A History of the Craft in America: California and Councils, 1967-1973, Part II

Here continues descriptions of the groups that were involved in the series of “council” meetings in California that led to the founding of the Covenant of the Goddess in 1975. Fred and Martha AdlerTwo figures little appreciated in Craft history are Fred and Martha Adler, who lived in Hawthorne, CA, and were two of the relatively few Witches who cooperated with Hans Holzer in the late 1960s. According to his Truth About Witchcraft, Martha, convinced she had been a Witch in a previous life … [Read more...]

A Brief History of the New Reformed Orthodox Order of the Golden Dawn, Part I

Having been a co-founder of the NROOGD and a ringleader in it for its first decade, I naturally have at least ten times more information about it than about almost any other Craft or Pagan group. Trying to include all that in the general history of the Craft that these blogs are aiming toward would have totally unbalanced it. Putting it together in my Hippie Commie Beatnik Witches has solved the problem. Here I will be giving a much more general overview of the NROOGD, in about as much detail as … [Read more...]

The Pagan Way

In a strict chronology, I should next be discussing events in California and New England in the late 1960s, but, given the problem of many developments all happening more or less simultaneously, I think it will be clearer if I wrap up some later history of the Pagan Way movement, since I have covered its origins.In creating the Pagan Way, Joe Wilson, Ed Fitch, John Hansen, and the other members of the Committee of Correspondence created a form of Witchcraft that was Gardnerian in all but a … [Read more...]

Joe Wilson, Part III: England

Wilson wanted to go to England to contact the many people he knew through his magazine who claimed to have knowledge of the Old Religion. In September 1969 he was assigned to RAF Upper Heyford, Oxfordshire, England.  On the way I stopped in New York to visit Susan Roberts and look at the galley proofs of her book. Also at that meeting were Ed Fitch, Ray Buckland, John Hansen, and Joe Luchak. We agreed that her book was as accurate as possible, and knew that after publication it would generate a … [Read more...]

Before the Gardnerians: Introducing the Magus

 [This begins the first chapter of my forthcoming A Tapestry of Witches: A History of the Craft in America, Vol. I. The book itself will have much prefatory material explaining how, why, and what I am covering. Here I am going to just jump right into the stories.] Certainly there were people called Witches, or who called themselves Witches, in America before the arrival of Gardnerian Wicca in 1963. Sometimes the term meant merely people who practiced some sort of folk magic or had usable p … [Read more...]


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