Psycho Success Club

From Kook Science

Psycho Success Club

1907 newspaper ad for the Psycho Success Club

Formation c. 1907
Headquarters New York City, NY
President Elmer E. Knowles

The Psycho Success Club was a New York-based mail-order outfit, organised by Elmer Ellsworth Knowles (a.k.a. Elmer Sidney Prather) in around 1907, self-described in their advertising as the "most powerful mental organization the world has ever known,"[1] offering the "Mystic Formula" and "Harmony Key" as part of a correspondence course covering "hypnotism, mysteries of magic, astrology, clairvoyance, graphology, palmistry, and the black arts"[2] to paying students. The club was compared to A. Victor Segno's Segno Success Club,[3] a Los Angeles-based mail-order program that promised "mental waves" would be sent out to assist paying members in achieving success in their endeavours.



  1. "Queries and Minor Notes: Chemist's Report", Journal of the American Medical Association (Chicago: A.M.A.) 71 (11): 922, 1918-09-14,, "In 1909, "Elmer E. Knowles" was president of the "Psycho Success Club," which was operated from 400 St. Nicholas Ave., New York. This was the "most powerful mental organization the world has ever known" — Prof. Knowles said so. Those who sent in $1 or $5 or $10 (according to the ease with which the fool and his money were parted) for membership in this club had to "pledge not to reveal the Mystic Formula or Harmony Key to any person who is not a member in good standing."" 
  2. "FARMER MOURNS HIS $2,600, Sues "Psycho-Success" Wife, Whose Magic Reached Pocketbook", Indianapolis Star (Indianapolis, Indiana): 12, 1912-11-10, 
  3. "Psycho Success Club", Truth 63: 885, 1908-04-08,;view=1up;seq=909, "A good old Yankee ramp has lately reappeared in the new name of the “Psycho Success Club — Prof. Elmer E. Knowles, President.” The premises of the “Club" are at 126, West 34th street, New York. The swindle is modelled on the Segno Success Club, which used to hunt for flats at Los Angeles, California."