Slater, John

Slater, John (1867–1932)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

John Slater was an American clairvoyant who gave demonstrations of mediumship for over fifty years. He was born on September 24, 1867, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His parents were Irish; his father Michael was a Roman Catholic and his mother Mary Killen a Baptist. Slater began showing psychic ability when he was only four years old. His four-year-old playmate Mary Powers died, and Slater spoke of seeing her in his back yard shortly after attending her funeral. By the age of twenty-one, he left home determined to devote his life to Spiritualism. His parents were not at all supportive of his interests and he suffered some self doubt. Slater and a friend—Spiritualist Elizabeth Holmes—had a séance with Leah Fox Underhill, one of the original Fox Sisters. At that sitting Slater was told, in effect, “You were born to do the work of the spirit world.” He took the message to heart.

From the platform, Slater would read sealed letters and give names, addresses, dates, and all pertinent information regarding deceased people. He also excelled at psychometry. He traveled all over the United States, appearing before large audiences everywhere he went. He settled in San Francisco and married Eugenie Browell in 1890. Prior to that he had traveled to Hawaii, and been well received there.

Slater’s spirit guide was his uncle William Killen, his mother’s brother. His first spiritual camp work was at Lake Pleasant, Massachusetts, and shortly thereafter he went to Lily Dale, New York, which he then attended on a regular basis.

In 1930, Slater established his right to function as a medium in Detroit, Michigan. A clergyman there had him arrested for making predictions, which was a statutory offence. Slater won his case, with costs against the clergyman, and went on to do his work unchallenged until his death in 1932. In June of that year, Slater had been to the annual convention of the California State Spiritualists Association and died shortly after returning home from that event.


Fodor, Nandor: Encyclopedia of Psychic Science. London: Arthurs Press, 1933
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“Sleeping Prophet" see Cayce, Edgar
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References in periodicals archive ?
Slater, John, Marialuz Lopez-Terrada, and Jose Pardo-Tomas, eds, Medical Cultures of the Early Modern Spanish Empire (New Hispanisms: Cultural and Literary Studies), Farnham, Ashgate, 2014; hardback; pp.
Other names include: Tommy Bowen, Richy Slater, John Chaloner, Terry Conner, Taffy, Dougie Boyle, Tony Fitz, Freddy Sanchez and Dave Blackburn.
Elaine and her fellow Epic Epiacum directors, Martyn Slater, John McGough and Paul Frodsham of AONB, are to hold a display day on May 22 at nearby Knarsdale, after which the development project will be launched.
With: Anthony Hopkins, Stella Arroyave, Christian Slater, John Turturro, Michael Clark Duncan, Camryn Manheim, Jeffrey Tambor, S.
Those on board so far include Christian Slater, John Turturro, Gena Rowlands and Kevin McCarthy.
Peterhead bring back Mark Slater, John Duffy and Shaun McSkimming at home to East Stirling who are set to list an unchanged side.
READER Albert Wild from Seaforth sent in this picture of himself, Richie Slater, John Chaloner and Dougie Boyle onboard an Empress of England Cruise.
The colony included artists such as Henry Hetherington Emmerson, Robert Jobling, George Horton, John Falconer Slater, John Charlton, Arthur Hardwick Marsh, the American Winslow Homer and Frank Holl, who was commissioned by Queen Victoria to paint her a picture.
The eight are Dan Price, Danny Malin, Francis Slater, John Hobart, John Nicholls, Alan Robinson, James Cathcart and Matt Wright.