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Elizabeth Mapes attended Duke University from 1937-1941 and was active in social and campus events, including Parapsychology Laboratory experiments and the Woman's College orchestra. The collection includes one large scrapbook containing programs, invitations, cards, and memorabilia, as well as several small files of photographs and clippings.

The collection contains a scrapbook Elizabeth Mapes kept of her time at Duke University as well as photographs, clippings, and other materials from her activities at Duke. The scrapbook includes programs for sporting events and various performances, tickets, meal ticket books, telegrams, cards, invitations, clippings, a corsage, a cigar, and the remains of a tobacco leaf. Photographs are of the Duke campus and other students. Clippings and correspondence include descriptions of Elizabeth Mapes' activities in Grand Rapids, MI, as well as Durham, NC; notes and correspondence related to her participation in Parapsychology Lab experiments; registration for classes and campus activities; and a copy of her certification as a Private Pilot.


Gertrude Raffel Schmeidler papers, 1943-1983 30.8 Linear Feet — circa 24,000 items

The Gertrude R. Schmeidler Papers span the period 1943-1983. The bulk of the collection consists chiefly of Research Files but also includes Correspondence and Writings. The research data located in the Research Files consists primarily of information which Schmeidler gathered through her work with students and colleagues as an experimental psychologist and parapsychologist. This data formed the basis of her published journal articles and books about how various factors and traits affect a person's extrasensory perception (ESP) abilities. There are very few personal papers located in the collection.

The value of the collection may be viewed from several perspectives. One is able to see how researchers collaborate with each other; to evaluate the value of networking and mentoring; to study the role of women in parapsychology; and to become aware of groups and institutes interested in the study of ESP, such as the American Society for Psychical Research, the Duke University Parapsychology Laboratory, and the Parapsychology Foundation, Inc.

Reflected in much of the research is the work for which Schmeidler is most notable, the development of the metaphor of the sheep and goats. She determined through several cycles of ESP card-guessing experiments that "sheep" (persons who believed that success was possible in ESP tasks) scored higher than "goats" (those who rejected the possibility of success). Later documentation in the sheep/goat research includes data and correspondence by Murray Melnick and Christopher Scott pertaining to their study of earlier tabulations of Schmeidler's sheep/goat research.

The following correspondents, researchers, and subjects are generally represented throughout the Correspondence and Research Files Series. Included are: Gardner Murphy, Schmeidler's mentor and the person who first interested her in psychical research; Ingo Swann, who studied PK (psychokinesis) effects on temperature; Caroline Chapman, a psychic with whom Schmeidler conducted proxy settings; Eileen Garrett, a psychic who was president of the Parapsychology Foundation Inc., and with whom Schmeidler conducted proxy settings; Steve Heyman, who studied the effect of time and impatience on ESP abilities; Betty Humphrey, who worked in the Duke Parapsychology Laboratory in the late 1940s and early 1950s and used drawings as her ESP targets; Larry Lewis, who attempted to find out if ESP hones into a target like sonar; and Thelma Moss, who studied a house haunting. Schmeidler collaborated with Swann, Heyman, Lewis, and Moss on the research topics listed above and co-authored journal articles which were published as a result of their research. Schmeidler also published an article about her proxy settings with Chapman. The research data relating to the Garrett settings was never published. There is scattered correspondence between Schmeidler and J. B. and Louisa Rhine, but not a substantial amount. There are several letters between J. G. Pratt, who was working at the Duke University Parapsychology Laboratory, and Schmeidler pertaining to the Chapman proxy settings in the mid 1950s. There are numerous letters between Schmeidler and Humphrey, some describing the working environment at the Duke University Parapsychology Laboratory; others relate to Humphrey's research. Other topics are represented primarily in the Research Files Series, including data about how various attitudes, conditions, traits, and surroundings affect ESP abilities. Among them are frustration, utilizing Saul Rosenzweig's Picture Frustration Study; Rorschachs and ESP scores of patients suffering from cerebral concussions; background stimuli; Rorschachs and ESP scores in maternity patients; ESP and memory; ESP scores following psychotherapy; and mood and attitude as predictors of ESP performance; telepathic rapport based on personality traits; and others such as long distance experiments in telepathy, precognition, poltergeists, and clairvoyant medical diagnosis based on the Silva Mind Control method.

