Round Table Foundation – Eileen Garrett
And so, as he approached the 30th year of his life, Andrija stepped onto the path that would set minds spinning; that made Aldous Huxley call him one of the most brilliant minds in parapsychology; that made others doubt his sanity, or call him a liar and a cheat. But whatever he was, he opened the eyes of many to the incredible mind-power we all posses.
Andrija’s first task was to get funds, and start a nerve-research program on animals. But this was easier said than done, and in order to make a living, he had to go back to the practice of medicine by making housecalls.
In December of 1948, he got his first break when a neighbour, Roy Hines, gave him the use of a barn as a laboratory.
The winters in Maine are cold, always below freezing level, and at night reaching levels of 10 to 20 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. Determined to build research facilities, Andrija put on four layers of clothing, two pairs of gloves, and worked hard to keep warm. Yet, as he worked, building lab partitions, lab benches, etc., he kept thinking about telepathy and wondered what the hell he was doing freezing his butt off while he wanted to devote all his time studying the human mind, to find someone who could do telepathy.
The barn was two miles from the cottage where he lived, and one evening as he walked home, feeling despondent, he noticed a flickering light on the snow. He knew that there were no cars, no lights, not even houses. He was all alone on a country-road, and there was no possible source of the flickering light.
Looking up at the sky, he was awe-stricken, for he saw for the first time in his life the bizarre light patterns of the Northern Light. The light display was so overwhelming that he forgot the cold, his hunger, weariness and loneliness. He stood in the road for a half-hour, neck bent, drinking in the splendor, and he knew that whatever happened to him in the way of adversity, he would not cease from his quest.
Meanwhile the Balokovic’ had not remained idle and had stirred up an interest for their ‘protege’ among their rich and influential friends, and by June of 1949 Andrija had received a total of $13,000 in grants.
Within a few months, three young assistants, who loved the idea of the barn-laboratory in the woods, joined him. They collected animals for the nerve research, and soon the barn was populated with sheep, goats, dogs, rat and mice.
Curiously enough, the first research Andrija did was with Dr. Samuel Rosen, a New York hearing specialist. The transdermal device (hearing aid) which Andrija developed later with Dr. Lawrence led, as we shall see further on, to one of his last projects when he became suspicious that the transdermal/neurophone technology was being used for adverse purposes.
What Dr. Rosen wanted to test on animals was his theory on the cause of conductive deafness. A few years later he got world acclaim for his Stapes Mobilization Surgery, making it possible for millions of people to hear again.
In order to shield and house the delicate nerve electronic equipment which he had built, Andrija put them in a small room constructed entirely of metal. When such a room is grounded to earth, and with the door closed, no electro-magnetic waves can penetrate. If, for instance a radio is taken inside, it will continue to play as long as the door is open. But, as soon as the door is closed, and providing there is no electric wire passing through the walls, the radio will be completely cut off from the broadcasting station. The radio waves are blocked and cannot penetrate the interior. Such a room is called a Faraday Cage, after the inventor Michael Faraday (1791-1867), a British chemist and physicist.
Little did Andrija suspect that the Faraday cage would become very important in his future research.
His second break came in November of 1949 when he met the late Eileen Garrett. Mrs. Garrett, who was born in Ireland, on March 17, 1893, was the founder of the Parapsychological Foundation in New York. She had the reputation of not only being able to do telepathy and clairvoyance, but also of being a great medium. Her spiritual controller was called Uvani. She was astounding, and at the same time honest and modest, not wanting any money for her seances, and doubting her reputed psychic powers herself. However, when put to the test, she was able to identify in New York City objects that were on a table in a doctor’s clinic in Iceland. She even quoted some passages from a book that the doctor was reading at that moment. Andrija called this “traveling clairvoyance.”
He was very impressed by Mrs. Garrett, and not only because of her psychic powers. “The force of her personality was unusual in its firmness. I saw not only a woman, but a mover of the world.” He was also thrilled, because he got, as he said. “a glimpse of what the operation of telepathy could be like.” When one day Mrs. Garrett spoke of his chronic middle ear infection, he wondered who could have told her. When she continued to say that the infection had started when he was twelve, Andrija was dumbfounded. Nobody, but he himself knew that. Did she find that in his memory bank? When Andrija asked if he could test her psychic ability inside the Faraday cage, she complied, but first she wanted him to meet a friend of hers, John Hays Hammond, Jr. one of the world’s great electronic inventors, who lived in Gloucester, Mass.
