Volume/Folder: Newspaper clippings regarding the Order of Fifteen occultist group

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Record Number: 5730
Call number: Wo*989
Volume: 1
Date of Original: circa 1907 - 1910
Original Format: Printed Matter, Clippings
Image description: News clippings, mostly from the Philadelphia Public Ledger, regarding the esoteric occultist group the Order of Fifteen at the University of Pennsylvania. The first group of news items describe controversy around the group when F. Homer Curtiss, corresponding secretary for the group and University of Pennsylvania student, sent University provost Dr. Abbey literature about the Order. Dr. Abbey understood the literature to be promoting "free love" and adultery, and alerted authorities. There are also two columns dedicated to Dr. Abbey's veiws on the evolution of human gender and sexuality.

The next set of news items tell the story of the divorce proceedings of Mr. William E. Mountain and Mrs. Valerie Mountain. William Mountain, an amateur poet, claimed that his wife's involvement in the Order of the Fifteen came between them; a large portion of the stories related to their divorce discusses the teachings of the Order, and why it may have instigated their divorce. Mr. Mountain's poetry is also highlighted in a few of the articles. One finally claims that Mrs. Mountain took a ghost, "Bill," as her lover. This last portion of this article is only available as a photocopy--this reproduction is digitized here.