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Jack Ruby and the Dallas Magicians


Guest Tom Scully
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Guest Tom Scully

Prelude to this post is Post #1 in John Mulholland Master Magician recruited by Sid Gottlieb's TSS MKULTRA thread.

The point here is that John Mulholland, the smartest and most committed illusionist of his generation, close friend of Harry Houdini, was recruited by the CIA to teach covert operators "the art of deception", and, in this very small community of expert technicians, John Gaughan, protege of Dallas master magician, Mark Wilson, a man who allegedly knew Jack Ruby, is the expert who currently knows how to perform John Mulholland's most intricate set of illusions, "Dr. Hooker's Impossibilities".

I was surprised to find that Ruby was described as hosting the act of Blackstone Jr., and was in close contact with AGVA Union officials Alton Sharpe and Tom Palmer. Those two mens were friends and expert magical performers/illusionists. Neither the

WC or the HSCA makes any mention of these details.

Why would there be "chatter" about Jack Ruby and a "second shooter" on themagiccafe.com/forums ?

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtop...9&start=120

Posted: Jan 12, 2009 12:02pm

Mark Wilson had a story where he said Jack Ruby tried to get himself set up as Mark's agent!

Posted: Jan 28, 2009 9:04pm

Tom Palmer a/k/a Tony Andruzzi was the AGVA manager over Ruby's club when Kennedy was shot. Tony confided in friends the name of the second shooter shortly before he died, and it will be revealed in the upcoming Palmer/Andruzzi biography. Stay tuned.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/18/fashion/...&ref=design

Magicians Ask: What’s Up His Sleeve?

By STEPHANIE ROSENBLOOM

Published: May 18, 2008

CHANCES are you’ve never heard of John Gaughan.

He doesn’t advertise. He doesn’t have a Web site. There is no street entrance to his workshop, a former 1930s aircraft school alongside railroad tracks on a dry, industrial stretch of road that straddles the city limits of Los Angeles and Glendale. Visitors must drive around back, past stacks of steel beams and cans of spray paint, toward a chain-link fence topped with barbed wire.

That Mr. Gaughan, 68, is not easily found befits an artisan who has spent most of his life creating large-scale illusions for many of the world’s most famous magicians and illusionists: Siegfried & Roy, David Blaine, Criss Angel, David Copperfield, Doug Henning, Mark Wilson, Ricky Jay....

....Nowadays Mr. Gaughan is one in a circle of elders of magic. But growing up in Dallas he was just another boy who hung around a shop called Douglas Magicland.

“I was the demonstrator and he was the kid who would come in,” recalled Mark Wilson, 79, the magician who produced and starred in network television’s first weekly magic series, “The Magic Land of Allakazam,” shown on CBS and ABC in the early 60s.

Before long, Mr. Gaughan, then 14, began working for Mr. Wilson and his assistant (and wife), Nani Darnell. “He would help us put magic kits together that we would sell in department stores,” said Mr. Wilson, who has taught the likes of Cary Grant, Dick Van Dyke and Johnny Carson to perform tricks...

...In 1961, Mr. Gaughan followed Mr. Wilson to Los Angeles, where he also studied industrial design at California State University. As Mr. Wilson’s star rose, he opened his own workshop in a house on Venice Boulevard....

....Eventually, Mr. Wilson moved his operation to the space that is Mr. Gaughan’s shop (though he is relocating to another site about three miles away).

Mr. Gaughan is also a top collector of magic memorabilia, restoring antique devices and replicating lost creations such as the Turk, a famed 1700s chess-playing automaton that rarely lost a game, trouncing Benjamin Franklin and Napoleon Bonaparte, according to legend. It was destroyed in a fire in 1854. Using a couple of pieces that survived the fire, Mr. Gaughan succeeded in building a working replica of the automaton after some 25 years.

“There are 8 or 10 people that build illusions,” said Mr. Steinmeyer, who is the author of “Hiding the Elephant: How Magicians Invented the Impossible and Learned to Disappear.” “To me, what’s unique about John is his interest in historical work.”

Mr. Steinmeyer and other professionals credit Mr. Gaughan with unraveling enduring mysteries and reintroducing them to modern magicians. “What’s a shame is that secrets fall out of fashion,” Mr. Steinmeyer said.

IN describing Mr. Gaughan’s abilities, his peers point to a 20th-century illusion called “Impossibilities” created by Dr. Samuel Cox Hooker, which, as Mr. Wilson described it, has “fooled every major magician in the country.”

Mr. Gaughan acquired the illusion from Dr. Hooker’s estate, cracked its secrets and performed it twice at the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History. Playing cards rise and lower at his command, and a disembodied teddy bear head floats off a table.

Mr. Wilson had read about the illusion and thought: “Well, of course if I see it I’ll understand it. I’ll know how to do it.”

But that was not the case.

“He just fooled the hell out of me,” said Mr. Wilson, quickly apologizing for his enthusiastic language. Even so, he said, “I don’t think I want to know how to do it because I enjoy being fooled.”....

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/06/04/politics/04MAN.html

A Quiet Man Takes Charge: John Edward McLaughlin

June 4, 2004

....Behind the tweed, however, is a mirthful side. Around the agency he is known as Merlin, Mr. Tenet noted on Thursday ? most likely because he is an accomplished amateur magician who delights in pulling dollar bills from behind the ears of visitors.

But in his new job, as acting director of central intelligence, his most important performances will be his briefings for President Bush most mornings, a job Mr. Tenet relished. Mr. McLaughlin, in fact, has more than a decade of history with presidential briefings.

During the presidential transition in the fall of 1992, Mr. McLaughlin, then the agency's director of Slavic and Eurasian analysis, occasionally spelled other officials who were briefing Gov. Bill Clinton in Little Rock, Ark...

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/valley/l...50.story?page=1

Now you see it, now you don't - collectors, scholars and performers gather in North Hollywood to celebrate the history of magic.

By Patrice Roe, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

November 16, 2007

As exclusive gatherings go, this one was noteworthy, even by the high local standards set by A-list Hollywood, with attendees including a former acting director of the CIA, at least one prime-time TV star and half of Penn & Teller (the smaller, quieter half).

That last guest is perhaps the one clue you need to figure out the subject of their mutual interest: magic. Or more specifically, the history of the art, as long-dead prestidigitators, illusionists and "miracle" workers were resurrected for the 10th Los Angeles Conference on Magic History, held Nov. 8-10 in North Hollywood.

The biennial invitation-only conference -- so exclusive that it generally takes a death to create an opening for the following event -- is billed as "a unique weekend of wonders" by its organizers and the "hottest ticket in magic" by the editor of a leading magicians' magazine. The conference attracts an eclectic group of attendees who share a passion for magic history;...

....The invitation to attend this year's conference came in the form of a puzzle. When assembled, it read, "You are cordially invited to the Queen of Hearts' party, the long-awaited encore of Dr. Hooker's 'Impossibilities and Rising Cards.' "

Dr. Hooker and his effects have achieved a reputation of mythical proportion in the magic community. His "masterpiece" was the rising cards. To someone unfamiliar with magicians' methods, the trick may look unremarkable. A card is selected by an audience member and then rises from a deck onstage.

But there were subtleties employed by Dr. Hooker that have baffled the greatest minds in magic from Harry Houdini to present-day magic scholars.

John Gaughan restored and presented the half-hour re-creation of Dr. Hooker's show, aided by "Miltiades III," the animated head of a teddy bear. Dr. Hooker chose the name Miltiades from his granddaughter's storybook, "Adventures of Miltiades Peterkin Paul."

Gaughan, an award-winning builder of magical effects, is another of the conference organizers. His quiet, modest demeanor fits well with the slower paced presentation style of the early 20th Century effect.

Brian McCullagh made the "very expensive" trip from Australia specifically for Gaughan's show. McCullagh, who has attended four of the conferences and lectured in 1997, said he had originally read of Dr. Hooker in the 1950s. He called Gaughan's presentation "brilliant."

McCullagh became interested in magic as a boy and tried his hand at performing. "But I found that as a performer, I make a better math teacher," McCullagh said.

While many magicians' secrets were revealed during the conference, Gaughan is keeping those of the "Impossibilities" to himself. Richard Kaufman, editor of the magicians' magazine Genii, wryly suggested that perhaps water-boarding would get Gaughan to talk.

Besides the rising cards, the Conference on Magic History offered the 250 registrants an exhibit room, two dealers' rooms and 18 lectures and shows.

The conference, since its inception, has been held at the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn in North Hollywood. The number attending is still small compared to other mainstream magic conventions. But there were just 120 at the first; that group fit nicely into a small theater at the hotel. The popularity of the conference has increased the number attending, and now all the events are held in the hotel's ballroom.

This year's conference, as a result, lacked some of the friendly intimacy of earlier gatherings. A few of the speakers, reading woodenly from notes or neglecting to present graphics, gave some in the audience an opportunity to grab a quick nap. Nonetheless, there were plenty of highlights – enough to justify the admission cost of $260.

Dr. Peter Lamont spoke on a Victorian-era personality, W.J. Vernon, in a presentation titled "Professor, Pseudo-scientist, Terrorist." Lamont is a historian and psychologist based at the Koestler Parapsychology Unit at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland....