Having gone with Andrija to Gloucester in 1958, I cannot refrain from giving the reader a taste of the unusual place on Hesperus Avenue, close to the sea above a rocky coastline in Massachusetts. Andrija had told me that Mr. Hammond lived in a castle; I had not expected it to be a medieval castle, complete with battlements, towers, a drawbridge, iron entrance doors, narrow winding stone staircases and parapets. It resembled a European castle of five and six centuries ago. After having crossed a moat, and tugging the pull cord, the huge door swung open silently, and a white-coated servant bowed us in. It was Hillman, the butler. “Let me show you to your rooms,” he said. “Mr. Hammond will see you in the library in a half hour,” and noiselessly as a cat he led the way.
I had to pinch myself to make sure that I was not dreaming as we entered the Great Hall, an enormous stone room. An article in the New York Times of August 1954 compared the proportions of the room to those of the Cathedral of St. Nazaire in Carcassonne, France. “Its monastic effect is heightened by a tall, canopied Bishop’s chair from fifteenth-century Spain, flanked by two eighteenth-century Italian chairs. Special lighting in the hall enhances the architectural detail of the Gothic interior. Of particular interest is the rose window, a copy of the famous rose window in Reims Cathedral; a rare copy of the Duccio Madonna, and opposite it the gold organ screen which once shielded the organ in the Marienkirche in Lubeck, where Bach was organist.”
Everywhere were paintings, sculpture, furnishings and antiques of the Middle Ages, all assembled by Mr. Hammond since 1910.
After dinner, elegantly served by Hillman in a dining-room which was paneled with wood taken from a provincial house in central France, we retired to the Great Hall to listen to classical music, that was reproduced over an amplifier and a system of loudspeakers concealed at intervals in the walls so as to produce a lifelike re-creation of the sound. It was one of Mr. Hammond’s many inventions. I remember him telling me that he had been interested in music ever since he was a boy, particularly in pipe organ. So, shortly after leaving college, he began to create what he felt would be the perfect instrument. The result of more than twenty years work, was undoubtedly the most spectacular object in the castle, a magnificent pipe organ. There must have been thousands of pipes, reaching to the top of a high stone tower.
When we left the Great Hall we came into what looked like a village courtyard with a large pool and an abundance of tropical plants. My bedroom (according to medieval custom, the unmarried maiden had to sleep alone, I guess) had a wrought iron, canopied bed and red medieval tapestries. The whole place was awe-inspiring.
Although it has been many years ago, I do remember that I didn’t like Mr. Hammond. He was old, baldish, and rather too effeminate for my taste. Neither did I like Hillman, who scared me half to death each time he suddenly, silently would be behind me.
Andrija’s first visit to John Hayes Hammond in December of 1949 resulted in a long lasting friendship. “Jack became my mentor, teaching me more subtleties of life than any book can capture. He taught me the art of invention, how all his ideas came to him in dreams, in reveries, etc.
He told me stories of great people he had known during the first half of the twentieth century: Popes, czars, kings, inventors, generals, artists, beauties, knaves, and scoundrels. His father had been chief mining engineer to Cecil Rhodes, and starting in early youth, Jack had traveled the world. He was truly a Renaissance man in every aspect of his life.”
However, it was not until March 27, 1951 that Andrija met with Eileen Garrett and Jack Hammond in Gloucester to start his experiments to find out whether or not telepathy existed.
Back in Camden, Maine, Andrija encountered all kinds of trouble. Because he had defended Joyce and Zlatko when they were damned as “Reds” by the population of the small New England town for supporting the Progressive Party, whose candidate for president was Henry Wallace, he too was considered a Red. His activities, and those of his friends and workers, were regarded as being Communist-inspired. Andrija was treated like a dangerous radical, and became an object of inquiry by the local FBI.
Roy Hines, the owner of the barn, became difficult and refused to honor the agreement made with Andrija. However, a new location was found, and purchased for $35.000 with the help of one of Andrija’s ‘patrons’, Walter Cabot Paine of Boston. It was the beautiful estate ‘Warrenton’. Sixty-five acres of land, situated on that point of Penobscot Bay where the Atlantic rolls into the wide gulf between Owl’s Head and Vinal Haven. The house had 45 rooms and some dozen bathrooms.
