The Apparitionists’ by Peter Manseau

Premiere DateNov 23, 2017
00:00 Book Talk Opening
00:25 (Sound Bed) To The Moon Spirit Fest
00:33 Episode Intro: Kory French
05:58 Rain Rain Spirit Fest
09:30 Interview with Peter Manseau Part 1
20:35 Inklings Spirit Fest
23:09 Interview with Peter Manseau Part 2
39:51 River River Spirit Fest
44:14 Book Talk Outro: Kory French
46:30 Nambei Spirit Fest
51:50 Finish

In the early days of photography, in the death-strewn wake of the Civil War, one man seized America’s imagination. A “spirit photographer,” William Mumler took portrait photographs that featured the ghostly presence of a lost loved one alongside the living subject. Mumler was a sensation: The affluent and influential came calling, including Mary Todd Lincoln, who arrived at his studio in disguise amidst rumors of séances in the White House. Peter Manseau brilliantly captures a nation wracked with grief and hungry for proof of the existence of ghosts and for contact with their dead husbands and sons. It took a circus-like trial of Mumler on fraud charges, starring P. T. Barnum for the prosecution, to expose a fault line of doubt and manipulation. And even then, the judge sided with the defense—nobody ever solved the mystery of his spirit photography. This forgotten puzzle offers a vivid snapshot of America at a crossroads in its history, a nation in thrall to new technology while clinging desperately to belief.

Book Cover and Author headshot images provided by the author’s representative.

Kory French is the Founder and Principal of Emily Consulting, a consulting company that leads start-up and early-stage companies in everything from concept development to strategic planning to scaling and exit…