Winter Magic Auction


In its final sale of the year, Winter Magic: The Rex Conklin Library and Other Fine Conjuring Collections, Potter & Potter Auctions offers the remarkable library of the late  Rex Conklin, whose collection is highlighted by rare blow books, a copy of Dean’s Hocus Pocus among other antiquarian titles, and unique signed copies of books by Houdini bearing related photographs and ephemera. Drawing from other collections, the auction features selections of fine conjuring apparatus, vintage posters, antique prints, and a bevy of photographs and ephemera you won’t find anywhere else, including an early twice-signed cabinet portrait of Harry Kellar.

The auction begins at 10:00 AM (CST) on Saturday, December 10, 2016. The digital catalogue is available for download. Previews take place in the gallery from November 30th – December 2nd from 10am-5pm.

Good luck to all those bidding.


Larcom Theatre has been sold

Larcom Theatre

Larcom Theatre Sold

Here is an update on our last post from April about the sale of the Larcom Theatre from Rick Heath:

As of 11:00 am on Friday, September 9, the historic Larcom Theatre in Beverly, MA was official sold. The 1912 560-seat jewelbox that the Le Grand David company purchased in 1984 now is under a new ownership committed to keeping it as a vibrant performing arts venue.

The sale “officially” marks the end of 40 years for us in Beverly. In August 1976, we became the new owners of the 1920 Cabot Street Cinema Theatre. Hard to believe that on February 20, 1977, we took to the Cabot stage and began a run of 35 consecutive years that ended in May 2012, just two months after Cesareo’s death. As many already know, the Cabot was sold in October 2014 after a major auction of Le Grand David illusions, posters and memorabilia. In a similar fashion, after a final auction this April 10, the Larcom was offered for sale.

We are delighted, thanks to Bill Kalush, that a significant portion of the correspondence, historical material, photographs, etc. that we had amassed is now permanently housed at the Conjuring Arts Research Center in New York City. It will take some time, but it will be archived and digitally preserved for historians and researchers for generations to come.

it makes me very happy to know that so many of our original posters, illusions and even backdrops are now in good hands and have good homes with magicians and collectors from coast to coast and beyond. And, we managed to save two irreplaceable “treasures” from the wrecking-ball and pass them on to owners who are dedicated to keeping them alive and well. It has been a good run, and I’m grateful it has all worked out so well.

Thank you to Rick Heath for this update and for sharing this journey with us.


MCW 2017 – Dealers

The Magic Collectors Weekend in Montreal – May 25 to 27, 2017 – promises to be something very special. We are pleased to announce that, if early registrations are any indication, we will sell out – and, well ahead of schedule.

We also know that no MCW is complete without a chance to add to your collections. This time, because half the conference will take place at the hotel, and half at the McCord Museum, we have elected to do things a little differently.

The good news is that no one will be charged for a dealer’s booth. This is because there will be no official dealers’ room. (With conference divided between two locations, we didn’t think it was in anyone’s best interest to set up a formal dealers’ room.)

In the spirit, however, of the old MCW’s at Magic Inc. – and the fabled swap meets that were set up prior to those events – we will be providing tables near the main hotel meeting room on Thursday afternoon and evening, all day Friday, and Saturday evening for anyone so inclined. There will be no charge for use of the tables, and they will be made available on a first come/first serve basis.

Please note, as this the first time the MCW is taking place outside of the United States, for anyone bringing items for sale or trade from Europe or the United States (or any other country, for that matter) it is up to each registrant to determine what can or cannot be brought into the country.

Don’t hesitate to contact us at if you have questions or concerns.



Two Brand New Books

John Bannon and Handsome Jack (or is it John Lovick?) have authored two brand-new must-have books. As a subscriber of Magicol, you’re entitled to a special offer on both of them from our friends at Squash Publishing.



The retail price of these books is $110, but act NOW and SAVE $10 just for being a subscriber of Magicol! Hurry, this offer expires on September 10th, 2016 at 12:00 pm. (Shipping options are USA or International)


PrintFirst up is John Bannon’s latest card trick compendium, Mentalissimo.

In Mentalissimo, John brings his talents to bear on mentalism and mental magic with playing cards. “I do card tricks, have a keen interest in mentalism and am a fanatic about the construction of magic tricks. For me, a book like this is just what I look for. All of the above; in one place.”

