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April 12, 2010 | History

Leo L. Martello

26 September 1930 - 29 June 2000

Leo Martello was born in Massachusetts, the son of a Sicilian immigrant father. His parents divorced when he was very young, and he was placed in a Catholic boarding school. He claimed to have had many psychic experiences as a child. In his early teens, he began to study palmistry and tarot with a Gypsy woman. He went on to become a hypnotist and graphologist as well. At the age of sixteen, he began making radio appearances, giving handwriting analyses, and selling short stories to magazines. He attended Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts and Hunter College and the Institute for Psychotherapy in New York City, supporting himself with a variety of odd jobs. In 1950 he founded the American Hypnotism Academy in New York. In 1951 he was initiated into a Sicilian-style witch's coven in New York Cityand became a Stregone, or male Witch. In 1955, he was awarded a Doctorate of Divinity degree by the National Congress of Spiritual Consultants. He became a minister and served as Pastor of the Temple of Spiritual Guidance in 1955. In 1960 he left to pursue his interests in witchcraft. In 1964, he travelled to Tangier, Morocco, to study oriental religion, magic, and witchcraft for a year. He founded the Witches' Liberation Movement and the Witches International Craft Association (WICA), and in 1970 he launched publication of the WICA Newsletter and Witchcraft Digest. He also founded the Witches Anti-Defamation League (later renamed the Witches Anti-Discrimination Lobby). He wrote books about witchcraft, hypnotism and handwriting analysis.

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April 12, 2010 Edited by Open Library Bot Added photos to author pages.
January 14, 2009 Edited by caf21 Added title, added web site, added birth date, added bio, added photo
April 29, 2008 Created by an anonymous user initial import