I'm continuing on this vintage paranormal month on GHT to cover the 50s, 60s and 70s and the para events/icons/obsessions that made us all para geeks today. I'm covering one of the biggies in parapsychology - Hans Holzer.
Hans Holzer was born in Austria and ended up settling in New York. He had a life-long interest in the paranormal. Eventually, he ended up teaching parapsychology at the New York Institute of Technology, as well as writing over 100 books on the paranormal and occult. He was involved in researching some of the most notable cases of paranormal activity.
He believed in the afterlife and ghosts. He believed ghosts to be imprinted and the right people could read their presence. Spirits, however, he believed, could interact with the living. He also believed in spirits being earthbound at times and reincarnation. In fact, many of his findings helped to define present-day takes on hauntings.
In 1977, Holzer and a medium did an investigation of the Amityville home. The medium said the home was built over an ancient burial ground and that an old Native American chief's spirit had taken over Ronnie DeFao to make him kill his family there.
On an interesting note, he was a very spiritual man, believing in reincarnation, past lives, also a vegan and a Wiccan high priest.
Being one of the real groundbreaking investigators in the heyday of the rebirth of spiritual investigations, Holzer was a polarizing figure. It was easy to tear apart any of his claims (as are done today), but there was an audience for his books and shows, findings and insights. Not much has changed in the field of investigation since, as far as rebuking claims.
Even Dan Ackroyd mentioned that Hans Holzer's influence made him interested in doing "Ghostbusters."
Today, the next generation, born and raised in Holzer's care, his daughter Alexandra, does investigating and writing about the paranormal. We have had her on Paranormal Geeks Radio before and she is really intelligent, talented, and insightful, definitely someone to watch in the realm of haunting phenomena.
Hans Holzer books
Alexandra Holzer book
More about Hans Holzer
*Tomorrow's post is Proving Life After Life