...Along with the centerpiece of Gaughan's rising cards, conference-goers saw other performances using restored magical apparatus. Caveney performed "The Million Dollar Mystery," built originally in the 1930s for the San Francisco magician Charles Carter. Baskets of balls, buckets of water and a woman are all produced from a box about 18-inches square.

Jim Steinmeyer, award-winning illusion designer and another of the conference organizers, presented "Finding the Lady." This effect is an oversized version of the street con, the Three Card Monte. Instead of trying to find the Queen of Hearts from three overturned cards on a piece of cardboard set up on a street corner, you try to find a woman from behind giant-sized cards set up on stage.

A real treat was Steinmeyer's second presentation of the illusion showing how it works. It was fascinating. Don't ask how he did it -- everyone there was sworn to secrecy.

Those attending the conference can be as interesting as the presentations. Teller of Penn & Teller could be seen conversing with other magic buffs.....

....Another conference attendee was John McLaughlin, former acting director of the CIA. When asked if he had attended many of the conferences, he responded simply, "You have to be invited."

McLaughlin, who presented "Magic and Intelligence, Kindred Arts" at the 2005 conference, says he has been interested in magic since he was a boy and sees a parallel between it and intelligence work. McLaughlin, now a college professor, says he uses magic to show his students how easy it is to be fooled.

Not officially part of the conference but offered to registrants was the opportunity to take a tour of "Extraordinary Exhibitions: Broadsides From the Collections of Ricky Jay" at the Hammer Museum in Westwood.

Jay, who was instrumental in the conference's origins in 1989, was present Friday morning to offer an insider's glimpse into his collection of broadsheets dating as far back as the 1618 promotion of "The Learned Horse." (Jay is known for his stage performances as well as parts in the films "Boogie Nights" and "The Prestige" and the TV shows "The Unit," "Kidnapped" and "Deadwood.")....

http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubbthr...94916#Post94916

Saturday Night, November 3rd,2007 Beverly Garland Holiday Inn, North Hollywood, Ca. 7:30 pm. The Hooker Card Rise performance of Dr. Samuel Cox Hookers "Impossibilities & Miltiades III". The Fransican Room, small in area had 50 seats. Front row had 8 seats, three rows, then along the back of the room were probably 20 high stools with backs.

The back wall had many letters from famous magicians and scientists who were witness to the demostration when Dr. Hooker was alive and performed this himself. I arrived early, seeing the actual Hooker family decendants after a private showing leaving the room. I met and spoke then visited with a man whom had not seen any magic performed befor. He was clearly overwhelmed with what he witnessed, shocked and completly mystified. The family still talking, having cheese & crackers, coffee and so forth started leaving. I had seen a guest book on the registration table and signed it. The group of people to see the 7:30 pm show had started to arrive and the guest book was not left on the table, it must have been for family only and I am not a family member.

While sitting on a bench next to this table outside, Mike Caveney gave me my copy of the 10th Los Angeles Conference on Magic History. Entering the Franciscan room, my seat was A-2, second from the left end in the front row. The room was full and the presentation began on time. I was probably as close as 8' away from the stage and I could see very clearly.

The stage was on a 12" riser and the curtains were the original one's Dr. Hooker had in his own house when he performed. The stage was small, what looked like maybe 10' across and only about 6'/7' deep. The back curtain was ornate in pattern and multi-colored in soft tones in what looked like a floral design.

The front most curtain was a dark brown and looked like cordaroy material. There were a couple curtains over the stage that had a shelf behind the 1st one were the ribbons for the swinging effect were tossed back up on to when done. These curtains were a forest green color.

On stage there were only 4 tables all with round tops about 12" in diameter and only about 1/2" thick, no fringe material from edge and all tables were felt covered. On the far right a crank model Victrola music player sat on yet another table (5) total. Just to the left on another table was Miltiades III a bears head, dark brown fur, big eyes, extended mouth jaws and a frill collar. The eyes moved up, down, and side to side. Being completly animated, the head moved side to side and nooded up and down, the jaws opened quickly like talking but no sound or clicking or any other noise came out of it being completly silent.

A table against the back curtain had the glass bell jar like a wedding clock cover but much larger, about 10"/11" in diameter and 20"/24" tall. On this table there were also 3 or 4 3" tall small clear glass pedistals about 1/2" to 3/4" diameter each. The table for the houlette was just left of center stage and only about 2' or 3' back from the stages front edge. The remaining table held additional props used during the performance, this was located further to the left and from my seat covered slightly by the front most brown curtain.

Jim Steinmeyer began telling us about Dr. Samuel Hooker and his life, where he was born and lived, his education in Chemistry and also mentioned Dr. Hooker recieved his PHD in only (1) year. John Gaughan presented the Hooker Card Rise and an expert job he did! John is not a typical magic performer, his specialty is restoring antique magic apparatus, automatons, clocks, Houdini's Water Torture Cell ect...John did not showboat himself and performed very casualy.

No sound system was necessary at all due to the room being small as it was. 1st effect began when John picked up a pack of cards from the far left table, removing cards from the box, he placed the box upon Miltiades's table and instantly the bear's eyes rolled down and to the right looking at the box, just laid, then looked at John and its mouth started moving as if speaking but no words came out. John acted like he understood the problem the bear had and removed the box from it's table and placed the empty card box on the prop table to the far left. Then John handed the top 1/3rd of the deck to the person on my far right end of the front row, handed the 2nd third to a person in the middle of our row, then handed the remainder of the pack to me for shuffling. I overhand shuffled my cards briefly. John asked the 3 of us to do this.

He then collected these cards and holding them, he brought forward the houlette to the front row and I touched it, seeing it clearly, it had glass on both sides, was open through the front and back. Made of what looked like brass and had what looked like a solid bottom. Also had small rings at the top of both sides. He then put the deck into the houlette and carefully placed it on the table. He then wound up the victrola, which had the word "Stella" in decal on its inside cover and soft music played.

He asked Miltiades to make a card rise as a poem started to be read aloud. The Queen of Hearts rose slowly and lowered back down. All through out this demonstration Miltiades was animated and a one sided conversation took place between John Gaughan and Miltiades. Next were the marching cards, they all rose one at a time quickly, the Queen of Hearts was removed and stood next to the houlette as this was done. All the while John Gaughan is still reading this poem. The Kings all rose one at a time, then the Joker rises and the Queen of Hearts falls forward face down, poem over.

John Gaughan then asked the audience for a single digit number "7" was called then John asked Miltiades to make them rise, 7 cards rose exactly! Another number of cards was asked for and "4" was called out, again Miltiades made exactly 4 cards rise from the deck in the houlette. Both sets of cards were handed out to the audience to verify. Next effect: Audience shuffles deck, the Joker is removed and with scissors, cut in half width wise, one half was placed over the inside bottom of the houlette from the front to rear the remainder of the deck was placed in the houlette over the Joker half piece, then the entire deck rose with in the houlette and lowered, the Queen of Hearts rises again.

John asked the audience member to call out a card, the 10 of Clubs was called and it rose, this card John Gaughan gave to the audience member to keep as a souvenir. Again audience is asked to call out a card, the Jack of Spades was called and it rises. Then John asked Miltiades to make the very front card rise which was the 3 of Spades and it then rose from the houlette. Then the 7 of Diamonds was called, this was from a man in the front row. And then John asked him to raise his hand and the card rose just as his hand rose, stopped, rose again and lowered, back and forth as his hand/arm was moved up and down, the card responded at the same speed!

Next effect: A borrowed deck from audience, John Gaughan did not touch it, audience member asked to pick a card between 1 and 15, 5 of Hearts was selected and signed, then reversed and both adjacent cards befor and after were also noted. The reversed 5 of Hearts was counted from the face , to be "11" cards in. While in the houlette quickly the 5 of Hearts rose and is shown to be the 11th card and the cards next to it were the same cards.

Next effect: A 2nd borrowed deck from the audience is used and shuffled, the head of Miltiades is now covered with a handkerchief and the houlette is also blocked from view with the folding two panel poem placed in front. The 3 of Diamonds was noted to be the 21st card from the back of the deck, John Gaughan asked Miltiades to mentally think about where the 3 of Diamonds is. Miltiades kept shakeing its head no, under 5,10,15,20,25 then Miltiades nodded yes, on down to "21". John then came off the stage to me and asked me to count out loud in a clear voice to 21. I did and placed the cards in a silver bowl held my John, handing the 21st card to John, it was the correct card! The 2 of Hearts was then called out and it rose also.

Next effect: Then three of the Jacks jumped out fast and cleared the deck as John caught them. Then the bell jar was placed over the houlette's table top and the Jack of Hearts rose 15" to 20" inside the bell jar! No wobble, smooth and silent and so very clean! Then it lowered onto the top of the deck slowly and cleanly. All the while Miltiades is animated and then the bell jar is placed over Miltiades's table top and slowly he rises and keeps moving its eyes and mouth and turns slightly, it raised 15" slowly and it was just as clean and smooth! The bell jar was removed while Miltiades was still 4" off the table top! Clean, slow, smooth, silent, Magical, very very Magical and still animated all the while.

