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Iowa Families:

The Myths and Legends

Vision Reveals Money

 By Sharyl Ferrall

 The Ladies' Home Journal for March 1905 article titled "Ghosts and Visions that People Have Seen," gives the following story:

    A farmer -- Michael Conley -- living near Ionia, Iowa, went to Dubuque, for medical treatment on Feb. 1, 1891.  Two days later his body was found in an out building of the Jefferson House and was carried to the morgue, where after an inquest it was prepared for shipment to his late home.  The old clothes which he wore were thrown outside the morgue, on the ground, and he was prepared for burial in a new suit of clothes with a white shirt and black satin slippers of an unusual pattern not in the local market.  His son, Patrick, hastened to Dubuque and returned home with the remains.  When he arrived at the farm house with the coffin, and told his sister, Lizzie, that her father was dead,  she fell into a swoon in which she remained for several hours.  Lizzie Conley had not seen her father's corpse; yet when she recovered from her swoon she declared that her father had appeared to her in vision.  she described in detail his burial clothes, even the peculiar slippers placed upon his feet by the undertaker.  Asking where her father's old clothes had been put, the daughter further recounted how he, in her vision, had informed her that after leaving for Dubuque he had sewed a large roll of bills inside his gray undershirt beneath a piece of red cloth.  The entire family scouted Lizzie's experience as an hallucination, but the physician attending her advised that the clothes be recovered, if only to set her mind at rest.  Her brother telephoned to the coroner at Dubuque and asked that his father's clothing be found and placed in a bundle.  The young man arrived at the coroner's office a few days later, took the gray shirt from the bundle, and inside found a secret pocket of red material sewed wit large awkward stitches such as a dim sighted old man would make.  Within the pocket was a roll of bills amounting to thirty-five dollars.


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