J. M. Aldrich

From Kook Science

James Martin Aldrich (1856-1915) was an American confidence man who claimed to have invented a perpetual motion machine, an item that came to Mid-Atlantic press attention in March 1897 when he was arrested at Cleveland, Ohio and brought to Bradford, Pennsylvania on fraud charges after leaving that town with investment funds.

Press Coverage

Spirit Photography at Lily Dale (1883)

  • "LILY DALE CAMP-MEETING. Spiritualists and Liberals in the Woods at Cassadaga -- The Light and Literature of a Queer Gathering.", Buffalo Morning Express (Buffalo, NY): 4, 28 Jul. 1883, "L. and J. M. Aldrich of Pine Valley, Cattaraugus County, N.Y., are located in the grove, and are prepared to furnish a man with his picture surrounded by spirit pictures of departed friends, made up as little angels with big wings or big angels with little wings, at very reasonable prices. You pay your money and take your choice. It is but just to say that one of the ring performers in this spiritual show informed your correspondent that the 'spirit photograph dodge' was an arrant fraud and humbug." 

Perpetual Motion Discovered (1888)

Perpetual Motion Improved (1897)

Scientific American Feature (1899)