The Office of Security is often dismissed as a marginal component of the CIA by researchers who have chosen to focus on the far more glamorous Directorate of Operations (which included James Jesus Angelton's Counterintelligence Staff, the assassination and paramilitary-centric Special Activities Division (SAD) and Sidney Gottlieb's Technical Service Staff (TSS) until the early 1960s), much to determinate of truth seekers. The OS was far from marginal and in fact there appears to have been a decades-spanning conspiracy to cover-up the extent of the OS's dirty deeds. This is no more evident than in conventional accounts of Project ARTICHOKE, where is alleged to have been rolled into Sidney Gottlieb's MKULTRA some time between 1953 and 1955.
As was noted before here, that is totally bogus. ARTICHOKE did not end in the mid-1950s, but in fact continued until 1963, at which point it appears to have been broken down into successor programs that may not have ended until 1973. Nor did Sidney Gottlieb and the TSS ever oversee ARTICHOKE. While Gottlieb and the TSS had a role in the so-called "Artichoke Committee," the project was under the control of the Office of Security from its inception until 1963, aside from a brief period from late 1951 until September 1952 when it was directed by the Office of Scientific Intelligence (OSI). The OSI was the OS's primary partner in ARTICHOKE and even retained control of "foreign scientific aspects" after overall control was reverted back to the Office of Security.
ARTICHOKE was, in other words, a totally separate project from the far more well-known MKULTRA, and was likely far more brutal and stranger than Gottlieb's dabblings (and dabblings they were in comparison to Morse Allen's penchant for the extreme). My initial series on the OS already covered the brutality aspects of this project, noting that the current practice of "enhanced interrogation methods" and "extraordinary rendition" is very much a legacy of ARTICHOKE.
This is hardly surprising as the principal purpose of ARTICHOKE was to develop what were initially referred to as "special interrogation" practices. Soon, however, ARTICHOKE ventured into even more exotic and bizarre pursuits. I'm sure many of you are aware that one of these pursuits was "mind control" and on the whole the OS's track record in this regard was a mixed bag (as noted before here).
Another was parapsychology. The OS subsidized the research of J.B. Rhine and his famed Duke University experiments as well as those of Martin Ebon. But even more compelling and mysterious was its support of the research of Dr. Andrija Puharich, whom the great Philip Coppens referred to as "the Father of the American New Age Movement." This may be a bit of a stretch, but there can be little doubt Puharich had a large yet little acknowledged role up until the 1980s.
While this may seem incredible to many, bare in mind that the head of the Office of Scientific Intelligence throughout the heyday of ARTICHOKE was H. Marshall Chadwell, a man with a keen and well documented interest in UFOs. It is by now fairly well known that Chadwell was an early advocate of CIA investigations into UFOs and that he was behind the creation of the infamous Robertson Panel. Less well known was Chadwell's involvement in ARTICHOKE, which he briefly headed, as well as his friendship with Vannevar Bush that dated back to at least their time working together in the WWII-era National Defense Research Committee (all of which was noted before here).
H. Marshall Chadwell
While evidence of the Office of Security's interest in UFOs is scarce, there can be little doubt now that the OS sponsored Puharich's bizarre research for ARTICHOKE. And this research does indeed appear to have been geared towards the fantastic --"supersoldiers" and even establishing contact with a nonhuman intelligence. This series shall explore such possibilities and may reveal a truly disturbing prospect underlining the Pentagon and CIA behavior modification experiments.
But before getting to all of that I must first consider Puharich's contact with an alleged extraterrestrial intelligence that referred to itself as "The Nine" for they are at the heart of this mystery. Long time readers of this blog (and those of you who glance over to the side bar) are probably well aware that I've written a prior post on The Nine, but much time has passed since then and I have come into additional compelling information. But beyond that, the timing of Puharich's alleged contacts with The Nine is most important, and here I will have a chance to outline the different eras.
So, with the statement of purpose out of the way, let us get on with the story. It all begins with a chance encounter with "a Hindu scholar and sage from Poona, India" (Uri, Andrija Puharich, pg. 13) whom Puharich first met at some point in December of 1951. This individual is known only to posterity as "Dr. D.G. Vinod." No record of Vinod appears to exist outside of Puharich's accounts of his initial encounters with The Nine, which has led many to believe that D.G. Vinod was a pseudonym and I see no reason to question this.
