Rituals - E28 • Pranks or Paranormal The Fox Sisters


It’s rituals, believe it or not today, because at the end of this episode, excuse you, I’m not allowing you to finish.

Just kidding.

Keep going.

Because at the end of this episode, we’re going to decide whether the story I’m about to tell you is true or pure fiction.


Oh boy.

Another one where we have to decide.

Yeah, it’s a thinker just like the mall and you’re about to hear the story of the Sisters, but not every detail but enough to make a judgment call but true or false.

If you’re committed to the world of spiritualism, you have them to thank for many aspects of your system of belief.



All right, I’ll give him a chance.


Hi everyone, and welcome to rituals a Spotify original from par cast.

I’m M Schultz and I’m Christine cheaper every week.

We’ll explore the evolution of spiritualism and the Occult through stories practices and the impact on Modern culture.

Today we are talking about the fox sisters which is one of my favorite topics.


I love a good spiritual.

Performer Duo, a Duo ragtag team?

As I was just referring to me and Christine.

Before we recorded we have talked about the fox sisters on.

That’s why I drink and episode 201.

If you’re interested in more detail after this, but stay here first and then go listen to.


And that’s why I drink.


Because I’m excited to rehear this story that I apparently have heard before and already forget.

Oh good.

Okay, good.

The well there, another pair of spooky performers during the rise of spiritualism and one of my favorite topics.

So let’s crack into it.


The main overarching argument about the foxes ours is whether they actually communicated with the deceased, or was it all a prank that they couldn’t reveal?

So that being said, do you have any pranks that you’ve thrown out of your sleeve, or any pranks happen to you in your time?


Any memorable ones, I did something bad once and I prank it was a prank to me in it.

Nobody else thought it was particularly funny.

What was it?

Becoming a podcaster?

My parents are like, tell us.

Joke, an elaborate April Fool’s Day prank.


Know when I was in first grade, I won’t get into the details.

But basically I thought it would be fun to hide in the coat room during recess.

And then while everyone was on the playground, I switched everybody’s backpacks on there with their little nametags.


Oh, that’s hysterical.

I thought it was great.

But then my friend Alyssa, who now is one of my good friends at the time, I had a big problem with her because I thought she Was like all, you know, holier-than-thou because she was older than us, by a few months.

And so I was like, she thinks, she’s so cool.


So I put her backpack in the boys bathroom trash can and then I snuck out and back onto the playground and then chaos ensued, when the buses came and everybody missed their bus Alyssa, midstance practice and everybody’s parents had to be called but like the funnest part to me is that I didn’t speak English.


At least I told everyone I didn’t.


So nobody even once thought it was me and they had always thought it was the weird German girl.

Nobody thought it was me.

It was amazing beg to differ.

I would have clocked you a mile away I would have for sure.


Feel like I know what you’re up to.

You’re too sneaky.

You too busy who quiet?

Are not talking English.

You got something else going on.

I bet if we had a big like beating where the entire first grade was gathered after school and they had a talk to us and they said we know who did it.

So if you say it’s you everyone close your eyes and if You raised your hand and admit that, it’s you, then you’re not going to get in as much trouble because we know who did it, and I was like, no, you don’t.


So, of course, I did, raise my hand and they never figured out.

It wasn’t me.

I like how you read the room where you were, like, if you really know who it is, why do you need me to raise my hand?


I was like, I’m not that stupid.

And so they never figured out.

It was me.

And then years later, Alyssa, one day was like, man, it was so weird.


This kid, remember that time that kid pulled that prank in first grade and like put my backpack in the trash I was like Oh my God.

Yeah, that was me.

And we had a little bumpy friendship moment for a minute there, but I think she has since forgiven me, I would say your biggest prank to date is when, as you mentioned in this story you didn’t tell your school for years that you could speak English.


Nobody thought that was funny there.

I had a great time.

I literally, they taught me yours sign language for all the songs, and I just did that, and I didn’t have to speak.

It was honestly, the highlight of my life and I was caught.

