Saturday, June 3, 2017

Remembering James Hamilton

Last month I was shocked and saddened to learn that James Hamilton had passed away. James was a wonderful man who was Wild About Herrmanns. He even looked like Herrmann! I always enjoyed seeing James at the Magic Castle and at magic conventions. I felt we were kindred spirits in our devotion to a single magician, and I always asked him what was new and happening in the Herrmann world. To be standing with him when he got his first good look at the magnificent Matthew Brady portrait of Alexander Herrmann at the last L.A. Magic History Conference was a real treat.

It was also James who provided me with the Jesse L. Lasky quote: "[Houdini] did his best acting handcuffed and locked in a trunk at the bottom of a river." I would frequently tell him that his line was still getting the biggest laugh of my lectures. He always liked that. It also seemed like every time I saw him he was in the midst of sharing. Whether it be his knowledge, items from his collection, or just his own great joy and enthusiasm. In fact, I believe I first met him while he was helping a young historian with information about Adelaide Herrmann for her college dissertation on Women in Magic. That was James.

Yesterday at the Magic Castle, I heard someone say, "James is now with Alexander." I do like the idea that Herrmann is now sharing with him.

Items from James's Herrmann collection will be auctioned by our friends Haversat & Ewing Galleries on June 23-24.

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3 comments:

  1. Oh, no! So sorry to hear this. He was the living link to "Compars."

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  2. I was shocked when I heard the news. I didn't know James well, but we had a great conversation a couple years ago, which I will never forget. I had hoped to get to know him better and of course was anxious for his Herrmann book. It appears he has asked Margaret Steele to finish the book, so this is good news.

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  3. RIP JAMES MUCH LOVE......

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