Joe Nickell, Ph.D., is Senior Research Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) and "Investigative Files" Columnist for Skeptical Inquirer. A former stage magician, private investigator, and teacher, he is author of numerous books, including Inquest on the Shroud of Turin (1998), Pen, Ink and Evidence (2003), Unsolved History (2005) and Adventures in Paranormal Investigation (2007). He has appeared in many television documentaries and has been profiled in The New Yorker and on NBC's Today Show. His personal website is at joenickell.com.
Review of Charles Fort: The Man Who Invented the Supernatural.
Review of Ghosts Caught on Film: Photographs of the Paranormal By Melvyn Willin.
At the home of a blacksmith named John Fox, strange rapping noises began to occur in the bedroom of Fox's young daughters...
Despite the popular antics of inept "ghost hunters," ghosts continue to remain elusive.
Sir Edmund Hillary, Explorer, Skeptic (1919-2008)
The conqueror of Mount Everest, Sir Edmund Hillary, who died January 11, 2008, was a man of many famous exploits.
Did an incident that reportedly occurred in Turin, Italy, in 1453 offer unimpeachable evidence of the supernatural?
It is a horrifying concept: being buried—or walled-up—alive. Fears of such possibilities were once rife.
Among those creatures that inhabit the night, or at least the nightmares of the credulous, are vampires, zombies, and werewolves
Most "flying saucers" are eventually identified as planes, balloons, meteors, or other objects, or even as illusions or hoaxes.
Did famed orator Robert Green Ingersoll communicate posthumously through a spiritualist medium to recant his atheism?
Like people everywhere, the Dutch can also be superstitious--hence the conference theme, “the paranormal.”
The Loch Ness Critter
Gordon Holmes caught on camera a "jet black thing, about forty-five feet long, moving fast in the water."
A Brazilian faith healer claims spirits take control of his body to enable him to perform surgeries without anesthesia.
Calling it "the world's greatest mystery," Gian J. Quasar revisits the enigma of the Bermuda Triangle.
Peru’s Ancient Mysteries
Peru, like all the Americas, was relatively recently settled. A succession of native cultures flourished in various regions...
Little Audrey: The Life and Death of a ‘Victim Soul’
A milestone in supernatural claims has been reached: Audrey Santo—the brain-damaged girl in Worcester, Massachusetts...
As a cryptozoologist--albeit a skeptical one--I have long been on the track of fabled creatures...
May 18, 2007
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia's fortune tellers failed to foresee the closure of their shops
A Pathologist Among the Spirits
Beyond Knowing: Mysteries and Messages of Death and Life from a Forensic Pathologist. by Janis Amatuzio, MD
Leonardo da Vinci was something of a cryptographer, and much attention has been given his various "codes".
April 5, 2007
If you were a filming a supernatural thriller, would you have Hilary Swank play a Joe Nickell type, or Joe Nickell play himself?
Some assume that UFOs are a modern invention, but since ancient times men have reported seeing strange things in the sky.
Mankind's imagination has always been excited by the possibilities of unknown regions.
In the popular imagination, ghosts are a form of “energy” that survives death.
Spirited Defense: William James and the Ghost Hunters
Review of Ghost Hunters: William James and the Search for Scientific Proof of Life After Death. By Deborah Blum.
Shame on Shamus Sham
The false confession of American John Mark Karr—that he had murdered child beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey in 1996...
Death of a Demonologist
Ghost hunter and self-styled "demonologist" Ed Warren, 79, died August 23, 2006, at his Monroe, Connecticut home.
What were the humanoid-like creatures that terrified a family at their farmhouse?
Belief that spirits of the dead exist and can appear to the living is both ancient and widespread.
In an earlier article, "Peddling Snake Oil" (Nickell 1998), I addressed the question of snake oil’s existence.