My own game one, they tried to offer me, green beans, I famously hate green beans to this day and they try to offer me green beans and I said I don’t like green beans thank you and everybody froze and I was like oh no oh no the ruined is it the jig or the gig?


One of them is up but now I don’t know.

Either never The Jig, The Jig Is Up.

The Jig Is I said it once wrong and M has never really let me live it down but the gig is up, butts The Jig.


What about um any pranks, nothing compared to faking?

What language?


I see three years to the school.

I went to highly recommend, by the way, if you can get away with it at this point in your life that you don’t speak English, go for a shot.


I don’t think I have anything near that.

I don’t think I ever really pulled a lot of pranks.


My mom was not about Mischief.

Oh, really?

Anytime I tried something, she would shut it down real quick.

Yeah, there was one time, my Dad tried to scare my mom by like sneaking up the stairs and then he was going to scare her and It’s not a nice prank, I walked out and saw what he was doing.


So I scared him and the middle of him, trying to scare my mom and he jumped backwards and broke through the staircase and fell all the way down.

Okay, I’m sorry.

That’s a little thing called karma.

All right, he broke a rib, but he’s cool.

He’s a, it was fine.


If he had your cunt.

That’s your prank.

That’s your ultimate Pride.

Even I walked in you crank the prankster I he learned and the, especially when we had to pay for a whole new set of stairs, but, you know, not to hurt and a rib.

But yeah I don’t think I think the best prank I ever did.


I think was America’s Hircine shift yatch is my favorite Cryptid to date which you can listen all about on and that’s why I drink episode 2 to 6, talk about hoodwinking, talk about Hoodwink let’s just say the Americas her seeing shifter is here today with us and it’s not me and it’s certainly not em.


It’s really not up but it is someone else Syria right now.

Well you win in the prank game I guess wasn’t I wasn’t trying to but thank you.

I’m glad I won a trophy.

Something in my life.

Well, good back to the ranks of the fox sisters.

Are maybe not the pranks.


We don’t know for sure, but it seems like the absolute truth went to the Grave with them.

Oh, do you think people in this area of like spiritualist performance?

Do you think they should ever reveal their truth before?

It’s too late?


Come on.


Would you want to know who’s fake?

And who’s not, like what if someone to their grave kept saying?


It’s true.

Like, would you actually believe them?

Well, no, if wow.


But what if they were, what if they were one of the though, Diamonds in the Rough?

You make a great Point.


Do you have an opinion on this?


Because now, I’m thrown, I don’t know.

I wonder if it depends on what type of performance you’re doing.

Like, if you’re claiming to talk to people’s parents that have.

Yeah, but I feel like that’s the last least likely person to admit that they’re lying, you know what I mean?

Yeah, but then there’s other people who, like, just do like those, like table wrappings, like just knock knocking on tables and knocking on doors, and if I don’t believe them, And if I found out that if they didn’t tell me personally, that it was them or that it was fake.


I wouldn’t like lose sleep over.

Yeah, yeah.

I mean, yeah, I got you, but then I also wonder like if you’re a medium and you’re saying really nice things as if like, if you’re faking it, I still don’t think it’s morally.

Okay, at all.

And I don’t like, I’m not totally for it, but if you think you’re giving people, some sort of Grace by, like saying something nice.


Maybe, I don’t know.

Then you put yourself in a weird gray space and if you lie or I’m sorry then Yeah, if you admit like, oh I was lying the whole time, then all the people who felt comfort from your message, like back.

Now, what what is that worth?

Yeah, that’s a great plan.

Oh my gosh, yeah, I don’t know what a conundrum.


I think you have a moral obligation to be honest, no matter what.

But I also wonder like, how are you helping or are you not helping by being honest?

Great point, but you’ve put yourself in that situation.

Anyway, by potentially being a fraud.

So, I don’t, I like this is where Houdini needs to show up and just like, tell everybody what’s real, what’s not know.


And I He had to him, everything’s fake.

So I think if I have to pick a side, I’d say honesty is the best policy agreed.

But I don’t know if that’s always true, I think I agreed.

As I just told a story about how I never admitted to my clients.

