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Novice Karate Group (ages 8 & up)

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Eric Sysoev
Eric Sysoev

A Magician Among The Spirits By Houdini



The real situation, of course, is, however, that among people who frequent séances the difficulty is not for the mediums to convince them of the genuineness of the phenomena but for them to fail sufficiently badly to make their clients suspicious. A professional medium once told a friend of the writer that on one occasion when the séance had gone wrong and he had found it impossible to extricate his hand, he had been obliged to represent the spirit presence by touching the client with his cheek: the medium was in a panic because he realized immediately that he was unshaved; but the lady quickly reassured him after the séance by explaining that she had considered it their most successful: the spirit hand had communicated its divine essence in the form o fan electrical pricking. One remembers also the French savant who reported to his government that, as the result of prolonged and careful researches, he had established in respect to spirits that they had hair, that they were warm, that they had beating hearts, that their pulse could be felt in their wrists and that their breath contained carbon dioxide.




A Magician Among the Spirits by Houdini



Harry Houdini (1874-1926), master magician and escape artist, wrote in A Magician Among the Sprits, (1924) that he had "accumulated one of the largest libraries in the world on psychic phenomena, Spiritualism, magic, witchcraft, demonology, evil spirits, etc., some of the material going back as far as 1489." In 1927, through Houdini's bequest, the Library received 3,988 volumes from his collection. While strongest in nineteenth and twentieth century publications on spiritualism- Houdini doubted "if any one in the world has so complete a library on modern Spiritualism: - the Houdini Collection contains a number of magic books inscribed or annotated by well-known magicians. Leonard N. Beck. discusses significant items in "Things Magical in the Collections of the Rare Book Division," QJLC, v. 31, October 1974, p. 208-234. Also in the collection are prints, playbills, printed ephemera, periodicals, and many volumes of pamphlets on such topics as card tricks, mediums, hypnotism, handcuff escape methods, and chalk-talking. Of special note are over one hundred unannotated scrapbooks containing theatre notices and news clippings on subjects of personal interest. Houdini's theatrical collection was sold after his death to Messmore Kendall and later donated to the University of Texas. Supporting Resources 041b061a72


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