The New Houdini Chronology ☛ 1896

1874-90 | 1891-94 | 1895 | 1896 | 1897 | 1898 | 1899 | 1900 | 1901 | 1902 | 1903 |

Last update: 3/26/18
Weeks run Monday to Sunday.

Dec. 30-Jan. 5:
Jan. 6-12:
Jan. 13-19: Bijou Theater, Wilmington, DE (Jan. 13-15) – American Gaiety Girls [1][2][8]
➤ Tues, Jan. 14: Escapes cuffs in Wilmington police station. [2][8]
➤ The 9th and Arch Dime Museum in Philadelphia features "Houdini and Mlle. Ola" in "The Butterfly" this week. Possibly Jack Hyman? [2]
Jan. 20-26:
Jan. 27-Feb. 2: Star Theater, Hoboken, NJ, (Jan. 27-29) – American Gaiety Girls [2][8]

Feb. 3-9:
Feb. 10-16: Star Theater, Hoboken, NJ - performs as Prof. Morat, hypnotist. [2][8]
Feb. 17-23: Gilmore's Opera House, Springfield, MA (Feb. 22-24) – American Gaiety Girls [1][2][8]
Feb. 24-March 1: The Auditorium, Hartford, CT (Feb. 27-29) – American Gaiety Girls [2]

March 2-8: Opera House, New Britain, CT – American Gaiety Girls (March 2-3) [1][2][8]
➤ Mon., March 2: Houdini escapes handcuffs at police station. [2][8]
March 9-15: Front St. Opera House, Worcester, MA (March 12-14) – American Gaiety Girls [1][2][8]
March 16-22:
March 23-29: Music Hall, Lowell, MA (March 23-25) – American Gaiety Girls [1][2][8]
March 30-April 5: Palace Theater, Boston, MA – American Gaiety Girls [1][2][8]

April 6-12:
➤ Mon., April 6: Houdini celebrates 22nd birthday.
April 13-19: Music Hall, Woonsocket, RI [1]
➤ Tues., April 14: The American Gaiety Girls folds after business manager Fred Harvey is arrested for misappropriating funds. [2][8]
April 20-26:
April 27-May 3:

May 4-10:
May 11-17:
May 18-24:
➤ Sun., May 24: Harry and Bess join the Marco Co. in Boston, MA. [2][8][9]
May 25-31:

June 1-June 7: Boston Marine Hall, Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada (June 1-2) – Marco Co. [9]
➤ Thurs., June 4: Houdini escapes handcuffs and does card tricks at police station. [2][8]
June 8-14: Opera House, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada – Marco Co. [2][8][9]
➤ Fri., June 12: Marco show draws only 24 customers.
✪ ➤ [Date?]: Houdini's sees his first straitjacket at Saint John's Provincial Lunatic Asylum.
June 15-21: Bookings at Fredericton City Hall (15-16) and Moncton Opera House (17-18) cancelled. [9]
➤ Mon., June 15: Harry and Bess check into Carleton House (Argyle St.), Halifax, Nova Scotia. [9]
June 22-28:
✪ ➤ Thurs., June 25: Houdini escapes handcuffs and jail cell (first jailbreak?) at Halifax police station. [2][8]
✪ ➤ [Date?]: Houdini bound to horse escape at Halifax Common. First outdoor stunt. [9]
June 29-July 5: Academy of Music, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada – Marco Co. [1][9]
➤ Tues., June 30: Houdini accepts challenges. Marco bills act as "Escape from Dorchester." [8]
➤ Thurs., July 1: Marco Co. performs final show and folds. Harry and Bess remain in Canada to fulfill advance bookings.

July 6-12: St. Peter's Hall, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada (July 6-8) - "Magic, Mirth and Mystery" [9]
July 13-19: Gunn’s Opera House, Truro, Nova Scotia, Canada (July 15-16) [2][8][9]
➤ Houdini and Bess perform Trilby levitation.
July 20-26:
July 27-Aug. 2:
➤ July 25-27: Pioneer Hall, Springhill, Nova Scotia, Canada [2][8][9]
➤ July 29-30: St. George's Hall, Parrsboro, Nova Scotia, Canada [9]

Aug. 3-9: Academy of Music, Amherst, Nova Scotia, Canada (Aug. 3) / Melanson's Hall, Joggins Mines, Nova Scotia, Canada (Aug. 5-9) [9]
➤ [Date?]: Houdini escapes handcuffs at Amherst police station.
Aug. 10-16:
➤ Aug. 8-10: Music Hall (Bridge & Main), Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada [9]
➤ Aug. 11: Hickman's Hall. Dorchester, New Brunswick, Canada [9]
Aug. 17-23: Opera House, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada (Aug. 17-18) [1][2][8][9]
➤ Mon., Aug. 17: Houdini escapes handcuffs and jail cell at Moncton police station. [9]
➤ Sat., Aug. 22: The Houdini's sail from Yarmouth aboard the SS Yarmouth. Houdini seasick, Bess has to perform in his place. [9]
➤ Sunday, Aug. 23: The Houdinis arrive in Boston abroad SS Yarmouth. [9]
Aug. 24-30:
Aug. 31-Sept. 6:

Sept. 7-13:
Sept. 14-20:
Sept. 21-27:
Sept. 28-Oct 4:

Oct. 5-11:
Oct. 12-18: Tony Pastor's 14th Street Theater, New York, NY [6]
Oct. 19-25: Imperial Music Hall Buffalo, NY [9]
➤ Thurs., Oct. 22: Houdini escapes handcuffs at Buffalo police headquarters. [2][8]
Oct. 26-Nov. 1:

Nov. 2-8: Wonderland, Detroit, MI. [2]
Nov. 9-15:
Nov. 16-22:
Nov. 23-29: Kohl & Middleton's Dime Museum, Chicago, IL [2]
Nov. 30-Dec 6: Olympia Musee, Milwaukee, WI (Dec 3-5) [1][2][8]

Dec 7-13:
Dec 14-20:
➤ Thurs., Dec 17: Alexander Herrmann dies at age 52.
Dec 21-27: Wonderland Musee and Theater (4th near Edmond), St. Joseph, MO [2]
➤ The Houdinis play the "Curio Hall" while Harry performs solo act in the "Bijou Theater." [2]
Dec 28-Jan. 3: Wonderland Musee and Theater (4th near Edmond), St. Joseph, MO [2]



Primary Sources:
[1] Koval, Frank. The Illustrated Houdini Research Diary, Part 1: 1895 to 1899. Chadderton: 1993.
[2] Original newspaper story or advertisement via newspapers.com or other archival source.
[3] Silverman, Kenneth. Houdini!!! The Career of Ehrich Weiss. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.
[4] Christopher, Milbourne. Houdini The Untold Story. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co., 1969.
[5] Original Houdini letter, cable, contract or signed photo.
[6] Original pitchbook, program, playbill or poster.
[7] Houdini diary.
✪ Denotes a first or possible first.

Additional Sources (1896):
[8] Harry Houdini Personal Scrapbook 1895 to 1899, History Museum at the Castle, Appleton, WI.
[9] MacNab, Bruce. The Metamorphosis: The Apprenticeship of Harry Houdini. Fredericton: Goose Lane Editions, 2012.

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