FAY, ANNA EVA -- MT129.000 - (COPPER)
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ANNA EVA FAY -- MT129.000

DATE: 1905
OBV: Seated Hindu goddess in center, "MASCOT / AEF".
REV: Hieroglyphic figures around edge, wreath, inside: "AYX / 70d / 770".
COMPOSITION: C, struck without a collar, irregular size & shape, R5, V5. Irregular-S

Information From:
Magicians' Tokens And Related Items
An Illustrated check-list with estimates of values and rarities.
by F. William Kuethe, Jr.
TAMS Journal, Volume 18, Number 5, October 1978, (Part Two)
Product Details
Personal Details
Read It No
Location Magic Library (Home)
Condition Very Fine
Owner Bryan-Keith Taylor
Anna Eva Fay
From MagicPedia
Anna Eva Fay (1851-1927), born Ann Eliza Heathman in Southington, Ohio, was a Spiritualist popular in vaudeville during the late 1800s, where she billed herself as "The Indescribable Phenomenon".

Between 1870 and 1874 the eminent scientist William Crookes conducted a series of controversial experiments with some of the most remarkable mediums of the age, including Fay whom baffled him.

Washington Irving Bishop, who had worked with her as an assistant and manager, exposed her methods to a newspaper. She was also investigated by Harry Houdini, to whom she eventually admitted many of her tricks, after her retirement.

The Magic Circle made her an honorary member, designating her an Honorary Lady Associate, since women at that time were not eligible to be a members.

Her son, John Truesdale Fay (1877-?) also had an act with his wife billing themselves as "The Fays."


Anna Eva Fay (b. 1851-1927)

Anna Eva Fay's Real Name
Ann Eliza Heathman


The indescribable Phenomenon


Medium, Mentalist

Place of Birth

Southington, Ohio, USA


Approx. 5'-5'3"






Anna Eva Fay possessed the ability to make people believe she could tap into the spirit world and make contact with the dearly departed. She also harnessed the ability to see into people's minds and read their thoughts. She was one of the most famous and successful mediums and mentalists of her time.


Anna Eva Fay was one of the most renown mediums and stage mentalists of the twentieth century. She perplexed some of the most authoritative minds in her field and made people believe she could summon the spirits of the departed.
She was a celebrity, an enemy of magician J.N. Maskelyne, a close friend of Houdini and one of the last century's greatest mind-reading phenoms.

In 1848, a new religion called Spiritualism was born; The belief that spirits can be contacted, by means of "mediums," who can acquire information about the afterlife. Three years later saw the birth of another phenomenon. Ann Eliza Heathman was born in the small town of Southington Ohio.

As a child, she was told she was a medium for the spirits of the dead. She gave her first exhibition in an old schoolhouse, and from that point on she never looked back. Early in her career Ann met her first husband, Henry Melville Fay, an unscrupulous fraudulent medium and medium exposer in his own right.

Henry took Ann under his wing and under his guidance. As a result, she conquered America and then Europe, becoming Anna Eva Fay, the girl who stumped Sir William Crookes, one of the most respected scientists of the age.

In 1877, Anna and Henry had a son, John Truesdale Fay. John traveled with his mother's show and was suspected of assisting with "manifestations" while hidden under Anna's dress.

When the popularity of spiritualism began to decrease after the 1850's, Anna turned to conjuring in the form of mentalism.

Rather than summoning spirits, she was delving into the thoughts of her audiences. Anna's repertoire in mind reading exploded, making her one of the most famous and successful stage mentalists of her time.

Anna and Henry's marriage quickly disintegrated, and in 1881, Anna married David H. Pingree, who promoted her shows which included a stage clairvoyant act called "Somnolency," now known to be an ingenious effect.

In her later years, Anna made money answering letters by mail, in addition to her ongoing stage appearances. In 1913, she was honored by the famous conjurer's association "The Magic Circle" in London, which elected her honorary lady associate.

In 1924, Anna had an accident in Milwaukee, causing her retirement. Fay died may 20, 1927.