Say honesty is the best policy.


If you don’t speak English, you know, oh, you got me there?

Yeah, I think it’s a great space.

I don’t know what’s right.

And what’s wrong?

I think there’s a lot of circumstantial Nuance.

Yeah, a lot of new ones.

Anyway, let’s let’s get into these Fox sisters and you tell me.

Me at the end.



You think they should have done great.

It started in 1848, with Maggie and Kate who were the youngest of six, kids living with their family and hides, Ville.

New York, which is about 30 miles from Rochester.


Spiritualism begins in Upstate New York, folks case you were wondering, is that true?


Yeah, well the it all starts with them.

So oh, so they’re like the origin of this whole movement.


Okay, okay, well, we’ll get into it, don’t you worry.

Sweet Christine okay, rest your pretty little head.

So that March 1848 Maggie was 14 at the time and Kate was 11 so their children hijinks are going to ensue.


There should have been a newspaper, headline hijinks and Hinesville.

Hello, I like that and that’s good.

If it’s not too late, 1848.

Please write one up.

Thank you.

Come on.


Maggie is 14.

Kate was 11 when they started experiencing some strange and maybe scary stuff.


Hmm, they claim that every time that they went to bed at night, Night, they heard knocks on the walls and furniture, and they claim that the noises were coming from the spirit of a murdered Peddler wiggle, that’s quite a jump.

I’m like, okay, maybe there’s a raccoon.

Oh no we’re not.


Okay, we’re going a different direction with this.

Which also if all you’re hearing are knocks, how do you know?

It’s a peddler who’s been murdered less.

You do one of those really complicated like knock, once for every letter, Morse code knocking.

Yeah, gosh, yeah.

By the way, a peddler for anyone wondering is someone who Travels around selling stuff.



And I was gonna say like a peddler.

Yeah, Chris, yeah, you got it.

Well, I mix up Peddler with Vagabond, you had a murdered Vagabond and your hence he had been murdered but I don’t know if he was murdered but he was certainly dead and a ghost and you’re just knocked and knocked and knocked he called himself, a vagabond.


When we used a Ouija board with him, we asked what his job was.

And he said a vagabond and I felt a kinship with him ever since.

Well, I think it was when we asked him what his favorite food was.

And he said, Jin, yes, okay.


Okay, you’re right.

I’m lying.

This is one of those times.

I wonder if the Ouija board works, or if Christine was just spelling things to me, practicing, my English wasn’t very good at it yet.


So they say that, there’s this murdered Peddler knocking on their furniture at night, and their neighbor heard what they were claiming and was obviously skeptical.

So naturally she went to experience it herself which this is the ultimate Noisy Neighbor.

Move of like I want in on the drum way.


You said, Noisy Neighbor.

I think you meant nosy but I like noisy 20.

Nosy, neighbor about the noisy.


I feel like they both kind of work.


The ultimate nosy neighbor move because I do feel like if you’re hearing that, the family is going through something.

And your first step is I’d like to insert myself into this narrative.


It’s like Karen.

You don’t come into the children’s bedroom.

No one invited you here.

Someone dead and it was her like actually it was herself.


So with the neighbor and their mother as Witnesses, Maggie and Kate got into bed and they began to make the same demands of the alleged.


They demanded it to count to certain numbers by knocking and it would, and they even ask the spirit to tell the neighbors age and they heard 33 knocks and it was right about her age.

I will, the that goes to show Karen now.

She’s like now she’s called out because she’s been telling everyone, she’s 29 only for the fourth time.


So they asked it to answer.

Yes or no questions using one knock for yes or none for.


And it played that game with them and the yes or no questions were all about, who this?

Spirit was when he was alive and how he died.

So one thing, no one seemed to notice was the date.


All this was happening was the day before April fools.

Okay, okay.

I guess we just ignore that for the rest of time and the entire spiritualist.

Businessman who wouldn’t president’s alok Winky Dink?

And at that point the experience seemed very real and had affected the fox family enough to leave their house.


So oh my gosh didn’t feel like a co-inky-dink.

