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‘Driven Insane by Eddyism’: Christian Science, Popular Psychopathology, and a Turn-of-the-Century Contest over Faith and Madness

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 November 2021

Abstract

At the turn of the twentieth century, Christian Scientists contended with ongoing allegations that their faith was more of a mental pathology than a religion. This article analyzes how the Church of Christ, Scientist, in particular its public relations branch the Committee on Publication, systematically contended with popular portrayals of Christian Science as a source or indicator of insanity. Two highly profiled court cases, both predicated on the purported insanity of a Christian Science woman and her attendant inability to manage her business affairs, are explored for their cultural effect on the promotion of the causal association between Christian Science and madness. This study employs newspaper clippings collected and archived by the Church's Committee on Publication as well as court records to argue for the salience of the insanity charge in shaping the early history of Christian Science and its public perception. As a religious tradition premised on divine healing and health, popular psychopathological interpretations of Christian Science were particularly subversive and functioned not only to discredit and undermine the religion's claims to healing but to forward societal fears that Christian Science study posed a unique threat to women's health. This examination draws attention to a dynamic historical exchange between the press and a new religious movement, as well as the polyvalent gendered presumptions embedded in popular charges of insanity in association with religion.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © 2021 by The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture

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References

Notes

1 Alfred Farlow, “Absolves Christian Science,” Christian Science Sentinel, October 11, 1900.

2 This was likely a reference to the New Hampshire Asylum for the Insane located in Concord.

3 Farlow, “Absolves Christian Science.”

4 Edwin Scott Gaustad and Philip L. Barlow, “Christian Scientists,” New Historical Atlas of Religion in America (Oxford University Press, 2001), 174.

5 In 1885, the Rev. A. J. Gordon read a speech condemning Christian Science at the Tremont Temple in Boston, in which he stated, “I believe Christian Science to be of precisely the same lineage as Spiritualism or Theosophy—from beneath, and not from above.” Quoted in “Defence of Christian Science against Rev. Joseph Cook and Dr. A. J. Gordon's Religious BAN,” Journal of Christian Science, March 7, 1885.

6 Stephen Gottschalk, Rolling Away the Stone: Mary Baker Eddy's Challenge to Materialism (Indiana University Press, 2003), 26.

7 Rennie B. Schoepflin, Christian Science on Trial: Religious Healing in America (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), 113–15; Frank B. Wynn, “The Physician: Pathies, Isms and Cults in Medicine,” The Journal of the Indiana State Medical Association 14 (June 1921): 188; “Mrs. Eddy's Case of Hysteria,” Journal of the American Medical Association 7 (February 16, 1907): 614–15.

8 For Eddy's views on contagion, see, Mary Baker Eddy, “Obey the Law,” The Christian Science Journal, March 1901.

9 Throughout this article, I use the terms insanity, madness, lunacy, and others, as these were the terms most commonly employed during the period under consideration. I consciously avoid utilizing terms such as “mental illness” and “mental health” as these labels were not yet in use in the early part of the twentieth century. The term madness has been reclaimed by mad activists and Mad studies scholars in an effort to question the solidity of mental illness and demonstrate the historically contingent nature of its social construction and interpretations. While I use diagnostic labels to explore debates over the relationship between religion and insanity, I do so to analyze the contests over these terms, not to reinforce their legitimacy.

