“You Are to Do What We Say”: The Adventures of Arthur Conan Doyle and his Spirit Guide Pheneas

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle encountered a spirit named Pheneas through the mediumship of his wife from 1922-1930. Doyle published approximately one-third of these revelations in Pheneas Speaks (1927) and contemplated supplementing them with another book after Pheneas’ prophecies led to the establishment of a worldwide Spiritualist church. But when Doyle died in 1930, several letters were published in which he wondered if spirits from the other side had misled him. Michael W. Homer’s presentation will use previously unpublished materials to explore the séances in which Pheneas appeared to Doyle’s home circle.


Michael W. Homer is a trial lawyer in Salt Lake City, a Fellow of the Utah State Historical Society, Chair of the J. Willard Marriott Library Advisory Board, University of Utah, and member of Board of Advisors, Office of Undergraduate Advancement, University of Utah. He is the Honorary Italian Consul in Utah and has been recognized by the President of the Republic as a Cavaliere dell’Ordine della Stella D’Italia (Knight of the Order of the Star of Italy). He has written numerous articles concerning Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes published by BSI Press, The Illustrious Clients of Indianapolis, The Arthur H. Clark Company, Elledici, SugarCo, Effidieffe, Presses Universitaires de Lyon, Rupert Books, Encyclopedia of Occultism & Parapsychology, Utah Historical Quarterly, ACD: Journal of the Arthur Conan Doyle Society, Manitoba History, SYZYGY: Journal of Alternative Religion and Culture, Dialogue, A Journal of Mormon Thought, and Theosophical History.

Curated and Hosted by

Shannon Taggart is an artist and author exploring the intersection between Spiritualism, photography, and the representation of belief. Her work has been exhibited and featured internationally, including within the publications TIME, New York Times Magazine, Discover, and Newsweek. Taggart’s monograph, SÉANCE (Fulgur Press, 2019), was named one of TIME’s ‘Best Photobooks of 2019.’ https://www.shannontaggart.com/

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Shannon Taggart’s Supernatural Mystery Symposium

Selections from the annual event on supernatural mystery and strange cultural history, curated by Shannon Taggart and hosted in Lily Dale, NY, USA—the town home to the world’s largest Spiritualist community.

What Is the Future of the Grave? by Allison Meier – 3 Mar

Dr. Raymond Buckland’s ‘Wide World of Spirit – Steven Intermill and Toni Rotonda – 24 Mar

Spiritual Spectacles: Mother’s Work and the Shaker Era of Manifestations – Maria Molteni – 11 Apr

Ted Serios: The Mind’s Eye, with Emily Hauver – 25 Apr

Séance: Spiritualism, Photography and the Search for Ectoplasm – Shannon Taggart – 2 May

Music from Elsewhere – Doug Skinner – 9 May

Publishing the Paranormal – Charles and Penelope Emmons – 16 May

Supernatural Mystery Symposium: Reclaiming Art – JF Martel – 23 May

The Adventures of Arthur Conan Doyle – Michael W Homer – 20 Jun

Fall 2024 8:00 pm - 09:30 pm - rescheduled, date to be confirmed

£6 - £10 & By Donation

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