Christopher Knowles of The Secret Sun provides one of the best accounts of modern references to The Nine that predate Puharich's involvement in the second part of his essential "The Secret Star Trek" series. There Knowles notes that a story published in Fantastic Adventures, a pulp magazine edited by the legendary Ray Palmer of Amazing Adventures (and who originally published the bizarre "Shaver Mysteries"), contained a short story from November of 1947 that bore an uncanny resemblance to the later manifestation of The Nine. The story, "Son of the Sun," was written by Millen Cooke under the pseudonym Alexander Blade. Cooke had a keen interest in the occult and UFOs and was deeply involved in the West Coast occult community during this era. Knowles speculates that "Dr. Vinod" may have been a part of this circle:
"... Missus Cooke was obvious given to visionary experience. It's unclear if her liturgy was her own personal revelation or that of a group similar to the Round Table, but it should be noted that the Cookes were instrumental in bringing Meher Baba to America, and the mysterious Dr. Vinod could well have been part of that circle. These people all seemed to know each other, though they swapped practices and enthusiasms like normal people change socks."
Millan Cooke on the left
But back to the matter at hand. Puharich's next encounter with Vinod occurred two months later, in February 1952. At this point Vinod allegedly read Puharich's past and future. The sage accomplished this by gripping the middle joint of Puharich's right ring finger with his right thumb and index finger while whistling between his teeth "as though he were trying to find a pitch" (Uri, pg. 13). After a minute or so of this Vinod began to recount detailed aspects of Puharich's past while also predicting a rosy future for the Croatian scientist.
Puharich was so impressed that he arranged another meeting with Vinod, but this time under laboratory conditions. A little less than four years before Puharich had first encountered Vinod he had set up a foundation to study such phenomenon. Both this foundation and its backers are most interesting.
"... Puharich founded the Round Table Foundation of Electrobiology in Camden in 1948, an organization whose name was usually shortened to the Round Table, or the Round Table Foundation. Thus, the hospital or clinic that had been originally planned became instead a kind of research institute specializing in the more arcane of the behavioral sciences, from cybernetics to ESP, and moved from the barn --which he lost due to some unpleasantness concerning Red baiting in the small New England town --to somewhat grander quarters in a twenty-two room house. One of the earliest experiments was with the psychic Eileen Garrett, who was placed in a Faraday Cage to test her psychic abilities, as were such other famous names in the field as Peter Hurkos and Henry Stone. In order to support his research, Puharich approached a variety of individuals for funding, including Henry Wallace. Wallace had been Secretary of Agriculture in the Franklin D. Roosevelt Administration and later his Vice President. Under Truman, Wallace had been Secretary of Commerce, and in 1948 ran for President himself on the Progressive Party ticket. Wallace's name is usually associated with a scandal involving a Russian mystic, one Nicholas Roerich (Wallace himself is usually credited with coming up with the pyramid and all-seeing eye design used on the back of the US dollar bill)...
"In any event, Wallace agreed to help fund Puharich's research, with a check for &4,458. 73 in April of 1949. A princely sum at the time. And he visited the Round Table --according to Eileen Garrett --sometime in 1949-1950.
"Another mysterious donor to the Foundation was one Walter Cabot Paine, of Boston, who donated $3,000. When a researcher attempted to interview Walter Paine, he was rebuffed immediately, and Paine did not answer any questions. Arthur Young, the Bell Helicopter designer and eventual guru himself, told the same researcher that Paine was an associate of his and an oil executive who wished to remain anonymous. Mr. Young was being a little disingenuous, for he was related to Walter C. Paine through marriage. Arthur Young would remain a close friend and associate of Puharich during the 1950s and it is this relationship that --in the context of all we have been discussing so far --is absolutely stunning in its implications, for Arthur Young was married to a Forbes heiress, one Ruth Forbes Paine, who was a descendant of Ralph Waldo Emerson. In other words, very old, very white money. Walter Cabot Paine was the son of Robert Treat Paine, a wealthy Boston Brahmin and art patron who made a special study of Japanese art, and was a direct descendant of the Robert Treat Paine who was a signer of the Declaration of Independence. W.C. was directly related to Ruth Forbes Paine Young's previous husband, George Lyman Paine (who is also descended from Colonial American 'royalty,' the Lyman family). Her son by that previous marriage, Michael Paine, married Ruth Hyde."
