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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...

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)

Photograph

Ben Bergor on Stage

Date: 1930 ca.

Description: Magician Ben Bergor of Madison with the stage equipment he used for his performances.

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

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...

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...

Date:  date unknown

Description: Madison magician Ben Bergor standing in front of the Leota Theatre. Bergor was born Ben Goldenberger, first performed in Vaudeville as Bennie Golden Berger...

Photograph

Off to the Trenches

Date: 1918-05-05 

Description: Send off for World War I recruits at the railroad station. The man leaning out of the train window is Ben Bergor, a professional magician and vaudeville pe...

Date: 1937 ca.

Description: Ben Bergor, a Madison area magician (standing third from the left), with a group of Chicago area magicians. Identified individuals are (seated, left to rig...

Photograph

Mandu the Magician

Date:  date unknown

Description: Doc Mann of Beloit, Wisconsin, who performed novelty entertainment and "top hat magic" as Mandu the magician.

Date: 1950 ca.

Description: Flyer for a family party at the high school auditorium in Columbus, Montana, sponsored by the Nystul Lumber & Imp. Co., an International Harvester dealer....

Date:  date unknown

Description: During his career as an entertainer and magician, Ben Bergor of Madison also booked the acts and served as master of ceremonies for many sports shows aroun...

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...

Photograph

Hypnotism Act

Date:  date unknown

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

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: 1950 ca.

Description: Inside of flyer featuring the performers at the family party held at Williston Armory in Williston, North Dakota and sponsored by the Erickson Implement Co...

Photograph

Ben Bergor Performs

Date:  date unknown

Description: Magician Ben Bergor of Madison performing a trick on stage. With him are his wife, who performed as Madame Alva, and an assistant.

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...

Print

Dell O'Dell

Date:  date unknown

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

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,...

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