10 For analyses of the Next Friends Suit see Robert Peel, Mary Baker Eddy: The Years of Trial (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1971); Robert Peel, Mary Baker Eddy: The Years of Authority (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1977); Gillian Gill, Mary Baker Eddy (Reading, MA: Perseus, Books, 1998); and Peter A. Wallner, Faith on Trial: Mary Baker Eddy, Christian Science and the First Amendment (Concord, NH: Plaidswede, 2004). These works mention the Brush Will Case of 1901 in passing, but neither analyze nor contextualize it within the broader narrative of insanity allegations against Christian Scientists. For more general analyses of Christian Science, see Stephen Gottschalk, The Emergence of Christian Science in American Religious Life (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1973) and Stephen Gottschalk, Rolling Away the Stone: Mary Baker Eddy's Challenge to Materialism (Indiana University Press, 2006). Scholarship on Christian Science has been largely consumed with the life and personality of Mary Baker Eddy, who is commonly referred to as Mrs. Eddy, and has been contentious from the early beginnings of the Church. While the aforementioned works employ a degree of sympathy for Eddy and Christian Science, they nonetheless are the most rigorous in their source material and analysis. Scholarship on Mary Baker Eddy and the history of Christian Science was altered with the opening of The Mary Baker Eddy Library in 2002, then known as the Mary Baker Eddy Library for the Betterment of Humanity. The present study is indebted to this public access and, with few exceptions, all of the newspaper source materials were accessed through the Library's archives and with the help of its staff.

11 Curtis, Heather D., “A Sane Gospel: Radical Evangelicals, Psychology, and Pentecostal Revival in the Early Twentieth Century,” Religion and American Culture: A Journal of Interpretation 21, no 2 (Summer 2011): 195226CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Ann Taves, Fits, Trances and Visions: Experiencing Religion and Explaining Experience from Wesley to James (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999).

12 Mary Baker Eddy, “Committee on Publication,” The Manual of The Mother Church (Boston: Allison V. Stewart, 1910), 34.

13 Setting the Course (Boston: The Committee on Publication, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, 1993), 34; Lee Zeunert Johnson, “Christian Science Committee on Publication: A Study of Group and Press Interaction,” (PhD diss., Syracuse University, 1963), 99.

14 Mary Baker Eddy, Letter to Alfred Farlow, December 9, 1899, The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

15 On the proliferation of newspapers, especially urban newspapers, and increased circulation and readership at the turn of the century, see Christopher B. Daly, Covering America: A Narrative History of a Nation's Journalism (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2012), particularly the chapter “Crusaders and Conservatives, 1875–1912: Journalism in Yellow and Gray.”

16 In the months preceding the formation of the CoP, Eddy was publicly engaged in a highly profiled lawsuit with former student Josephine Curtis Woodbury. During the same period, Mark Twain's first critical publication on Eddy and Christian Science was published in Cosmopolitan.

17 Gottschalk, Rolling Away the Stone, 255.

18 Johnson, “Christian Science Committee on Publication,” 581–82.

19 Setting the Course, 29.

20 Setting the Course, 11.

21 Setting the Course, 14.

22 Judith Huenneke, Senior Research Archivist, The Mary Baker Eddy Library, email to author, December 18, 2019.

23 This number represents the approximate number of articles dated between 1900 and 1915 compiled by the CoP via clippings bureaus and archived by The Mary Baker Eddy Library under the subject headings “Insanity,” “Insane,” and “Insanity, Cases of,” combined with other articles focused on insanity under the headings of “Brush Will Case,” and “Next Friends Suit.” Many of the articles cited throughout this article were republished several times in newspapers across the country, as was customary at the time. The CoP continued to track and organize public coverage of insanity and medical views on insanity until the mid-twentieth century, if not longer.

24 Alfred Farlow, “Twenty-Six Years in the Public Press,” Boston Sunday Post, March 24, 1914, 39. Farlow's article was written by “special request” of the newspaper and published under the headline “How He Corrected Mistakes as to Christian Science, Told Here for the Sunday Post by Publicist Alfred Farlow.” Later in the twentieth century, Lee Zeunert Johnson, a former employee of the CoP, related that Christian Science's enactment of its right to reply was a matter of protecting their First Amendment rights with an understanding that ensuring the free exercise of religion was entwined with its public reception, a matter that was largely influenced by the press. Johnson, “Christian Science Committee on Publication,” 15–21.

25 An interesting comparative analysis of Christian Science, particularly its Publishing Society, and corporate public relations could be made in the middle and later part of the twentieth century as the Church of Christ, Scientist attempted to expand their public reach through increased political lobbying, radio, and eventually television.

