The best way to understand the development of EVP it is to go back a little in time.
With the rise of Spiritualism beginning with the “mysterious rappings” of the Fox sisters in the nineteenth century, there have been many attempts to “contact the dead,” while claiming to be engaged in scientific study.
Thomas Edison saw new technology, part of which he invented, as a means by which spirits might try to contact us. Apparently, he strove to make contact through some sort of phonograph device in the 1890s. Then, in the late 1920s, he tried to make contact with the souls of the dearly departed by means of some sort of special chemical equipment. It is claimed that spirit voices were first captured on phonograph records in 1938, seven years after his death.
However, it was with Friedrich Jürgenson (1903-1987) that the study of EVP really begins. Jürgenson was in some ways a Renaissance Man — an archeologist, a philosopher, a linguist, a painter who was commissioned by Pope Pius XII, a singer and recording artist, and a film documentary maker. . Jürgenson’s interest in Electronic Voice Phenomena apparently began when, after having recording bird songs with a tape recorder, he could hear human voices on the tapes, even though there had been no one in the vicinity.
This surprising event naturally piqued his interest, and he turned his attention to making recordings of nothing — that is, recordings made in a quite place with no one around. He continued to detect voices on these tapes, and his studies led to the 1964 publication of his book Rosterna fran Rymden (“Voices from space”).
He subsequently recognized some of the voices that his tape recorder picked up, including that of his mother, who called him by her pet nickname for him. However, as we say where I grew up, his mother was already “on the wrong side of the grass;” that is, she was deceased. It seemed natural to him to assume that she was communicating from beyond the grave. Thus, he came to the conclusion that all the voices that he had recorded were voices of the dead. In 1967, he published Sprechfunk mit Verstorbenen (“Radio-link with the dead”).