Underwood attends a talk at the local gospel hall in Letchworth

by Sir Wilfred Grenfell,

and is enchanted by tales of adventure in far-off lands...

Wilfred Grenfell (1865-1940)

‘Grenfell of Labrador’, as he was known, was a famous physician and medical missionary to Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada. He helped the poor with food, clothing and medical care.

The Strathcona, used as a medical vessel by the Grenfell Mission.

Title page of Adrift on the Ice Pan by Wilfred Grenfell, an autobiographical account of his harrowing experience of becoming trapped on a small drifting piece of ice while crossing a frozen bay by dog-team on the northern peninsula of Newfoundland.

“...I listened, fascinated…”

“...as he related some of the superstitions…”

“...and charms then common in Labrador…”

Newfoundland - a large Canadian island off the east coast of the North American mainland.

“…and of the haunted house…”

“…where the occupants moved house…”

“…in the middle of the fishing season…”

“They said a spirit

had appropriated their dwelling

by night…”

“...so they moved by day,

when the spirit was asleep,

to another spot...”

“Even after all these years…

Grenfell’s phrases linger in the memory…”

‘I have long ceased to deny things

 just because I cannot explain them’

‘I have seen the accident called death many times

but I never saw any reason to believe in the death of the personality.’ 

“I particularly recall one incident he described…”

“...which involved his meeting a person…”

“...whom he later found to be dead

at the time he had met him…”

“It was little wonder that ... his experiences interested me,

for years later I learned that he had been a member

...of the Ghost Club...”


“Its history is in itself a fascinating exploration of...the development of interest in psychical research in its widest interpretation…”

Early members of The Ghost Club

“...of that which is, at present, inexplicable: the unknown…”

It first began in order “to enquire into Spiritualism

and such phenomena as the Davenport Brothers

were producing…”

The Davenport brothers claimed to be able to 'contact the dead' via their Spirit Cabinet...

A Spirit Cabinet is a medium’s makeshift enclosure, 

 within which spiritual phenomena is purportedly made 

 'actual' or real.

“[The Ghost Club] progressed

from a select…club…”

“...to an association with members world-wide…”

No Common Task

The Ghost Club: A History
p.5, 8

Underwood discusses the Ghost Club.