After writing about my Grandad's dowsing, another memory came back to me. While he was the "official dowser" and used a stick cut from a tree for that purpose, I can remember my grandmother and aunts (her daughters) using a pendulum to divine things, another form of dowsing. This included the sex of the baby a pregnant woman was carrying, or how many children she would have as well as their gender; if someone would get married and when, and if it would be a happy relationship and for how many years it would last. For their pendulum, they simply used a needle on a thread — they would hold it still over the back of the person's hand, and if it went in circular motions, that meant one thing, and if it went back and forth, another indication. There was a lot of that going on when I was small and all the aunts, including my mother, and their friends were marrying and getting pregnant.
So when I later moved to "The Big City," it was no surprise to me in those New Age days when I came across people using crystals and such for pendulums; they were just reviving an old practice. All the old arts have existed on the pendulum of human spiritual development for uncounted ages, swinging this way and that as they lose and then gain momentum, depending on the needs of the times.