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Harry Houdini

Harry Houdini

(24th March 1874 - 31st October 1926)

Born in Pest, Hungary. Stage name of Ehrich Weiss (born Erik Weisz). Of Hungarian-Jewish parents, his father being a rabbi. Brought to USA later that spring when the family name was henceforward spelled Weiss and his first name was re-spelled Ehrich.

At age 9 saw his first magician (Dr Lynn). Moved to New York City in 1888 when taught his first sleight-of-hand tricks by friends Jake Hyman and Joe Rinn. Inspired to become a professional by reading Robert-Houdin's Memoirs in 1890 and then in 1891, at Hyman's suggestion, adopted 'Houdini' as stage name.

Without doubt, the most famous magician in history. To escape a life of poverty reinvented himself as magician Harry Houdini, King of Cards and Handcuff King. To survive in vaudeville, Houdini invented the Escape Challenge, daring spectators to handcuff or tie him in unusual knots and devices - and Houdini was always able to escape. A public relations genius far ahead of his time, Houdini created the image of the living superhero, escaping from straitjackets, bonds and jails. Houdini changed his direction in the early 1900s, abandoning the Challenge (sadistic policemen were caught on several occasions trying to shackle Houdini with hopelessly jammed cuffs) in favor of the straightforward escape. The Metamorphosis (in which he changed places with his wife Bess, who was locked inside a trunk), the Milk Can (in which he was locked inside a metal can full of liquid) and the Water Torture Cell (in which he was shackled upside down inside a tank full of water) were his most famous onstage escape illusions. Houdini again changed direction after 1913, when his mother died. Heavy with grief, Houdini turned to spirit mediums in an effort to contact his mother, and was shocked to find that the mediums were nothing more than frauds using magic tricks to con their victims. Furious, Houdini launched a passionate crusade to expose spirit mediums by actually performing their "miracles" and then exposing them as a part of his stage show. Houdini died unexpectedly in 1926 on Halloween from peritonitis. Houdini had been suffering the symptoms of appendicitis for several days when he was punched in the stomach several times by a McGill University student who was testing Houdini's ability to withstand blows. The punches ruptured the already distressed appendix, and Houdini's refusal to seek medical attention for another several days caused the fatal infection. Houdini had been planning a spectacular illusion called Buried Alive, in which he was to remain sealed in a buried coffin for an extended period before escaping. The coffin was on tour with him when he died, and his body was shipped home in it. Though Houdini was most known as an escape artist and magician, he also owned his own movie company, making several films in which he, of course, starred. He also held a U.S. patent for an improved diving suit, and was the first pilot to fly solo in Australia.

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Corde Magiche ed Evasioni

Corde Magiche ed Evasioni by Harry HoudiniQualunque tipo di spettacolo tu faccia questo libro fa per te!

GRANDE LIBRO - GRANDE MATERIALE

Arricchisci la tua biblioteca digitale di un vero e proprio GIOIELLO : per la prima volt in formato digitale in Italiano un libro del Grande HOUDINI

Si tratta di CORDE MAGICHE ED EVASIONI . In questo libro Houdini sciorina tutto il suo sapere in un campo che gli appartiene per eccellenza: LE CORDE.

TUTTI possiamo trovarvi (e noi lo abbiamo fatto) materiale pratico per il nostro repertorio sia che eseguiamo magia generale, giochi con le corde, escapologia, grandi illusioni, mentalismo,...

Harry Houdini16 Mar 2013$8.00

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Magical Rope Ties & Escapes

Magical Rope Ties & Escapes by Harry HoudiniThis is one of the best books by Houdini, because here he writes about something he really knows alot about. With many of his escapes he had to be very familiar with the knots he was tied up. This book has many good illustrations and several photos where Houdini himself demonstrates certain ties. It is a great collector item as well as source of information. If you can only buy one book by Houdini, by this one.

1st edition, 1920, Will Goldston Limited, London; 80 pages.

Table of Contents

pagepage
  1. Photograph - Ira E. Davenport and "Houdini".
  2. Foreword
  3. For Opening of Rope Act
  4. A Simple...
Harry Houdini7 Sep 2005$8.00

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Mysterious Mr. Yu

Mysterious Mr. Yu by Harry HoudiniMysterious Mr. Yu or Haldane of the Secret Service is a story (film script) to one of Houdini's own movie creations. It features Houdini as Haldane, a secret service agent who fights an evil ring of counterfeiters, interwoven with a love story.

1st edition, 1921, Harry Houdini; 6 pages.

Harry Houdini7 Sep 2005$2.00

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Miracle Mongers and Their Methods

Miracle Mongers and Their Methods by Harry HoudiniIn Miracle Mongers and their Methods, Harry Houdini turns a critical eye to wonders such as 'The Incombustible Spaniard' or 'Defiers of Poisonous Reptiles'. The timeless fascination with miracles and astonishing claims makes this classic as timely as when it was originally written.