26 Alfred Farlow, “Twenty-Six Years in the Public Press,” Boston Sunday Post, March 24, 1914, 39.

27 Johnson, “Christian Science Committee on Publication,” 176. The choice perhaps also aimed to highlight Christian Science as a biblically based tradition and thereby undermine critics’ claims that Christian Science was not a legitimate Christian faith and that Scientists worshipped Eddy as a Christ-like figure.

28 Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures (The Christian Science Board of Directors, 2017), 408. This excerpt was reprinted in “Christian Science and Insanity,” Christian Science Sentinel, March 21, 1901.

29 On the popularity of the divine healing movement in the late nineteenth century, see Heather D. Curtis, Faith in the Great Physician: Suffering and Divine Healing in American Culture, 1860–1900 (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007).

30 Curtis, Faith in the Great Physician, 6; Jn 14:12 KJV.

31 Mary Baker Eddy, “Christian Science Healing Explained and Defended,” The Christian Science Journal, April 1901.

32 Eddy, Science and Health, 468.

33 Eddy, Science and Health, 555.

34 Eddy, Science and Health, 37.

35 Alfred Farlow, “Twenty-Six Years in the Public Press,” Boston Sunday Post, March 24, 1914.

36 The newspaper articles cited hereafter were all collected by the Church's Committee on Publication and archived by The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

37 “Christian Science in a Will Contest,” New York Herald, November 25, 1900.

38 During testimony, Dr. Hamilton stated he had never read Science and Health except in a “superficial” way. Brush Will Case Court Transcript, 1300, The Mary Baker Eddy Library; Dr. Flint similarly stated, “I have very little authentic information about these Christian Science beliefs.” “X-Science Faith not Lunacy,” New York Sun, February 22, 1901.

39 “Court Transcript,” Box 534619, “New York, New York, first church, contested Will of Helen C. Brush, deceased Vol. 2), 1300, The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

40 “Court Transcript,” 1300.

41 “Is Belief in the New Testament an Evidence of Insanity?” Journal, February 21, 1901.

42 Abbot, E. Stanley, “The Criteria of Insanity and the Problems of Psychiatry,” American Journal of Insanity 59 no. 1 (July 1902): 2Google Scholar. Emphasis added.

43 “Court Transcript,” Box 534619, “New York, New York, first church, contested Will of Helen C. Brush, deceased, Vol. 2), 1307. The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

44 “Court Transcript,” 1300. Another physician and alienist, Dr. Frederick Peterson, also a specialist on insanity and veteran expert medical witness, testified during the trial and declared that Helen C. Brush was of unsound mind and had monomania, or what he described as “mental unsoundness which affects a certain idea or group of ideas; just a part of the mind.” “Dr. Peterson Testimony,” Box 534619, “New York, New York, first church, contested Will of Helen C. Brush, deceased, Vol. 2), 1558. The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

45 “Christian Science Will Case,” New York Post, December 14, 1900.

46 Reprinted as “Christian Science Is Insanity, Says Expert,” The North American, February 19, 1901.

47 “Christian Science an Insane Delusion,” New York Times, February 19, 1901.

48 “Faith Curists Suffer from Delusion!—Dr. Hamilton!” New York Journal, February 19, 1901.

49 “Christian Science Is Just Plain Lunacy,” Union, February 19, 1901; “Christian Science an Insane Delusion,” New York Times, February 19, 1901; “Calls X-Science Madness,” New York Sun, February 19, 1901; “Insane Delusion,” Birmingham Ledger, February 28, 1901; “Says Christian Scientists Suffer from Delusions,” Milwaukee Journal, February 21, 1901.

50 “Is Belief in the New Testament an Evidence of Insanity?” New York Journal, February 21, 1901.

51 “Christian Science Will Case,” New York Post, December 14, 1900.

52 “Mrs. Eddy replies,” Echo, March 15, 1901; “Christian Science on Trial in the Brush Will Contest,” New York World, February 17, 1901; “CS Described in Court,” New York Herald, December 15, 1900.

53 The 1901 Woodbury libel case also brought Christian Science into the headlines but not on the same scale as the Brush Will Case.

54 “Christian Science and Insanity,” Owensboro Messenger, March 10, 1901.

