In Search of Maria B. Hayden: The American Medium Who Brought Spiritualism to the U.K.

by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack

She was revered—and disdained. Maria B. Hayden of Boston and later New York City was the first American medium to introduce the religion of Spiritualism to the U.K. in 1852–53. Through her séances in England and America, Maria’s spirit communication convinced many of the elite and upper classes, as well as scientists and the clergy, that there is life after death. In a day when women were to be deferential to men, Maria forged ahead despite her critics, managing successful careers as a spirit medium, a healing medium, a clairvoyant physician, a psychometrist, and a medical doctor.

In this definitive biography, Sharon DeBartolo Carmack rescues Maria from the mists of Spiritualist history, not only returning her to her rightful place as an important pioneer, but also providing an engaging portrait of this remarkable woman. Carmack masterfully weaves together previously uncovered archival, historical, and family documents with the social history of the Spiritualist movement to tell Maria’s life story.

This biography also includes accounts of more than thirty of Maria’s seances, 130 illustrations, and appendixes with reproductions of her medical articles, a handwritten spirit communication from one of Maria’s private sittings, and fully documented Trenholm and Hayden genealogies.

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“Sharon Carmack, a well-known genealogist, has written a brilliant biography of Maria’s life…”–New England Historical and Genealogical Register

“The page count should not intimidate potential readers. The author’s writing style, numerous illustrations, and fascinating lives of Maria and her husband make for a quick read.”–The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record

In Search of Maria B. Hayden: The American Medium Who Brought Spiritualism to the U.K., 2020, 600 pp., 130 illus., notes, bibliography, index. ISBN 978-0-9972076-4-4.

Available on Amazon, Amazon UK, or other Amazon international marketplaces. For an autographed copy (US orders only), please order from Scattered Leaves Press. If you live outside the US, Sharon is happy to mail you a signed bookplate to affix to the inside cover of your book. Please email Sharon with your name and mailing address.