The data for experiments, both successful as well as unsuccessful, are in the collection. The results of some were never reported in the literature. Because of the amount of data in the collection, it is possible that some of the experiments could be replicated and/or studied for new results.

The Writings Series primarily consists of information pertaining to the work she co-authored with Robert A. McConnell, ESP and Personality Patterns.

Folders throughout the collection contain Schmeidler's typed notes which describe the data, list the name of the researcher with whom she collaborated, and in some cases the article or articles which resulted from the research. Others indicate the nature and subject of the correspondence and include information pertaining to her various writings.

Through Schmeidler's correspondence with colleagues world-wide and her collaboration with fellow scientists, one is able to gain an understanding of the vast range of experiments and topics studied in the parapsychological field. One is also able to study the difference in research styles between Americans and Europeans. Since the research files span a period of forty years, the collection also reflects the various methods, materials, and equipment used for research in the field.

Related collections in the Department include the Parapsychology Laboratory Records and the Louisa Rhine Papers.


Howard Easley papers, 1936-1954 1 Linear Foot — 500 Items

Howard Easley was a psychologist and professor of Education at Duke University from 1930 to 1957. Collection includes correspondence, course materials, manuscripts, lists, printed matter, and other papers concerning the Education Department, parapsychology, educational psychology, testing and related subjects. Correspondence, 1936-1942, with students, colleagues and editors includes copies of 1938 letters between J.B. Rhine and Virginia Harding, mother of purported psychic Faith Harding.

Collection includes correspondence, course materials, manuscripts, lists, printed matter, and other papers concerning the Education Department, parapsychology, educational psychology, testing and related subjects. Correspondence, 1936-1942, with students, colleagues and editors includes copies of 1938 letters between J.B. Rhine and Virginia Harding, mother of purported psychic Faith Harding. Course materials include examinations. Manuscripts, mostly by others, include preliminary dissertation exams by several students. Also included are pamphlets related to the genealogy of the Easley and McCullough families, a few gradebooks, and U.S. Naval paperwork regarding Easley.


J. Gaither Pratt papers, 1963 0.5 Linear Feet — 500 Items

Pratt joined the psychology department at Duke in 1937 as an instructor and a member of the staff of parapsychology where he served for nearly 30 years. Contains two drafts of a manuscript entitled, The Benign Revolution: An Insider's View of Parapsychology. This was published by Doubleday in 1964 under the title Parapsychology: An insider's view of ESP.

Contains two drafts of a manuscript entitled, The Benign Revolution: An Insider's View of Parapsychology. This was published by Doubleday in 1964 under the title Parapsychology: An insider's view of ESP.


Louisa E. Rhine papers, 1890-1983 5 Linear Feet — 3,800 Items


The papers of Louisa E. Rhine span the years 1890 to 1983 and include journals, correspondence, writings, genealogical papers, notebooks, pictures, and miscellaneous papers relating principally to her work and research with her husband J.B. Rhine in the field of parapsychology, including the impact of this work on their personal and professional lives.

This impact is shown in Louisa Rhine's journals (1903-1982). The journal entries while not routinely made are nevertheless often lengthy, descriptive, and self-revealing. They document her school days at the University of Chicago, and her courtship, marriage, and relationship with J.B. Rhine. Parts of four journals describe their struggle to understand and to formulate a personal religious philosophy. Others describe their family life and incidents relating to the rearing of their four children. Their work in the Parapsychology Laboratory at Duke, as well as the Laboratory's relationship with the Duke administration are described. The journals include passages from some of J.B. Rhine's letters, interspersed with notes relating to some of Louisa Rhine's studies. Another journal includes excerpts from the other journals.

Correspondence forms the bulk of the collection, and is divided into four categories: personal, special, parapsychological, and business. The most voluminous is personal correspondence primarily from two of the Rhine's children, Sara (Rhine) Feather and Rosemary Rhine. Also included, however, are letters from other family members and friends.