1st edition, 1920, Dutton; reprinted, 1980, Cole; reprinted, 1981/1993, Prometheus; 240 pages.

Table of Contents

pagepage
  1. I.Fire worship. - Fire eating and heat resistance. - The Middle Ages. - Among the Navajo Indians. - Fire-Walkers of Japan. - The Fiery Ordeal of Fiji
  2. II.Watton's Ship-swabber from the Indies....
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Houdini's Paper Magic

Houdini's Paper Magic by Harry HoudiniPaper is a fascinating product. Being the son of a paper maker (my father worked many years for a paper manufacturer) I developed early on a fondness to paper. And Houdini's Paper Magic is all about paper. Tricks with paper, paper folding, paper tearing, and paper puzzles. It seems today paper folding was replaced by balloon modeling. I have only seen once an act entirely based on paper tearing. Maybe this ebook version of Houdini's Paper Magic inspires one to build an act around paper. This book is definitely a good start. The Modern Conjurer has also an excellent chapter on paper folding.

1st edition, April...

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A Magician Among The Spirits

A Magician Among The Spirits by Harry HoudiniHoudini writes about the famous mediums in his time. Names like Palladino and Ann O'Delia Diss Debar should ring a bell. He also elaborates on his exchanges with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle who was a firm believer in spirits and paranormal phenomena.

1st edition, 1924, Harper & Row, New York; reprint 1972, Arno Press, New York; 296 pages.

Table of Contents

pagepage
  1. Introduction
  2. Preface
  3. I. The Founders of Modern Spiritualism
  4. II. The Davenport Brothers
  5. III. Daniel Dunglas Home
  6. IV. Palladino
  7. V. Ann O'Delia Diss Debar
  8. VI. Dr. Slade and His Spirit Slates
  9. VII. Slate Writing and Other Methods ...
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Handcuff Secrets

Handcuff Secrets by Harry HoudiniHoudini shines in this book. Handcuffs are his passion. He knows every little detail about them and every nuance in their mechanism. Houdini was not a particular good magician, but as an escape artist he is still unsurpassed. Thus, if you would like to know more about handcuffs and their inner workings, this book is for you.

1st edition, 1909, George Routledge & Sons, London; later reprinted by Magico Magazine, New York; 110 pages.

Table of Contents

pagepage
  1. Preface
  2. I.Introductory
  3. II.Opening Sealed Handcuffs
  4. III.Blunders of some Handcuff Exposers
  5. IV.Fake or Spoof Manacle
  6. V.American...
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"Margery" the Medium Exposed

"Margery" the Medium Exposed by Harry HoudiniHarry Houdini spent a good part of his life exposing mediums and 'unexplainable' phenomena. In this booklet he describes the case of the Boston "Margery" and the prize the Scientific American put up for true paranormal effects. He not only clearly describes and demonstrates the tricks of this very clever medium but also tells the difficulties surrounding the actual exposure. Houdini was world class in the role of the detective. It is fascinating to read how he sensitised his leg to be able to feel the slightest movement the medium made.

Margery or Mina Stinson (1888–1941) was born in Canada...

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The Unmasking of Robert-Houdin

The Unmasking of Robert-Houdin by Harry HoudiniHoudini was upset that the widow of Robert-Houdin did not want to meet him. As a revenge Harry Houdini wrote The Unmasking of Robert-Houdin, in which Houdini tries to push Robert-Houdin from his pedestal. He tries to show that most tricks Robert-Houdin claimed as his invention were infact not his invention and that Robert-Houdin was not this great magician he usually is thought he was. But most of Houdini's alegations are fabricated and do not stand close inspection. Jean Hugard wrote as response to Houdini's nasty book Houdini's Unmasking, where Hugard point for point refutes Houdini's argumentation. I personally favor Hugard's opinion,...
Harry Houdini7 Sep 2005$6.00

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The Right Way To Do Wrong

The Right Way To Do Wrong by Harry HoudiniThis is a fun book to read. Great stories about pickpockets, burglars, bunco men, thiefs, and others. Houdini collected interesting cases talking to detectives, and police chiefs. The book describes the methods used to scam innocent victims. Some of these schemes are still popular, which shows again, that one can learn a lot from the past.

published 1906 by Harry Houdini, Boston MA; later reprinted by Gamblers Book Club, Las Vegas; 96 pages

Table of Contents

page

  1. Preface
  2. Shot One - Income of a Criminal
  3. Shot Two - Professional Burglary
  4. Shot Three - Difficulties of Burglary
  5. Shot Four...
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02/10/2016
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