55 Quoted in “Insanity and Religion,” The Christian Science Journal, April 1901.

56 “A Righteous Distinction,” Harper's Weekly, March 9, 1901; See also “Christian Science as a Religion,” Brooklyn Eagle, September 14, 1901.

57 “‘Scientists’ Not Insane,” Buffalo Times, August 30, 1901; “Brush Case Settled,” Boston Journal, August 29, 1901.

58 “Topics of the Times,” New York Times, August 30, 1901.

59 “Christian Scientists Are Given Regular Standing before the Law,” Grand Rapids Democrat, August 31, 1901; “Scientists Win Will Case,” News, August 29, 1901.

60 “Insanity and Religion,” The Christian Science Journal, April 1901.

61 Mrs. Mary Baker G. Eddy, “Christian Science Healing Explained and Defended,” The Christian Science Journal, April 1901. Originally published in the New York Sunday Journal. This article was later republished in Mary Baker Eddy, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, 1908.

62 For a history of the diagnosis of religious insanity, see, Numbers, R. L. and Numbers, J. S., “Religious Insanity: History of a Diagnosis,” Second Opinion 3 (1986): 5777Google ScholarPubMed; Bainbridge, William Sims, “Religious Insanity in America: The Official Nineteenth-Century Theory,” Sociological Analysis 45, no. 3 (1984): 223–39CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed; and “Theories of Religious Insanity in America,” in The History of Science and Religion in the Western Tradition: An Encyclopedia, ed. Gary B. Ferngren (New York: Garland, 2000): 582–87.

63 Even though religion was a leading moral cause of insanity in insane asylum admissions statistics, religious causes were rarely ever more than 20 percent of total admissions.

64 Chas E. Atwood, “Teachings of Recent Investigations into the Causation of Insanity,” The American Journal of Insanity (Baltimore: Utica State Hospital Press, 1891–1892), 340.

65 On the history of dementia praecox, see Richard Noll, American Madness: The Rise and Fall of Dementia Praecox (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2011).

66 In his critique of medical jurisprudence, Hamilton cited the “public ignorance of insanity” as a factor adversely affecting the process and pointed out that outdated classification systems of insanity or disease labels were often referenced in the courtroom and echoed in the press. Allan McLane Hamilton, “The Development of the Legal Relations Concerning the Insane, with Suggestions for Reform” (speech, New York Academy of Medicine, March 1907), The Mary Baker Eddy Library.

67 Heather D. Curtis, “A Sane Gospel: Radical Evangelicals, Psychology, and Pentecostal Revival in the Early Twentieth Century,” Religion and American Culture: A Journal of Interpretation 21, no 2 (Summer 2011): 195.

68 See Article XIV, “The Christian Science Pastor,” and Article XV, “Reading in Public,” in Mary Baker Eddy, The Manual of The Mother Church. (Boston: Allison V. Stewart, 1910), 34.

69 A few of Eddy's students, such as Augusta Stetson and others, nonetheless gained personal followings.

70 Mary Baker Eddy explained in Science and Health that Christian Scientists have no creed but do agree on a basic set of tenets, including their belief that Jesus's resurrection confirmed the metaphysical base of being or “served to uplift faith to understand eternal Life, even the allness of Soul, Spirit, and the nothingness of matter.” Eddy, Science and Health, 497.

71 The presumption of whiteness was standard in the press. While early Church records show that African Americans were involved in Christian Science at the turn of the century, both as recipients of healings and as trained Christian Science practitioners, the majority of Scientists were white men and women of European descent and the profiles of Scientists reflect this fact. In my survey of hundreds of articles collected by the CoP regarding Christian Science and insanity, there were no mentions of African American Scientists.

72 Schoepflin, Christian Science on Trial, 34–37.

73 On madness, gender, and race, see Elizabeth Lunbeck, The Psychiatric Persuasion: Knowledge, Gender, and Power in Modern America (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994); Martin Summers, Madness in the City of Magnificent Intentions: A History of Race and Mental Illness in the Nation's Capital (New York: Oxford University Press, 2019); Jonathan Metzl, The Protest Psychosis: How Schizophrenia became a Black Disease (Boston: Beacon Press, 2009).