Now the 3" short clear glass pedistals are placed upon the houlette table, and an old magic book, 1/2" thick is placed on top of the pedistals. (3) cards are asked for and called out by the audience, choosen were the 2 of Hearts, 7 of Spades and the 8 of Diamonds. The houlette is placed upon the book, clearly above the table top, then the 2 of Hearts rises. Then the houlette is suspended from two ribbons from above the stage and using the two small rings on the sides of the houlette. This looks to be about head high to John Gaughan, and the 7 of Spades rises. Now the hanging houlette is left swinging back and forth and the 8 of Diamonds rises.

Finally the houlette is placed back on its table, covered once again by the bell jar and now many cards are shot up out of the houlette and just left inside the bell jar all over the table top, not all the cards flew up just several of them. Finished!

Excellent show, $100.00 per ticket....

http://www.magicbeard.com/view.php?id=2

Speak of the Devil: A Conversation about Tony Andruzzi

Eugene Burger and David Parr

Originally published in Genii Magazine, October, 2000

...EB: No, my first impression never really changed. Tony was a Trickster. It wasn't a put-on. He lived it. This polarity between being an incorrigible demon on the one hand and a benevolent spirit on the other dominated Tony's contribution to twentieth century magic.

DP: In that he created the Tom Palmer comedy act, and then went to the other end of the spectrum with Masklyn ye Mage.

EB: Yes, and also his influence on twentieth century magic which, I think, has been both positive and negative. Just as Tony gave positive permission, as it were, for many of us to look deeper into our magic and ask better questions, he also gave permission to some, for example, in the Psychic Entertainers Association, to do psychic readings and present themselves to the gullible, who are suffering, as one who has real powers that can help them with the problems in their personal lives. I think that was Tony's negative influence -- that he never deeply asked the ethical question. And I think that same duality of saint and sinner also dominated Tony's personal life. It certainly dominated the seven Invocational conventions he organized, wouldn't you say?

DP: Definitely. At times it was hard to tell if it was a magic convention or a Bacchanalia.

EB: It was either, and it was both. Again, an expression of the basic paradox of Tony Andruzzi: The Invocational was part serious convention and part drunken party. And in the middle, having a wonderful time, was Tony, equally serious and happily drunk.

DP: I often marveled at his ability to pull himself together and perform. One minute he was rambling on and on in a haze, goofing around and laughing and shouting, and the next minute he was in his Masklyn persona, dead serious, and performing magic. And when he was finished he was right back to Crazy Tony, the life of the party. I remember one night in particular, very late, when someone persuaded him to do this routine with a rock -- do you remember this?

EB: Yes, I do. The effect relied on inducing eye-strain in the viewer, which made the rock appear to be breathing. Some people saw it, and some people didn't. ...

....EB: Yes. The third idea, that Tony was not aiming simply for laughter and applause, follows from the second idea: that bizarre magic is not a show but something deeper, a conjuring with the very forces of the cosmos. Tony's aim, I think, was to pull the rug from under our concept of reality, to shake us up, to disturb us.

DP: Thank-you Tony! Magic should be disturbing sometimes. It should make people uncomfortable. Of course, that's not an easy goal. It's not a commercial goal. The audience doesn't necessarily walk away smiling and admiring how clever and adroit you are. Instead they have a creepy feeling that what they've just experienced might have been real.....

....DP: It was a terrible loss. Because I think Tony Andruzzi was one of the hidden geniuses of magic. You know, the fact that Tony abandoned a successful career as a comedy magician to try something very different was really inspiring to me. When I began attending the Invocational conventions --

EB: Did you go to all of them?

DP: All seven. And at that time I was performing magic in comedy clubs, and I was completely miserable. Because I was totally out of my element. Being around people like Tony and you and Max made me realize that comedy isn't the only way to go. I didn't belong in comedy clubs. My skills are suited to something else. So I left the path I was on, and set off on a new path. Tony's example let me know that that was possible.

EB: Yes, that's Tony's final legacy to me as well. And probably for many of those who knew him personally or through his writings. Tony gave all of us permission to take our magic into new and different directions, to walk down different paths....

http://www.dragonskull.co.uk/mym.htm

A TONY ANDRUZZI MEMORIAL

Tony Andruzzi was born Antonio C. Andruzzi in 1925 in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He learned magic at the age of 8 from a magic set. From the 1950's to the early 1970's, he was a professional illusionist & comedy magician, adopted the name "Tom Palmer" and had his name legally changed to Thomas S. Palmer...

http://www.magicmagazine.com/january05/january05extra2.html

WEB EXTRA: Alton Sharpe 1921-2004

By John Moehring

It was an uncle, the one from Wichita Falls, Texas, who opened the eyes of five-year-old Alton Sharpe to the wonders of magic. He was on a business trip, auditing the franchised Rexall drug stores he owned, and he'd stopped to visit Alton's family who lived on the outskirts of Dallas. He was about to leave when he asked the boy, "Would you like to see a mystery of magic?" There was a "Yes, sir," even though he wasn't too sure what his uncle was talking about....

...Al's father was a motion picture distributor whose territory covered Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, and most of Utah. He was constantly on the road, and his mother had grown accustomed to accompanying him. Al soon joined them on their journeys. He was tutored no matter where they traveled.

Al's repertoire of magic tricks continued to grow. On his sixth birthday, his other uncle, the one who lived near Oklahoma City, gave him an English bulldog.....

...His aunt, who lived in Wichita Falls and worked for a dry goods manufacturer, had one of her seamstresses sew up a tuxedo for Al. His accumulation of tricks was packed into a black leather suitcase and taken along as the family traveled from state to state. "My mother and aunt started calling on one-room country schools. If the teachers wanted a program of entertainment, they picked a date that coincided with our return trip. My fee was $1 and I was billed as 'Al the Boy Wonder & His Wonder Dog Scat.'"...

...Sharpe says that for the next three years, there was rarely a month that went by when there weren't attorneys or insurance company investigators or both at his home in Dallas. "I remember sitting there in the dining room and listening to the insurance people and my mother as they rehashed the story over and over. One night when I walked into the room, two lawyers were down on the floor using knives and forks to represent the vehicles involved in the accident." It was late and Al had a Quaker Oats box under his arm. "I kept my toy cars in an old oatmeal box. It was a collection of little metal automobiles and trucks, and I even had a bus and a wrecker. I asked the men, 'Why don't you use these?' Every time after that, whenever the lawyers came to the house to analyze the accident, they used my toy cars."

Alton was intrigued with the ways and means of attorneys, their methods for unraveling mysteries. He knew then that he wanted to become a lawyer one day. "However, because of all those tricks and things that I was learning from my uncles, I really wanted to be a magician first." ....

....Young Mr. Sharpe was becoming quite adept at thimble and coin manipulations, learning moves from a copy of The Modern Conjuror. It wasn't long before he ordered a copy of Thayer's Catalogue of Quality Magic No. 7. The 288-page wish book was indeed as advertised: "The Finest, Largest and Most Comprehensive Compilation of Magical Goods Ever Published." And there on page 121 was the trick that he had to have, the trick that was in the repertoires of all the greats, including De Kolta, Kellar, Blackstone, and Willard — The Flying Bird Cage, Catalogue No. 912. Finest make, Price $10.

When the shiny, nickel-plated, precision-crafted birdcage arrived, Al was, quite frankly, disappointed. He could not, as the catalog description purported, "cause the cage to vanish in a flash, leaving not a trace to tell of its mysterious flight." That's because the cage was longer than his arms.

"I wrote Mr. Thayer telling him that I couldn't hide a cage that big up my sleeve. A week later, he wrote back saying that he had a metalworker by the name of Walter Baker who could make a custom cage." All Al had to do was send a drawing of his arm, indicating the measurement from his shoulder to elbow to wrist. "The cage that Baker made was superior to the German-manufactured cage sold by Thayer's at the time, and I performed it until it wore out, which was 20 years later." ....

..Two years later, while visiting Douglas' new store, now called Douglas Magicland and located at 409 North Ervay, Al met Harry McDaniel, the president of the Dallas Magic Circle. Although Al was too young to join the club, he was invited to one of the meetings. The local magicians liked him and, even though he was underage, he was handed a membership application. McDaniels requested that he be at the next induction ceremony.

"There were four of us being initiated that night. Harry asked each of us what our favorite trick was, saying that we'd have to get up in front of the members and prove that the trick we chose really was our favorite." Sharpe told McDaniel his choice was the Chinese Linking Rings, mainly because he'd been doing the trick his way for quite some time.

The inductees sat in an anteroom and waited their turn. As each was called, he was handed his prop of choice as he entered the meeting room. "Actually, they were playing tricks on us, but none of us knew it.....

...William Larsen Sr., who was into his third year of publishing Genii, had a big blackboard on a wall where he posted all the venues that magicians were working. Al says, with a laugh, "When the other magicians saw the two theaters listed by my name, they'd ask Bill, 'How the hell's that possible?'"

