This section is from the book "A Book Written By The Spirits Of The So-Called Dead", by Carl Gustaf Helleberg. Also available from Amazon: A Book Written by the Spirits of the So-Called Dead.
" In 1869 while holding a circle at Aurora, Ind., composed of a few intimate friends and neighbors, a gentleman—a stranger to all of us—applied for admission, stating that he had been left by the east bound train, and not being able to resume his journey until the following morning, and hearing of my mediumship, he desired, if agreeable, to have a sitting, or be allowed to join the circle for that occasion. My husband cor-dially assented. Our stranger friend had been seated but a short time when I saw a spirit forming by his side. I watched the process, and to my utter astonishment, which I at once made known, the spirit had a rope around his neck and presented a frightful appearance. I observed,' see a spirit with a rope around his neck, with tongue protruding,' etc. ' Describe him, madam, if you please,' spoke the stranger. I did so; the spirit for the purpose changing his appearance to that of his natural condition. The stranger, became very much excited, arose, seized his hat, and nervously remarked, ' This is a great test to me. Several years ago I was sheriff of an interior county in Indiana, and that man, Jim Roberts, was sentenced to be hanged for the murder of his father-in-law, and I am the one who executed the sentence of the court.' When in the act of taking his departure, he suddenly turned around, and plaintively inquired Has Jim got any thing against me? I only did my duty as an officer of the law.' On being assured that no ill feeling was entertained by the spirit against him, but that he appeared as he did more for the purpose of a test than any thing else, he took his departure. I have never seen him since. He gave me, however, considerable notoriety in the community by relating his wonderful experience with a spiritual medium, and advised everyone to shun mediums unless they were prepared and willing to have every thing connected with their past lives revealed and made known. Perhaps this abused spiritualism may yet become the instrumentality of compelling people to walk uprightly in their dealings with their fellowmen.
" These are a few among hundreds of such instances that I might relate, but the space allotted will not permit. I wish now briefly to refer to another phase of my mediumship. At various intervals I have had prophetic warning, and prophetic revelations have also been given me. I have also had what might be appropriately termed panoramic visions of past events of those both in and out of the body, and of events to transpire in the future of earth life. These visions, especially those prognostic of the future, have been truly wonderful. It is an oft quoted saying that ' coming events cast their shadows before,' and there remains no doubt in my mind but what spirits—whether all, I am not prepared to say—can sufficiently forecast the future as to reveal events and actions concealed from mortal discernment in the bosom of coming time. Let me mention a few instances in my own experience as evidence of the existence of this power.
" In 1869, myself and husband were holding a seance alone, at Aurora, Ind. We were living in the lower part of the city, near the river bank. Aurora is situated on the banks of the Ohio river, twenty-five miles below Cincinnati, Ohio. A little above the center of the city fronting the river a small stream, called Hogan creek, empties into the Ohio. Three or four hundred yards above the junction of the two streams and on the banks of the aforementioned creek, is located the mammoth distillery, owned by Messrs. J. & J. W. Gaff & Co. It has been consumed three times by fire and as often rebuilt. At the time of which I am speaking, we put blankets up to the windows in the room to be used for our dark circle, and by this means effectually excluded all external light. After extinguishing our lamp light, we sat patiently, awaiting manifestations. In the course of a half hour I saw and said, ' I see a large brick building on fire. The light from its ascending flames is flooding the river in front of the city. There, I see a poor man burning up in the fire. I see its majestic walls crumbling to pieces and falling into a huge mass of ruins.' At this juncture, we heard out doors the cry of fire! fire! and soon the bells of the quiet little city began to announce to its citizens that the insatiate fire-fiend was engaged in his terrible work of devastation and ruin. We hastened to the door only to behold, true to the mission previously given, the bosom of the river as brilliantly lighted up as though illuminated by the rays of the sun at his meridian height. J. & J.W. Gaft'& Co.'s distillery was on fire and burned to ruins, and another concomitant of the vision was too sadly verified—a man was literary burned to ashes.
" Soon after this occurrence, a very dear lady friend called to see me. She contemplated a trip to Indianapolis, and intended to start on the morrow train. I said to her,' Do not start to-morrow. Defer it until the succeeding day. I see an accident on the road, and I see written in the air these words," Within twenty-four hours." I prevailed on her to postpone the trip in accordance with the warning of the vision. She had no occasion to regret it for the train on which she intended to be a passenger jumped the track before it reached its destination, and while no one was very seriously injured, yet it might have been otherwise had my friend been on board. She might not have escaped so luckily.
" The shocking casualty of the collision between the United States mail steamers America and the United States, on the Ohio river, between Cincinnati and Louisville, will be well remembered, especially by the people along the line of that route. The night of the painful occurrence I was a member of a circle held at the residence of Mr. Lewis Shirley, of Jeffer-sonville, Ind. I saw the collision, the boats on fire, etc., at an hour antedating by several hours the time when the unfortunate event transpired. So thoroughly was I convinced that the verification of the vision was close at hand that I prevailed on a son of Mr. Shirley to meet the carrier-boy at the ferry landing early the following morning to procure a copy of a Louisville daily paper. When the boy returned with the paper I was not surprised to find in its columns an account of the disaster, which I had plainly and vividly seen a number of hours prior to its actual occurrence.