(Sinister Forces Book I, Peter Levenda, pgs. 238-240)
Henry Wallace is of course a long time bugaboo of the conspiratorial right. In addition to his association with mystic Nicholas Roerich, he was also a Freemason and had dabbled in Theosophy for nearly a decade before abandoning it at some point in the 1930s. He remained a self-professed Christian for his entire life, however.
The presence of Arthur Young and Ruth Forbes Paine Young, along with their distant relation Walter Cabot Paine, on the donor list are most interesting as well. The latter two were of course very old money, stretching back to the Colonial days. And they were not the only "Boston Brahmins" to become involved in the sage of The Nine either, as we shall see. Certainly then Puharich appears to have been receiving support from elements within the oldest branch of America's aristocracy.
But there are indications that Puharich was getting even more generous contributions for his research, the sources of which have never been identified. But this was no inconsiderable amount of money. The great Philip Coppens notes: "Fortune often walked together with these, as in 1951 he somewhat miraculously received a research grant of close to $100,000 to build a solid sheet metal Faraday cage, to test Garrett." This is quite impressive, considering that Puharich was from a rather humble background and yet a mere five years or so after graduating from medical school he seemingly had access to ample amounts of funding for rather arcane research.
It is also interesting to note that Arthur Young was living near Philadelphia during this time frame and would continue to maintain a residence with Ruth Forbes Paine Young in that general area for years to come. As was noted in my examination of the Office of Security, a lot of strange things appear to have been happening in Pennsylvania during this era in general. Another of Puharich's close associates, whom he would first encounter towards the end of 1960s, Ira Einhorn, was also based out of Philadelphia for years.
Even more curious is Ruth Forbes Paine Young's son from a previous marriage, Michael Paine. As noted above, Michael Paine was married Ruth Hyde. This young couple would go on to befriend to Lee Harvey and Marina Oswald during their time in Dallas in early 1963. Marina Oswald and her child would later move in with Ruth Paine, after she had separated from Michael, later in 1963 and was rooming there at the time of the assassination. There are many disturbing implications about the Paines and their possible intelligence ties, which I addressed before here. There is also a possibility that the Office of Security had some tie to the Paines, especially Ruth Hyde Paine whose father the OS had an extensive file on (as noted before here). But moving along.
Puharich's next session with Vinod, this time under laboratory conditions, did not occur until December 31, 1952, New Year's Eve. By all accounts, it was well worth the wait as this was the first formal contact Puharich had with The Nine.
"... On December 31, 1952, Dr. Vinod and I took a plane from New York to Maine. We landed in Augusta at 7:30 P.M., and Hank Jackson, the administrator of the laboratory, the Round Table Foundation, was there to meet us. We drove over the country roads in the snow, chatting all the way. We entered the great hall of the laboratory, and without saying a word or even taking off his overcoat, Dr. Vinod found his way to the library and sat down on a sofa. Hank and I followed him. We realized that he had gone into a trance. We sat opposite him, waiting expectantly. Curious enough, the house was always bustling with activity, but on this New Year's Eve there was not a sound in the house from child, man, woman or animals. There was the hushed silence of expectancy as Hank and I watched our entranced sage.
"Then, at exactly 9 P.M., deep sonorous voice came out of Dr. Vinod's mouth, totally unlike his own high-pitched, soft voice, saying in perfect English without an accent:
M calling: We are Nine Principles and Forces, personalities if you will, working in complete mutual implication. We are forces, and the nature of our work is to accentuate the positive, the evolutional, and the teleological aspects of existence. By teleology I do not mean the teleology of human derivation in a multidimensional concept of existence. Teleology will be understood in terms of a different ontology. To be simple, we accentuate certain directions as will fulfill the destiny of creation...
