These stories are not "founded upon fact"; they are fact. If I may claim any merit for them it is this—they are absolutely and literally true. They seem to me to be unusual even among the mass of literature that has been written upon the subject they illustrate; if they possess any novelty at all it may be found in the fact that the phenomena they describe occurred, for the most part, without invitation, without reference to "conditions," favorable or otherwise, and without mediumistic intervention.
I have written these stories with no purpose to bolster up any theory or to strengthen or weaken any belief, and I must say frankly that, in my opinion, they neither prove nor disprove anything whatsoever. I am not a believer, any more than I am a sceptic, in regard to so-called "Spiritualism," and have consistently held to my non-committal attitude in this matter by refraining, all my life, from consulting a medium or attending a professional séance. In the scientific study of Psychology I have a layman's interest, but even that is curious rather than expectant;—my experience, which I think this book will show to have been considerable, in the observation of occult phenomena has failed to afford me anything like a positive clue to their causes or meaning.