Friday, April 29, 2022

Searching for Houdini in Bellefontaine

The city of Bellefontaine, Ohio, together with real estate developer Small Nation, are in the process of restoring a historic block of buildings that once housed that city's Grand Opera House. Check out the sign that hangs in the building's widow. I love this kind of stuff!

Unfortunately, I don't currently have a listing in my chronology for Houdini's appearance at the Grand Opera House in Bellefontaine. This doesn't mean he wasn't there. I've just yet to find him.

The Grand Opera House operated from 1880 to 1913. As far as I know, Bellefontaine was not on the Keith or Orpheum vaudeville circuits, so it's most likely Houdini appeared here in his early days (1893-1899). Opera Houses such as the one in Bellefontaine are where the American Gaiety GirlsCalifornia Concert Co., or Roger's Orpheum Stars would play, sometimes only for a single night.

So if can anyone help find Houdini in Bellefontaine, that would be great. That sign is too cool to not be true!

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