The New Houdini Chronology ☛ A.D.

| 1916 | 1917 | 1918 | 1919 | 1920 | 1921 | 1922 | 1923 | 1924 | 1925 | 1926 | A.D.

Last update: 2/21/18
The following are significant events in the afterlife of Harry Houdini.

1927
July: Houdini's magic and spiritualism library donated to the Library of Congress.
April: Bess sells 278 to neighbors John and Filippina Bonanno.
Oct. 31: Houdini bust and S.A.M. embalm revealed on grave.
December: Bess previews "frozen man" act at 420 West Fifty-Third Street, New York, NY.

1928
Feb. 8: Medium Arthur Ford claims to make contact with Houdini's mother. Says "Forgive."
Publication of Houdini His Life Story by Harold Kellock.

1929
Jan. 5: Arthur Ford claims to have received the 10th and final word of Houdini Code via a series of seances.
Jan. 8: Arthur Ford holds seance with Bess and press at Payson Ave, reveals Houdini Code.
Jan. 10: Papers report Ford seance a "hoax."

1930
Jan: Bess opens tea room Mrs. Harry Houdini's Rendezvous in New York.
March 19: Bess issues statement saying she never received a legitimate message from Houdini and renounces the possibility.
Bess meets Edward Saint in Rye Beach, NY.
Publication of Houdini's Escapes by Walter B. Gibson.

1931
Publication of The Secrets of Houdini by J.C. Cannell.

1932
Nov. 24: Bess tours with The Mantell-Houdini Show.
December: Houdini's real birthday and birthplace revealed in German magic magazine Die Magie. Not reported in U.S.
Publication of Houdini's Magic by Walter B. Gibson.

1933
Hardeen opens "Houdini's Temple of Mystery" in Atlantic City, NJ.

1934
Bess and Ed Saint live at 2435 Laurel Canyon, Hollywood, CA.

1935
July: Bess and Ed Saint have Houdini Seance at 2435 Laurel Canyon, Hollywood, CA.

1936
April: Hardeen stars in Vitaphone short Medium Well Done.
October: Houdini on cover of second issue of Genii Magazine.
Oct. 31: The Final Houdini Seance in Hollywood, CA

1938
March: Bess films Religious Racketeers at The Grand National Studios (Poinsettia and Santa Monica Blvd.) in Hollywood.
April 12: Religious Racketeers previewed.
Sept. 10: Hardeen begins 4-year run in Hellzapoppin' on Broadway.

1941
Nov. 1: Mina "Margery" Crandon dies at 53.

1942
March 6: Jim Collins (60) dies.
June: Hardeen gives Sidney Radner the Water Torture Cell.
Oct. 22: Edward Saint (52) dies in Hollywood, CA.
Oct.: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1943
Feb. 11: Bess Houdini (67) dies aboard a train in Needles, CA.
Feb. 18: Bess is buried in Gate of Heaven cemetery in Hawthorn, NY.
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1945
Jan. 25: Hardeen appears on television, WCBW, New York.
May 29: Hardeen names assistant Douglas Geoffrey as successor, Hardeen Jr.
June 12: Hardeen (69) dies in Doctor's Hospital, Brooklyn, NY.
June 15: Hardeen buried at Machpelah cemetery.

1946
Publication of The Great Balsamo by Maurice Zolotow.

1947
Hardeen Jr. and Sherms tour with show "Houdini Lives Again."

1948
Oct. 31: Friends of Houdini and Hardeen hold seance at 12 Gay Street, NY. First of the "Official" Houdini seances?

1949
Seance inside 278. Rose Bonanno claims to receive phonecall from Houdini.

1950
Publication of The Great Houdini by Beryl Williams and Samuel Epstein. First book to note Martin Beck's contributions to Houdini's career.

1953
July 2: Paramount's Houdini starring Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh released in U.S.
July 15: The life of Harry Houdini on "You Asked for It", WMAL-TV.
Publication of Houdini on Magic by Walter B. Gibson. (Never goes out of print.)

1955
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1956
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1958
James Randi recreates Houdini's Shelton pool test, proving Houdini used no trickery.

1959
January: Houdini's sister Carrie Gladys Weiss (77) dies.
July 10: House at 2400 Laurel Canyon burns in massive brush fires. Papers report it as "Houdini Mansion."
August: Publication of Houdini The Man Who Walked Through Walls by William Lindsay Gresham. First biography to show Houdini's birth as March 24, 1874 in Budapest.

1960
Sept. 22: Portions of The Man From Beyond air on ABC's Silents Please hosted by Ernie Kovacs.
Publication of Houdini Master of Escape by Lace Kendall (Adrien Stoutenburg).

