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Restless Souls: The Making of American Spirituality [Leigh Schmidt] on Amazon. com. Hardcover: pages; Publisher: HarperOne; 1st edition (September 1.
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It is said that Elisha gestured grandly to the mausoleum and told Maggie that this was where she would spend eternity. One could spend months attempting to untangle the complicated, seemingly on-again, off-again relationship of Elisha and Maggie. Indeed, many authors and historians have done exactly that. Even their own letters seem to indicate a cycle of confirming their engagement, then later saying goodbye to one another forever, only to write back shortly thereafter talking about getting married again.


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In fact, there may even be some evidence that Elisha and Maggie were married, albeit informally and largely thanks to a bit of a loophole in Pennsylvania Quaker law. Perhaps it is this muddy timeline which contributes most to the sad events which happened shortly thereafter. On his trip to London, Elisha became sick. Rather than returning home, his doctor recommended that he sail to Havana, Cuba where the warmer climate would hopefully help him recover. He never did. He died on February 16, at only 37 years old. Doing this naturally alienated her from the spiritualist community remember, spiritualism was considered a religion.

Converting to a different religion sent a very clear message. Maggie, now going by the name Maggie Kane, refused, and instead decided to sue the Kane family. She seemed to understand the inherent value of the letters she held and was probably afraid that the Kane family would at best refuse to return them, and at worst destroy them as damning evidence.

What we do know is that the Kane family sadly never paid Maggie a single penny. The only recourse Maggie seemed to have was that stack of correspondence between herself and Elisha. She took all of his letters, with all their private declarations of love and devotion, to a publisher and turned them into a book titled The Love-Life of Dr.

Restless Souls by Leigh Eric Schmidt - Paperback - University of California Press

Kane, which is as joyfully scandalous as it sounds. Unfortunately for Maggie, her story only gets sadder from here. She struggled with depression and alcoholism for the rest of her life.

She admitted that the rapping sounds heard by the audience were nothing more than a shared ability for the sisters to very loudly yet imperceptibly crack their toes. Maggie died in at the age of 59, destitute and alone. Whether or not she ever contacted her husband on the other side is a mystery we may never solve.

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Not every love story has a happy ending. Shakespeare knew it, Victor Hugo knew it, and Victorians living every day lives knew it. You can grab a copy and decide for yourself whether or not these star-crossed lovers were ever married. We think they were. Interested in more stories like this? Like Like. They used to arrive in my email on a regular basis and I would share them with friends who enjoyed them as well.

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You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Skip to content. Maggie left and her sister Kate in an early daguerreotype photo Elisha was a naval doctor and war veteran turned Arctic explorer. Elisha Kent Kane: Arctic explorer In other words, both of these young people existed entirely between two worlds — known and unknown; well mapped and unexplored; real and imagined.


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There was never any kind of attitude in the studio. Once you were there, it was beautiful. I can do my own grocery shopping. I can get out and shop. I am a woman and I am a lady. Farmer Jack, on 12th Street, is exactly where I get my meat. Every now and then I have to bust a few suds, yeah. I do my own personal wash. This restaurant has changed since I was here last. Her life has veered fairly spectacularly from the quotidian. Hence the craving for domesticity—and, after years of show-biz virtues, her demand for straight talk.

She can be incredibly direct. We just really need to know each other. The Reverend C. Franklin was no ordinary minister. In the black culture of the segregated 40s, 50s, and 60s, the preacher carried enormous social and political influence. His was a voice that could wrap itself around the deepest, most private feelings of his thousands of parishioners. Aretha was his beloved daughter, the child whose talent mirrored his own dynamic charisma. She grew up as a child in his church, his temple, under the spell of his dreams. In black Detroit, C.

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Restless Souls: The Making of American Spirituality, Second Edition with a New Preface

She was a princess in a very special kingdom. I mean, truth is the light. Aretha was a little bitty something. Barbara died when Aretha was 10, and the singer, who has never discussed her mother in public, will say little about her today. But I knew she could sing and I certainly could see how much people enjoyed it. There was always music—gospel and jazz. Aretha Franklin, whose skills as a pianist are comparable to her agility as a vocalist, played the instrument like a prodigy almost from the moment her fingers touched the keyboard. It should not have been surprising.

It is hard to imagine a location more nourishing for musical talent. Outside, the sound of nascent Motown moved through the streets. The Temptations lived not too far, a few blocks.


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The Four Tops. So we had a bunch of music happening in our neighborhood. All kinds of musicians were part of her informal musical education. I just listened and met them. My dad wanted me to study and he got a music teacher for me and it was O. I just felt like what we were doing was too childish. The teacher would show up and I would just hide until she left. I refused to go to class anymore. I really wanted to get out of the baby book and this whole vernacular that I thought was elementary.

Restless Souls: The Making of American Spirituality

Suddenly she pauses. My approach would not have been as natural as it is. But with Reverend Franklin pushing, there was no doubt she would succeed. I ask her about the first time she sang in public. I was about eight or nine. They had a chair—I used to stand on the chair because I was too small to be seen behind the podium. But Aretha Franklin did and they remain part of her, part of the diva who seems so unwilling to inconvenience herself for anyone these days.

Baby, those steep mountains with no railings. Never again! But at an age when most of the girls from New Bethel were joining the church choir, Aretha Franklin was meeting the big names.