Sharpe became friends with Larsen and admired the fact that he was able to pursue his highly respectable profession as criminal lawyer and still devote so much time to magic. (In 1939, the Larsen Family toured the United States with a full-evening show.) Bill not only introduced Al to all the magicians, but a galaxy of Hollywood stars as well. The rest of the summer was a whirlwind of shows, the highlight being a testimonial banquet for Max Factor. Here, Al met and hobnobbed with Bette Davis, Chester Morris, Mickey Rooney, Bobby Breen, Ray Milland, "Think-a-Drink" Hoffman, and comedic movie actor Gil Lamb.

"Lamb got me three walk-on roles, one in a William Powell movie where I was paid good money for just sitting on a barstool for four hours. On that set, I met Adolph Menjou, the actor who taught me how to 'shoot a cuff.' Menjou told me that whenever he was standing upstage, he would lightly tug on his coat sleeve, causing the white French cuff of his shirt to pop out slightly. He said that shooting a cuff was a device he often used to steal a scene."

World War II was coming on and Harry Popkin offered to get Sharpe a deferment that would allow him to work in the movie industry. But Al decided to head back to Colorado, where he enrolled at the University of Denver. His studies kept him busy, but he found time to do shows for club-date producer Harry Greban, who booked him in hotels and casinos in Utah and Nevada.

Just before Thanksgiving of 1941, Greban advised Al that a deal was pending for 12 weeks on the Kemp Time circuit, a tour of theaters and military bases in and around Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Sharpe needed to report to Chicago to finalize the contract, even though the tour was two weeks away. ....

...By 1944, Sharpe was determined to get into the U.S. Army Air Corps. With recommendations from flight instructor Clayton Mardoni, of Mardoni & Louise second-sight act fame, and Col. Harry Tunks, also a magician, Sharpe was sent to Sioux City, Iowa to await orders for air cadet training. The papers never arrived. Instead, Al was handed a telegram from General H.H. "Hap" Arnold, stating he was released from all obligations to the Air Corps and was to join a Camp Show unit being formed around movie star Mickey Rooney. He was flown to New York, where rehearsals began the next day for Hip! Hip! Hooray! The show played military hospitals around New York and for all the workers in the Brooklyn Navy Yard before it shipped overseas.

"Hip! Hip! Hooray! The Jeep Shows are on the Way!" was the hue and cry as Mickey and the gang took the entertainment as close to the front line as possible. Ten Jeeps transported the 40 performers and musicians. Harry James' brother, Jimmy, was the bandleader. In addition to Rooney and actor Bobby Breen, there were five variety acts, including another magician, Jim Conley. As the Allied Armies cleared a path from Normandy to Paris, the performers worked their way around Southern France, entertaining the First, Seventh, and Ninth Armies. During the Battle of the Bulge — when the U.S. Army broke through the Ardennes Forest and the enemy at Bastogne surrounded the entertainers — the Jeep Show troupers were rescued by none other than General Patton's Third Army.

The war was declared over on May 8, 1945. A week later, Mickey's show unit entertained at the Pottsdam Conference. Sharpe was invited to do close-up at the dinner table of the Big Three — Truman, Attlee, and Stalin. When Rooney headed back to America, Hip! Hip! Hooray began a celebratory tour of theaters in France, this time giving Al the opportunity to perform with Marlene Dietrich, Joe E. Brown, and Celeste Holm.

Later that summer, Al was on his own and he went on to London, where he enjoyed an extended engagement at the Albany Hotel. This was followed by a run at the Bagatelle, where he met Jon Martin, the British magical mechanic who built a pair of custom birdcages for Al's act.

Returning to Paris to work at the CafŽ Baccarrat on the Champs Elysees, Al encountered Alan Keith, a sophisticated sorcerer who would soon appear as an enigmatic persona in Sharpe's literary endeavors. Al also met Guy Bare, the creative craftsman who engineered props and scenery for the Folies Bergere. Guy fabricated several pieces for Al's act and was instrumental in getting him a spot in the Folies show....

...Being a native Texan, Al's Labor Day weekends were usually set aside for the annual Texas Association of Magicians Conventions. In 1953, in an effort to encourage professionals and semi-pros to compete, Al set up a "revolving trophy" that awarded originality. The trophy remained in the possession of the winner for a year and passed on to next year's winner, unless someone won two years consecutively, then the trophy was kept. The first Al Sharpe Award for Originality in Presentation went to W.C. "Stubby" Stubblefield at the '53 TAOM Convention in Houston. Successive winners would be Mark Wilson in '54, Robert Gurtler (André Kole) in '55, Sam Berman in '56, and Ramon Galindo in '57. When Galindo won the Sharpe trophy again in 1958, it was retired.

In 1954, public relations executive and magician Robert Parrish convinced the owners of The Gaslight, an exclusive key club on Chicago's North Rush Street, to feature magic regularly in their showroom. Al performed twice a night for two weeks, alternating with Parrish every two weeks, for six months. About the same time, Al's friend, Marvyn Roy, who'd already made a name for himself with "Artistry in Light," started performing the act on ice at the Conrad Hilton. When Marvyn told Al that acts on ice demanded higher fees, Al took skating lessons and mounted his nightclub act on ice....

...By 1956, the Al Sharpe Studio of Magic had moved to an upstairs office space in the Woods Building on West Randolph Street. And because Mr. Sharpe had built up quite a sizeable practice as a civil law and tax attorney, numerous were the times he'd have to shut down the shop to "run over to the courthouse and take care of a legal matter." Finally, in the spring of 1957, Al sold the shop to Clarke "The Senator" Crandall, who ran it for two years before closing it. ...

...In late 1960, Sharpe was retained by the American Guild of Variety Artists to audit and ferret out the corruption that had taken over certain branch offices of the performers' Union, which was, and still is, affiliated with the AFL-CIO. It was a time when gambling and racketeering were prevalent in most of the mob-owned nightclubs under AGVA's jurisdiction, and allegedly mobsters had infiltrated the Union's offices. "AGVA is divided into three regions: the West Coast, the Central, and New York or the East Coast," Sharpe explains. "New York was corrupt, but the branch offices in the Central area had the most corruptness. When the Union decided they wanted to eliminate the problem, I was hired as the appointed attorney to the regional director of AGVA's Central to clean it up."

Sharpe began with the Dallas branch, which took two years to get straight, then moved to St. Louis for about nine months, on to Denver for a month, and back to Chicago. Basically, he was assigned the task of firing the staff members in each of the branch operations, going through the books, and then making legal decisions as to how to reorganize the offices.

Al was prohibited from performing while serving as AGVA's legal advisor. So, as an outlet for his magic, he turned to writing. In 1961, he authored and self-published a book he called Expert Hocus Pocus. The slim volume contains many of the routines he used in his nightclub performances over the years...

...During Al's two-year tenure at the Dallas AGVA office, he often opened a door or two for his fellow magi. Harry Blackstone Jr. showed up in 1962, not long after earning his master's degree at the University of Texas, looking for work. "Harry had left his job with the radio station [KTBC] in Austin and he really didn't have an act, yet. So I called up Jack Ruby, who owned the Carousel Club, and told him that there's a guy in town whose father was a famous magician. Right away, Jack offered to audition Harry on the midnight show." Blackstone put together some card tricks and did his father's Rope Tie and injected some comic relief into the Carousel's bill of exotic dancers. The audience loved him. Jack Ruby loved him. And the strippers loved him. Blackstone ended up working almost six months at the Carousel before heading out to Los Angeles, where he'd soon launch a magic career by going on television with the Smothers Brothers.

When Sharpe left Dallas in May of 1962 to go to the AGVA office in St. Louis, he offered magician Tom Palmer the branch manager position, a job Palmer would take and keep until February of 1964. Not long after Al completed his clean-up duties in St. Louis and Denver (where he had to fire the same AGVA rep he knew from his college days), he returned to Chicago and soon found out that his legal services were no longer needed.

"About that time, because of my experiences with union negotiations, I was invited to join a well-established Chicago law firm and become a partner."....

...Sharpe had been gone from the Dallas AGVA office for a little over a year when, in the summer of 1963, Carousel Club owner Jack Ruby became totally disgruntled with the union's policy permitting non-professional strippers to perform at nightclubs under AGVA's jurisdiction. He was adamant that the competition was employing inexperienced girls and promoting "amateur nights" in a manner calculated to destroy his business.

About a week before the Kennedy assassination, Ruby received a letter from AGVA branch manager, Tom Palmer, stating that modifications to the policy were being considered and amateur nights "would not be tolerated." The letter upset Ruby; his discontent with the Dallas office grew acute. He called Sharpe at the AGVA office in Chicago, soliciting his help. Al suggested that Jack mail a copy of Palmer's letter and he'd look into it. Not long after Ruby's call, on November 21, Sharpe's services were suspended by AGVA.

On November 23, the day after the JFK assassination, Sharpe and his wife phoned the Dallas AGVA office to tell Tom Palmer of Al's termination. Because Tom was not in the office to take the call, the secretary was told of Al's misfortune. Before they hung up, Sharpe gave the secretary a message: "Tell Jack not to send the letter today, it would be awkward in Chicago."

