Why do you think Houdini started to engage in anti-spiritual diatribe or became part of anti-spiritualism movement?
His chief assistant, a guy named James Collins said he first turned on spiritualists when he was a teenager.
His father died when he was 19 and there was some important insurance papers that they couldn’t find and Houdini pawned the watch his father had left him and paid a spiritualist to give him a reading and tell him where these papers were. And the papers weren’t there and the money was just gone and the watch was gone and that was sort of a pivotal event in Houdini’s life and kind of soured him on it.
H A P P Y F A T H E R ‘ S DAY ! ! !
We are very familiar with the above Prison Cell and Barrel Mystery Poster, which can be found in many Houdini books.
Both posts included the above photo of a Houdini theater display in Salem, Massachusetts, and commented about the poster on the right behind the packing crate possibly being a second Prison Cell and Barrel Mystery poster. Well, I knew I had seen a frontal image of that poster in a photograph when I visited Fred Pittella’s Houdini & Escapes museum during my special visit to NY in 2015. And that is absolutely a second Prison Cell and Barrel Mystery Poster. Below are two images I took during my visit that Fred has given permission to share.
Special Thanks to Fred Pittella
To kick off June, thought I would share a Pharmaceutical Calendar Ad from 1977, I recently acquired about Houdini escaping from prison when manacled in handcuffs and irons:
He insisted that his escapes were authentic and had police certificates to prove that.
Before actually escaping from his prison cell, Houdini had to free his wrists and ankles from handcuffs and leg-irons.
[The ad goes on to describe various methods he would use to escape depending on if the handcuffs were regulation or not and whether he could reach the lock with his hand or not.]
Once his hands were freed, it was a simple enough to remove the chains and leg-irons. Only one step remained – opening the cell door.
[The ad goes on to say that Houdini was never very specific about how he performed this part of the jailbreak].
To get the real secret of the Cell Escape, highly recommend the David De-Val book