"When Dr. Vinod awoke from his trance after some ninety minutes odd speech by the Nine, he had no recollection or knowledge of what had been said. Hank and I worked for a month with Dr. Vinod, listening to the profound wisdom of the Nine. It was a deeply moving experience, ad we really believed every word that we heard purely on the internal evidence. This work was interrupted in February 1953 when I had to serve as a captain in the U.S. Army during the Korean War."
(Uri, Andrija Puharich, pgs. 13-16)
The location in Glen Cove, Maine where Puharich and the Round Table Foundation conducted the initial seances with The Nine
And so ended the first of a series of seances that would have profound implications for the history of the United States. As such, it is largely immaterial as to whether or not The Nine actually existed for their influence would begin to greatly effect American popular culture by at least the early 1960s and would continue to do so for years afterwards in some of our most revered franchises. And certainly it would seem that powerful forces within both the public and private sphere would have a keen interest in them. But more on that later.
As for what exactly The Nine are/were, this is a bit ambiguous. It is commonly reported (even by your own humble writer) that they initially claimed to have been the Great Ennead, a group of nine Egyptian deities whose cult center was located at Heliopolis. During the Old and Middle Kingdom eras they were usually at the top of Ancient Egypt's pantheon.
the Great Ennead of Ancient Egypt
This researcher has not been able to determine if The Nine ever actually stated this to Puharich, however. It would seem that Puharich made the connection via a series of sessions in the mid-1950s with the psychic Harry Stone in which Stone claimed to be channeling Rahotep, an Egyptian pharaoh of the 17th Dynasty. Puharich believed that he had detected references to the Ennead in some of these sessions. It would appear that upon making this connection Puharich became convinced that these communications were linked to the earlier ones with The Nine. But more on the Stone sessions in a moment.
Eventually The Nine claimed to be an extraterrestrial race from the planet Hoova who were now located in a city-sized spacecraft known as Spectra. They did not, however, appear to exist in physical form (aside from the spacecraft), but had evolved to the point that they had forgone their flesh-and-blood bodies many centuries ago. In some accounts they were said to have advanced to such a state that now they existed outside of time and space, multidimensional beings that none the less still had an interest in the development of the human race. Or something like that.
The next contact occurred in February of 1953 and for this session Puharich had brought in some big guns to join Vinod, Henry Jackson and himself.
"Some months later, on June 27, 1953, the night of the full moon, Puharich gathered around him what was to be a core group of the Round Table Foundation for another session with Vinod. The membership of this group of nine members --a la The Nine --is illuminating. Henry Jackson, Georgia Jackson, Alice Bouverie, Marcella Du Pont, Carl Betz, Vonnie Beck, Arthur Young, Ruth Young, and Andrija Puharich. Dr. Vinod acted as the medium. Imagine the Fellowship of the Ring, with government funding and a security classification that was, well, 'cosmic.'
"In this group, we find immediately a Du Pont and a Bouverie. Du Pont is self-explanatory, but for those who do not have a copy of the New York Social Register to hand, Alice Bouverie was born Ava Alice Muriel Astor, and was a descendant of John Jacob Astor, and the daughter of Colonel John Jacob Astor IV, builder of the Astoria Hotel and author of the book A Journey to Other Worlds (1894); her father was also one of the ill-fated passengers aboard the Titanic when it went down in April 1912...
"... Henry Jackson was Puharich's administrator and was married to Georgia Jackson. Carl Beck was involved in alternative energy research, and had visited the laboratory of one Thomas Henry Molay, a Mormon scientist and erastz alchemist living in Salt Lake City who claimed to have identified a source of 'free energy' which he termed 'radiant energy.' Developing alternative energy sources (a la Nicola Tesla) would be a preoccupation of Puharich in the years to come. (The only member of the original Nine that the author has been unable to satisfactorily identify is Vonnie Beck, who may have been the same Vonnie Beck who was a pilot for the US Navy during World War II, but at this time there is no further information on Beck.)