The secretary did not tell Palmer of her conversation with Al until the next morning. And she never attempted to "tell Jack not to send the letter..." It didn't matter. Jack Ruby had been arrested and jailed for the murder of suspected presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. The following day, Tom contacted the FBI, informing them of the phone call from Al.

On November 25, when FBI agents interrogated Al Sharpe in Chicago, he explained why it would be "awkward" for Ruby to send the letter. According to the agents' report, filed November 26, 1963: "Sharpe described Ruby as a person who became excited when a disagreement occurred..." That FBI report became Warren Commission Exhibit No. 2323 and was part of the Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy, that was submitted to the President on September 24, 1964. ...

For the next 20 years, as Sharpe diligently pursued his profession of attorney at law, he managed to find the time to acquire an impressive arsenal of card artifice and effects. He became a connoisseur and collector of some of the finest card magic of the time, card magic that he would share with other enthusiasts when he published the books that are now known as the Expert series.

Sharpe's Expert Card Conjuring was released in 1968. Disciples of Ed Marlo were amazed at the amount of new material that Al had obtained and written up for Marlo — over 60% of the tricks and moves in this volume are attributed to the man.

When Al was ready for retirement from the legal world in 1980, he and his wife, Lorraine, had already decided they wanted to move to California. Al had always fantasized of having a home with a theater, a place where magical soirees could be staged on a whim. This dream probably stems from his memories of the theater at Brookledge, the location of the Floyd Thayer Studio of Magic that, in 1942, became Al's friend Bill Larsen's home. "We looked at a lot of Hollywood directors and movie stars' homes that had screening rooms, but all these houses were too big. We finally found one we liked; it was Constance Bennett's house in Beverly Hills." Constance was the sister of Joan Bennett and starred in the late 1930s Topper movies. Tom Palmer, now Tony Andruzzi, came out and helped Al build a jewel of a stage in the center of the living room...

...It's been over three-quarters of a century since Al the Boy Wonder & His Wonder Dog Scat trekked the countryside, performing in those one-room schoolhouses. In the years that ensued, the boy became the master of a craft that enabled him to travel the world and enjoy a profession of entertaining and mystifying millions of people. Along the way, he shared those invaluable experiences and earned the utmost acclaim of his peers. This year, at the annual Magic Collectors' Weekend, which takes place in May in Kansas City, Missouri, Alton Sharpe will be the Guest of Honor — a fitting tribute to a man who has honored the art of magic and mystery his entire life.

According to Alton Sharpe, the illusionist Blackstone Jr. went directly from working at LBJ & wife's Austin, TX television station to working an extended series of midnight "engagements" at Jack Ruby's Carousol Club, and then to international stardom....

The FBI's Nov. 26, 1963 interview of Sharpe includes no reference to Blackstone Jr,:

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/...bsPageId=145424

Sharpe also reveals that both he and Tom Palmer at the Dallas AGVA Union office were accomplished illusionists who were still friends into the 1990's....

http://www.people.com/people/archive/artic...0072069,00.html

* October 30, 1978

Harry Blackstone Jr. Is a Real Cut-Up, but Wife Gay Keeps Her (and His) Act Together

You are about to witness the most sense-confounding drama on the stage today," the tall, goateed man bellows to a packed auditorium in Oshkosh, Wis. "Thirty-six inches of solid steel blade turning at 2,000 revolutions per minute will cut through lumber like a hot knife through butter. I can assure you, anything or anyone placed beneath it would have the same thing done to it"—or her.

Harry Blackstone Jr., 44, is really saying: "Ladies and gentleman, I am about to saw my wife in half." It is only an illusion, of course, despite the whining blade and sawdust, but Gay Blackstone, 30, the sawee, still is not wild about it. Especially since she also gets shot from a cannon, turned into a tiger, levitated and subjected to countless other indignities in the course of the show. Fortunately, the Blackstones have two formal agreements in their five-year-old marriage: (1) never to go to bed angry with each other and (2) never to go onstage angry with each other.

Their commitment is now being thoroughly tested, for they are barely a month into a cross-country tour that will take them to 110 cities in 27 states by March. Blackstone's show—it travels with a moving van full of equipment, two buses and a menagerie vehicle for such co-stars as Sebastian the jackass, Misty the 6,500-pound elephant and Bolma the Bengal tiger—is probably the most ambitious since the spectacles mounted by Harry's late father, the Babe Ruth of magic, in the 1940s. "I am responsible for the livelihood of 29 people," proclaims Blackstone, who rarely drops his ornate onstage diction even when asking the time. "I think I will succeed and my confidence is not unfounded."

He has the active support of third wife Gay, who not only plays foil but also co-produces the extravaganza. A close friend says the Blackstones are "two personalities working toward the same goal—they're busy, hectic and overbearing." But the consensus is that they're good bosses to work for considering the pressure. Gay professes to have no problem accepting second billing. "I had so many friends who were so unhappy trying to be stars," she says. "I love to perform but I don't have to be a star."

Originally she had more showbiz ambition than Harry. While he had made his stage debut at six months in his father's act, he later had qualms about picking up the wand when Harry Sr. passed it on: "I thought one legend in a household was enough." Inevitably, he learned the tricks of his father's trade, but after finishing high school at 15 (his childhood friends included future playboys Peter Revson and Lance Reventlow), he graduated from Swarthmore, then studied theater arts at Southern Cal and the U of Texas before enlisting in the Army. His father, who once pickpocketed a presidential bodyguard's revolver while performing for Calvin Coolidge, lost a multimillion-dollar fortune during the Depression. So after being mustered out, Harry Jr. edged back into show business, first as an announcer at the Lyndon Johnsons' TV and radio station in Austin, then as a manager for West Coast companies of Hair and associate producer of the Smothers Brothers TV show. Finally, at Tom Smothers' urging, Harry returned to performing on television and the international club circuit seven years ago. ...

...Once he began performing again, Harry had his name ("It opens a lot of doors, but they're on springs since people expect a lot") and a repertoire of 90 illusions that helped him live up to it. In 1976 he was named the official "Bicentennial Magician." Then in 1977 he gave a command performance for Queen Elizabeth's Silver Jubilee, and this year peers voted him the coveted Star of Magic, only the 11th bestowed in the 80-year history of the Magic Association. Harry has already starred in three TV specials and plays an evil magician in a just-finished Universal TV movie based on the Mandrake comic strip. He would like to have his own Broadway vehicle or TV series. ...

...She and Harry cope all right, too. Their new $190,000 bus comes equipped with a private suite and a sauna. Gay complains that it takes her four hours to wind down after a show and she wants a Jacuzzi to help her insomnia. Blackstone, however, requires only a matter of seconds to transform himself into a sawing-away, sleeping person.

Edited by Tom Scully
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Prelude to this post is Post #1 in John Mulholland Master Magician recruited by Sid Gottlieb's TSS MKULTRA thread.

The point here is that John Mulholland, the smartest and most committed illusionist of his generation, close friend of Harry Houdini, was recruited by the CIA to teach covert operators "the art of deception", and, in this very small community of expert technicians, John Gaughan, protege of Dallas master magician, Mark Wilson, a man who allegedly knew Jack Ruby, is the expert who currently knows how to perform John Mulholland's most intricate set of illusions, "Dr. Hooker's Impossibilities".

I was surprised to find that Ruby was described as hosting the act of Blackstone Jr., and was in close contact with AGVA Union officials Alton Sharpe and Tom Palmer. Those two mens were friends and expert magical performers/illusionists. Neither the

WC or the HSCA makes any mention of these details.

Why would there be "chatter" about Jack Ruby and a "second shooter" on themagiccafe.com/forums ?

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtop...9&start=120

Posted: Jan 12, 2009 12:02pm

Mark Wilson had a story where he said Jack Ruby tried to get himself set up as Mark's agent!

Posted: Jan 28, 2009 9:04pm

Tom Palmer a/k/a Tony Andruzzi was the AGVA manager over Ruby's club when Kennedy was shot. Tony confided in friends the name of the second shooter shortly before he died, and it will be revealed in the upcoming Palmer/Andruzzi biography. Stay tuned.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/18/fashion/...&ref=design

Magicians Ask: What’s Up His Sleeve?

By STEPHANIE ROSENBLOOM

Published: May 18, 2008

CHANCES are you’ve never heard of John Gaughan.

He doesn’t advertise. He doesn’t have a Web site. There is no street entrance to his workshop, a former 1930s aircraft school alongside railroad tracks on a dry, industrial stretch of road that straddles the city limits of Los Angeles and Glendale. Visitors must drive around back, past stacks of steel beams and cans of spray paint, toward a chain-link fence topped with barbed wire.

That Mr. Gaughan, 68, is not easily found befits an artisan who has spent most of his life creating large-scale illusions for many of the world’s most famous magicians and illusionists: Siegfried & Roy, David Blaine, Criss Angel, David Copperfield, Doug Henning, Mark Wilson, Ricky Jay....

....Nowadays Mr. Gaughan is one in a circle of elders of magic. But growing up in Dallas he was just another boy who hung around a shop called Douglas Magicland.