What happy and sad memories I have of that great place. Everywhere there was the restrained elegance of wood paneling, marble, and beautiful furniture. Descending the stairs into the grand hall I felt like a movie star. Making love in front of a roaring fire in the fireplace of our bedroom was like something I had only imagined in my wildest dreams. The library, where Andrija entertained people from all over the world, was my favorite room. And helping Andrija with his work, and taking care of the children was how I pictured our future. But that was in 1957. When Andrija and his twelve co-workers moved to Warrenton at the end of 1950, the house was bare and they had no real funds. Yet they were happy, operating a scientific commune.
Arthur Krock, a correspondent for the New York Times wrote in his column ‘In the Nation’:
“ONE FASE OF THE UNENDING QUEST”
On the estate known as Warrenton in Glen Cove, Maine is the laboratory of the Round Table Foundation, of which the director is Dr. Henry K. Puharich and the research is in Electrobiology.
In two weeks spent on the grounds of Warrenton, this correspondent became sufficiently familiar with the work of the foundation to reaise that Dr. Puharich is one of those pragmatic dreamers who give their lives to wrest from nature secrets which, unfolded one by one, have improved the physical lot and raised the spiritual contribution of man.
The secret he pursues concerns extrasensory perception – the tangibles felt by man and beast that cannot be traced to any of the five senses. One study proceeds from the theory of Dr. Daniel E. Schneider: that a nerve in the ear, known as the chorda tympani, is sonic, which has led to a new treatment of head noises (such as ringing in the cars), and has been expanded by the Round Table to explain certain states of psychic depression. Another study opened an unexpected bypath into the psychology of taste, and, as a result, Dr. Puharich was able to give the research scientists of General Foods information of commercial value.
This was fortunate because like all men of his age and type, he is operating on a shoestring and is able to occupy spacious Warrenton only because an equally consecrated family, headed by a wife brought up in the scientific tradition, does all the work of household and farm.
While seeking to discover the source, biology and operation of the ‘sixth sense,’ the effect of growth-controlled plant food on the nervous system, and adding experimental substance to his ‘Peizo-electric Theory,’ the young director – he is 33 – attempts to make ends meet with animal husbandry and other commercial by-products of this major research. As, in association with Dr. Sam Rosen, his clinical observations of the chorda tympani uncovered the taste prospect which interested General Foods, so, with David E Anderson (once Assistant Air Attaché to the British embassy in Washington). Dr. Puharich has worked on the ‘feathercast,’ a laminated plastic for orthopedic cases which weighs in ounces what the standard cast weighs in pounds, and is being tested by the Navy. And the Guggenheim Foundation has its eye on another of his experiments.
Yet the doctor is the son of immigrant Yugoslavs. He worked his way through school, college and medical school, abandoned a bright economic future, and now follows an ideal, as Pasteur and the Curies did. In time he may reach his goals, or he may not. But in the mean time he is treading the hard road that led to the greatness of this nation.”
The experiments with Eileen Garrett, which lasted for three months, were conducted in Gloucester, in the Faraday-cage built by Jack Hammond. The experiments were designed to test the hypothesis that telepathy is based on the transmission of electromagnetic waves between humans. Therefore if a person is placed inside the Faraday cage, thought-waves – like the radio waves – should not be able to penetrate to the inside. In other words, Andrija felt, he should be able to block telepathy by appropriate shielding.
For the results of these experiments I quote from Andrija’s book. Beyond Telepathy appendix A, and from his Journals:
“The exploratory experiment, Project I, made use of a copper-screen Faraday-cage of dimensions 7x7x7 feet, the entire cubical enclosure being placed on insulating supports. The plan was to place the sensitive, Mrs. Garrett in the cage, and a telepathic sender outside of the cage. The control test consisted of the following:
1. Mrs. Garrett as receiver in the cage.
2. A person in another room acting as the sender.
3. The cage door open, and the cage ‘floating,’ i.e. not grounded.
4. The test material, a pack of Zener Cards (cards bearing a star, a square, a cross, a circle and wavy lines), with the sender looking at each symbol, and trying to ‘send’ to the receiver.
Mrs. Garrett had chance-expectation results in this control test.
The test experiment in Project I was the same as the control test with the exception that the cage door was closed. This also showed chance expectation results.