(Sinister Forces Book I, Peter Levenda, pgs. 244-246)
A few points: Having a former Navy man such as Beck present at the seance will make ample sense in the next installment, so this research is inclined to believe that Levenda located the right individual. As for Carl Betz (and not Beck), this is not the famed actor, but an alternative energy researcher as Levenda indicates. The Henry Jackson present at the meeting has no connection, as far as this researcher can discern, with the longtime Democratic Senator Henry Jackson, who was close to the American Security Council (ASC, which this researcher has explored in depth before here).
As for the Blue Bloods, if anyone was wandering, the only one of them with tenuous ties to Skull and Bones appears to be Ruth Forbes Paine Young. There was at least one Forbes, John Forbes Kerry, who became a Bonesman. Ruth Young's husband prior to Arthur Young, George Lyman Paine, had blood relations to one family (Lyman) that may have also had Bonesmen in its ranks, but this researcher has not be able to reliably confirm this. On the whole then there were no discernible ties between Skull and Bones and this gathering.
"... the Round Table Group, and came later to be called, somewhat inaccurately, the Cliveden Set, after the country estate of Lord and Lady Astor. It included Lord Milner, Leopold Amery, and Edward Grigg (Lord Altrincham), as well as Lord Lothian, Smuts, Lord Astor, Lord Brand (brother-in-law of Lady Astor and managing director of Lazard Brothers, the international bankers), Lionel Curtis, Geoffrey Dawson (editor of The Times), and their associates. This group wielded great influence because it controlled the Rhodes Trust, the Beit Trust, The Times of London, The Observer, the influential and highly anonymous quarterly review known as The Round Table (founded in 1910 with money supplied by Sir Abe Bailey and the Rhodes Trust, and and with Lothian as editor), and it dominated the Royal Institute of International Affairs, called 'Chatham House' (of which Sir Abe Bailey and the Astors were the chief financial supporters, while Lionel Curtis was the actual founder), the Carnegie United Kingdom Trust, and All Souls College, Oxford. This Round Table Group formed the core of the three-bloc-world supporters, and differed from the anti-Bolsheviks like D'Abernon in that they sought to contain the Soviet Union between a German-dominated Europe and an English-speaking bloc rather than to destroy it as the anti-Bolsheviks wanted. Relationships between the two groups were very close and friendly, and some people, like Smuts, were in both."
(Tragedy and Hope, Carroll Quigley, pg. 581)
Could Puharich's group have been named after the British Round Table Group? Certainly this is a possibility and the presence of an Astor in the group does raise such questions. But it is unknown to this researcher as to how close Alice Bouverie was to the British branch of her family. As such, this is probably an unlikely prospect, but curious nonetheless.
But back to the seance. By all accounts this one was even more impressive than the first:
"Dr. Vinod sat on the floor in the lotus posture holding in his hands a string of sacred beads, called rakshas. On his lap was a simple copper plate nine inches in diameter. On the flour to his side was a small statue of the Hindu god, Hanoum. Thus, Dr. Vinod was in the center of a circle made up of the nine people listed above. He entered a trance state at 12: 15 A.M. He spoke for about fifteen minutes and then one of the Nine, R, spoke through him, saying:
Tonight we want to create Brahmins in this world. Brahmin means a person dedicated to Brahman.
"At this instant all nine observers in the fully lighted room saw the appearance, in an instant, of what appeared to be a pile of cotton threads about three feet from Dr. Vinod. It seemed to this observer that the pile of thread had just popped right out of the wooden floor. Dr. Vinod, still in a trance state, leaned over to pick up the threads. When he untangled them, he brought forth loops of finely woven cotton cord. He handed one to each person and there was exactly one loop for each. He asked each person to slip the loop over the right shoulder and under the left arm.
"What we had witnessed was the appearance of a material substance from nowhere! All present were quite sure that the large ball of cotton material had come from the floor and no place other than the floor."
(Uri, Andrija Puharich, pgs. 16-17)
Peter Levenda writers in Sinister Forces Book One: The Nine that he believes that the statue was actually of Hanuman, the Monkey King. Hanuman was apparently a human being who was given divine powers due to his devotion and courage. Thus, if the statue was of Hanuman, it would seem especially appropriate in this context.
