For anyone who came of age during the middle of the 20th century, it was hard to not run across the name of Jeane Dixon. From the 1950s to the 1980s, Dixon was considered one of the premier psychics in the United States. Her high profile was maintained by a syndicated newspaper column, seven books (including two best sellers), and the fact that she provided readings to during more than one presidential campaign. The supermarket tabloids of the day, especially the National Enquirer, often ran feature stories on Dixon and some of her latest predictions.
To her followers, Dixon could do no wrong. Specific predictions were hailed as proof of her abilities. Detractors would tend to focus on anything Dixon said that did not come to pass, or that seemed so vague in nature that it was inevitable that the prediction would come true sooner or later. Regardless of whether you believe in psychic abilities or not, there is no denying that Jeane Dixon was a force to be reckoned with for the better part of thirty years.
Named Lydia Emma Pinckert at the time of her birth, Dixon came into the world in Medford, Wisconsin. The family did not tarry in the area, moving first to Missouri and later to Southern California. Much of Dixon’s childhood was spent in California.
One of the ongoing controversies about the life of Dixon related to the year of her birth. The most often cited date is 5 January 1918, and happened to be the date that Dixon was most likely to include in her press kits and mention in any interviews. On at least one occasion, she provided the year of 1910 as part of a legal inquiry. In later years, a reporter claimed to have convincing evidence that both years were incorrect, and that Dixon was actually born in 1904.
From most accounts, her growing up years were happy ones. Her father, Gerhart Pinckert, entered into a business partnership with Hal Roach, who was well known as a movie producer at the time. The business had nothing to do with the film industry however. Instead, the nature of the operation had to do with the sell of new and used vehicles.
According to Dixon, it was in Southern California that she was first advised that she had powers and would one day be known as a true seer. This information was the result of a gypsy reading her palm and gifting her with a crystal ball. Part of the prediction was that Dixon would one day have the ear of powerful people and provide advice that if heeded would produce positive results.
Throughout her life, Dixon was a faithful member of the Roman Catholic Church. In fact, she often stated that her abilities were a gift from God.
A Long and Happy Marriage
In 1939, young Lydia Pinckert married James Dixon, a union that lasted until his death. Her new husband also owed a car dealership and was known for making honest deals. The company was very successful for a number of years. Dixon’s young wife also participated in the business operation, serving a number of years as president.
Beginnings of National Prominence
By the 1950s, Jeane Dixon was beginning to amass a following and providing psychic services to a few prominent individuals. The general public became more aware of here and her abilities after the publication of an article in 1956. The 13 May 1956 issue of Parade magazine included several predictions by Dixon, one of which would later be remembered. That was the prediction that the Democrats would win the presidential election in 1960. Further that winner would later die in office, either due to illness or assassination.
Her fans were quick to remember the first part of the prophecy when John F. Kennedy, a Democrat, was elected in 1960. Even more people would remember that 1956 prediction when President Kennedy was assassinated on 23 November 1963.
For the better part of the next twenty-five years, Dixon remained in high demand. She made frequent guest appearances on talk shows, wrote a column that was widely syndicated and began to be involved with several book projects related to her life and her work. Of particular note is A Gift of Prophecy: the Phenomenal Jeane Dixon, authored by Ruth Montgomery. Considered to be of a biographical nature, the book provided much of the foundation for the official story of Dixon’s life. Published in 1965, the book would remain popular for years, selling in excess of three million copies.
While all of the seven books that included Dixon’s participation would sell well, there as only one more that reached the heights of A Gift of Prophecy. That was My Life and Prophecies, which was credited with being based on conversations between Dixon and Rene Noorbergen. This claim was later challenged by Adele Fletcher, who said that My Life and Prophecies was nothing more than a reworked version of a manuscript that she had submitted and was later rejected. According to court records, Fletcher was later awarded a percentage of the book’s sales.
Ties to the Presidency
The scope of Dixon’s consultations with political figures and celebrities is not well known, owing to the fact that many of those dealings were conducted in confidence. There are two verified connection with two separate presidents of the United States. Dixon would often consult with Rose Mary Woods, who was the secretary to Richard M. Nixon. The appearance of Dixon in the Oval Office in 1971 is often cited as one event in a long line of consultations that continued up until Nixon’s resignation. In light of the fact that Nixon, chose to set up cabinet committee focused on terrorism shortly after Dixon predicted terrorist activities would commence in the USA after the 1972 Munich Olympics, her followers tended to believe that she carried a great deal of influence with the President through Woods.
Jeane Dixon is also known to have provided psychic readings and advice to Nancy Reagan during the years that Ronald Reagan served as President. The extent of Dixon’s consultations is not known, since Mrs. Reagan was known to consult more than one psychic during those years.
The Later Years
As the 1980s progressed, Dixon began to step back from the spotlight. This was especially true after the death of her husband. While she still made the occasional appearance, her place was eclipsed by other psychics of the day.
Jeane Dixon continued to live quietly in her remaining years, although she continued to provide advice for clients and even managed to publish two more books during the 1990s. After suffering a heart attack, Dixon passed away on 25 January 1997. Running Press published one of her two books of the decade posthumously in 1998.