International Association for the Preservation of Spiritualist and Occult Periodicals
About Archives Practices Contribute Contacts Search


Periodical: Modern Astrology (Rose Dawn)

Summary:  From Pat Deveney's database:

Rose Dawn's Modern Astrology.
Published in the Interests of the New Astrology, together with Astrology's Scientific, Metaphysical and Religious Aspects through the Ages / Day to Day Guide.
Other titles: Modern Astrology
1936—1942 Monthly
Del Rio, TX, then New York, NY. Editor: J. Travelstead, editor, "P.T. Koran," Dr. Matthew N. Mattson, DD., associates; William P. Taylor, editor; J. Travelstead, managing editor, "P.T. Koran," Dr. Matthew N. Mattson, D.D., associates; etc.. Succeeded by: World Astrology Magazine
1/1, June 1936-1942. Originally 12 pp. tabloid format publication and then 40 pp. magazine format.

In December 1937 the journal was purchased by Fox Publications of New York, although Rose Dawn continued to edit the journal for a time in 1938. It ceased publication in 1942 and was merged into Fox's World Astrology Magazine in December 1943. This was the work of William P. Taylor and Isabelle Mullens/Taylor, husband and wife (at least at common law) entertainers on Border Radio in the 1930s. The pre-eminent scholar of the mentalist radio scams of the period, John B. Buescher, has noted that the journal "always featured a dreamy headshot of [Rose Dawn] on the cover (as did her calendars), which showed her visage to much advantage and displayed her ‘blondined' resemblance to Mae West and Jean Harlow."

As Buescher has laboriously discovered, William Perry Taylor (November 5, 1897-August 14, 1953) was born in Dayton, Ohio, and turned without notable success to acting and then conjuring and mind-reading by a crystal ball (under the name "Prince Rajbar Mahendra") until in the early 1930s he moved to Del Rio, Texas, to perform as a mentalist under the name "Koran" and "Koran the Mystic" on John R. Brinkley's Radio XER/XERA ("the world's most powerful broadcasting station") in Mexico, across from Del Rio. On Brinkley, the goat gland transplantation specialist, see the notes on Sydney B. Flower under Hypnotic Magazine, New Thought (Chicago), and Rejuvenation. At some point Taylor encountered Isabelle Madge Coutant Kruschke Mullens [Taylor(?)] (February 12, 1897-August 21, 1964), an Indiana-born singer and showgirl, who at the time was married to John H. Mullens, Taylor's sometime manager and advance man. Isabelle (or Delores/Dolores), under the name "Rose Dawn, the Star Girl" came to have an amazingly successful program on XER/XERA (measured by the volume of incoming mail), giving psychic readings, astrological advice and prayers to listeners, and offering "instructions in fortunetelling -- as well as books to make one's personality blossom like a flower and magic vials of exotic perfume," as Fowler and Crawford relate in Border Radio (1987). She also offered a "Rose Dawn Giant Daily Astrological Guide," complete with a "Good Luck Affirmation" for the year, and had a nationally syndicated astrology newspaper column. Rose Dawn, who was rumored to have been Brinkley's personal astrologer (and mistress), soon took up with Taylor whom she apparently married in 1935 (though there is no formal record of the marriage), and they began promoting the Mayan Order as the vehicle for their mail-order lesson business. Although they proclaimed that Taylor had encountered a secret Mayan occult group in Mexico in his search for occult wisdom, no details of which are provided, the Mayan background was perhaps based on nothing more than the couple's geographical location, a reading of Augustus Le Plongeon, and a desire for something mysterious and unknown to their audience to anchor the business. There were other Mayan-inspired occult ventures at the time, notably Harold Davis Emerson's Mayan Temple (see the note under the Mayans), founded in New York the late 1920s, but there is no known connection between the two ventures.

This journal was started in June 1936 to capitalize on and promote the Taylors' radio shows and line of products (Rose Dawn's fine perfumes, the "Comfort Club," "Rose Dawn's Brand of Fine Citrus Fruits,". In format it was a typical astrology publication, with a "Day by Day Guide" for the current month, "Dawn-ology," "Lessons in Astrology," and "Among Us Women" by Rose Dawn, articles on "Mayanry," applied astrology (for salesmen, etc.), "The Star of Bethlehem," and on character analysis for that month. Contributions by Elbert Benjamine, Robert A. Hughes, Helen McFarland, Dr. J.A. Lange, Dr. Matthew N. Mattson, D.D., Abel Abbot, Christina Dahl, Juanita Coleman, "Ariel," Theodore Devere, and others. Over time, emphasis shifted increasingly to the mysteries of the Mayans, on which see the note under Daily Meditation/Divine Meditation. University of California, Santa Barbara; NYPL.

Issues:Modern Astrology V2 N1 Jan 1937
Modern Astrology V2 N2 Feb 1937
Modern Astrology V2 N3 Mar 1937
Modern Astrology V3 N5 Nov 1937

Creative Commons License
IAPSOP materials are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
IAPSOP respects people's privacy and personal data rights.