“I was the demonstrator and he was the kid who would come in,” recalled Mark Wilson, 79, the magician who produced and starred in network television’s first weekly magic series, “The Magic Land of Allakazam,” shown on CBS and ABC in the early 60s.

Before long, Mr. Gaughan, then 14, began working for Mr. Wilson and his assistant (and wife), Nani Darnell. “He would help us put magic kits together that we would sell in department stores,” said Mr. Wilson, who has taught the likes of Cary Grant, Dick Van Dyke and Johnny Carson to perform tricks...

...In 1961, Mr. Gaughan followed Mr. Wilson to Los Angeles, where he also studied industrial design at California State University. As Mr. Wilson’s star rose, he opened his own workshop in a house on Venice Boulevard....

....Eventually, Mr. Wilson moved his operation to the space that is Mr. Gaughan’s shop (though he is relocating to another site about three miles away).

Mr. Gaughan is also a top collector of magic memorabilia, restoring antique devices and replicating lost creations such as the Turk, a famed 1700s chess-playing automaton that rarely lost a game, trouncing Benjamin Franklin and Napoleon Bonaparte, according to legend. It was destroyed in a fire in 1854. Using a couple of pieces that survived the fire, Mr. Gaughan succeeded in building a working replica of the automaton after some 25 years.

“There are 8 or 10 people that build illusions,” said Mr. Steinmeyer, who is the author of “Hiding the Elephant: How Magicians Invented the Impossible and Learned to Disappear.” “To me, what’s unique about John is his interest in historical work.”

Mr. Steinmeyer and other professionals credit Mr. Gaughan with unraveling enduring mysteries and reintroducing them to modern magicians. “What’s a shame is that secrets fall out of fashion,” Mr. Steinmeyer said.

IN describing Mr. Gaughan’s abilities, his peers point to a 20th-century illusion called “Impossibilities” created by Dr. Samuel Cox Hooker, which, as Mr. Wilson described it, has “fooled every major magician in the country.”

Mr. Gaughan acquired the illusion from Dr. Hooker’s estate, cracked its secrets and performed it twice at the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History. Playing cards rise and lower at his command, and a disembodied teddy bear head floats off a table.

Mr. Wilson had read about the illusion and thought: “Well, of course if I see it I’ll understand it. I’ll know how to do it.”

But that was not the case.

“He just fooled the hell out of me,” said Mr. Wilson, quickly apologizing for his enthusiastic language. Even so, he said, “I don’t think I want to know how to do it because I enjoy being fooled.”....

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/06/04/politics/04MAN.html

A Quiet Man Takes Charge: John Edward McLaughlin

June 4, 2004

....Behind the tweed, however, is a mirthful side. Around the agency he is known as Merlin, Mr. Tenet noted on Thursday ? most likely because he is an accomplished amateur magician who delights in pulling dollar bills from behind the ears of visitors.

But in his new job, as acting director of central intelligence, his most important performances will be his briefings for President Bush most mornings, a job Mr. Tenet relished. Mr. McLaughlin, in fact, has more than a decade of history with presidential briefings.

During the presidential transition in the fall of 1992, Mr. McLaughlin, then the agency's director of Slavic and Eurasian analysis, occasionally spelled other officials who were briefing Gov. Bill Clinton in Little Rock, Ark...

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/valley/l...50.story?page=1

Now you see it, now you don't - collectors, scholars and performers gather in North Hollywood to celebrate the history of magic.

By Patrice Roe, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

November 16, 2007

As exclusive gatherings go, this one was noteworthy, even by the high local standards set by A-list Hollywood, with attendees including a former acting director of the CIA, at least one prime-time TV star and half of Penn & Teller (the smaller, quieter half).

That last guest is perhaps the one clue you need to figure out the subject of their mutual interest: magic. Or more specifically, the history of the art, as long-dead prestidigitators, illusionists and "miracle" workers were resurrected for the 10th Los Angeles Conference on Magic History, held Nov. 8-10 in North Hollywood.

The biennial invitation-only conference -- so exclusive that it generally takes a death to create an opening for the following event -- is billed as "a unique weekend of wonders" by its organizers and the "hottest ticket in magic" by the editor of a leading magicians' magazine. The conference attracts an eclectic group of attendees who share a passion for magic history;...

....The invitation to attend this year's conference came in the form of a puzzle. When assembled, it read, "You are cordially invited to the Queen of Hearts' party, the long-awaited encore of Dr. Hooker's 'Impossibilities and Rising Cards.' "

Dr. Hooker and his effects have achieved a reputation of mythical proportion in the magic community. His "masterpiece" was the rising cards. To someone unfamiliar with magicians' methods, the trick may look unremarkable. A card is selected by an audience member and then rises from a deck onstage.

But there were subtleties employed by Dr. Hooker that have baffled the greatest minds in magic from Harry Houdini to present-day magic scholars.

John Gaughan restored and presented the half-hour re-creation of Dr. Hooker's show, aided by "Miltiades III," the animated head of a teddy bear. Dr. Hooker chose the name Miltiades from his granddaughter's storybook, "Adventures of Miltiades Peterkin Paul."

Gaughan, an award-winning builder of magical effects, is another of the conference organizers. His quiet, modest demeanor fits well with the slower paced presentation style of the early 20th Century effect.

Brian McCullagh made the "very expensive" trip from Australia specifically for Gaughan's show. McCullagh, who has attended four of the conferences and lectured in 1997, said he had originally read of Dr. Hooker in the 1950s. He called Gaughan's presentation "brilliant."

McCullagh became interested in magic as a boy and tried his hand at performing. "But I found that as a performer, I make a better math teacher," McCullagh said.

While many magicians' secrets were revealed during the conference, Gaughan is keeping those of the "Impossibilities" to himself. Richard Kaufman, editor of the magicians' magazine Genii, wryly suggested that perhaps water-boarding would get Gaughan to talk.

Besides the rising cards, the Conference on Magic History offered the 250 registrants an exhibit room, two dealers' rooms and 18 lectures and shows.

The conference, since its inception, has been held at the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn in North Hollywood. The number attending is still small compared to other mainstream magic conventions. But there were just 120 at the first; that group fit nicely into a small theater at the hotel. The popularity of the conference has increased the number attending, and now all the events are held in the hotel's ballroom.

This year's conference, as a result, lacked some of the friendly intimacy of earlier gatherings. A few of the speakers, reading woodenly from notes or neglecting to present graphics, gave some in the audience an opportunity to grab a quick nap. Nonetheless, there were plenty of highlights – enough to justify the admission cost of $260.

Dr. Peter Lamont spoke on a Victorian-era personality, W.J. Vernon, in a presentation titled "Professor, Pseudo-scientist, Terrorist." Lamont is a historian and psychologist based at the Koestler Parapsychology Unit at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland....

...Along with the centerpiece of Gaughan's rising cards, conference-goers saw other performances using restored magical apparatus. Caveney performed "The Million Dollar Mystery," built originally in the 1930s for the San Francisco magician Charles Carter. Baskets of balls, buckets of water and a woman are all produced from a box about 18-inches square.

Jim Steinmeyer, award-winning illusion designer and another of the conference organizers, presented "Finding the Lady." This effect is an oversized version of the street con, the Three Card Monte. Instead of trying to find the Queen of Hearts from three overturned cards on a piece of cardboard set up on a street corner, you try to find a woman from behind giant-sized cards set up on stage.

A real treat was Steinmeyer's second presentation of the illusion showing how it works. It was fascinating. Don't ask how he did it -- everyone there was sworn to secrecy.

Those attending the conference can be as interesting as the presentations. Teller of Penn & Teller could be seen conversing with other magic buffs.....

....Another conference attendee was John McLaughlin, former acting director of the CIA. When asked if he had attended many of the conferences, he responded simply, "You have to be invited."

McLaughlin, who presented "Magic and Intelligence, Kindred Arts" at the 2005 conference, says he has been interested in magic since he was a boy and sees a parallel between it and intelligence work. McLaughlin, now a college professor, says he uses magic to show his students how easy it is to be fooled.

Not officially part of the conference but offered to registrants was the opportunity to take a tour of "Extraordinary Exhibitions: Broadsides From the Collections of Ricky Jay" at the Hammer Museum in Westwood.

Jay, who was instrumental in the conference's origins in 1989, was present Friday morning to offer an insider's glimpse into his collection of broadsheets dating as far back as the 1618 promotion of "The Learned Horse." (Jay is known for his stage performances as well as parts in the films "Boogie Nights" and "The Prestige" and the TV shows "The Unit," "Kidnapped" and "Deadwood.")....

http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubbthr...94916#Post94916

Saturday Night, November 3rd,2007 Beverly Garland Holiday Inn, North Hollywood, Ca. 7:30 pm. The Hooker Card Rise performance of Dr. Samuel Cox Hookers "Impossibilities & Miltiades III". The Fransican Room, small in area had 50 seats. Front row had 8 seats, three rows, then along the back of the room were probably 20 high stools with backs.

