Alexander J. McIvor-Tyndall

From Kook Science

Alexander J. McIvor-Tyndall
Alexander James McIvor-Tyndall - portrait, c. 1900.jpg

Photo portrait of A. J. McIvor-Tyndall from Revelations of the Hand (1900)

Alias(es) Ali Nomad (translated by him as "Chief Wanderer"); John Lockwood; The Marconi of the Mind, the King of Mesmerists
Born 3 April 1871(1871-04-03)[i]
Market Harborough, Leicestershire, England, United Kingdom
Died 10 December 1940 (69) [1]
Santa Barbara, California [2]
Spouse(s) 1; 2; 3; Frances Osten (m. 1892,[3], dv. 1896);[4] Margaret Logan (m. 1896, dv. 1917); Laura Hudson Wray (m. 1917)
Children Victoria Margaret McIvor Tyndall (1918-1997)

Alexander James McIvor-Tyndall (April 3, 1871 - December 10, 1940) was an English psychical demonstrator and touring lecturer on many allied subjects, including palmistry and hypnotism. Contemporary press accounts related stories of McIvor-Tyndall's experiencing cataleptic fits, some lasting for days, following his public demonstrations of mind reading, a point which he himself played up, and he received further coverage for his performance of such feats as blind driving carriages and proposals to be buried alive. McIvor-Tyndall drummed up further attention by making a habit of offering of his services as a hypnotist to defendants in criminal cases, promising to draw evidence from their unconscious to prove their innocence or guilt, while also offering his services as a clairvoyant to law enforcement, boasting of his power to lead them to criminals. In his regular stage performances, McIvor-Tyndall was known for going blind-folded in an effort to prove his powers as a psychic and for hypnotising groups of people, his routine being roughly in line with other mentalist acts of the day.

As a speaker, writer, and publisher, McIvor-Tyndall was associated with New Thought and Spiritualism, and seemingly every other discipline of like character in between, and his memberships were likewise extensive, including the International Psychic Alliance, New Thought Fellowship, National Spiritualist Association and General Assembly of Spiritualists, Psychic Research Bureau, &c.

Selected Bibliography

McIvor-Tyndall was also editor of The Swastika: A Magazine of Triumph (1906-1911), the main organ of a Swastika movement he promoted for a period.

Illustration of McIvor-Tyndall from 1895 advertising for a Los Angeles performance.

Press Coverage


Photograph of McIvor-Tyndall, blind-folded, and an assistant, engaged in the act of automatic writing, c. 1909.




  • Price, Harry (1936), Confessions of a Ghost-Hunter: Leaves from a Psychist's Case-Book, London: Putnam, p. 282-285  — brief remarks on Price's investigation into McIvor-Tyndall


  1. Alexander James McIvor-Tyndall's date of birth is uncertain. In Who's Who, Herringshaw's National Library of American Biography, and like sources, as well as California death records, his birth date is given as 4 March 1860, while his year of birth is alternatively estimated as 1870, 1871, and 1877 in marriage certificates and other U.S. documentation, and, stretching it even moreso, during the 1940s, McIvor-Tyndall claimed to be nearly or over 100 years old, which would give a birth year in the 1840s. The year 1871 appears to be the most accurate, based on English records of his parents, Alexander McIvor Tindall and Agnes Sampson, who were married in 1868, and English baptismal, birth registration, and census records regarding their son, Alexander James Tindall, whose birth was registered in 1871 (April-May-June),, and was baptised on 9 January 1873,, and who also appears in the England and Wales 1871 Census (aged 0),, and 1881 Census (aged 10),


  3. "Tyndall Married.", San Francisco Call (1 June 1892): 1,, "Alexander J. McIver Tyndall, the mind-reader, was married yesterday by Judge Troutt to Miss Frances Osten." 
  4. "The Divorce Mill", Los Angeles Herald (Los Angeles, CA): 10, 25 Aug. 1896,, "Alexander J. McIvor Tyndall was also granted a decree by default in department two, divorcing him from his wife, Frankie Tyndall, on the ground of desertion."