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Communicating with the dead. Medium conducting a seance in an attempt to communicate with the dead. The medium will attempt to enter a trance-like state, aided by the participants sitting around the table. In this trance-like state, the medium will then attempt to contact the spirits of the dead, often one of the relatives of the people at the table. The practice is controversial, with sceptics suggesting that a medium uses tricks such as tilting tables, draughts of cold air, and strange noises, to deceive the participants. This photograph is from the Bain News Service, one of the USA's earliest news picture libraries. The photographs date from the 1890s to the 1930s.
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