A couple of new findings in no particular order... may interest students of Vivekananda's life...
1. Marie Louise Burke the "Paragon" of Vivekananda researchers, wrote, in Volume three of her New Discoveries: "Christina Greenstidel and Mrs. Mary Funke were the last to arrive bringing the number of known disciples up to eleven. But in her 'Introductory Narrative' to her Inspired Talks, Miss Waldo writes, 'By a singular coincidence just twelve students followed the Swami to Thousand Island Park.' At the date of this writing his or her identity is unknown."
We now have the pleasure of solving this long standing mystery:
Besides the known visitors at Thousand Island Park during the Summer of 1895... a newly discovered visitor to the Swami at Thousand Island Park. According to a Syracuse newspaper : Ethel Howe. For a long time it was known that there were 12 visitors in total to see the Swami at Thousand Island Park at the summer of 1895. Eleven of the names were known to biographers and the 12th name was a mystery. We know there were 12 from the poetic reminiscenes of Miss Sarah Ellen Waldo , but she never mentioned the names. From other sources in the past we learnt the names of the eleven. We now have the long awaited answer to the question of who was the 12th visitor to the Swami at Thousand Island Park. Mystery 12th person solved? The 12 are: Stella Campbell, Ellen Waldo, Ruth Ellis, Dr Wight, Landsberg, Marie Louise, Miss Dutcher, Walter and Frances Goodyear, Chirstine Greenstidel, Mary Funke, and ... Ethel Howe. More on her later
2. Dr. Street, who is the third Western Sanyasin of Vivekananda's used the intitals J.B. and in an interesting article published in 1901 talks about a Hindoo Swami, appearing in connection with the World's Fair, having brought the knowledge of reading crystals which Dr. Street employed.... but the article does not specifically mention Vivekananda.
3. We now have a photo of the notorious Leon Landsberg. It was published in 1920, almost eighteen years after Vivekananda's death. In the article, Landsberg, using the name the Swami gave him-- (Kripananda), talks of indefinite mortal life, through asana and pranayama, while claiming he is not a "Hindoo". At present, we do not know the date of Landsberg's death, or if he was successful in preserving his own body- as he claims was possible. He would be approximately 160 years old now, if he were living, and about 70 when the article was published.
5. Yet another new discovery- at least for us- is to learn of the connection between Emma Calve and Henri Jules-Bois. Calve was the last host for Swami in the west in late 1900, a tour through east Europe to Egypt, Bois, along with Josephine MaCleod, and the former Pere Hyacinth and his wife were also guests.
It seems that she and the writer Bois were well known among the then thriving Parisian esoteric scene as paramours. Bois who was deeply interested in magic and mysticism wrote a book "Satanism and Magic" which was banned by the Catholic Church. Calve apparently shared his fascination in the occult and employed some of the symbolic elements of withcraft, along with a heavy dose of lascivious and wanton elements into her role as Carmen.
6. Several newspaper reports have been recently re-discovered and as far as we know have not been published in connection with the Swami's life...
7. Photo (for the first time ) of the Mansion where Vivekananda stayed in Detroit- the home of Frances Bagley, his staunch friend. Also some new (to Vivekananda researchers) photos of Mrs Bagley, which may be of interest.
- www.vivekananda.net edited by Frank Parlato Jr.