74 The concern with over-studying echoed early nineteenth-century interpretations of “excessive Bible reading” as a form of religious zealotry and cause of madness. Heather H. Vacek, Madness: American Protestant Reactions to Mental Illness across Three Centuries (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2015), 98.

75 “Christian Science Student Escapes from Westport Sanitarium,” Westport News, September 21, 1901.

76 “Girl Makes Escape from Sanitarium,” Daily Leader, September 24, 1906.

77 R. Stanhope Easterday, “Says Christian Science Was Her Support,” Muncie Evening Press, August 1, 1905.

78 Edward Hammond Clarke, Sex in Education; or, a Fair Chance for the Girls (Boston: James R. Osgood and Company, 1873), 83–84. On women, health, and Victorian sensibilities, see Smith-Rosenberg, Carroll and Rosenberg, Charles, “The Female Animal: Medical and Biological Views of Woman and Her Role in Nineteenth-Century America,” Journal of American History 60 (1973): 332–56CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed.

79 Susan Lindley referred to Eddy's “ambiguous feminism” to draw attention to Eddy's difficult-to-categorize interpretations of women's rights. Lindley, Susan, “The Ambiguous Feminism of Mary Baker Eddy,” Journal of Religion 64, no. 3 (July 1, 1984): 318–31CrossRefGoogle Scholar. On Christian Science and women, see, Hicks, Rosemary, “Religion and Remedies Reunited: Rethinking Christian Science,” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion 20, no. 2 (Fall 2004): 25–58CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Ann Braude, “The Perils of Passivity: Women's Leadership in Spiritualism and Christian Science,” in Women's Leadership in Marginal Religions: Explorations Outside the Mainstream, ed. Catherine Wessinger (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993); Bednarowski, Mary Farrell, “Outside the Mainstream: Women's Religion and Women Religious Leaders in Nineteenth-Century America,” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 48, no. 2 (June 1, 1980): 207–31Google Scholar; and McDonald, Jean, “Mary Baker Eddy and the Nineteenth-Century Public Woman: A Feminist Reappraisal,” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion 2, no. 1 (Spring 1986): 89111Google Scholar.

80 Schoepflin, Christian Science on Trial, 42–43; Hicks, “Religion and Remedies Reunited,” 42.

81 Hicks, “Religion and Remedies Reunited,” 29.

82 “Victim of Over-Reading,” The Detroit News, August 21, 1908.

83 “Adjudged Insane,” Times Cumberland, August 10, 1908.

84 “Loses Her Mind over Christian Science,” Cleveland News, October 2, 1907.

85 “Woman's 1,000 Mile Ride in Straight Jacket,” New York Evening Journal, March 8, 1906. See also “Driven Insane by Her Religion. CS said to have Deranged Mrs. Jarvis while in Florida,” New York Evening World, March 8, 1906; and “Goes Insane over Christian Science,” Telegraph, March 8, 1908.

86 “Woman's 1,000 Mile Ride in Straight Jacket,” New York Evening Journal, March 8, 1906.

87 “Yearning, Not Creed Broke Her Health,” New York American, March 12, 1906.

88 “Reports Prove to be Unfounded. Christian Science Did Not Drive Mrs. Jarvis Crazy,” Jacksonville Metropolitan, March 17, 1906.

89 “Christian Science and Insanity,” Troy Times, March 8, 1906.

90 Amariah Brigham, Observations on the Influence of Religion upon the Health and Physical Welfare of Mankind (Boston: Marsh, Capen and Lyon, 1835), 146.

91 Frederic Rowland Martin, The Philosophy of Spiritualism and the Pathology and Treatment of Mediomania: Two Lectures (New York: Asa K. Butts and Co., 1874), 14.

92 For a more detailed discussion of the prevalence of this view throughout the nineteenth and turn of the twentieth century, see Alvarado, Carlos S. and Zingrone, Nancy L., “‘The Pathology and Treatment of Mediomania,’ by Frederic Rowland Marvin (1874),” History of Psychiatry 23, no. 2 (June 2012): 229–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

93 “Woman Declared Insane,” Bellingham American, December 11, 1908.