The next step was to design a random switch that would put an electrical charge on the outside walls of the cage. Eileen Garrett was to guess when the charge appeared as a test of her telepathic sensing (she could feel no electricity, even if she touched the inside walls of the cage). The random charge appeared 91 times in 22 experiments, and she was right 89 times.
Andrija suspected that this was not pure telepathy, because the electric charge produced some ionization of the air. He reaised that the Faraday cage that Jack Hammond’s engineers had built had one flaw, it was made of copper screen mesh. In order to eliminate direct possible effects of such ionic charges on Eileen, he envisioned placing her inside a solid sheet metal Faraday cage. The inner cage was to be of copper and was to be absolutely gas tight. Andrija believed that if Eileen could still accurately detect random electric charges on the outside when she was sealed into the inside cage, then the proof for telepathy would be rigorous.
When 1951 drew to a close, Andrija looked back on a happy and fruitful year. Not only his experiments with Eileen, but also his animal research on taste physiology had gone very well. Word had leaked out about his work, bringing many people to the Round Table who offered all kinds of help, even bringing furniture to fill the house. According to Andrija, it was a happy year for Jinny also: “My wife enjoyed being the hostess and gentle manager of this excited ensemble of visitors. She bore our second daughter on May 17th after spending a full day happily working in the garden.” Soon, however, their happy life would change, for, as Andrija himself said, 1952 was the beginning of a new era for him.
Andrija refers to meeting Dr. Vinod, a Hindu scholar and sage from Poona, India, whose contact with nonterrestrials played a decisive role in Andrija’s life, opening the way for his future work.
But I believe that meeting Gladys Davenport, (A pseudonym is used here to protect the privacy of still living relatives) who became Andrija’s friend and patron was the turning point. Having been a poor boy all his life, Andrija was fascinated by this “elegant patrician”, her wealth, and the rich friends she introduced him to. Invitations to chic lunches and dinners, elegantly served by butlers and maids, made his head spin. But he reaised that if he was to continue his research, he needed money, so he’d better get used to it. At first he felt clumsy and awkward, but he learned fast. When asked how much he had in mind, he answered, without blinking an eye: “$107,000 for one year.”
A few months later The Round Table Foundation received a research grant of close to $100,000. It enabled Andrija to build the solid sheet metal Faraday cage, and to do the critical test for telepathy with Eileen Garrett.
The experiments were so successful that they attracted the interest of the U.S. Department of the Army. An American, Colonel Jack Stanley, and a French General, J.C. Sauzey came to the Round Table to express the interest of their respective governments. As a result of this visit, Andrija was invited to present his new data on telepathy at a meeting sponsored by the office of the Chief, Psychological Warfare, US Army at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. on November 24, 1952.
Why they had shown an interest became clear in 1959 when a French popular science magazine published a story that the Americans had been successfully communicating by telepathy with the submarine, Nautilus. This rumor gave Soviet scientists, already interested in telepathy, a lever to gain fresh government backing. A parapsychological unit was added to the Leningrad department of physiology, with professor Vasiliev as its head. The Super Power competition was on.
In 1963, at the International Astronautic Congress in Paris, NASA’s Bioastronautics director, Eugene B. Konecci said that the U.S. believed that the Soviets had at least eight centers for energy-transfer research. If experimental results are half as good as the Soviets claim, they probably will be the first to achieve mind-to-mind communications on the moon, he said. The critical experiment could be made with a man in space under long term gravity-free conditions. He hinted that U.S. work in “thought transference” lead to the same conclusion. An ideal platform for the human receiver, he said, would be a manned orbital laboratory operating in the null region where the gravitational forces of the earth and moon are approximately equal. The human transmitter on the earth would be put under high-gravity forces. Under these conditions, Konecci said, the U.S. would expect to find a most remarkable increase in the interaction of “energy-transfers” for direct communications between humans.
When I met Andrija in 1956 he was still doggedly pursuing this line of research. The results of many long series of experiments were sufficient proof to him that telepathy did exist and that placing a person within a Faraday Cage increased his level of performance significantly. He also discovered that electrical charging of the cage produced a state of mental tension (adrenergia) in some subjects and a state of relaxation (cholinergia) in others. When in the latter group negative ions were added to the respiratory atmosphere, producing cholinergia, the telepathy scores increased even more.
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