Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Houdini's Liberty Island "mystification"

Here's an excerpt from a profile of Houdini in the October 10, 1926 issue of The Buffalo Times ("Things Never Told About Harry Houdini" by William H. Crawford). This is the first I've ever heard of this Liberty Island feat. I've kept the lead-in paragraph for its revelation that Houdini didn't like the word "trick".

So did this really happen? Seems fishy. Again, I've never heard of this, and if this was performed expressly to give newspaper men a story, where are those contemporaneous stories? Or even one from this reporter?

Still, it's a nifty story, and the only Houdini Statue of Liberty connection that I'm aware of, so I'm happy to let it ride.



  1. Fishy, especially if the story did not appear in the World, whose offices - on Park Row, not too far from Bedloe's Island - were the scene of the crime.

  2. Strange tale. But Houdini had plenty of "real" ways to give the press a hot story, so it seems an odd motivation for pulling a fast one. But I love the idea of the actual "mystification" and can think of a few ways it could've been achieved, if real. It does sound rather off-brand for Houdini, though.