When and where was Baird T Spalding born? Part 2

In part 1 of this topic, I wrote about the conflicting tales around Baird T Spalding’s biography, and outlined the historical record.

Fellow mystic and DeVorss author David Bruton wrote about Spalding’s birth date in Baird T Spalding As I Knew Him, a self-published biography released in 1954. On May 26, 1952, Bruton attended a 95th birthday party for Spalding at the DeVorss offices in Los Angeles, and discussed the discrepancies in Spalding’s age with one of the guests. On writing the biography, Bruton noted the idiosyncrasies.

On two different occasions I asked him where he was born. The first time he told me in “upstate New York;” the second, “Spalding, England.” During one of his last public lectures a member of the audience asked where he was born and he answered, “In India.” He spoke with equal affection for the “old family home” in upstate New York, in Spalding, England and in Coconada, Madras Province, India.

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When and where was Baird T Spalding born? Part 1

Baird T Spalding had a long and colorful history, and anyone interested in his life will quickly find themselves knee deep in anecdotal tales. In order to separate fact from fiction, I believe it is critical to establish the key facts of Spalding’s background. Unfortunately very few sources agree on his biographical details, and the information provided by Spalding and his publisher has been inconsistent.

Spalding is often claimed to have been ninety or older at the time of his death in 1953, adding to the mystique around his writings on immortal masters. A Los Angeles Times obituary published on March 21st, 1953, demonstrates the typical claims.

Funeral services will be conducted at Tempe, Ariz tomorrow at 3pm for Baird T Spalding, 95, research engineer, world traveler and author who died in the Arizona city last Thursday.

A similarly inaccurate obituary was published a week later in the Logansport Pharos-Tribune of Indiana.

Rochester friends have received word of the death of Dr Baird Spaulding, age 107, noted scientist, author and world traveler, who was found dead in bed at Arona, Arizona, Thursday.

Neither obituary agrees on Spalding’s age or even the spelling of his surname. In addition to advancing his age over the century mark, the Logansport obituary adds a doctorate and scientific prowess to Spalding’s achievements.

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Welcome to the Baird T Spalding discussion site

Baird T Spalding was an American author and mystic who wrote a popular series of books The Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East. Since their first printing in 1924, Spalding’s books have sold millions of copies, but Spalding’s life story remains shrouded in mystery.

Over the coming months this site will be discussing Spalding’s life and his books, and the mystery surrounding this popular author. Topics will include the religious movements that inspired Spalding, his personal life story, and the truth about his trips to India.

More than fifty years after his death, Spalding remains an important influence on New Age and occult thought. The intent of this site is to reveal the man behind the mystery and encourage a broad, factual discussion of his work.

Commentary and written contributions are welcome from those who have read and been influenced by Spalding.

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