94 “Religious Mania Leads Wife Away,” Grand Rapids Herald, February 19, 1910.

95 “Mother Insane Children Ill,” Reporter, December 16, 1911.

96 “Driven Insane by Eddy-ism Christian Science Doctrine Proves Too Much for Brain of Mrs Thomas Troy,” Star Peoria, July 30, 1910. For more examples of religious insanity attributed to women engaged in Christian Science study, see “Mind Dethroned by Religion,” Herald, June 1910; and “Former Religious Enthusiast Whose Mind Was Twice Impaired,” St. Louis Post, November 12, 1912.

97 “Dollar Hat to Prove Her Sanity,” Boston Traveler, April 9, 1912.

98 On journalism's deployment of the crusade narrative, see Gretchen Soderlund, Sex Trafficking, Scandal, and the Transformation of Journalism, 1885–1917 (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2013).

99 “Lost Her Reason while Confined in Healers’ Care,” New York World, March 4, 1907.

100 The phrase mortal mind was regularly invoked by Eddy in Science and Health and other writings to suggest a person's erroneous co-identification with matter rather than Divine Spirit and therefore their perceived barrier from God or Intelligence. See C. S. V., “Mortal Mind,” The Christian Science Journal, November 1895.

101 Dozens of articles on the Isabelle Hubbard case were published across the country and collected by the CoP. See, for example, “Insanity Did Not Yield to the ‘Healers,’” New York Evening World, March 4, 1907; “Say Xian Science Drove Her Mad,” Daily People, March 5, 1907; “Becomes Insane while Treated by ‘Healer’ of Cult,” Bulletin, March 4, 1907.

102 Gloege, Timothy E. W., “Faith Healing, Medical Regulation, and Public Religion in Progressive Era Chicago,” Religion and American Culture: A Journal of Interpretation 23, no. 2, (2013): 188CrossRefGoogle Scholar. The authority of medical science was further buttressed by newspapers’ narrative of the story, such as the Toledo Press's point that it was the “interference of Christian Science” that had landed Miss Hubbard in the psychopathic ward. “Science Cult Is Blamed in Nerve Disease Case,” Toledo Press, March 4, 1907.

103 Wynn, “The Physician: Pathies, Isms and Cults in Medicines,” 188.

104 See, for example, Olivia Howard Dunbar, “The Real Mrs. Eddy. ‘Mother’ of Christian Science,” New Work World, May 15, 1901; Joseph I. C. Clarke, “The Veiled Prophet of Christian Science,” The New York Herald, May 5, 1901. Both of these articles were collected by the CoP who then submitted letters to the editors correcting views of Eddy.

105 The popularity of the McClure's exposé on John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil trust led to this record in circulation. Daly, Covering America, 146.

106 Georgine Milmine, “Mary Baker G. Eddy: The Story of Her Life and the History of Christian Science,” McClure's Magazine, January 1907, 227–42.

107 Georgine Milmine, The Life of Mary Baker Eddy and the History of Christian Science (New York: Doubleday, Page and Company, 1909), 21, 159, 453.

108 Mark Twain, Christian Science (New York: Harper and Brothers, Publishers, 1907). For critical coverage of Eddy, see, for instance, Rev. John Alex Dowie, “Christian Science Exposed As an Anti-Christian Imposture,” Zion Lecture Series no. 3 (January 1, 1897); Frederick William Peabody, Complete Exposure of Eddyism or Christian Science: The Plain Truth in Plain Terms Regarding Mary Baker G. Eddy, 1904; Charles Giffin Pierce, Exposé of Christian Science Methods and Teaching Prevailing in the First Church C. S., New York City: And the Dangers of the Philosophy which Has Protected, Supported and Enabled Its Votaries to Deceive, Falsify, Oppress, Persecute, Practise Dishonesty and Do Works in Fulfilment of the Prophecy Recorded in Matt. 24:24, Constituting a Menace to Individual Liberty and Rights, and to the Moral and Spiritual Life of a Nation (New York: The Restoration Publishing Company, 1906). This last work included excerpts of insanity profiles of Christian Scientists published in newspapers to support its claims against Christian Science.