The back wall had many letters from famous magicians and scientists who were witness to the demostration when Dr. Hooker was alive and performed this himself. I arrived early, seeing the actual Hooker family decendants after a private showing leaving the room. I met and spoke then visited with a man whom had not seen any magic performed befor. He was clearly overwhelmed with what he witnessed, shocked and completly mystified. The family still talking, having cheese & crackers, coffee and so forth started leaving. I had seen a guest book on the registration table and signed it. The group of people to see the 7:30 pm show had started to arrive and the guest book was not left on the table, it must have been for family only and I am not a family member.

While sitting on a bench next to this table outside, Mike Caveney gave me my copy of the 10th Los Angeles Conference on Magic History. Entering the Franciscan room, my seat was A-2, second from the left end in the front row. The room was full and the presentation began on time. I was probably as close as 8' away from the stage and I could see very clearly.

The stage was on a 12" riser and the curtains were the original one's Dr. Hooker had in his own house when he performed. The stage was small, what looked like maybe 10' across and only about 6'/7' deep. The back curtain was ornate in pattern and multi-colored in soft tones in what looked like a floral design.

The front most curtain was a dark brown and looked like cordaroy material. There were a couple curtains over the stage that had a shelf behind the 1st one were the ribbons for the swinging effect were tossed back up on to when done. These curtains were a forest green color.

On stage there were only 4 tables all with round tops about 12" in diameter and only about 1/2" thick, no fringe material from edge and all tables were felt covered. On the far right a crank model Victrola music player sat on yet another table (5) total. Just to the left on another table was Miltiades III a bears head, dark brown fur, big eyes, extended mouth jaws and a frill collar. The eyes moved up, down, and side to side. Being completly animated, the head moved side to side and nooded up and down, the jaws opened quickly like talking but no sound or clicking or any other noise came out of it being completly silent.

A table against the back curtain had the glass bell jar like a wedding clock cover but much larger, about 10"/11" in diameter and 20"/24" tall. On this table there were also 3 or 4 3" tall small clear glass pedistals about 1/2" to 3/4" diameter each. The table for the houlette was just left of center stage and only about 2' or 3' back from the stages front edge. The remaining table held additional props used during the performance, this was located further to the left and from my seat covered slightly by the front most brown curtain.

Jim Steinmeyer began telling us about Dr. Samuel Hooker and his life, where he was born and lived, his education in Chemistry and also mentioned Dr. Hooker recieved his PHD in only (1) year. John Gaughan presented the Hooker Card Rise and an expert job he did! John is not a typical magic performer, his specialty is restoring antique magic apparatus, automatons, clocks, Houdini's Water Torture Cell ect...John did not showboat himself and performed very casualy.

No sound system was necessary at all due to the room being small as it was. 1st effect began when John picked up a pack of cards from the far left table, removing cards from the box, he placed the box upon Miltiades's table and instantly the bear's eyes rolled down and to the right looking at the box, just laid, then looked at John and its mouth started moving as if speaking but no words came out. John acted like he understood the problem the bear had and removed the box from it's table and placed the empty card box on the prop table to the far left. Then John handed the top 1/3rd of the deck to the person on my far right end of the front row, handed the 2nd third to a person in the middle of our row, then handed the remainder of the pack to me for shuffling. I overhand shuffled my cards briefly. John asked the 3 of us to do this.

He then collected these cards and holding them, he brought forward the houlette to the front row and I touched it, seeing it clearly, it had glass on both sides, was open through the front and back. Made of what looked like brass and had what looked like a solid bottom. Also had small rings at the top of both sides. He then put the deck into the houlette and carefully placed it on the table. He then wound up the victrola, which had the word "Stella" in decal on its inside cover and soft music played.

He asked Miltiades to make a card rise as a poem started to be read aloud. The Queen of Hearts rose slowly and lowered back down. All through out this demonstration Miltiades was animated and a one sided conversation took place between John Gaughan and Miltiades. Next were the marching cards, they all rose one at a time quickly, the Queen of Hearts was removed and stood next to the houlette as this was done. All the while John Gaughan is still reading this poem. The Kings all rose one at a time, then the Joker rises and the Queen of Hearts falls forward face down, poem over.

John Gaughan then asked the audience for a single digit number "7" was called then John asked Miltiades to make them rise, 7 cards rose exactly! Another number of cards was asked for and "4" was called out, again Miltiades made exactly 4 cards rise from the deck in the houlette. Both sets of cards were handed out to the audience to verify. Next effect: Audience shuffles deck, the Joker is removed and with scissors, cut in half width wise, one half was placed over the inside bottom of the houlette from the front to rear the remainder of the deck was placed in the houlette over the Joker half piece, then the entire deck rose with in the houlette and lowered, the Queen of Hearts rises again.

John asked the audience member to call out a card, the 10 of Clubs was called and it rose, this card John Gaughan gave to the audience member to keep as a souvenir. Again audience is asked to call out a card, the Jack of Spades was called and it rises. Then John asked Miltiades to make the very front card rise which was the 3 of Spades and it then rose from the houlette. Then the 7 of Diamonds was called, this was from a man in the front row. And then John asked him to raise his hand and the card rose just as his hand rose, stopped, rose again and lowered, back and forth as his hand/arm was moved up and down, the card responded at the same speed!

Next effect: A borrowed deck from audience, John Gaughan did not touch it, audience member asked to pick a card between 1 and 15, 5 of Hearts was selected and signed, then reversed and both adjacent cards befor and after were also noted. The reversed 5 of Hearts was counted from the face , to be "11" cards in. While in the houlette quickly the 5 of Hearts rose and is shown to be the 11th card and the cards next to it were the same cards.

Next effect: A 2nd borrowed deck from the audience is used and shuffled, the head of Miltiades is now covered with a handkerchief and the houlette is also blocked from view with the folding two panel poem placed in front. The 3 of Diamonds was noted to be the 21st card from the back of the deck, John Gaughan asked Miltiades to mentally think about where the 3 of Diamonds is. Miltiades kept shakeing its head no, under 5,10,15,20,25 then Miltiades nodded yes, on down to "21". John then came off the stage to me and asked me to count out loud in a clear voice to 21. I did and placed the cards in a silver bowl held my John, handing the 21st card to John, it was the correct card! The 2 of Hearts was then called out and it rose also.

Next effect: Then three of the Jacks jumped out fast and cleared the deck as John caught them. Then the bell jar was placed over the houlette's table top and the Jack of Hearts rose 15" to 20" inside the bell jar! No wobble, smooth and silent and so very clean! Then it lowered onto the top of the deck slowly and cleanly. All the while Miltiades is animated and then the bell jar is placed over Miltiades's table top and slowly he rises and keeps moving its eyes and mouth and turns slightly, it raised 15" slowly and it was just as clean and smooth! The bell jar was removed while Miltiades was still 4" off the table top! Clean, slow, smooth, silent, Magical, very very Magical and still animated all the while.

Now the 3" short clear glass pedistals are placed upon the houlette table, and an old magic book, 1/2" thick is placed on top of the pedistals. (3) cards are asked for and called out by the audience, choosen were the 2 of Hearts, 7 of Spades and the 8 of Diamonds. The houlette is placed upon the book, clearly above the table top, then the 2 of Hearts rises. Then the houlette is suspended from two ribbons from above the stage and using the two small rings on the sides of the houlette. This looks to be about head high to John Gaughan, and the 7 of Spades rises. Now the hanging houlette is left swinging back and forth and the 8 of Diamonds rises.

Finally the houlette is placed back on its table, covered once again by the bell jar and now many cards are shot up out of the houlette and just left inside the bell jar all over the table top, not all the cards flew up just several of them. Finished!

Excellent show, $100.00 per ticket....

http://www.magicbeard.com/view.php?id=2

Speak of the Devil: A Conversation about Tony Andruzzi

Eugene Burger and David Parr

Originally published in Genii Magazine, October, 2000

...EB: No, my first impression never really changed. Tony was a Trickster. It wasn't a put-on. He lived it. This polarity between being an incorrigible demon on the one hand and a benevolent spirit on the other dominated Tony's contribution to twentieth century magic.

DP: In that he created the Tom Palmer comedy act, and then went to the other end of the spectrum with Masklyn ye Mage.

EB: Yes, and also his influence on twentieth century magic which, I think, has been both positive and negative. Just as Tony gave positive permission, as it were, for many of us to look deeper into our magic and ask better questions, he also gave permission to some, for example, in the Psychic Entertainers Association, to do psychic readings and present themselves to the gullible, who are suffering, as one who has real powers that can help them with the problems in their personal lives. I think that was Tony's negative influence -- that he never deeply asked the ethical question. And I think that same duality of saint and sinner also dominated Tony's personal life. It certainly dominated the seven Invocational conventions he organized, wouldn't you say?

DP: Definitely. At times it was hard to tell if it was a magic convention or a Bacchanalia.

EB: It was either, and it was both. Again, an expression of the basic paradox of Tony Andruzzi: The Invocational was part serious convention and part drunken party. And in the middle, having a wonderful time, was Tony, equally serious and happily drunk.

DP: I often marveled at his ability to pull himself together and perform. One minute he was rambling on and on in a haze, goofing around and laughing and shouting, and the next minute he was in his Masklyn persona, dead serious, and performing magic. And when he was finished he was right back to Crazy Tony, the life of the party. I remember one night in particular, very late, when someone persuaded him to do this routine with a rock -- do you remember this?

