Friday, January 18, 2013

The Margery Files: Keepsakes

This week WILD ABOUT HARRY is showcasing rarities from the private Libbet Crandon de Malamud Collection, courtesy of Anna Thurlow, the great granddaughter of "Margery" the Medium.

Today we conclude our week-long look inside the private Crandon family archives with what I think is a poetic postscript. Below is Margery's own copy of Houdini pamphlet exposing her methods. You would think she would not have kept one of these -- that she would not want to preserve this for the record -- that it should not be part of "The Margery Files". Yet here it is; Houdini's last word on Margery, brought to us by Margery herself. Is she trying to tell us something? A complicated, curious, and in the end, I can't help but feel it's a somewhat sad relationship.

"It is sad," says Anna Thurlow, the great granddaughter of Margery and our guide this week. "I have always felt that they could have had such a different relationship had they circumstances been other than what they were. They shared a lot of traits and background."

One final thing about the above image. Anna originally sent me a scan of this cover. That was great, but I asked if she could just photograph it for me "sitting on a table or something." I thought that would make it more personal. Anna did one better and sent the above photo with the booklet laying on the fabric from one of Margery's skirts. "One of two items of clothing of hers I still have," says Anna.

And what might that other item of clothing be? Well, that's our grand finale...

Margery's seance kimono!

I hope you've enjoyed our special week being Wild About Margery. Please join me in extending my thanks to Anna Thurlow for allowing me to share these amazing and revealing items here on WILD ABOUT HARRY.


  1. Okay, that over the chair = totally spooky but also rather amazing. =)

    Thanks for this - it's been great!

  2. I met Anna at the London Seance in 1999. She was sittingf next to me at the seance table! Lovely lady!

  3. I would have to say fantastic! The entire week was great, but I love seeing these keepsakes. These two photos are priceless. I've got a million questions though after reading these articles. Great job John and thank you to Anna for sharing!

  4. That picture of the kimono almost sitting in the chair is perfect. Thanks to both of you for sharing and taking the time to do all of this. I, for one, appreciate it.

  5. Thank you Anna! This was a fantastic week for us. I am amazed that Margery kept a copy of Houdini's expose pamphlet, but she did have respect and maybe even admiration for Houdini.

  6. Thank you for the excellent info and generously sharing all of this. Thanks WAH. Narinder

  7. Like a performer keeping a scrapbook that also includes bad reviews. It was her time in the sun.

  8. Thank you for your kind comments - this has been so much fun and a pleasure! It has been great to participate in this forum.

  9. The kimono simplified neutralizing the control on her right side.