109 On defenses of Christian Science and Eddy see, B. O. Flower, “The Recent Reckless and Irresponsible Attacks on Christian Science and Its Founder, with a Survey of the Christian-Science Movement,” The Arena (January 1907): 47–67; Charles Klein, “Christian Science: An Impartial Estimate,” Cosmopolitan (February 1907): 458–63. Publications owned by William Randolph Hearst, such as the New York Journal—the New York World's main competitoravoided publishing rebukes against Eddy and Christian Science after the healing of Hearst's son through Christian Science treatment in 1903. Gottschalk, Rolling Away the Stone, 33.

110 Schoepflin's Christian Science on Trial: Religious Healing in America details the long history of attempts by the medical establishment, including the American Medical Association, to compete with Christian Science practitioners and command control of American healthcare.

111 “Christian Science,” Science, April 22, 1898, 565–66.

112 Schoepflin, Christian Science on Trial, 113–15.

113 “Insanity and Christian Science,” American Journal of Insanity 57 (April 1901): 726–27.

114 “Mrs. Eddy's Case of Hysteria,” The Journal of the American Medical Association 7 (February 16, 1907): 614–15.

115 “Mrs. Mary Baker G. Eddy Dying; Footman and ‘Dummy’ Control Her,” New York World, October 28, 1906.

116 Later, Mary Baker Eddy's adopted son Ebenezer Foster Eddy and another Baker family cousin joined in the suit.

117 Quoted in Gillian Gill, Mary Baker Eddy (Reading, MA: Perseus, Books, 1998), 501.

118 Daly, Covering America, 138

119 “Mrs. Eddy Is Insane,” Daily Journal, June 8, 1907; “Her Alleged Hallucinations,” Manchester Union, June 8, 1907.

120 Mary Baker Eddy, Miscellany, 29.

121 Quoted in Gottschalk, Rolling Away the Stone, 31.

122 Serving for the defense were Hosea W. Parker, a state representative from New Hampshire, Judge Edgar Aldrich, and Dr. George F. Jelly, an expert alienist from Boston. “Distinguished Men Deliberating whether Mrs. Mary Baker G. Eddy Is or Is Not Insane,” Boston American, August 18, 1907.

123 Allan McLane Hamilton, Recollections of an Alienist Personal and Professional (New York: George H. Doran Company, 1916), 311.

124 Michael Meehan, Mrs. Eddy and the Late Suit (Concord, NH: Michael Meehan, 1908), 233.

125 Hamilton, Recollections of an Alienist, 314.

126 Allan McLane Hamilton, “Notes in Regard to Disqualifying Conditions,” 3–4. “Eddy, Mary Baker—Lawsuits—‘Next Friends’—Hamilton, Allan McLane—Materials” Folder Number: 65, Mary Baker Eddy Library.

127 Hamilton, “Notes,” 2.

128 “Eddy Case Collapses,” The Granite State News, August 31, 1907; “Mrs. Eddy Sane and Has No Delusions Says Noted Alienist,” The North American, August 24, 1907.

129 Quoted in Meehan, Mrs. Eddy and the Late Suit in Equity, 246.

130 “Eddy Case Collapses,” Piset Observer, August 29, 1907.

131 “Dr. Allan McLane Hamilton Tells about His Visit to Mrs. Eddy,” The New York Times, August 25, 1907.

132 “Eddyite Has Gone Insane,” Boston Post, October 5, 1907.

133 Calvin Frye, Letter, September 2, 1907, Mary Baker Eddy Library.

134 “Locked Up on Insanity Charge,” Riverside Daily Enterprise, September 21, 1907; “Mrs. Catherine Roe Fails to Improve,” Salt Lake Tribune, October 17, 1907.

135 “Filling Asylums,” Telegram, February 7, 1909.