Them felt like oh yeah, real situation.

Joking matter which.

By the way, if this all was a prank, can you imagine I can caping like, oh shit to farming.

Yeah, yeah, we don’t know how to stop because now it’s too late to cut.


What do you say like?

I was sorry.

You sold the house Mom.

We were just kidding.

I mean awkward.

So Maggie and Kate were sent to I guess they move into a house, that was like, too small for all of their family because Maggie and Kate were then sent to go live with their older, sister Leah in Rochester and like not with the family.


They were just too much trouble.

I wonder if the family was like the two of you might be the reason for this.

Let’s have you go somewhere else.

I think you’re murdered Peddler with you right Leah.

You’re you take them now.

It’s your job.

Big sister role, take the ghost and you’re too mischievous.


Kids too much of a siblings soon after they moved in with Leah Maggie and Kate would be thrust into the spotlight and helped create what would become modern spiritualism.


Okay so Leah said, if there, Live with me.

We’re going to do something cool.


Something big.

Up next, we’ll get into the fox sisters National celebrity and in the end decide whether we think it was all fake to begin with.

Okay, I mean I have my thoughts already but I’ll let you finish.


Thank you.

Finally, okay.

They say time heals all wounds, but sometimes time can do anything but welcome to cold cases.

The new Spotify original from par cast.


I’m Carter Roy.

Every Monday join me as I revisit the clues and miscues of some of the most elusive criminal cases in history, from burglary, and arson to kidnappings and murder each episode of Cold cases explores.


Many types of crime, the many ways, they remain unsolved and how long it takes to find the answers if ever will Justice.

Be served, only time will tell follow cold cases, free and only on Spotify.


So March 1848, the fox sisters, Maggie and Kate have possibly connected to a real Spirit or having pulled off an April Fool’s joke cause the family to flee their home and the two girls went to live with their sister, Leah, and Rochester.


And Maggie and Kate originally connected.


With the spirit of a dead Peddler, allegedly in their home, but soon people realize that the girls could conjure other Spirits as well, when they started doing more demonstrations for people.

Mmm, this brought a lot of attention to Maggie and Kate so they’re older sister Leah, took advantage of the situation and created a spiritualist sticks.


Isayah T.


I like that move.

I mean, you might as well, Leah was just hurting to be a part of a PR team, I think.

Because right, Right?

She’s the boss baby before time.

She was she?

Well, it was like 1848 I either become spiritually, sick Society, girl, boss or I stay home and be a housewife.



Hmm of choice.

What to do what to do?

No, she really was like of all of these facts sisters.

I’m not going to be the Forgotten one.

Yeah, I guess not.

But she is still kind of playing a background role right?

Like she didn’t get to insert herself as much.


I’m imagining like she had to be the manager sort of I guess maybe she got the Will reward the momager the sisiter, the momager.

Yeah, exactly.

I guess she was, like, she got to brag about being the reason that they took off, right?

It’s true.

She was like the pulling the strings, okay?

I mean, Kris Jenner.


Certainly has a lot of things to brag about even though she’s not like what.

Technically one of the Kardashians, the are 100%, right?

I get it and this is sort of where Modern spiritualism as we know it starts to take shape which I feel like spiritualist by the way should have stuck with the name spiritualists and Society because that sounds so badass, love that I do too.


But so, this is where spiritualism takes off.

So the society that Lea created, which by the way, again, now that we could say, she basically created spiritualism, certainly had nothing to poopoo on.

No kidding, she created it using some pieces of religion, you including hymns being used to open and close the session and they would call these sessions seances.


Oh my gosh, okay Leah started touring the girls around the country.

So now she’s also a tour manager and they were a hit with People wanting to chat with their deceased, loved ones.


So this is where we get with some problematic stuff, exactly.


Leah claimed that other stuff then started to happen because I guess they were so involved in this world.

Now in this included tables moving doors opening and shutting on their own and people saying that they were feeling like they’re being touched by cold hands.

Oh, oh, that just gave me the creeps that you feel like you were touched by Yan’s.