So to was the presence of the Boston Brahmins for a transformation into Brahmins. Here are some more details about this concept:
"A Brahmin, of course, is the highest caste in the caste-structured Hindu system. Other castes include warriors and merchants, and there is also the non-caste known as the Untouchables (who were generally involved in trades considered unclean, such as handling the dead, slaughtering, etc.). What Vinod (or, actually 'R') was telling the assembled group is that they were to be reborn as spiritual Brahmins, in charge of bringing about a mystical renaissance on earth... under the mentorship of The Nine, of course. 'R' then made an allusion to alchemy and transformation, and then a reference to Buddha. Eventually, the Hindu and Buddhist references faded out of the communications from The Nine in favor of discussions of 'supersense' and other quasi-scientific, philosophical constructs that might have seemed profound in the context of the seance but which make for rather painful reading today, fifty years later."
(Sinister Forces Book I, Peter Levenda, pg. 247)
What became of this group of "Brahmins" is unknown. Of course Puharich continued chasing The Nine for at least another two decades and a few other participants would continue to crop in and out of the story for a few more years. Arthur Young, for instance, may have been with Puharich during a trek he took to Mexico in 1956 that seemingly produced a communication with The Nine and Alice Bouverie would play a key role in the next stage of Puharich's interaction with The Nine before her death (also in 1956). But the rest of the group appears to have drifted out of the story. Of course the Jacksons, due to Henry's occupation as Puharich's laboratory assistance, may have played a further role and the same is also possible of Young's wife, Ruth Forbes Paine Young. But as far as this researcher is aware this marked the end of the involvement of Marcella Du Pont, Carl Betz and Vonnie Beck in this ordeal. This also marked the final channeling of The Nine by Dr. Vinod as well. From here on out new mediums would be located.
Thus, only two of these "Brahmins" (Puharich) and Bouverie can be reliably linked to The Nine beyond the July 27, 1953 session. There's also a strong possibility that Arthur Young remained involved until the mid-1950s as well. But everyone else appears to have already played heir role. This would hardly be the last time The Nine would set lofty goals for their followers that would eventually be abandoned.
Puharich's next alleged contact occurred in 1954. This was the episode involving the psychic Harry Stone noted above. As far as this researcher is aware, Puharich never appears to have linked this episode publicly with The Nine, though there are multiple indications from Puharich and his associates that there was a connection. That Puharich may have been hesitant to link these two events is easy to understand: Stone's alleged channeling of Rahotep, an ancient Pharaoh, was closely connected to the fly-agaric or amanita muscaria, an hallucinogenic mushroom. While Puharich would later go on to record these experiences in his classic The Sacred Mushroom, neither the general public (then emerging from McCarthyism) or the deep state (in which such things were highly classified) were ready for hallucinogens to be linked explicitly to nonhuman intelligences at this point.
Rahotep is the figure with his arms raised
As for Stone's experiences, the great Philip Coppens noted:
"In 1954, Puharich received a transcript from what Harry Stone had uttered during a trance. Some were in English, others in Egyptian. 'The first time this occurred, Harry had been at Mrs. Davenport’s apartment in New York. When admiring a gold pendant, in the form of a cartouche, he had suddenly started to tremble all over, got a crazy staring look in his eyes, staggered around the room, and then fell into a chair.' What fascinated Andrija was the trance description that Stone had given of a plant that could separate consciousness from the physical body. Puharich knew that the ancient Greeks and the shamans in Siberia had an ancient tradition in which men partook of a plant which could detach the soul from the body, travel far, and then return with knowledge that was otherwise inaccessible to the human mind. If he was able to master this technique, it was clear that he and those for whom he worked, would have a powerful advantage over their enemies. Stone’s drawings of the plant looked like mushrooms, and the description he gave was that of the fly agaric, or amanita muscaria.
