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American Experience; Telegrams from the Dead


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American Experience
Telegrams from the Dead
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered October 1988 As television's longest-running, most-watched history series, American Experience brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that helped form this nation. Now in its eighteenth season, the series has produced over 180 programs and garnered every major broadcast award. Series release date: 10/1988

Program Description

From 1850 to 1890, spiritualism gripped America. Abraham Lincoln, Commodore Vanderbilt, Horace Greeley and Frederick Douglass joined the millions who followed the "discoveries" of the spirit world as "revealed" through thousands of mediums. It was a movement in which religion and politics intersected and was shaped by the changing public roles of women, new scientific thinking, and Victorian-era morality. By 1880, as one fraud after another was revealed, the movement faded. The film shows how much America's fascination with spiritualism



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Chicago: “American Experience; Telegrams from the Dead,” 10/03/1994, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed April 21, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_E1A78BF6C9854D47A7325C034491824E.
MLA: “American Experience; Telegrams from the Dead.” 10/03/1994. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. April 21, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_E1A78BF6C9854D47A7325C034491824E>.
APA: American Experience; Telegrams from the Dead. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_E1A78BF6C9854D47A7325C034491824E
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