I never worry about people not reading a particular entry, because the Archive link is always at the bottom of the page, and no matter which one a new guest randomly lands on, it will be a good one.
So, it happened again. I found another little piece of evidence tending to support my past-life memories. I'm going to be deliberately vague, because the details are in my book, and I'd like people to read them there, in context. And, of course, at some point I'd like to start selling the book.
Even being vague, however, some background will be required, here. Some years ago, when I was studying the small town that my past-life self, Mathew Franklin Whittier, eloped to with his first wife, Abby, I began feeling a sense of recognition. It's hard to explain--I got feelings, nostalgic memories almost. Like trying to remember a dream, but mainly having the feelings and emotions most prominently. If it wasn't imagination, I seemed to be remembering a street corner, as a place where we lived--and the song from "My Fair Lady" always comes to me, when I think about anywhere I lived together with Abby, or when I think about visiting her family home... I felt I remembered street names where we walked, because we would make up stories about them. There was Silver Street, and Locust Street, and Pleasant Street... You see, the people with the silver lived on "pleasant street" until they were visited by the locusts...things like that.
I just made up that example--but am I doing it, again? I can't always tell. Honestly, that felt like imagination guided by past-life memory. Anyway, early in my study, I had a very vivid memory-glimpse of walking hand-in-hand along a street like these, talking of high philosophy and things that were far ahead of our time. We were the only ones out...it was dusk, there were lights on in the houses, it was autumn or early winter, and there were bare trees lining the street on both sides. To my knowledge, I had never seen photographs of these old Northern streets, which typically were lined like this with huge elms.
But when I began studying this particular small town, I felt I recognized the street names, and the streets, we actually walked down. So, I underwent a third, exploratory past-life regression, to see if I could get more details about it. And I did get a lot more details--I think--but they couldn't be verified. What I did subsequently find was a letter from Mathew to his sister written a month or so after they'd first arrived (having eloped). They were living in a boarding house run by a similar couple, i.e., he was a Quaker, and she wasn't, and like Mathew, he wasn't entirely orthodox. There was also a hint, in the historical record, that this couple who ran the boarding house moved a year later, and probably gave up that enterprise, so that Mathew and Abby would have to have moved. Finally, long story, there was evidence that to appease Abby's father, they might have taken a nicer place than the boarding house (because she was upper-class, and he would have hit the ceiling knowing his daughter was staying in a common place like that).
There the matter stood for years, until my researcher/friend went back into that same town's newspaper, looking for other materials (I have spoken of the "Kappa Lambda & Mu" anti-slavery letters to the editor).
While she was in there, I asked her to photograph some of Mathew's business ads, which the first researcher had copied from microfilm several years earlier. She got them, but she photographed one the first researcher had missed. And I initially missed what was smack on top of it.
There, above Mathew's business ad, is an ad seeking to let a tenement. It appears to be Mathew attempting to sublet that same apartment, about a month and a half after they had taken it. And here is the maddening thing about historical research, when you are looking for obscure people, and obscure events, 180 years ago. The memories are real--the case is real--but it was a long time ago, and ordinary people often don't leave a very big footprint. I have found a lot of Mathew's published work, because he was a writer--but very little else. A handful of letters, a few published anecdotes (mostly where his famous brother was involved somehow); a few other bits and pieces. Here, the timing is right. The tenement is for a "small family." It is on the same street I recognized--except, we don't know where on that street. I remembered it being on the end nearest the church they would have attended. As said, this ad sits directly above Mathew's business ad, and it says to enquire at the newspaper office. That means Mathew may, as I have felt, have been freelancing for the newspaper, for extra cash--perhaps as a clerk of some kind, or a compositor. That would account for the two ads being together. The ad even makes a pun about it being a "pleasant tenement" on Pleasant Street--and Mathew wouldn't have been able to resist making a pun, even in a little three-line ad. That it is for a "small family" suggests that it has most recently been occupied by a small family--i.e., his own small family (their child was on-the-way by this time).
The following year would find Mathew working as a clerk for another newspaper, and then launching his own paper. He would use these skills for extra income, for many years. I, myself, was a typesetter for several years. There are just these bits and pieces, the warp and woof of a coherent tapestry...
So there are a lot of clues pointing toward my previously-recorded memories, but it's not proof. For that, I would need a letter from Mathew to his sister, talking about their apartment, and not the early one written from the boarding house.
But when I talk about a "preponderane of the evidence" being a valid type of proof in its own right, I have found interlocking clues like this dozens and dozens of times. Perhaps hundreds, by now. I haven't counted them all. Again, as I've said many times, this is because it's a real case. I can't miss--I can't help but run into clues like this. It is indeed like shooting fish in a barrel. It is not that I am bending Occam's Razor until it screams. I am not jamming a square peg into a round hole. I am practically batting away clues like flies, here. That's why my book is so long--I kept finding them, and adding them, finding them, and adding them. Since people have been ignoring me, I figure, I'd better find more clues, and prove it more strongly.
But did I ever find the kind of proof that knocks your socks off? Yes, I did, a few times. People don't want to give me credit for those, either...
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
Music opening this page: "On the Street Where You Live" from the film "My Fair Lady"