Dr. J. Heber Smith gets robbed


Dr. J. Heber Smith, professor of medicine at Boston University, is the person who introduced Evangeline Adams to astrology in the late 1800s. We know from Dr. Smith’s obituary that he was born on 5 December 1842 in Bucksport, Maine. He died in Boston on 28 October 1898. Even though J. Heber Smith played a key role in American astrology in the 19th century, his birth chart does not appear in AstroDataBank.

Obituary of Evangeline Adam’s mentor Dr. J. Heber Smith

Because his birth time is unknown, the chart presented here is cast for Noon (mean positions of the planets) in an Aries-rising wheel.

Birth chart of Dr. J. Heber Smith, time unknown

As far as I know, Dr. Smith published very little about astrology, but a brief booklet allegedly written by the doctor on how to interpret transits has been available through the American Federation of Astrologers. Evangeline Adams’ delineation of transits was strongly influenced by the teachings of her mentor, Dr. Smith.

In the section of his booklet about Jupiter transiting in conjunction or evil aspect to Mars, Dr. Smith mentions that he was robbed because of carelessness on his part and the failure to safeguard his things. His comment is rather garbled, and I suspect that whoever typed his notes did not understand Dr. Smith’s use of astrological glyphs and notation. Here is the direct quote in written English, rather than astrological notation:

I was robbed under the following configuration; Jupiter entering Scorpio opposite Neptune and Mars radical and square Mercury, helio, with Saturn entering Taurus in opposition.”

It is a bit hard to make sense of this quote, but looking in the ephemeris for the period covering Dr. Smith’s lifetime, we find that Jupiter was entering Scorpio at the same time that Saturn was entering Taurus only during the span from about 11 October to 4 November of 1851, when Dr. Smith was almost 9 years old. Maybe someone stole his bicycle, which he carelessly left unsecured. A likely date for the robbery was 29 October 1851 when (based on the geocentric positions):

Transiting Jupiter was at 4 Scorpio opposite transiting Saturn. (The noon heliocentric position of natal Mercury was 1 Scorpio 37′, so the geocentric position of transiting Jupiter would have been conjunct rather than square to the heliocentric position of natal Mercury.)

Transiting Saturn was at 0 Taurus 25′ Rx opposite transiting Mercury, Jupiter and Sun.

Transiting Jupiter was at 4 Scorpio 00′.

Transiting Neptune was at 6 Pisces 34′ Rx in square to natal Mercury and Sun.

Transiting Mars was at 2 Leo 43′ in square to transiting Mercury and Sun.

Natal Mars was square to natal Jupiter and Saturn.

Dr. Smith had a profound influence on Evangeline Adams’ life, as is suggested by the synastry between their birth charts. Here is Evangeline’s natal chart (inside) with J. Heber Smith’s noon positions superimposed around her nativity.

Synastry between Evangeline Adams (inner chart) and Dr. J. Heber Smith, her mentor (outer wheel).
His Uranus conjoins her Ascendant, Mercury and Venus.
His Pluto sextile Neptune closely aspects her Sun.
His Sun occupies her 9th house, and his Mercury conjoins her 9th cusp and her Saturn in the 9th.
His Jupiter/Moon conjunction in her 11th, where Jupiter rejoices, sextiles her Pisces Ascendant degree.

About Anthony Louis

Author of books about astrology and tarot, including TAROT PLAIN AND SIMPLE, HORARY ASTROLOGY, and THE ART OF FORECASTING WITH SOLAR RETURNS.
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3 Responses to Dr. J. Heber Smith gets robbed

  1. Pingback: Will the real Dr. J. Heber Smith please stand up? | Anthony Louis – Astrology & Tarot Blog

  2. Tom Callanan says:

    “November of 1851, when Dr. Smith was almost 9 years old. Maybe someone stole his bicycle, which he carelessly left unsecured.”

    Unlikely, as the bicycle, as we know it, really hadn’t been invented yet. The first bicycle with a pedal crank wasn’t invented until 1853. I know you were only guessing 😉

  3. Thanks for the information about bicycles. Maybe his favorite toy got stolen.

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