"Puharich realised that Stone had given him the answer to his problem: this mushroom could enhance extrasensory perception in human beings. All he had to do was find it and use it. By the fall of 1955, Puharich had an ample supply of the mushroom to find out…
"Puharich tested 35 'psychically ungifted' people, but none reported anything out of the ordinary. But in the case of Harry Stone, during a visit by Aldous Huxley, Stone asked to have the mushroom administered. Rather than chew, Stone applied the mushroom on his tongue and on the top of his head, in ritualistic fashion. Five minutes later he woke up, and began to stagger around as though he were heavily intoxicated with alcohol. At that point, Puharich wanted to test whether Stone’s psychic abilities had enhanced. The results were positive. In fact, they were not just positive, but perfect. Ten out of ten. And not only that, but superfast as well. Puharich quickly administered a large dose of atropine and removed the remaining particles of the mushroom from his tongue. Within fifteen minutes, Harry was ‘normal’ again.
"This was, of course, a major revelation for Puharich and the experiments were detailed in his book, The Sacred Mushroom. But Puharich was not the only one to write about it. Aldous Huxley stated: 'I spent some days, earlier this month, at Glen Cove, in the strange household assembled by Puharich […] Harry, the Dutch sculptor, who goes into trances in the Faraday Cage and produces automatic scripts in Egyptian hieroglyphics […] whatever may be said against Puharich, he is certainly very intelligent, extremely well read and highly enterprising. His aim is to reproduce by modem pharmacological, electronic and physical methods the conditions used by the Shamans for getting into a state of travelling clairvoyance. At Glen Cove they now have found eight specimens of the amanita muscaria. This is very remarkable as the literature of the mycological society of New England records only one previous instance of the discovery of an amanita in Maine. The effects, when a piece as big as a pin’s head, is rubbed for a few seconds into the skin of the scalp, are quite alarmingly powerful, and it will obviously take a lot of very cautious experimentation to determine the right psi-enhancing dose of the mushroom.' ”
Puharich alleged that he found the original fly-argaric specimens used in his experiments near his laboratory in Maine. This occurred in 1955 while most of Puharich's efforts were geared towards locating samples in Mexico (as were the CIA's). Naturally, psychics had assisted Puharich in locating these samples. Puharich would eventually claim to have figured out a way to cultivate them so as to have a steady supply for his experiments.
There are also indications that Puharich was conducting other experiments with magic mushrooms around this time that have largely been hidden from the public, as well as the extent of the official interest in the Stone episode. This shall be addressed in a future installment. For now it is interesting to note that Alice Bouverie played a key role in this series of events as well, apparently being one of the first individuals to locate a fly-argaric in the Maine woods during 1955. Almost exactly a year later she would die suddenly. Another of Puharich's psychics, in this case the famed Dutchman Peter Hurkos, had a premonition of her death shortly beforehand:
"The next morning, July 19, 1956, I again arrived at the laboratory to find Peter in the kitchen having a cup of coffee. He was still talking about the luminous mass which he had seen two evenings ago. I quizzed him all over again as to what he thought it meant. He admitted that he had no idea what it meant, but that it had made an indelible imprint upon his mind. While I was talking to Peter the phone rang and I answered it. It was Alice Bouverie's son calling from New York City. He was very taut, and tersely announced: 'Mummy is dead.' I couldn't believe my ears, and asked him to repeat what he had just said. He repeated: 'Mummy is dead, we found her in her bedroom this morning. She had apparently died sometime during the night. I thought you would want to know.' I was so stunned that I couldn't find the right things to say. I finally asked him what had been the cause of death. He said that he did not know, but the doctor who had examined her had the idea that it probably was a stroke. She had been in perfect health when she went to bed...
"Alice's sudden death remained inexplicable. The coroner described death as due to natural causes, but could not define any single pathology that could be responsible for such sudden death..."
(The Sacred Mushroom, Andrija Puharich, pgs. 112-113)
And so departed another of the "Brahmins" from the stage. Alice Bouverie had apparently helped Puharich locate a sample of the fly-argaric on July 6, 1955 and then passed away on July 18, 1956. Her contribution had consisted of passing on a "hieroglyphic message" that Harry Stone had received on July 4 and which Alice had recorded and passed on to Puharich, just in time for his improbable discovery on July 6. Whether these dates have any significance is unknown, but they are close to a shake up in the deep state that shall be addressed in the next installment and thus worth noting in this regard.