I feel like if someone touched me with a cold hand like in a seance, I feel like they’re hiding.

This would be over, because I would just like, instinctively, like punch backwards or like, feel like that’s probably you at a Halloween haunted house.

It is.

I can’t do them.

I get so violent.


I always go.

Actually, with a different Christine, is like my go-to on one.

The fun.

Christine, the one who will go to Halloween jump-scares with me.

Yeah, but she has to physically hold both of her hands together and like up against her chest and I have to stand in front of her when we go through them because otherwise she shall punch and so yeah, because if someone scares you it’s like I mean my Action is to like a lash out.


So I feel like if a cold hand, grab me, I’d grab the hand and then be like, I gotcha - two people, please and when they scare me, I go, I like your costume.



What cold clammy hands you have it?

My mind.

So down cold hands are touching people and this was all blamed on invisible Spirits, which became the conceptual Foundation of what would be called spiritualism.


That is pretty cool.

Now, of course, when something as wild as communicating with the Dead comes up, you’ll have those who want definitive proof.

So me you both of our partners, not me.

It’s like I already believe it.


I’m like, I’m fine with whatever happens.

So some folks started looking into what the fox sisters were claiming.

If first are with a couple Community leaders and Rochester residents investigating, the sisters original story about The Peddler who was allegedly murdered in the families.


Farmhouse years before the knocking started, okay, they examined.

The basement of the house and found strands of hair and what appeared to be bone fragments, what?

So to, I guess to help them further the storyline that there was, in fact, a murdered Peddler on-site.


My God.

Oh my God, here’s my thing.

It was 1848.

There was no DNA.

Like they found hair in a place where people lived and Bone fragments could have been.

Like it was a farmhouse.

It could have been a rat or something like who knows.

I think they would probably know as people.

Who worked in farm I guess.


So at farms whether it was an animal bone.

But I mean you know I mean there could have also been a person murdered in their house.

I feel like both are feel like a rat as may be more realistic, or if there was a someone who died on their property, why would it be in their house versus like, I don’t know.


I’m trying to come up with some sort of back and forth.

I mean, this is the first time I’m seeing any sort of evidence and you’re saying, oh, no.

Now I’m skeptical.

I’m like, wait, they found human hair and bones.

Okay, hair part?

Doesn’t I could Really walk into any part of my place and find human hair.


You know?

I mean the bone part is that Park bone Parts.

Odd the boat.


You could say it’s odd.

I guess, I mean I guess back then.

First of all I just want to point out before someone tweets that is my favorite thing is when you say there was no DNA back then.

Well I know.

Yeah there were you know, sort of, you know what we mean?


Second of all like I guess people didn’t necessarily get buried in cemeteries.

Like sometimes people were buried on the land that they live.

That’s true.

Maybe it was somebody who passed away.

Away there.

But it shouldn’t be in the basement I guess.

I don’t know.


Especially if it’s only a part of the bones.


It’s like yeah.

Great point.

Oh okay.

The bone part.

I will give you the bone Parts, weird but the hair part, I just feel like as Farmers know, if it’s a rat.

Skeleton versus you’re right.

You’re kidding me.


But I do think the hair part is like you can find hair anywhere especially when you have that a family of like a tour living there.


And you’re wondering where hair came from.

That’s a very good point.

So the community also decided to rent a hall and Rochester where they 400 people into the room to experience Maggie and Kate do their thing and make the noises happen again.

Okay, after the demonstration Maggie and Kate were yikes.


Stripped of their clothes in a private room as minors to see if they were wearing anything that would help create their noises.


When it says, they were stripped in a private room.

Who knows how many people were in that private room?


Private room, right?

Someone’s, exactly like someone that Is not your parents and even then I don’t like that.

So like I don’t understand but they did it to see if they had anything on them and they did not.


And nothing was found on them.

That would show that this was an obvious hoax.


Oh okay.

I guess they had to believe it at this point.

So Maggie and Kate started getting back out there, do more professional shows and their older sister Leah was still handling their career at this point and she even helped them book.

A suite at Barnum’s Hotel in New York City which was owned by the cousin of PT Barnum.


