Where Houdini Lives
You look good on television John and handled your opinion of the brooch's origin well.1. Copperfield said the brooch is from Russia and it's the only one of its kind. Nothing else to prove this claim.2. Hardeen burned Harry's props in 1927 after a home burglary?
Thanks Leo. I think the show was well done. It was a fun day. I drove up to Santa Barbara in the AM and taped this at a B&B they had rented and outfitted as a studio. I really didn't know what a big deal this show was. Jamie Colby did say I was "telegenic", which was nice to hear coming from a pro like her. After my interview they asked, "What else are you an expert on!?"Yeah, nothing proves the brooch is from Russia, unless maybe Copperfield or Gabe had some sort of appraisal done that reveals a Russian origin of the jewels or setting or something? But even I, at the time of this taping, would give them that it likely came from the Grand Duke. But now after discovering the 1899 "Czar's brooch" claim, I'm no longer sure.The 1927 home robbery is in Kalush. It wasn't HH's props that were burned, it was some papers, and they said that. They ran that past me and I tried to urge them toward the Niagara Falls museum fire as a better button, but they went with this.
My thought was if it were from a Russian Nobelman, the quality would have been much better. Only 14K gold and were the stones and setting of high quality, the jewelry value alone, regardless of the Houdini connection would give it a value of more than the $72,000 it sold for. I think Harry picked it up at Zales :) David W
Jamie had the correct word, you were telegenic. The television camera likes you. Your friendly demeanor and voice came thru clear.I had also wondered about the karats. 14K is standard here in the U.S. but other countries prefer 22 or 24K gold. The gold karats in that brooch should have been higher than 14 if it was Russian. Harry might have possibly had that custom made in NYC by a jeweler.