The "King of the iron shackles in Vienna" Houdini, who free himself with incredible strength from straitjacket and heavy shackles.
(See page 10)
With special photographs for the "Interessante Blatt" from Charles Wagner.
In March 1902 Houdini was playing a month long engagement at Ronacher Theater in Vienna, Austria. This was his first appearance in Vienna after having broken a contract to originally appear in 1900. Built in 1872, the Ronacher is still in use today.
Not only are these photos I've never seen, but this could be the earliest image of Houdini in a straitjacket. And what a straitjacket that is! As far as Houdini pics go, these are as good as it gets, and just proves there is undiscovered Houdini GOLD still to be found in this part of the world.
Thanks to Bill Mullins for sharing this terrific find. And to Eileen Krug a.k.a. "Houdini Fanbase" for the translation.
I wonder what became of the original press photos from all the German newspaper pix we've seen so far. Did they survive the bombing in WWII and beyond?ReplyDelete
That's a great question.Delete
Keep in mind the mores/sensitivities of the time: "Nude", could mean the body mostly , but not completely exposed. (Sorry if anyone is disappointed) Even decades later, shows that featured dancers or strippers with brief bottoms or g-strings and pasties were advertised as "Nude". I have seen theater/club marquees proclaiming, "10 Dancers! 7 Nude, 3 Naked". Maybe then naked means NAKED, not just nude.ReplyDelete
Note how HH dropped the loincloth photos after the Holland 1903 photo session. The U.S. jail photos a few years later were to be the last seminude shots.ReplyDelete
Right. Those jail cell photos. Would love to know exactly when and were those where taken. There's also the set of photos of HH in the long white trunks. Not sure of the exact date or place of that particular photo session either.Delete
There's only two seminude jail cell photos that I'm aware of: the one standing cuffed to the bars and the jock strap photo where he looks like a hobbit. I think there's one more where he's sitting on a bench in the cell. Prolly from the cuffed to the bars session.Delete
The long white trunk photos are indeed a mystery. I love the one where he's kneeling behind a set of manacles on the floor.
Yeah, there's the sitting down shot. So three. Those are all that I know of as well. But I bet there might be more!Delete
In the Randi book there's that kneeling shot and written on it in what looks like Houdini's hand is a word I can't make out (might be "finished") and the date 1905.
In one he has a great smile..rarely see anyone of that era smiling in photos..ReplyDelete