "The Old 'Un" sketches, had, in fact, been caught plagiarizing from his editor. Or that Albert Pike claimed, to a biographer, that he had written "Ode to the Mocking Bird" a "couple days after his marriage," when the original version of that poem actually appeared in print two years earlier. (The poem was completely revised, and one can argue that he, himself, revised it, but it's a weak argument given all the other evidence which I can bring to bear.)
Now, there is a particularly interesting example I wanted to go back over. It's given in my first book, and I've talked about it before in this blog. I've established, here, that Mathew was the real author of the "Quails" travelogue in the Boston "Weekly Museum" of 1849-1852. There is no reason to suppose that slapstick entertainer Ossian Dodge met with Daniel Webster very soon after the Fugitive Slave Law was passed; or that he was invited to Victor Hugo's home in Paris. (Nor, regarding yesteday's entry, is there any reason why Dodge, at age 18, would have known Oliver Wendell Holmes personally.) But there is every reason to suppose that Mathew Franklin Whittier--acting as a secret liaison for William Lloyd Garrison--met with these men. It is Mathew's face we see in the etching of the opening of the 1851 World Peace Congress in Exeter Hall, London, where "Quails" says he is sitting at the reporter's table--not Dodge's. Dodge has a goatee and straight hair. The man seated at the reporter's table in that etching has Mathew's muttonchops and curly hair. There is even a stray loop of hair on the left, precisely as one sees in a later etching of Mathew. "Quails" is Mathew Franklin Whittier.
Mathew frequently "double-dipped" with travelogue letters, writing them under different pseudonyms for different papers. He even wrote them under different signatures, concurrently, for the same paper! It gave me quite a headache sorting that out! Because on at least two occasions he appears to have handed off the column to another writer, so that suddenly the itineraries, and other personal details, begin to conflict--whereas up to that point, they fit hand-in-glove.
So in the Portland "Transcript"--which I'm going to go back into, at the library, later today for year 1853--he wrote as "J.O.B." I initially found him using that signature in the 1856 "Transcript"; then, I discovered that he had taken it up, again, in 1857. Turns out he owned a trading company during these years, and he would write the travelogue based on his travels between Portland, Maine, where his estranged second wife and family lived, and Detroit, where he did business. Later, I found that he had written under "J.O.B." for the "Transcript" as early as 1851, at the same time he was writing as "Quails" for the Boston "Weekly Museum." One can compare the styles of "Quails" and "J.O.B.," and see the clear correspondence. But when "Quails" heads off to Europe, "J.O.B." is handed off to another writer--presumably because Mathew had contracted for a certain "run" of that travelogue, in order to raise money for his trip.
What concerns us, here, however, is the two different personas that Mathew adopts for "J.O.B." in 1856, and 1857; and the message he sent, across the years, to me. That's right, Mathew sent his future incarnation a message, if I'm not very much mistaken. And this would be a first, to my knowledge--a successfully-received inter-incarnational message, sent intentionally and received knowingly.
In 1856, Mathew, as "J.O.B.," introduces himself as a student who is taking a break from his studies. It's literal in the sense that Mathew was a life-long student--only the implied age is fictional. But in 1857, "J.O.B." has somehow morphed into a grown man who is relocating, with his wife and children, from rural New England to Detroit. That also was literal, except that whereas Mathew portrays "J.O.B." as being happily married, he had long-since separated from his second wife (contrary to his biographer's interpretation). This shows that Mathew would, in fact, adopt a persona, to a certain extent, even for travelogues. For "Quails," he had become an old man traveling in some unstated capacity for the government (a character which would fit neither Mathew, nor Ossian Dodge, who was 10 years younger). Even that was partially true, inasmuch as Mathew felt old after Abby's death, and thought of himself as an "old soul." Furthermore, he was indeed traveling for someone, namely William Lloyd Garrison and the Abolitionist movement, in which capacity he met with various prominent persons (including in the government) as a liaison, and which meetings he duly reported (sans purpose). So, as I quoted him saying a couple entries back, "The beauty of the thing lies in its apparent lies."