1961
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1962
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.
Oct. 5: Leopold Weiss (70) dies by suicide.

1964
October: Genii Magazine Houdini Memorial Issue.

1966
Feb. 17: Gladys Hardeen dies at 64.
Nov. 16: Man of Magic stage musical opens in London. Runs 126 performances.

1967
June 28: Elise Hardeen dies at 95.

1968
May: Houdini Magical Hall of Fame opens in Niagara Falls, Canada.
Oct. 31: Seance at Houdini Magical Hall of Fame, CA.

1969
Publication of Houdini The Untold Story by Milbourne Christopher.

1970
July 4: Papers report discovery of Houdini voice recordings.
Dec. 29: The Truth About Houdini airs on BBC. First full length Houdini documentary.
Remains of Laurel Canyon "Houdini Mansion" demolished.

1971
Water Torture Cell put on permanent display at Houdini Magical Hall of Fame, CA.

1972
October: Genii Magazine Special Houdini Issue.
The Houdini Birth Research Committee's Report officially recognizes Houdini's birthplace as Budapest and birthdate as March 24.

1974
March 1: The Grim Game screens at the New School, New York, NY.
March 24: Franklin Mint strikes medal commemorating centennial of Houdini's birth.
Oct. 31: Seance at Houdini Magical Hall of Fame, CA. Attended by Dunninger and James Randi.

1975
April 9: Houdini's grave bust smashed by vandals.
Oct. 31: Houdini receives star on Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood, CA.
Nov. 16: Houdini (1953) airs on KCOP in Los Angeles (seen by a young John Cox).
Dec. 26: Doug Henning does Houdini's Water Torture Cell live on NBC special "The World of Magic."
Houdini features in E.L. Doctorow's bestselling novel Ragtime.

1976
March 19: Milbourne Christopher as Houdini in Magic Vs. The Occult at Lincoln Center, NY.
April 28-May 25: The Great Houdinis films in Los Angeles.
May 15: The Truth About Houdini documentary airs in U.S. for first time.
Oct. 8: The Great Houdinis starring Paul Michael Glaser and Sally Struthers airs as ABC Friday Night Movie.
Oct. 30: Saturday Night Live broadcast from Houdini's grave.
Dec. 23: Doug Henning does Houdini's Vanishing Elephant live on NBC special.
Publication of The Original Houdini Scrapbook by Walter B. Gibson.
Publication of Houdini His Life and Art by James Randi.
Publication of Houdini A Pictorial Life by Milbourne Christopher.
Publication of Houdini A Mind in Chains by Bernard C. Meyer.

1977
Sept. 29: Houdini A Circus Opera opens at Carre Theater in Amsterdam.
Dec. 15: Doug Henning does Houdini's Walking Through a Brick Wall live on NBC special.
Publication of Houdini His Legend and His Magic by Doug Henning and Charles Reynolds.

1978
Sept. 27: Steve Baker does Water Torture Cell on Dick Clark's LIVE Wednesday.
Oct. 31: Houdini seance inside Room 401 of Detroit's Grace Hospital.
Dec. 5: Fonzi does Milk Can escape on Happy Days.

1979
Grace Hospital in Detroit is torn down.
Houdini Never Died documentary released in VHS.
The Executioners Song published with claim by Gary Gilmore that he's the illegitimate grandson of Houdini.

1980
April: 278 sells to Louis Moise.
June 13: Final contents of 278 auctioned in New Jersey.
Aug. 3: Houdini Never Died airs on HBO.
Publication of Death and the Magician by Raymund Fitzsimons in UK.

1981
November: Movie version of Ragtime released with Jeffrey DeMunn as Houdini.

1985
May 25: Houdini Plaza dedicated in Appleton, WI.

1986
Oct. 31: Recreation of the Final Houdini Seance at Variety Arts Center in Los Angeles.

1987
March 15: Young Harry Houdini airs as ABC Disney Sunday Movie.
Oct. 31: Official Houdini seance held as live television event.

1989
The Houdini Historical Center is established in Appleton, WI.

1990
Jan. 14: Douglas Geoffrey aka Hardeen Jr. (82) dies.

1991
Fred Thomas buys 278.
Water Torture Cell is refurbished by John Gaughan. Displayed as Los Angeles History Conference.

1992
Sid Radner collection loaned to Houdini Historical Center in Appleton, WI.

1993
November: Genii Magazine Special Houdini Issue.
Publication of The Life and Many Deaths of Harry Houdini by Ruth Brandon in UK.
BBC's Houdini The Life of the World's Greatest Escapologist documentary released on Home Video.

