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Photograph

Houdini, Harry

Date:  date unknown

Description: Harry Houdini in chains and ropes. He is tied to a wheel on a locomotive.

Historical Essay

Magician's Escape Trunk

Wisconsin Historical Museum Object – Feature Story

Escape trunk, restraining devices, and curtain used by magician Ben Bergor of Madison, Wisconsin, 1940s. (Museum objects #1982.159.17,19,21,23,25)

Date:  date unknown

Description: Formal publicity portrait of magician Ben Bergor of Madison performing one of his sleight of hand tricks with lighted cigarettes. Bergor was billed as the...

Photograph

Ben Bergor Escapes

Date: 1940 ca.

Description: Madison magician Ben Bergor, standing in the trunk, and his wife, Alvira, standing nearby, getting ready to perform an amazing escape act. The act had Berg...

Print

Dell O'Dell

Date:  date unknown

Description: Advertising brochure for Dell O'Dell, one of a few professional female magicians.

Date: 1914 

Description: Harry Houdini, born Erik Weisz in Hungary and raised as Erich Weiss in Appleton, Wisconsin, preparing to do one of his famous escapes, this time from a sub...

Photograph

Dorny Dornfeld

Date: 1929 ca.

Description: Quarter-length studio portrait of Werner "Dorny" Dornfeld, a Chicago area magician who was a leader in several national organizations of magicians. The "Be...

Date: 1969-06-24 

Description: Cover of "The Kudzu", an underground newspaper, featuring a reproduction of Martin Schongauer's 15th Century engraving entitled, "Saint Anthony Tormented b...

Date:  date unknown

Description: Magicians Dave (left) and Pauline Coleman performing their famous "Hindu Torture Board" trick using an anvil on a board full of nails positioned on the abd...

Photograph

Houdini in Chains

Date: 1919 

Description: Harry Houdini in a scene from the silent motion picture, "The Grim Game."

Photograph

Dick DeYoung

Date:  date unknown

Description: Professional magician Dick DeYoung of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, on a stage with three other people. DeYoung had over five decades of experience as a club and s...

Date:  date unknown

Description: View from street of Madison magician Ben Bergor being raised feet first (upside down) and in a straightjacket to perform an escape act outside a LaCrosse,...

Photograph

Hypnotism Act

Date:  date unknown

Description: Dr. Morton Greene, a graduate psychologist, performing his hypnotism act.

Historical Object

Houdini Award

Date: 1941 ca.

Description: The Houdini Award, an album, presented to Madison magician Ben Bergor by the Houdini Club of Wisconsin. Because Bergor won the award three years in success...

Photograph

Legislative Party

Date: 1951-05-23 

Description: Republican Assemblyman Ray Bice of LaCrosse performs a magic trick on Democratic Assemblywoman Ruth Doyle of Madison at a cheese party for lawmakers, legis...

Photograph

Sleight of Hand

Date:  date unknown

Description: Outdoor portrait of Madison magician Ben Bergor, who performed as Bennie Golden Berger during the early years of his career. He billed himself as the faste...

Date:  date unknown

Description: Two-sided playing card used for advertising by magician Howard Thurston (d. 1936), arguably the greatest magician of his day. The reverse side of the card...

Photograph

Shriners Yule Party

Date: 1947-12-18 

Description: Fletcher Mills doing a card trick for three children, with a clown looking on, at the Madison Shriners yule party at the Washington Orthopedic School, 545...

Photograph

Dr. Earl Lockman

Date:  date unknown

Description: Dr. Earl Lockman, a well-known escape artist, and his handcuff collection.

Poster

Ben Bergor Ad

Date: 1934 

Description: Advertising poster for a performance by Madison magician Ben Bergor.

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