In the opening letter, we see the student announcing his decision to drop his books and take to the road:
Dear Transcript:--The brain is weary and the nerves are getting tangled. Who blames me if I fling books, inkstand and pen and all the trumpery of student life, into the Lethean stream? Why die before the time in a self-made cage with the disease of "imprisoned fullness?" It will make us "good as new" to view the scenes of the sunset lands; so let us away to the West via the railroads to the St. Lawrence river, thence up the "inland seas interlocking almost to the 'Father of Waters.'"
What one must understand, is that Mathew puts on this appearance of being casual, while underneath he is anything but. He never uses a word frivolously, and if there is any phrase, or passage, which is seemingly tossed off without a context, it is code. Furthermore, he has studied metaphysics deeply; and by this time, in 1856, he has begun to take the concept of reincarnation seriously. (I have two pieces of evidence suggesting that by 1850 he had become open-minded, and by 1857 he believed he had been a "high Jewish priest" in a past life.)
So the seemingly casual reference to the "Lethean stream" is intentional. The River of Lethe is, of course, that figurative body of water which causes the reincarnating soul to forget its former life on earth.
Now we have some description of riding on the train, which doesn't concern us, here (though it hints at Mathew's alignment with William Lloyd Garrison and his motto, "No Union with Slaveholders!"). But after this introduction, we see the first subheading. Each subheading in "J.O.B.'s" travelogues corresponds to the place in which he finds himself. But this first one is entitled "On-the-Wing."
That was the motto of "Quails." It is, of course, a colloquialism, but its use here, by Mathew, is clearly intended to tie this travelogue signature in with "Quails," which he knows has been publicly accepted as Ossian Dodge's work. He wants posterity to know that he had been the real author of "Quails." But more than that--he wants to pass the message down through time to himself, i.e., to his future incarnation, across the River of Lethe. Presumably, because if nobody else ever figures this out, he hopes to be able to uncover it in his own future incarnation.
Indeed, I had already figured it out, as he should have expected he (I) would. After all, I am he. Once again, however, this is perhaps the first recorded instance of a man consciously and deliberately sending a message to his future self, and of that message being consciously received, as such.
Incidentally, I have mentioned that Mathew's pieces, written under various pseudonyms, often ended up side-by-side, or one after the other, on the page. The second installment of this travelogue immediately follows a letter from Mathew's known character, "Ethan Spike."
In the "Spike" sketch, he is ridiculing the President's stance on Manifest Destiny. You can see why he kept under cover. Mathew would be "outed" as "Ethan Spike" the following year, after which he appears to have lost his trading company, and to have been blacklisted in Portland.
Am I guessing about all this? Not really, not when one has studied over 1,500 of Mathew's works, as I have, and understands his methods and habits. Again, he never uses any term or phrase casually. Everything Mathew writes has meaning, and very often, more than one. For example, he may be using "Cuby" as an example, above, because his own destiny had taken him to Cuba, as a boy. (Here "Ethan Spike" speaks before the Mercantile Library Association on Cuba--Mathew, himself, had reported anonymously on this organization's lyceum talks for many years.)* Time and again, when I saw Mathew making what appeared to be a casual reference sans context, it was code, presented in multiple layers. No, I didn't arbitrarily or fondly read the meaning into these things. It's obvious after you see it. I've given examples in this blog, before, and the book is full of them. The "seventh chapter and 42nd verse of Nickerdemus" isn't just pulled out of the air. It's a reference to the seventh century, 42nd verse of Nostradamus, which was a secret message about a past incident in his courtship with Abby. I won't go back over that--but the reference to the "Lethean stream" is given with precisely the same modus operandi. Both are coded messages, and both reveal his deep study of mysticism and the occult.
