Psychic Observer Time Line

Prominent American Spiritualist magazine founded in 1974 by the merger of Chimes and the Psychic Observer. The Psychic Observer Corporation was founded in 1937 in Jamestown, New York, by Ralph and Juliette Pressing. The first issue of the Psychic Observer appeared in August 1938. In 1957 the Pressings retired and Agnes F. Reuther became editor. Two years later Tom O’Neill acquired the periodical, then issued as a tabloid. In 1960 he was informed by Andrija Puharich, then a young researcher, that he had discovered several of the more prominent mediums at Camp Chesterfield engaged in a conspiracy to conduct fake materialization séances. Puharich presented the photographic proof, pictures taken with an infrared camera. O’Neill published the pictures and announced the findings as a dark day for Spiritualism.

As a result of the exposé, O’Neill almost went bankrupt, as advertisers loyal to the camp pulled their support from the periodical. He relocated his publishing enterprise to North Carolina and for a brief period published under another title.

O’Neill died in 1965 and the Psychic Observer ceased publication. In 1968 it was purchased by Alice Tindell and moved to Washington, D.C. It was issued as an open forum magazine, but in effect it was the periodical of the National Spiritual Science Center, the church headed by Tindell. It was published by the ESPress, the church’s publishing concern. Henry Nagoka edited the new publication.

Chimes began in 1942 under the editorship of Bert Welch and his wife. It was later purchased by June and Leighton Denton. Chimes, Inc., the publishing company, also had a book distribution service and facilitated the Dentons’ healing ministry. Chimes faithfully served the American Spiritualist community for a generation until it was discontinued as an independent publication in 1974.

Psychic Observer and Chimes was discontinued after the July/ October 1981 issue.

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