You can expect: Squeaky-clean revelations of truly thought-of cards. Demonstrations of psychic ability that can’t be explained simply as coincidence. Clear, commercial prediction systems. Offbeat treatments of classic mental effects from “Add-a-Number” to “Out of This World.”

Thirty items are described and explained in twenty-one chapters. Almost all use regular unprepared cards. Two require a common gaffed card. Most are impromptu. A couple require a more-than-minimal stack. A few rely on easily-made external props. One employs a pack of ESP symbol cards. All are intelligently explained and laced with commentary and discussion. Come for the thought-provoking card effects; stay for the conversation.

The more I study card magic and mentalism, the more impressed I am with John Bannon. His “lean and mean” style of construction and execution inspires me. His routines are hard hitting and fun to perform.

—Jeff McBride, Las Vegas Headliner

This stuff is fun to read, and fun to do.

—Max Maven



The second book in this bundle, is the first – and only book of its type – written by male model and master magician Handsome Jack. It’s called Handsome Jack, etc.

Forget about his incredible looks, Handsome Jack’s skill, humor, and humility, make him a great writer of magic.

David Blaine

Handsome Jack is two of the best magicians I know.

Derek DelGaudio

This book is a vault of original, powerhouse material.

Michael Carbonaro

This is an extraordinary book. It’s laugh-out- loud funny, and contains original routines and brilliant essays that should be required reading for everyone who sets foot on a stage.

Pit Hartling

John Lovick is one of the most original, creative, and intelligent magicians we know, and this volume is invaluable. It offers profound cases in development, construction, writing, staging, and timing that will inspire magicians for generations.

Dan & Dave Buck

This treatise is a rarity in the magic world: it’s as funny (and attractive) as it is instructive. Handsome Jack, etc. details twenty stand-up (and close-up) routines with complete scripts, histories, and commentary on their development and performance.

In addition to Jack’s urbane descriptions, Lovick provides two essential essays on the subjects of scripting and persona.

A deluxe 212-page hardcover with two-color text, thirty original caricatures, and an introduction by Penn & Teller. This is one hardbound collection sure to turn heads – just like Handsome Jack.


The retail price of these books is $110, but act NOW and SAVE $10 just for being a subscriber of Magicol! Hurry, this offer expires on September 10th, 2016 at 12:00 pm.



Magicol 191: Correction


Mike Caveney & Tina Lenert, photo courtesy of Bill Taylor, ASC

Michael Claxton’s review of the Fourteenth Los Angeles Conference on Magic History appeared in Magicol No. 191

Reader Peter Rodgers offered this correction regarding the provenance of the “Birth of a Pearl” illusion presented by Mike Caveney at the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History:

 My main interest was your revue of Mike Caveney’s presentation and performance of the Birth of a Pearl using an actual illusion built by Phil Davies and used by the Australian Illusionist Maurice Rooklyn in his tours of New Zealand and Australia from the mid 1940’s through to 1954. The illusion had been stored in the Sydney home of Steve Walker for about 6 years, when Steve died in December 2014. It was me that contacted Mike Caveney and arranged for the illusion to be shipped to him for his performance at the LA Conference.
Phil Davies came to Australia with the Chung Ling Soo show in 1909 but stayed in Australia as an illusion builder until his death in the early 1940’s ( Chung Ling Soo’s Mechanists, they Stayed Behind by Brian McCullagh 1998). He manufactured a Birth of a Pearl for the Australian Illusionist Jean Hugard (John Gerard Rodney Boyce) who performed it for the rest of his career.(Jean Hugard by James B. Alfredson 1997). Unfortunately Hugard left Australia, (and his family) for Fiji and then the USA in 1916 never to return. He took the Birth of a Pearl with him and performed it in the USA at I believe Coney Island in New York until 1929. Hugard’s Birth of a Pearl had an “inner shell of dainty pink” (A Lifetime in Magic by Percy Abbott). Hugard’s Birth of a Pearl could not have been the same equipment later used by Maurice Rooklyn as reported in your article because Hugards illusion never came back to Australia. (It would be interesting to know what happened to it.) The lining of Rooklyn’s, now Mike Caveney’s illusion is green not pink.
But Rooklyn’s illusion was also made by Phil Davies, this time for Australian magician Wong Toy Sunn (Claude Guest) who started performing a Chinese act in 2011 soon after the departure of Chung Ling Soo from Australia. Rooklyn acquired the illusion and toured with it for about ten years after World War Two. In the mid 1970’s he either gave or sold it to Sydney Magician John Bodnar. Who put it into storage. When John went into an aged home in 2008 his son, Stephen Bodnar contacted me and I got Steve Walker to come with me to check it out. It was in a sorry state, the timber packing case was rotting and rats had built nests throughout the illusion. We cleaned it up and shifted it to Steve Walkers garage until early 2015 when we gave it to Mike Caveney for him to perform at the LA Magic History Conference. The article in the January 2016 Genii magazine is basicly correct except that Mike did not buy the illusion. He paid for it to be shipped to Los Angeles but we gave it to him.


