Saturday, June 9, 2012

Milk Can on display as part of 'Magic' at the Chicago History Museum

The Milk Can that toured with the now closed Houdini Art and Magic is on display at the Chicago History Museum as part of their new exhibition, Magic. The exhibition startes today and runs through the first week of January 2013.

The Milk Can arrives in Chicago for Magic. Photo by Enrique Gonzalez

The Milk Can is from the collection of the American Museum of Magic in Marshall, Michigan. While it has long been touted as a "Houdini Milk Can", I've often wondered if it's not actually Hardeen's Milk Can. It certainly resembles the Hardeen Can.

But whether the Can belonged to Houdini or Hardeen, it's still a wonderful magic artifact and a must see.


  1. When Bob Lund talked about how he was able to get the can, he told the story of a man named Marty Sunshine watched a show starring Hardeen and a Julious Proskower(I hope that is spelled right).
    Hardeen claimed Proskower was going to attempt to escape from Houdinis milk can. During the show there was a problem and the trick was exposed.
    Sunshine had words with Hardeen, who afterwards offered the can for sale. Sunshine purchased 2 cans, the over board packing box, the brass tubs for holding hot water for the water cell, to named
    a few. Later on he also purchased Hardeens can.
    Hardeens can was sold to Don Hines, and the rest to Robert Lund.
    About a year after Mr Lunds death, I came across an article written in 1928 where Hardeen mentions that he was having 2 new cans made just for this act with Proskower. Thus to me they are both Hardeen cans.
    Jon Oliver