Customer rank: +1This is a collection of three similar but distinct publications by Si Stebbins, explaining his famous card stack and various tricks one can do with it. These three are reproduced in facsimile but made searchable with added bookmarks for easier navigation.
The first one has the title "Si and Mary Stebbins" and opens with a wonderful photo of Si and his wife Mary, original Barnum & Bailey Rube. It was printed by Press of Rex Printing House in Philadelphia. No publishing date is given but must be after 1913*. It features the system, rules, and 10 tricks followed by an additional section on Pinochle, Seven-Up and Pitch rules. These card game rules don't have anything to do with Si Stebbins' system but one can assume that they were added by the publisher to increase the appeal of the booklet.
The second publication is "Card Tricks and the Way they are Performed". It starts out with a short description who Si Stebbins is mixed with an endorsement of the Cinco cigar brand. It features again the Si Stebbins system, rules and 10 tricks, but has four additional tricks. The first is the card on wall or ceiling and does not use the Si Stebbins setup in any way. The second trick is a three-deck trick and requires three decks in the Si Stebbins setup. The third effect uses the Si Stebbins setup, too. A spectator cuts the deck into three piles, selects one pile and chooses a number. Performer knows the card at that location in the chosen pile. The fourth effect is a mind reading effect that is not based on the Si Stebbins system. This booklet has in the back ads for the Henrietta and Cinco cigar brands distributed by Otto Eisenlohr & Bros., Inc. of Philadelphia, Pa.
The third publication is an abbreviated one issued by Kanter's Magic Shop. It only has the system, rules, tricks 1-5, and the mind reading trick mentioned earlier. Published in 1935.
* According to research done by Jim Robertson the first two booklets could not have been published before 1913: Prior to trick 5 in each is a reference to a quote from the SPHINX. Jim found it in Vol. 11. No. 11 p. 208 (January 1913). The performer's name was incorrectly spelled Claude Golden instead of Claude Goldin, but the information corresponds to the paragraph in the Si Stebbins booklets. "Claude Golden [sic] does a good clean act now and he can
thank Si Stebbins for many of his ideas."
word count: 10987 which is equivalent to 43 standard pages of text