Lily Dale Assembly: Fairy Trail Gallery

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Walking through the woods at Lily Dale Assembly, you may feel a prickling on the back of your neck indicating you’re not alone. You may think it’s a communication from beyond the pale, given that Lily Dale is the world’s largest spiritualist community. Yet, if you find yourself along the forest path behind the Healing Temple, be aware the fairies and angels abound. You can read more about the Fairy Trail here.

Enjoy the gallery below with images of this magical spot. Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Pet Cemetery Gallery

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Lily Dale Pet Cemetery German ShepardLily Dale Assembly is a Spiritualist community in Western New York and home to America’s oldest known pet cemetery. It’s filled with unique markers that signify the bond between humans and their animal companions. You can read more about this remarkable cemetery here.

Enjoy the gallery below with images of this extraordinary site.  Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Leolyn Woods and Being One with Nature

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Lily Dale mushroom whiteLily Dale Assembly cultivates a connection to the spirit world within a beautiful natural setting. Leolyn Woods is an old-growth forest located on the grounds of Lily Dale Assembly in Western New York. Leolyn Woods includes nature trails, a meeting area for spiritual retreat, and a pet cemetery. The grounds are on the shores of Cassadaga Lake, providing a scenic backdrop for the Lily Dale community. Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Architecture and Community-Building

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Lily Dale Architecture library

The Lily Dale library was built in 1924

The second half of the 19th century was a time when progressive ideas and religious movements took hold in the United States. In the 1870s, a group of Spiritualists and Liberals began to meet in Laona, NY to discuss their beliefs and to practice healing and mediumship. They began to meet at the nearby Alden farm, eventually expanding their day-long conferences into lengthier summer gatherings. In 1879 the Spiritualist Society of Laona purchased 20 acres along Cassadaga Lake to found what would later become known as the Lily Dale Assembly. As time went on, this Spiritualist camp became a strong community.
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Lily Dale Assembly: 19th Century Reform and Revival in Western New York

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Lily Dale old stump crop

Inspirational Stump at Lily Dale, NY

Lily Dale Assembly is a Spiritualist community founded at the end of the 19th century in Chautauqua County in Western New York. Residents and visitors to this small community aspire to make connections with those who’ve passed to the afterlife. It’s attracted progressives, reformists, and freethinkers for well over a century. This spiritualist town rose out of the religious reform and revivalism that flourished in New York State in the 19th century. Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Walking the Fairy Trail

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lily-dale-fairy-trail-2-blue-winged-angelChautauqua County in Western New York is home to old growth forests, beautiful lakes, and enchanted footpaths. Lily Dale Assembly has all of this and more. The long-standing community of Lily Dale is dedicated to understanding the science, philosophy, and religion of Spiritualism. Just past the Fox Cottage Mediation Garden, on the eastern edge of Lily Dale Assembly, is a woodland path known as the Fairy Trail. Here you can enjoy a peek into the unseen world while walking through a beautiful woodland. Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Spiritualist Practices in the 19th and 20th Centuries

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Hypnotic Séance 1887 by Richard Bergh

Hypnotic Seance, 1887, by Richard Bergh

Lily Dale Assembly is dedicated to understanding the science, philosophy, and religion of Spiritualism. Spiritualists believe that individual personal identity continues after death, that those in the spirit world can communicate with the living through a medium, and that healing and prophecy are expressions of God. Throughout Spiritualism’s history, the methods by which mediums would communicate with the spirit world have changed. Spiritualist practices of the past that focused on the physical manifestation of spirit  have given way to a modern emphasis on mental mediumship. Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: Home of America’s Oldest Pet Cemetery

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Lily Dale Pet Cemetery cat angelLily Dale Assembly, a Spiritualist community in Western New York, is home to the oldest known cemetery devoted to companion animals in the United States. It sits in the beautiful Leolyn Woods, an old-growth forest, at the back of the Assembly grounds. Spiritualists believe that mediums can communicate with people who’ve passed on to the afterlife. Just as people remember the friends and family they’ve loved, many also seek a way to memorialize animal companions who have given them so much comfort and joy in life. The pet cemetery serves as the final resting place for the pets of many Lily Dale residents, as well as memorializing other animals that have passed on to spirit.  Continue reading

Lily Dale Assembly: How the World’s Largest Spiritualist Center Came to Be

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Lily Dale signHave you ever sought spiritual guidance? Desired to receive the wisdom and reassurance of those who have passed to the afterlife? Lily Dale Assembly in Western New York creates a beautiful setting for those seeking connection with the spirit world. As the world’s largest spiritualist community, Lily Dale is a site of historical, cultural, and spiritual significance.

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The Other Fox Sisters and the Spiritualist Movement

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excerpt from A Fox Family History by Kevin A. Fox:

The Fox Sisters and the Birth of Spiritualism

There seems to be in the Fox family a strength and peculiar ability … an innate something which attracts and inspires.
—Mariam Buckner Pond, 1947

Introduction

The cottage where Margaret and Katie Fox first communicated with spirits.

The cottage where Margaret and Katie Fox first communicated with spirits.

My children grew up in Fredonia, New York, just five miles north of Lily Dale Assembly, which bills itself as “The World’s Largest Center for the Science, Philosophy and Religion of Spiritualism.” During the summer months it is the largest community of “spiritualists” in the US. The Fox sisters of Hydesville, New York are still celebrated worldwide as key figures in establishing the Spiritualism movement in the US and Europe in the mid-nineteenth century (Putnam, 2003). They are still spoken of reverently in Lily Dale, where one can see various monuments to their work—the Lily Dale Museum is filled with documents and relics relating to their lives. While I remain a curious skeptic, my daughters and their friends have more directly investigated the possibility of communication with spirits by having occasional “readings” by resident “mediums.” When they tell me the results of their readings I am often at a loss to explain how the “counselors” come by the information they seem to possess. If you travel to Western New York, I urge you to schedule a personal reading with any of the celebrated “mediums” at Lily Dale and make your own determination.

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