136 Alfred Farlow, “Christian Science Heals Insanity,” Augusta Herald, February 21, 1909.

137 Olcott Haskell, “Christian Science and Mental Diseases,” San Francisco Call, February 9, 1909.

138 Alfred Farlow, “Dr. Bernard Hollander of London, England, has Given . . . ,” Christian Science Sentinel, August 17, 1912.

139 Reed, Ralph Wallace, “A Study of the Case of Mary Baker Eddy,” The Lancet-Clinic 4, no. 16 (October 15, 1910): 360Google Scholar.

140 Eddy, Science and Health, 414.

141 For Eddy's views on insanity and asylums, see “Christian Science and Insanity,” Christian Science Sentinel, March 21, 1901; “Mrs Eddy Replies,” Echo, March 15, 1901; and Eddy, Science and Health, 408. Eddy and Scientists further critiqued insane asylums for causing the needless deaths of asylum inmates resulting from the carelessness of underpaid attendants who administered harmful and sometimes poisonous drugs. “Poisoned in Hospitals,” Christian Science Sentinel, July 20, 1899.

142 “Christian Science as a Curative Agent and a Religion,” Christian Science Sentinel, February 16, 1899.

143 For testimonies of healing of insanity by Christian Science see, for instance, M. “A Voice from the Queen City,” The Christian Science Journal, September 1896; Belle B. Coleman, “While an inmate of the State asylum for the insane at . . . ,” Christian Science Sentinel, November 4, 1905; Clarence Monahan, “With unbounded love and gratitude to Christian Science . . . ,” Christian Science Sentinel, June 7, 1919; L. Fish, “Severe Mental Affliction Healed,” Christian Science Sentinel, December 21, 1899. Many who submitted testimonies reported seeking healing despite initial hesitations about the religion of Christian Science generally, believing it to be a “mild sort of insanity” itself. William A. Newman, “Christian Science was first brought to my attention . . . ,” The Christian Science Journal, November 1900. Reports of healing were shared as “the fruits of Christian Science” and composed a later chapter of Science and Health entitled “Fruitage.”

144 For psychobiographies of Eddy see, for instance, Edwin Franden Dakin, Mrs. Eddy: The Biography of a Virginal Mind (New York: C. Scribner's Sons, 1929); Kenyon, F. E., “Mary Baker Eddy, Founder of Christian Science; The Sublime Hysteric,” History of Medicine 6, no. 3–4 (1975): 29–46Google Scholar; Maniha, John K. and Maniha, Barbara B., “A Comparison of the Psychohistorical Differences among Some Female Religious and Secular Leaders,” Journal of Psychohistory 5 (1978): 523–49Google Scholar; Klein, Janice, “Ann Lee and Mary Baker Eddy: The Parenting of New Religions,” Journal of Psychohistory 6 (1979): 361–75Google Scholar; and Julius Silberger, Mary Baker Eddy, An Interpretive Biography of the Founder of Christian Science (Boston: Little, Brown, 1980). For Christian Science responses to the continued pathologizing of Eddy, especially the view of her as an hysteric, see Stephen Gottschalk, “Mrs. Eddy through a Distorted Lens; Mary Baker Eddy: An Interpretive Biography of the Founder of Christian Science, by Julius Silberger Jr., MD, Boston: Little, Brown and Co. $12.50,” The Christian Science Monitor, July 2, 1980; and Gary A. Jones, Stephen Gottschalk, and Whitney Balliett, “The Real Mrs. Eddy,” The New York Review of Books, January 11, 2001.

145 Alfred Farlow, “Twenty-Six Years in the Public Press,” Boston Sunday Post, March 24, 1914, 39.

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‘Driven Insane by Eddyism’: Christian Science, Popular Psychopathology, and a Turn-of-the-Century Contest over Faith and Madness
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‘Driven Insane by Eddyism’: Christian Science, Popular Psychopathology, and a Turn-of-the-Century Contest over Faith and Madness
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‘Driven Insane by Eddyism’: Christian Science, Popular Psychopathology, and a Turn-of-the-Century Contest over Faith and Madness
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