Oh la la.

I know.

Well, if you’re doing something magical, it makes sense that you should go to a Barnum hotel, right?

I agree.

So they put on their act and the hotel’s, parlor, and admission was $1 for around 30, New York.

Elites, at a time that’s at around a big table during each show and the occasionally also did private sessions between their shows, okay.



The influential people that showed up, also, spread the word, furthering, even more that all of this was real, okay.

So they were they everyone was believing this not everyone but like people attending the events were believing it.

Word of mouth was was pretty crazy.

Okay, so people are talking about them like crazy, even though an editorial in the Scientific American made fun of them and called the girls, the spiritual knockers of Rochester.



That doesn’t sound that, that rude.


Also Scientific American is talking about you.

So like yeah, right?

Any like I’m sure Leo was like, yeah, any press is good, press again.

Imagine if all of this is fake and now like, celebrities and wealthy.

It’s and the scientific America is talking about you they’re like debating about whether what you’re doing is really like we’re 11 and just wanted to like do a show in our living room for our parents.


It was April Fool’s that is nobody get that.

So Maggie and Kate are also at the same time continuing to travel to other cities and do their shows.

Wow so they are just become Hot Shots and Philadelphia.

Though Maggie meets a man and falls in love with him.


That is 13 years older than her.

Okay, he is an Explorer.

I can’t believe that used to be a job title.

You would just tell people we want me to do you Nigel Thornberry.


Wait, was it Nigel Thornberry?

It was a bad name.



Kent Kane.


And the twist Was Elijah was Nigel Thornberry.

I’m just getting the twist.

The Twist Was Elijah.

Didn’t believe in Maggie’s supposed abilities.


Okay, I don’t know why she fell for him.


Then maybe she found That Charming like oh finally somebody who isn’t in awe of me?

Yeah, maybe and he also he couldn’t prove how they made the sounds.

He still and believe it and he pushed her to give up the deceit and she did what like she stopped.


She Stopped.

She quit during séances with her sister.

She went back to school and she married him just before he died in 1857.


And to honor his memory after he died.

She converted to Catholicism.

Okay, I mean, okay.

Feel the same way.


No comment.

I read that.

I won.

Huh, interesting way to honor a memory book.

What a choice?

Okay, I guess the exact opposite of spiritualism, okay?

Maggie did also start drinking heavily, but despite it all, she kept her promise to her late husband to stay away from spiritualism.


I spy, with my little eye, several red flags about Elijah, by the way, 100%.

I’m like, after his death, she still feels like she needs to, like, fulfill some promise that he met her.

She was Us for doing this thing that he, by the way, didn’t believe in and yet was like, but you can’t do it anymore.


I wasn’t there to confirm or deny this, but I have a feeling Elijah was a mastermind at gaslighting and people’s he feels very controlling.

I don’t know him.

Maybe he’s not and also, you know what, maybe he saw through the bullshit and called her out and maybe she needed someone to like, quote, make an honest woman out of her gross, but like me, like like a true honesty like, come clean.


About this honesty.

Yeah, maybe she needed someone to give her an out, like maybe she wanted out, you know, we don’t have.

So maybe he was exactly what she needed, but at the same time, it does sound like he just strolls in calls himself, an Explorer.


And then he says, I don’t believe in your stuff.

Give it up.


Also, you should not at all.

Touch spiritualism ever.

So I’m gonna die.

No, Andy, you should be Catholic by.

Am I wrong that?

No, you’re not.

Rug, I’m sorry.


Elijah doesn’t sound like something.

I’d invite to a party but not if he’s trying to figure out where all the knockings coming from.

I’m like, just enjoy the party, man.

He certainly not invited to my seances, that’s for sure.

Hell no, here’s the thing.

Kate also got married, but to a devout spiritualists.


Oh, Maggie went One Direction.

And Kate said, I see where you went and I’m doing the exact opposite, love it.

So she marries his devout spiritualist.

She also begins Drinking heavily, and she also kept building on her medium abilities.

