Newton J. Tharp in the News

The San Francisco Call
November 19, 1902

Tyndall Does Marvelous Feat: Blindfolded He Makes Wild Drive in a Carriage and Goes to the Lick House and Picks Out Name on Register

Alexander J. Melvor Tyndall, renowned the world over for his celebrated feats of mind-reading, successfully performed one of the hardest and most daring tests know to his peculiar psychic art yesterday. Blindfolded, Tyndall drove a carriage down Kearny street to California, down California to Montgomery and thence along that crowded thoroughfare to the Lick House, where he picked out a name on the hotel register selected by a responsible committee about fifteen minutes before. To this feat Tyndall added additional wonders. He told the date of the page in the register and spelled out or rather wrote out the name picked out by the committee.

It was a wonderful feat of mind-reading and it was a wonderful drive that Tyndall gave the human freight inside the carriage, who went along to see that there was no trickery.

William Greer Harrison, Newton J. Tharp, the architect; A.K. Coney, Mexican Consul; General R.H. Warfield and Clarence Leavy composed the committee selected by S.H. Friedlander, manager of Fischer's Theater, under whose auspices Tyndall performed the feat.

Promptly at noontime Tyndall and the members of the committee, none of whom were personally known to the mind-reader, arrived at the corner of Third and Market streets, from which spot the start was made. Tyndall was taken into a store and blindfolded by Consul Coney, and the consul and Clarence Leavy were delegated to remain with him to see that nobody communicated with him. William Greer Harrison, Newton Tharp, General Warfield, Theodore Bonnet, proprietor of the Town Talk; Eustace Cullinan and W. F. Britt got into a carriage and started down Kearny street.

Before starting several hotels were mentioned and finally the party agreed to drive to the Lick House and select a name from the register there. No one save those in the conveyance knew the hotel that had been selected and as they were all interested in seeing whether or not Tyndall could fairly perform the feat there was no chance for collusion. The horses were driven along Kearny street and over the route already outlined by Newton J. Tharp, he having been chosen to drive by Greer Harrison. At the hotel the register was taken into a private room and only the committee and the three newspaper men were allowed in the room.

A Mad Driver

Several names were suggested and then one of the newspaper men pointed out that of E. L. Ritson, written on November 15. This was satisfactory and Harrison guarded the register, while the rest of the party returned to the carriage and drove back to Third and Market streets to get Tyndall. Nobody left the carriage and a crowd of 2,000 people saw Tyndall mount the driver's seat and start on his wild drive. He was securely blindfolded and trembled like a leaf when he took hold of the reins and put Architect Tharp's hand to his head to read his mind. He was supposed to drive over the same route as the committee traversed, a rather dangerous undertaking for everybody in the carriage. Suddenly Tyndall received his inspiration and he lashed the horses with the whip and they dashed across Market street and down Kearny like a pair of runaways. In front of the Chronicle building a citizen narrowly escaped being crushed under the horses' hoofs.

Architect Tharp did not say a word to Tyndall. He kept his eyes straight ahead and whenever he saw a team or an electric car in the way the thought was instantly transmitted to Tyndall. In fact Tyndall claims that he saw every object that passed through Newton's mind and the manner in which he pulled up the horses and turned out of a car track or away from a passing vehicle at the right time seemed to indicate that he saw everything he claimed. At California street Tyndall swung around the corner in a reckless fashion, but Tharp thought of slowing up going down hill and Tyndall slowed up. In swinging into Montgomery street Tharp saw a clear track for two straight blocks and Tyndall whipped up the horses and sent them along at breakneck speed. Whenever Tharp grew cautious in his mind about coming up to a corner, Tyndall slowed up, just as if he were driving with his eyes open.

Pick Out Name

Upon arriving in front of the Lick House, Tyndall swung the horses into the curb and holding onto Tharp, went directly to the hotel register, and after fingering it for a time, found the page and pointed out the name. After doing this he wrote out the name on an envelope handed him by the clerk. Fully 500 people crowded into the hotel corridor to witness the crowning stunt of the test. After picking out the name, Tyndall went back to the carriage and drove back to the starting point.

The feat opened the eyes of the committee and the others who knew that Tyndall had given a truly marvelous test of mind reading. Upon arriving at Third and Market streets, Tyndall almost fell off the seat and the crowd cheered lustily for him. He was taken inside a store and began to revive from the terrible strain he was under while performing the wonderful test.

Architect Tharp said the moment a thought of danger from passing teams or cars entered his mind, Tyndall would pull up the horses and the moment a clear way showed along the thoroughfares traversed, he would let the horses have the whip and their heads. The drive was marvelous in itself, but those who rode inside the hack said they would not care to take another ride like it for many a day to come.

Tyndall's Last Séance

Tyndall, the famous thought reader, will give his last entertainment at Fischer's Theater this afternoon. The programme will embrace among other new and marvelous feats telepathy in medicine, the bank note experiment, the mental picture, the mock murder (by request), the word in book, the card trial, the age trick, the robbery, the magic music and other mental and psychic phenomena from the simpler to the more intricate experiments. Dr. Tyndall will also answer all challenges this afternoon.

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