The special correspondence consists of selected correspondence files arranged alphabetically by the correspondent's last name. The correspondents include: Ella (Long) Weckesser, Louisa Rhine's mother; Sylvia (Weckesser) Newcombe and Miriam (Weckesser) Whaley, sisters of Louisa Rhine; and Barry S. Siegal and William R. Birge, friends of the Rhines, who were officers during World War II.

The parapsychology correspondence includes letters from people in the United States and other countries who wrote to Louisa Rhine relating psychic phenomena either they or someone they knew had experienced. Some of these experiences were reported by Dr. Rhine in her publications.

Business correspondence is chiefly from other scientists in the field of psychical research, information relating to the work and funding of the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man, and information concerning the publication and translation of some of Louisa Rhine's works.

The personal and business correspondence, reflects the Rhine's concerns about how psychical research would be carried out in the future. They wanted to make sure that an accurate accounting of the work that had begun at Duke under J.B. Rhine's guidance be told. To that end, Louisa Rhine worked during the last years of her life to finish the work recounting as she said "J.B.'s attempt to find the 'something lost behind the ranges.'" Her efforts resulted in Something Hidden which was published posthumously in 1983.

The business correspondence also describes the strained relationship between Duke University and the Rhines' work both at the Parapsychology Laboratory, when it was officially a part of Duke University, and later when the Laboratory was transferred into the Institute of Parapsychology under the auspices of the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man.

The writings series contains both parapsychological and other works. The parapsychological writings include a chronological listing of J.B. and Louisa Rhine's works and of critiques and reviews of works by and about them. Also included is information about the Anpsi Project (psychic abilities in animals); miscellaneous notes kept by Louisa and J.B. Rhine; an index to articles in the Journal of Parapsychology (1937-1967); transcripts of interviews with J.B. Rhine; miscellaneous speeches, lectures, and articles relating to the work of the Rhines and others in the parapsychology field; and articles and memorials to honor J.B. Rhine after his death.

Other writings include short stories and poetry by Louisa and J.B. Rhine; anecdotes relating to the Rhines and their children; and attempts by the Rhines to write a work about "Our Life Together." There are some fragments of short stories by Louisa Rhine, some giving the author's name as "Louise Long" a pseudonym adopted when they lived in Massachusetts. One of them "In the Crucible of Life" is apparently a true story about Louisa and J.B. Rhine, although their names have been changed in the story. A note in this section by the Rhine's daughter, Sara (Rhine) Feather (denoted by SRF) tells something about her mother's writings.


William McDougall papers, 1892 - 1982 9.5 Linear Feet — 10000 Items

William McDougall (1871-1938), an early twentieth century psychologist, taught at Duke University from 1927 to 1938. McDougall espoused a hormic theory of psychology, emphasizing genetics and instinct over nurture. McDougall was also a strong proponent of parapsychology. The William McDougall Papers, 1892-1982, includes correspondence, writing, research, teaching materials, clippings, notebooks, photographs, diaries, drawings, and tributes. Most of the materials date from the time of McDougall's tenure at Duke University. Major subjects include Lamarckian experiments conducted by McDougall, the McDougall family (and sons Kenneth and Angus in particular), the study of parapsychology, the Parapsychology Laboratory at Duke University, the Psychology Department at Duke University, and anthropological studies in Borneo and the Torres Strait. English.

The William McDougall Papers date from 1892 to 1982, and contain McDougall's own papers as well as those of his family and other researchers. The collection is organized into three series. The first series, Professional, includes correspondence, writing, research, teaching materials, clippings, and tributes. Most of the materials date from the late 1920s to the late 1930s, the time of McDougall's tenure at Duke University. Of particular note is his correspondence with other scholars in the fields of psychology and the social sciences. A card file which indexes these correspondents is available with the collection. McDougall's notes from his Lamarckian experiments on rats can also be found here, as can photograph albums from his anthropological travels in the late 1890s. The Family series contains correspondence, notebooks, photographs, clippings, writings, research and education materials, diaries, drawings, and other materials. Many materials belonging to two of McDougall's sons, Kenneth and Angus, are filed here. The third series, Other Researchers, contains writings and correspondence written by other researchers about McDougall or about McDougall's influence on psychology. These materials were not directly related to or owned by McDougall; most were generated after his death.