Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The last battlefield

It isn't surprising that Houdini's campaign against fraudulent mediums brought on lawsuits. It's said Houdini was facing over $2 million in lawsuits at the time of his death. And while we could expect mediums to file suit against Houdini himself, here's one who took the extra step of suing the theater, in this case B.F. Keith's in Boston. This is from the August 5, 1926 New York Times (page 34).

Houdini didn't seem to be troubled by lawsuits. He had the means to defend himself and made the most of the publicity. But suing individual theaters (or circuits) could make them reluctant to book Houdini, and that could impact his career. So this might have been a shrewd tactic late in the battle.

In fact, this is shrewd enough that I can't help but wonder if Boston's own Dr. Le Roi Crandon (husband of Margery) might have been guiding the medium here?

Thanks to long-time reader Harry Houdini (real name) for this one.


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  1. I wouldn't put it past Dr. Crandon.

  2. Very interesting. Wonder where this could have led. Wonder if there were more like it. Surely it could have made theaters back off on booking Houdini.
    Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brookz
    The Houdini Museum, Scranton, PA
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