Monday, March 30, 2020

LINK: Houdini's sensational swim in the rapids of... the Hudson?

Sean Doran is back with another groundbreaking post at his blog The Mysteriarch. This time Sean tackles the location of Houdini's famous swim of "Niagara" rapids at the conclusion of The Man From Beyond. While still somewhat speculative, I think Sean is onto something and on the brink of rewriting Houdini history. So click the headline and dive on in.

"From the first viewing of The Man From Beyond, I've had reservations that "the swim" actually took place at Niagara. Being from the region myself, and spending many summers exploring Niagara Falls State Park, something always looked a bit off for that scene to have been shot on the rapids of the mighty Niagara."

Below are more of Sean's recent discoveries.

Related:

9 comments:

  1. An incredible find! Harry had us fooled for almost a 100 years. He also fooled the public in that Grim Game plane transfer until Gresham's book.

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    1. You mean Christopher. Gresham still had HH in the air.

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    2. Ah--right. BTW--I tried looking for that large rock HH is clinging on in the photos from Sean's website.

      I wonder about the reason for the Hudson River location. Safer? Red tape over shooting at the Falls?

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    3. Leo- Not sure about the reason for potentially choosing the Hudson rather than Niagara, but I have a feeling it was just due to safety. Those upper rapids can clock in over 25 MPH!

      The May 5th 1921 edition of the Batavia Daily News states "HH denied going over the Falls or going through the Whirlpool rapids as a climax of a motion picture play, which he and sixteen members of his company have been filming with Niagara scenery for a background." Background!!

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    4. The Hudson was going pretty fast in those rapids scenes. I went on YT to watch that MFB ending and the editing between the Falls and the Hudson River was done well. You get the impression HH was close to the waterfall.

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  2. I definitely think Sean is on to something. That definitely good be an Adirondack RR bridge. According to Sacandaga Park history, “Famous artists and entertainers including Houdini, W.C. Fields and J.P Sousa performed in the [Rustic] Theatre and the [Adirondack] Inn [a short distance from the railroad station]”. Sacandaga Park is a cottage community on the banks of the Sacandaga River, which is a tributary of the Hudson River, flowing into it across from Lake Luzerne, at the border of Saratoga County and Warren County [Adirondack State Park].

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    1. Whoa! Nice find Joe! Another string to chase down.

      John- Do you have anything that puts HH at the Rustic Theatre?

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    2. I'm afraid I don't have any listing for HH at the Rustic Theatre.

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  3. Thanks, Sean, for the fascinating detective work, and John for sharing!

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