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Jess Stearn Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: MFA
Date: Nov 1968

Biographical History

Jess Stearn (1914-2002) was an American journalist and author known for his writings on the occult.

After attending Syracuse University, Stearn worked for the New York Daily News as a reporter for seventeen years and then as an associate editor at Newsweek magazine. During his time as a reporter, he became interested in Edgar Cayce, an uneducated clairvoyant who could diagnose physical ailments, prescribe cures, and discuss a subject's past and future lives. Stearn published two biographies of Cayce, Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping Prophet and A Prophet in his Own Country: The Story of the Young Edgar Cayce. Through his interest in Cayce, Stearn went on to publish more than thirty other books on occult subjects such as reincarnation and psychic phenomena and informative subjects such as homosexuality and drugs. Some notable publications are The Search for the Girl with the Blue Eyes (1968), The Search for a Soul: Taylor Caldwell's Psychic Lives (1973), The Door to the Future (1963), Yoga, Youth and Reincarnation (1965), The Seekers (1972), Adventures into the Psychic (1969), The Miracle Workers: America's Psychic Consultants (1972), and The Sixth Man (1962).

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Jess Stearn Papers consist of biographical material, books, correspondence, and financial material.

Biographical material consists of a one-page article announcing Stearn's new column.

The bulk of this collection relates to Stearn's Books. The books for which the collection contains a significant amount of material are Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping Prophet and The Search for the Girl with the Blue Eyes. There are multiple drafts and a substantial amount of research for each book. Also included in this series are reviews of his books.

Correspondence consist of communications with Stearn's literary agencies, individuals, and fan mail Stearn received. Prominent individuals are Marcia Moore Acker, Hugh Lynn Cayce, and Gladys Davis Turner. Moore was an American writer, astrologer, and yoga teacher who was brought to the nation's attention through Stearn's book Yoga, Youth and Reincarnation. Hugh Lynn Cayce is the son of Edgar Cayce. Turner was Edgar Cayce's secretary and took notes on Cayce's psychic readings of various individuals.

Financial material contains the cost of the publicity tour of The Door to the Future in 1963, real estate tax for 1965, receipt for the Thunderbird motor Lodge in Virginia Beach, VA 1966, and a New York Telephone statement of calls and telegrams for May 1968.

Arrangement of the Collection

Books, correspondece, and writings are arranged alphabetically by title or name. Financial material is arranged chronologically.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Ken and Joanne MacIver material relating to Mr Stearn's novel "The Search for the Girl with the Blue Eyes" may only be used with the written permission of Kenneth MacIver. Any such written permission documents will be retained by SCRC.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this cataloging.

Related Material

Two books -- The Reporter and The Miracle Workers: America's Psychic Consultants -- have been separated from the collection and transferred to Rare Books for cataloging. Please refer to the Classic Catalog to locate these items.

For more Edgar Cayce material, see the Juliet Brooke Ballard Papers. The Long John Nebel Papers includes an interview with Cayce from 1968 and two interviews with Jess Stearn (his name is spelled "Stern" in the Nebel listing), 1966 and 1968.

Subject Headings


Caldwell, Taylor, 1900-1985.
Cayce, Edgar, 1877-1945.
Cayce, Hugh Lynn.
Moore, Marcia, 1928-1979?
Reilly, Harold J., 1894 or 1895-1987.
Stearn, Jess.
Turner, Gladys Davis, 1905-1986.

Corporate Bodies

Association for Research and Enlightenment.
Coward, McCann & Geoghegan, Inc.
Doubleday & Company, Inc.


Authors, American.
Psychical research.

Genres and Forms

Clippings (information artifacts)
Drafts (documents)
Galley proofs.
Illustrations (layout features)
Manuscripts for publication.
Research notes.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Jess Stearn Papers
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Jess Stearn, 1968-1973.

Table of Contents

Biographical material



Financial material