Magic has been attributed to making soldiers appear from a Trojan horse, cheating at card games and fantasy entertainment. It became an American obsession along with vaudeville in the early 1880s and continues today with acts such as Penn & Teller.
The Great Carson, later known as Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show, made his magic debut at the age of fourteen. It is believed his obsession with magic was the “rosebud” (catalyst) that led him to become the most famous talk show host in America.
Erik Weisz, who became Harry Handcuff Houdini, spent his time growing up in New York City and debuted as a trapeze artist at the age of nine in 1883. He partly changed his name due to his respect for American magician Harry Kellar.
As a magician he was best known for his Chinese Water Torture Cell performance where he was lowered into a tank of water upside down and handcuffed.
He later died from a ruptured appendix following an athletic magic feat. A spectator punched him quickly in the abdomen before he could tighten up his stomach muscles to prevent damage.
The Houdini museum is now located in Scranton, PA which is also home to “The Office’s” fictional Dunder Mifflin paper company.
Make the Heat Vanish With Magic
The Master Magicians’ Jumbo Magic Set includes 75 classic table tricks that are easy to learn and fun to perform indoors while avoiding the heat during this summer of record highs.
I was beside myself when I discovered that the manufacturer from which I ordered my magic tricks as a young magician was still in business in Chicago. My jaw dropped when the company told me that the 1930s original owner and magician, Jules Traub, also invented the revolving display rack that we see in every department store.
As with every magician I had to take the Society of American Magicians’ creed including the first and most important rule, I agree to “Oppose the willful exposure to the public of any principles of the Art of Magic, or the methods employed in any magic effect or illusion.”
Buy the Magic set now but be careful, it’s all fun and games ’til someone disappears.
Made in the USA