And then on October 21st 1888 40 years after they revealed their alleged abilities.


A public speech by Maggie Fox would reveal the truth about it.

All, what?

I don’t remember this, okay, I’m excited.

Coming up, find out just what Maggie revealed in Her speech, but it’s what she did after that, keeps us guessing are the fox sisters, frauds, Christine.


I don’t know.

Now, I’m confused.

On October 21st, 1888, the New York World, published an interview with Maggie Fox after, which she was set to make a speech at the New York Academy of Music.



And during the speech, she planned to publicly denounce.

Spiritualism while, also supporting her sister, Kate, who had been the target of some bad press?

Mainly, because of her drinking, oh, that’s harsh.

And Kate was expected to be in the audience to support Maggie.

And during her speech, she revealed the truth about her and Kate’s, famous medium abilities.


She said, quote My sister Katie and myself were very young children.

When this horrible deception began at night when we went to bed, we used to tie an apple on a string and move the string up and down causing the Apple to bump on the floor, or we would drop the apple on the floor.


Making a strange noise every time it would rebound.

Oh my goodness.

That was one bruised Apple.

After they said the neighbors 8833.

There’s is a bang bang bang.

Bang, bang on.

And it was just like up the pit at that point.

Just to see you and Maggie and Cole.


Eight then expanded their tricks by using their Knuckles joints and toes to make the sounds.


I remember this because you kind of weirded out by that and I said, oh, I can do that with my foot.

That’s the most psychotic part of it.

All is, you were like, oh I can do exactly what they do, what I can.


I mean, again I have a history of trying to pull these sorts of pranks but I can do that with my foot.


And I did it on the podcast and you were not happy about it, so I’m not going to do it here.

So then here’s this.

So Maggie said, quote a great.

People when they hear the noises imagine at once that the spirits are touching them, it is a very common delusion, which is weird because I’ve never heard something and then felt touched, although maybe, maybe it’s like, oh, I get a chill and you’re like, oh, a spirit is here.


That’s got to be it, right?

Because I feel like that’s the hardest part for me to believe, like, oh, and you hear something.

The spirits are touching you, I’m like mmm that one.

I don’t agree with maybe that’s what they mean.

Like oh it just gives you a chill or something.

It’s gotta be like a metaphysical touch.



Yeah, I don’t know.


But anyways, that was another thing that Maggie said in it and she also through her older sister Leah under the bus by saying, she knew it was fake all along.

Okay, well, leave Leah out of it.

She even started helping them pull off the tricks when they were traveling during their shows, okay?


I mean, I’m fully onboard now that this was all.

I thought so from the beginning.

But now, why would I not believe that?

They’re faking it.

I appreciate the Scandal that Maggie was trying to do.

Like, Lea must have been pissed Leah.

It’s been like, yeah.

Yo what I you could have at least, pretended.


I didn’t know was just managing the show.

Why did you throw me into this?

But also remember Maggie was also the one who was a devout Catholic now.

So maybe she felt the need to, even if all this was real, maybe she felt the need to denounce it for Jesus or something.


You know, for Jesus, I assume she’s like, oh, I know.

We put an apple on a string.


This is not my ticket to heaven.

So, I gotta, you gotta say some things, but then a year later Maggie tick, It all back and said she didn’t mean it.

Wait way, you can’t do that.

Was she legitimate the first time or was she only doing that for Catholicism?


And now she’s taking it back.

And what does that mean?

And also, this did not go over well for her with the spiritualist.

True loyalty back.

See ya, because first of all, obviously the spiritualists, don’t know what to believe anymore, and they started this whole movement is now the spiritualist to follow this movement or like, wait a minute, is this all yours, all this, a sham.


And after that, obviously Maggie and Leah, never reconciled.

Oh, I bet.

Imagine them reconciling after that.

It’s tough and Leah died in 1890 and Kate died.

Two years later and then Maggie died.

Eight months after her and March 1893.



So I just never reconciled despite the unclear truth about their story.

The Fox sisters impact on the spiritualist, movement is very real.

