Friday, October 3, 2014

Bess back in focus at the Magic Castle

The October Magic Castle newsletter has a few Houdini related goodies, including a nice ad for my "Houdini in Hollywood" talk on Wednesday, and this item about our good friend and frequent contributor Mark Willoughby:

We would like to extend our gratitude by a generous notion from Houdini collector and executive producer of The Ghastly Love on Johnny X, Mark Willoughby. Mark presented us with a nice black and white print of Bess Houdini and others as they appeared at the final Houdini séance in 1936 at the Knickerbocker Hotel to replace the previous print that had faded over time. The new print lives in the same wonderful frame which features hand lettering by our magical maître d’ Peter Mui. Thanks to Mark, we now have a fresh, clean replacement print for those visiting the séance room to enjoy. Thank you, Mark!

Mark owns several photos of the '36 Knickerbocker seance that I've never seen before, including an incredible shot taken on the roof in which you can see the HOLLYWOODLAND behind Bess and Ed Saint. I'll be sharing that photo during my Wednesday talk, and also here on WILD ABOUT HARRY around Halloween.

This weekend I will share a fantastic unpublished photo of Houdini inside 278 from Mark's collection.



  1. Have you properly identified the two Sgts at arms in the photo.
    One is misidentified in the Seance Room (Harry Mendoza).

    1. I don't know if they fixed that. Probably not. They just replaced the pic.

  2. An unpublished photo of Houdini inside 278 with my morning coffee tomorrow. You're a saint John, worthy of being canonized...

    1. :) I'll put it up as soon as I pour my own cup.