1994
May 25: Houdini's grave suffers major vandalism.
June 20: A&E airs Houdini: The Great Escape first airs on Biography. First of many half hour Houdini documentaries to air on similar cable series'.

1995
March 23: Houdini is character in Las Vegas show EFX (played by Michael Crawford).
April 30: Houdini Magical Hall of Fame closed by fire. Water Torture Cell and Swansa straitjacket destroyed.
May 24: Houdini Unlocking His Secrets airs on NBC.

1996
Dec. 8: Houdini is character in stage musical Ragtime.
Publication of Houdini!!! The Career of Ehrich Weiss by Kenneth Silverman.
Gene Gamache's Houdini People Came To See Him Die documentary released on VHS.

1997
Oct. 24: FairyTale: A True Story with Harvey Keitel as Houdini released by Warner Bros.

1998
Dec. 4: Houdini starring Johnathon Schaech and Stacy Edwards airs on TNT Network.
The Master Mystery is released on a 2-tape VHS set by William H. McIlhany.

1999
Nov. 5: Items from the Houdini Magical Hall of Fame auctioned at Butterfield & Butterfield's in Los Angeles.

2000
Jan. 24: American Experience Houdini documentary airs on PBS.

2001
Houdini is character in bestselling novel Carter Beats The Devil by Glen David Gold.

2002
July 3: U.S. Post Office issues first class Houdini stamp.

2003
Sid Radner pulls collection from Houdini Historical Center in Appleton, WI.

2004
Oct. 31: The Great Houdini Auction (Sid Radner collection) at Liberace Museum, Las Vegas, NV. Restored Water Torture Cell sells for $300,000 to David Copperfield (price later reduced  to $150,000 due auction irregularities).
Nov. 2: Houdini's niece Marie Blood dies.

2005
Oct. 31: Houdini Unlocking the Mystery documentary first airs on History Channel.

2006
January: Houdini-Lives.com launched (my first Houdini website).
Oct. 31: Publication of The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America's First Superhero by Bill Kalush and Larry Sloman.

2007
Jan. 11: Haldane of the Secret Service screens at the Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles (previously unknown print).
March 23: Authors Bill Kalush and Larry Sloman announce plan to exhume Houdini's body to test for poisoning.

2008
April 8: Houdini The Movie Star 3-DVD set released by Kino. Collects all Houdini's movies except The Grim Game.
July 11: Death Defying Acts with Guy Pearce as Houdini released in LA and NY.
Oct. 24: Houdini Hollywood Walk of Fame star restored and rededicated.

2009
Disneyland's Main Street Magic shop becomes "Houdini's Magic Shop."

2010
March 18-21: Houdini Centenary Flight celebrations in Diggers Rest, Australia.
Oct. 29: Houdini Art and Magic touring exhibition opens in New York.
Oct. 31: Publication of Houdini The Key by Patrick Culliton. Reveals secret of USD.
Nov. 10: WILD ABOUT HARRY launched.

2011
March 20: Dorothy Young (Houdini assistant) dies at age 103.
Sept. 29: Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brookz of Houdini Museum in Scranton restore Houdini's grave bust.
Nov. 23: Houdini straitjacket, first revealed on Pawn Stars, sells for $46,980 at auction.

2012
Oct. 23: Houdini Museum of New York at Fantasma Magic opens.

2013
July 10: New Houdini Plaza opens in Appleton, WI.
Sept. 30-December: Houdini Miniseries films in Budapest, Hungary.

2014
April 20: The Magic of Houdini with Alan Davies documentary premieres airs on ITV.
Aug. 23: Houdini's Double Fold chest sells for $55,000 at auction to David Copperfield.
Sept. 1 & 2: Two-part Houdini Miniseries starring Adrien Brody and Kristen Connolly airs on History Channel.

2015
March 29: "Houdini Day" in City of Los Angeles.
March 29: Restoration of The Grim Game premiers in Hollywood.
Oct. 18: The Grim Game airs on TCM.

2016
March 13: Houdini & Doyle begins airing on ITV Encore in UK.
May 2: Houdini & Doyle begins airing on FOX in U.S.
June 16: The House of Houdini museum opens in Budapest, Hungary.

2017
Feb. 4: Houdini Water Torture Cell poster sells for $114,000 in auction to David Blaine. Record price for a Houdini or magic poster.
April 8: Bess's "royal crown brooch" sells for $72,000 at auction to David Copperfield.
June 18: Houdini's 278 goes up for sale with Open House.

2018
Jan. 20: The New Houdini Chronology is launched!
May 5 to Sept. 23: Houdini: Terror on the Magic Isle exhibition on Catalina Island.
Summer: Inescapable: The Life and Legacy of Harry Houdini exhibition at The Jewish Museum in Baltimore.

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