Mathew is doing precisely what he said he would be doing, in the poem "The Great Cat Owl," which I shared with you, recently. With Abby gone, he is continuing the life they had begun together, as metaphysical crusaders; only now, he does it under cover, i.e. "at night." His work for their shared causes is clandestine; his tributes to her are given in secret. All of it looks quite harmless, on the surface. Even in the enemy's territory, he adopts a casual persona, as I have recently shared with his report on the "Piscatorian Brotherhood" (probably, code for the Underground Railroad, being "fishers of men"), written from New Orleans.
Do I do this, today? Have I carried over the habit? I think, in a way, I have. Because nobody takes me seriously. They all assume that I am a rather entertaining nut-case, I suppose. I found that I can come right out in the open, and still be dismissed, just as I was dismissed as Mathew. It's amazing, when you think about it. Mathew deliberately flew under the radar--but even if I fly at higher altitudes, it would seem that I remain invisible. Not to be grandiose, but as my Guru said about himself, people are veiled by their own curtain of ignorance. It's not actually necessary for me to do anything under cover. Nobody sees, and nobody cares.
Perhaps it's for the best. Perhaps I will have to discover my work again, next life, when people are more receptive to it.
And I have a hunch, or a fond fantasy, of how that will happen. I will somehow be asked to watch an obscure antique video about reincarnation called "In Another Life: Reincarnation in America" which was independently produced, on an absurdly small budget, in year 2003--say, 80 years ago. Perhaps I'm not quite sure I want to bother with it, but I've been roped into it by a friend, and I dutifully sit there thinking of all the things I need to be doing, and hoping it's not too long. Suddenly it begins, with the Gold Thread Video Productions logo and its accompanying musical theme--and the energy shoots up my spine like fire! My hair stands on end, and inside I am feeling, "I know this!!! I know this..."
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
P.S. Late afternoon--Back from the library. I didn't find very many of Mathew's works in the 1853 Portland "Transcript," but some of what I did find was very significant. I've just added these discoveries to my sequel, so I won't repeat it all, here. But this is the gist of it:
1) I've found a poem in the 1853 volume which confirms that Mathew was the author of the unsigned poem, "Love's Song," presented in my first book. That poem describes spirit visitation from Abby; and both poems, together, confirm that in the early 1850's, Mathew was attempting the same kind of relationship with Abby that I have with her now, i.e., cross-dimensional.
2) A story signed "The Old 'Un," with many style indicators pointing to Mathew's authorship, confirms that he was the author of that series, and that Francis A. Durivage stole it from him.
3) I found a second poem, about a "fairy," which strongly suggests Mathew's authorship. Again, it indicates an ongoing cross-dimensional relationship with her, and there are elements of the poem which point directly to Abby, and are not simply generic references. But this poem is signed "Bertram." Bertram is the name of the poet who writes a letter, in verse, to a friend about his courtship with a British lady, in "Lady Geraldine's Courtship." I have speculated that Mathew was the original author of that poem, which was published as part of a compilation by Elizabeth Barrett in 1844. Here, presumably, Mathew is signing "Bertram" as a specific reference to that poem, and the continuation of his relationshp with Abby.
The first two are essentially definite; the third is still somewhat speculative. Not very much, though, because of the very narrow reference that would fit Abby, but few other "fairies." Remember that "Lady Geraldine's Courtship" is tied, by a similar line, to "The Raven." I have said that the reason this occurred, was not because Poe was imitating Barrett, but because both poems were written by Mathew Franklin Whittier, and the common element in these two lines (a purple curtain) was actually owned by Mathew. This discovery strengthens my hypothesis, especially when one understands Mathew's M.O. in making covert references.
I found a new "Ethan Spike," too, though it's all about his disappointment in not obtaining an office of some kind. It probably suggests that Mathew was tied up in some job (it's my understanding he was working for the post office), or he was trying to obtain a position of some kind (or perhaps a promotion), and failed. The "Spike" series is usually based very loosely on things that are happening in Mathew's own life, even though the character, itself, is opposite.
A very productive expedition to the library, I must say.--S
*I beg to differ with unofficial Whittier biographer William Sloan Kennedy, who said that these sketches "weren't worth the trouble of looking up."
Music opening this page: "Gold Thread Video Productions Fanfare," by the author