Monday, August 9, 2010

Second-Hand Apparatus


Here is a pale little flier from Ovette. It appears to have been taped to something else, but I did not find a second page of similar size anywhere near it.

I looked up a few of the apparatus items with little luck, except for the first two, which kind of opened an interesting can-of-magic-worms on a magician I have not yet touched on: Harry Kellar. Kellar is one of those magicians I have made a mental connection with to the occult- probably in large because of his posters. That classic Faustian imagery is why I love vintage magic posters, and hope to one day collect a few of my own.

Something that was also of complete interest to me was learning about Kellar, Houdini, Thurston, and others being Masons. As my Grandfather was a Mason, I have high regard for the order. You can read more about this "Magical Brotherhood" via this article.

I was also interested in "Germain's Original Rose Bush Production," and was able to find this write up on it (and rose tricks in general) via

A real improvement on the trick was devised by that graceful and brilliant performer, Mr. Karl Germain, whose retirement from the stage is regretted by all who have had the pleasure of witnessing his performance.

In his version, a single uncovered flower pot stood on a table. Standing near it Germain began to fan the pot, when gradually there appeared to spring from it a few leaves. These were followed by buds, and then the plant increased in height until it was fifteen to eighteen inches above the top of the pot. That the flowers on it were real there could be no doubt, for the performer cut them off and distributed them to the ladies in the audience.

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