Powell, Evan

Powell, Evan (b. 1881)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Evan Powell was born in Merthyr Tydvyl, Wales, in 1881, where he grew up to become a coal miner. He moved to Paignton, Devon, England, where he was a small tradesman. He developed mediumistic abilities and had a spirit guide named Black Hawk. As a medium, Powell would sit inside a cabinet securely tied to a chair. He produced physical phenomena such as psychic lights, movement of objects (psychokinesis), and direct voice. He gave many séances for the British College of Psychic Science.

At one sitting, Black Hawk insisted that a book had been written about him. No one knew of it, so a friend of Powell commissioned a book agent to find it. It turned out to be a book titled Life of Ma-Ka-Tai-Me-She-Kia-Kiak or Black Hawk, dictated by himself. It was published in Boston in 1834. A copy of the book was obtained and presented to Powell. Black Hawk also insisted that there was a memorial to him in Illinois.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle compared Evan to another medium, saying, “Powell’s luminous phenomena are equally good. His voice production is better. The author [Doyle] has heard the spirit voices as loud as those of ordinary human talk, and recalls one occasion when three of them were talking simultaneously … Movements of objects are common in the Powell séances, and on one occasion a stand weighing sixty pounds was suspended for some time over the author’s head. Evan Powell always insists upon being securely tied during his séances, which is done, he claims, for his own protection, since he cannot be responsible for his own movements when he is in trance.”

Sources:

Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan: The History of Spiritualism. New York: Doran, 1926

Fodor, Nandor: Encyclopedia of Psychic Science. London: Arthurs Press, 1933

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In addition to her husband of 55 years, Larry, she leaves her children: Kristina Callaway of Norwich, Vermont, Susan Powell of Shrewsbury, Andrew Cudmore and his wife, Jennifer, of Princeton and John Cudmore and his wife, Caroline, of Needham; her grandchildren: Benjamin and Sarah Callaway, Virgil, Abigail and Joshua Powell, Evan and Ella Cudmore, Elly and Jack Cudmore; her sister, Nancy Johnson and her husband, George, of Madison, Connecticut; nieces and nephews.