Obviously, it’s how we got to where we are talking about spiritual stuff for real and almost 50 years after the fox sisters, initial claim of the knockings in their Home the National spiritualist Association was formed in 1893 and today it’s known as the National spiritualist Association of churches and we have this podcast where we talk about.


So many elements of spiritualism many of which can probably be tracked back to Maggie and Katie Fox.

I am inclined to believe you have not even asked me.

I’m sorry to just interject but I’m inclined to believe that they got wrapped up in a lie, in a prank, look at what I was like.


So so harmless prank, which Seemed like it was working and was pretty successful and then it got out of hand is what I believe happened.

First of all, totally agree with you.

That these children might have gotten caught up in a prank went too far.

I feel like there should just be a Hallmark movie of you know like the Avengers.


It’s like everyone gets an origin story and then they all come together.

Do ya.

I feel like there should be a situation where like all of these children who faked mediumship just come together and just come up with the best lie and then they have to fight Houdini.

I just feel like there’s a real connection with how many children there are.


Our that make something up like Roland doe.

Also, there’s the Davenport Brothers.

We haven’t even talked about, there’s Houdini with all of his mediums, that he knows.

There’s just so many people of all ages that are being taught Jesus, Jeff.

The Mongoose they’re being caught or they’re highly suspected to be faking this.


It’s very interesting.

I feel like it often start.

I mean, what, if back in the first grade, I had said, no, I saw a ghost moving all the bags, two different.

Well, then I just want to go to see.

I was smart enough to I know that that’s not going to work.

Well, they would have been like she speaks a no reaction playing what do I say in German, but they would have cared about the Ghost part.


There have been like, holy crap, she’s a miracle.

I know, I do agree with you, just to sum it up without all of my tangents.

I will say, I do agree with you.

That I feel like they probably just had like they went to put on a show for their parents in their living room and it’s just the parents believed it into it too much too much.


And I think it was a great prank.

Like I think it’s a great prank It’s relatively harmless until it gets out of Hand and it seemed like they had come up with some pretty cool.

I mean today maybe they’d be in stem they’re coming up with these cool pulley lever systems and stuff that is a great way to just all of the people who claimed mediumship in the 1800’s should have been in the stem and probably just didn’t say all of them.


I said bees to with our Apple pulley anyone like the fox sisters had a chance in stem had they use their powers for good.

Well had they been born in a different time period?

I imagine that they weren’t.

Welcome in the field.

Damn, in the 1800’s.

There were like go back to your go back to your Clairvoyance.


You do nothing about stem.

Do a freak Show for us, Barnum Hotel.

Okay, let’s hit it on that.

Definitely, thanks so much for listening.


We’ll be back next week with another great episode information on today’s episode came from talking to the dead Kate.

And Maggie Fox and the rise of spiritualism by Barbara Weisberg, Smithsonian Magazine a skeletons tail.

The origins of modern, spiritualism The Missing Link and modern spiritualism by a Leah Underhill, the Pittsburgh dispatched, the evening star, the National spiritualist Association of churches, the New Yorker and Victorian women and the theater of Trance, medium spiritualist and mesmerist in performance by a me lemon.


Remember to follow rituals on Spotify to get a brand new episode every week and you can listen to this and all other Sounds of rituals for free exclusively on Spotify.

And if you liked this show, follow at Park asked on Facebook and Instagram.

And at Park as Network on Twitter you can find me at VM Schultz and you can find me at Eckstein Schieffer, thanks again for listening and we will see you next week.


Rituals is executive produced by Max Cutler and is a Spotify original from podcast.

It was created by Max color, sound design by Kristen Acevedo with associate.

Sound design by Jamie Ryan research by Sapphire Williams.

Checking by Anya bayerle.

It’s produced by Kristen Acevedo and Jonathan Ratliff with production assistants by Ron Shapiro.


We’re your host, Christine cheaper and M Schultz.

Hi, I’m Carter Roy.

Host of the Spotify original from par cast, cold cases, from burglary and arson to kidnappings and murder explore.


The many types of crime, the many ways, they remain unsolved and how long it takes to find the answers.

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