Potter & Potter: Old & New


Potter & Potter Auctions
Magic Old & New
Conjuring from the 16th – 20th Century
August 27, 2016

The catalogue for the next magic auction from Potter & Potter is now available for download and purchase. The auction takes place Saturday, August 27 in Chicago.

According to Potter & Potter:

This auction celebrates the history of conjuring both old and new, featuring antiquarian and modern books, magnificent prints, engravings, and posters, fine pieces of conjuring apparatus, and automatons. A section of Dai Vernon memorabilia includes books, silhouettes, and trophies and props owned and used by “The Professor.”


Download Catalog

Advance Online Bidding

Good luck to all those bidding!


Magicol 191 is at the printers!


Magicol, No. 191

Cover features Dale Harney

The latest issue of Magicol, No. 191, with a feature on Dale Harney, is on its way to the printers! Here is a preview of what’s inside:

Dale Harney is a Canadian illusionist who is best known for his role on the Canadian television series, The Magic Palace. The show began in 1979 and featured great magic and magicians on an unprecedented scale. While the original episode recordings were lost—for reasons explained inside No. 191—David Ben discovered a number of episodes preserved on VHS in the collections of Allan Slaight, P. Howard Lyons and Sid Lorraine. He was able to locate Dale Harney, still actively involved in television and theatre (with behind-the-scenes roles) and we are pleased to present this profile to our subscribers.

To go along with this issue of Magicol, we are making Dale’s work on The Magic Palace the focus of a new free online exhibition. With Dale’s encouragement, all of the footage we have been able to gather will be digitized and shared online. We will release the exhibition soon, so stay tuned. There is a teaser clip for you to see here:

This issue also launches a new work by Leo Benhke, Magic and Literature, which will be serialized in the next several issues. The manuscript is divided into twelve chapters, the first two of which are featured in in this issue. We also have George Daily on a rare collectible associated with Horace Goldin, Michael Claxton’s review of the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History and Gabe Fajuri’s remembrance of Dan Waldron.

You will also find information and a registration form for the Magic Collectors Weekend 2017!

So many nice things in this next issue and we hope you enjoy!



The Weekend is Back!


Registration buttonHotel Info


The 44th Magic Collectors Weekend in
Montreal, Canada in 2017

Magicana is delighted to bring the MCW to Montreal in May 2017. We will be staging this conference to coincide with the opening of the major magic exhibition, drawn from the Allan Slaight Collection of magic posters and Houdiniana, at the McCord Museum.

In fact, a large part of the conference will take place at the McCord Museum (which is located in the heart of downtown Montreal) where delegates will enjoy private tours of the exhibition and behind-the-scenes tours by curators and staff of the museum. The museum has an exquisite exhibition in the works, and MCW delegates will be the first to experience it!

The balance of the conference will be held at our convention hotel, the Delta Montreal which is, literally, around the corner from the McCord. And, as we have had in the past, there will be a broad range of speakers.

But space is limited! This event is restricted by the meeting capacity at the McCord, so we only have 125 places available. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.

How much does it cost? Well, the regular convention rate is $250 USD, but Magicol subscribers are eligible for the discounted price of $225 for themselves and for spouses. (Canadians, when registering, please use the CANADIAN registration form.)

So, if you want to be the first to see the one of the largest, magic exhibitions featuring some of the world’s best magic posters—and a whole lot more—register today!

For more information about the conference, be sure to follow this blog for updates and details.



Potter & Potter Magic Poster Auction – June 25

The Collection of Norm Nielsen
The Golden Age of Magic Posters

(Part 1) June 25 in Chicago

On June 25, 2016, Potter & Potter Auctions will have part 1 of the collection of Norm Nielsen. The catalogue is now available online and also available for sale as a hardcover book with a dust jacket including large photographs of each poster with detailed historical information.

Even if you don’t want to participate in the auction, the catalogue by itself makes for a terrific coffee table book!

For more information: visit