EB: Yes, I do. The effect relied on inducing eye-strain in the viewer, which made the rock appear to be breathing. Some people saw it, and some people didn't. ...

....EB: Yes. The third idea, that Tony was not aiming simply for laughter and applause, follows from the second idea: that bizarre magic is not a show but something deeper, a conjuring with the very forces of the cosmos. Tony's aim, I think, was to pull the rug from under our concept of reality, to shake us up, to disturb us.

DP: Thank-you Tony! Magic should be disturbing sometimes. It should make people uncomfortable. Of course, that's not an easy goal. It's not a commercial goal. The audience doesn't necessarily walk away smiling and admiring how clever and adroit you are. Instead they have a creepy feeling that what they've just experienced might have been real.....

....DP: It was a terrible loss. Because I think Tony Andruzzi was one of the hidden geniuses of magic. You know, the fact that Tony abandoned a successful career as a comedy magician to try something very different was really inspiring to me. When I began attending the Invocational conventions --

EB: Did you go to all of them?

DP: All seven. And at that time I was performing magic in comedy clubs, and I was completely miserable. Because I was totally out of my element. Being around people like Tony and you and Max made me realize that comedy isn't the only way to go. I didn't belong in comedy clubs. My skills are suited to something else. So I left the path I was on, and set off on a new path. Tony's example let me know that that was possible.

EB: Yes, that's Tony's final legacy to me as well. And probably for many of those who knew him personally or through his writings. Tony gave all of us permission to take our magic into new and different directions, to walk down different paths....

http://www.dragonskull.co.uk/mym.htm

A TONY ANDRUZZI MEMORIAL

Tony Andruzzi was born Antonio C. Andruzzi in 1925 in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He learned magic at the age of 8 from a magic set. From the 1950's to the early 1970's, he was a professional illusionist & comedy magician, adopted the name "Tom Palmer" and had his name legally changed to Thomas S. Palmer...

http://www.magicmagazine.com/january05/january05extra2.html

WEB EXTRA: Alton Sharpe 1921-2004

By John Moehring

It was an uncle, the one from Wichita Falls, Texas, who opened the eyes of five-year-old Alton Sharpe to the wonders of magic. He was on a business trip, auditing the franchised Rexall drug stores he owned, and he'd stopped to visit Alton's family who lived on the outskirts of Dallas. He was about to leave when he asked the boy, "Would you like to see a mystery of magic?" There was a "Yes, sir," even though he wasn't too sure what his uncle was talking about....

...Al's father was a motion picture distributor whose territory covered Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, and most of Utah. He was constantly on the road, and his mother had grown accustomed to accompanying him. Al soon joined them on their journeys. He was tutored no matter where they traveled.

Al's repertoire of magic tricks continued to grow. On his sixth birthday, his other uncle, the one who lived near Oklahoma City, gave him an English bulldog.....

...His aunt, who lived in Wichita Falls and worked for a dry goods manufacturer, had one of her seamstresses sew up a tuxedo for Al. His accumulation of tricks was packed into a black leather suitcase and taken along as the family traveled from state to state. "My mother and aunt started calling on one-room country schools. If the teachers wanted a program of entertainment, they picked a date that coincided with our return trip. My fee was $1 and I was billed as 'Al the Boy Wonder & His Wonder Dog Scat.'"...

...Sharpe says that for the next three years, there was rarely a month that went by when there weren't attorneys or insurance company investigators or both at his home in Dallas. "I remember sitting there in the dining room and listening to the insurance people and my mother as they rehashed the story over and over. One night when I walked into the room, two lawyers were down on the floor using knives and forks to represent the vehicles involved in the accident." It was late and Al had a Quaker Oats box under his arm. "I kept my toy cars in an old oatmeal box. It was a collection of little metal automobiles and trucks, and I even had a bus and a wrecker. I asked the men, 'Why don't you use these?' Every time after that, whenever the lawyers came to the house to analyze the accident, they used my toy cars."

Alton was intrigued with the ways and means of attorneys, their methods for unraveling mysteries. He knew then that he wanted to become a lawyer one day. "However, because of all those tricks and things that I was learning from my uncles, I really wanted to be a magician first." ....

....Young Mr. Sharpe was becoming quite adept at thimble and coin manipulations, learning moves from a copy of The Modern Conjuror. It wasn't long before he ordered a copy of Thayer's Catalogue of Quality Magic No. 7. The 288-page wish book was indeed as advertised: "The Finest, Largest and Most Comprehensive Compilation of Magical Goods Ever Published." And there on page 121 was the trick that he had to have, the trick that was in the repertoires of all the greats, including De Kolta, Kellar, Blackstone, and Willard — The Flying Bird Cage, Catalogue No. 912. Finest make, Price $10.

When the shiny, nickel-plated, precision-crafted birdcage arrived, Al was, quite frankly, disappointed. He could not, as the catalog description purported, "cause the cage to vanish in a flash, leaving not a trace to tell of its mysterious flight." That's because the cage was longer than his arms.

"I wrote Mr. Thayer telling him that I couldn't hide a cage that big up my sleeve. A week later, he wrote back saying that he had a metalworker by the name of Walter Baker who could make a custom cage." All Al had to do was send a drawing of his arm, indicating the measurement from his shoulder to elbow to wrist. "The cage that Baker made was superior to the German-manufactured cage sold by Thayer's at the time, and I performed it until it wore out, which was 20 years later." ....

..Two years later, while visiting Douglas' new store, now called Douglas Magicland and located at 409 North Ervay, Al met Harry McDaniel, the president of the Dallas Magic Circle. Although Al was too young to join the club, he was invited to one of the meetings. The local magicians liked him and, even though he was underage, he was handed a membership application. McDaniels requested that he be at the next induction ceremony.

"There were four of us being initiated that night. Harry asked each of us what our favorite trick was, saying that we'd have to get up in front of the members and prove that the trick we chose really was our favorite." Sharpe told McDaniel his choice was the Chinese Linking Rings, mainly because he'd been doing the trick his way for quite some time.

The inductees sat in an anteroom and waited their turn. As each was called, he was handed his prop of choice as he entered the meeting room. "Actually, they were playing tricks on us, but none of us knew it.....

...William Larsen Sr., who was into his third year of publishing Genii, had a big blackboard on a wall where he posted all the venues that magicians were working. Al says, with a laugh, "When the other magicians saw the two theaters listed by my name, they'd ask Bill, 'How the hell's that possible?'"

Sharpe became friends with Larsen and admired the fact that he was able to pursue his highly respectable profession as criminal lawyer and still devote so much time to magic. (In 1939, the Larsen Family toured the United States with a full-evening show.) Bill not only introduced Al to all the magicians, but a galaxy of Hollywood stars as well. The rest of the summer was a whirlwind of shows, the highlight being a testimonial banquet for Max Factor. Here, Al met and hobnobbed with Bette Davis, Chester Morris, Mickey Rooney, Bobby Breen, Ray Milland, "Think-a-Drink" Hoffman, and comedic movie actor Gil Lamb.

"Lamb got me three walk-on roles, one in a William Powell movie where I was paid good money for just sitting on a barstool for four hours. On that set, I met Adolph Menjou, the actor who taught me how to 'shoot a cuff.' Menjou told me that whenever he was standing upstage, he would lightly tug on his coat sleeve, causing the white French cuff of his shirt to pop out slightly. He said that shooting a cuff was a device he often used to steal a scene."

World War II was coming on and Harry Popkin offered to get Sharpe a deferment that would allow him to work in the movie industry. But Al decided to head back to Colorado, where he enrolled at the University of Denver. His studies kept him busy, but he found time to do shows for club-date producer Harry Greban, who booked him in hotels and casinos in Utah and Nevada.

Just before Thanksgiving of 1941, Greban advised Al that a deal was pending for 12 weeks on the Kemp Time circuit, a tour of theaters and military bases in and around Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Sharpe needed to report to Chicago to finalize the contract, even though the tour was two weeks away. ....

...By 1944, Sharpe was determined to get into the U.S. Army Air Corps. With recommendations from flight instructor Clayton Mardoni, of Mardoni & Louise second-sight act fame, and Col. Harry Tunks, also a magician, Sharpe was sent to Sioux City, Iowa to await orders for air cadet training. The papers never arrived. Instead, Al was handed a telegram from General H.H. "Hap" Arnold, stating he was released from all obligations to the Air Corps and was to join a Camp Show unit being formed around movie star Mickey Rooney. He was flown to New York, where rehearsals began the next day for Hip! Hip! Hooray! The show played military hospitals around New York and for all the workers in the Brooklyn Navy Yard before it shipped overseas.

"Hip! Hip! Hooray! The Jeep Shows are on the Way!" was the hue and cry as Mickey and the gang took the entertainment as close to the front line as possible. Ten Jeeps transported the 40 performers and musicians. Harry James' brother, Jimmy, was the bandleader. In addition to Rooney and actor Bobby Breen, there were five variety acts, including another magician, Jim Conley. As the Allied Armies cleared a path from Normandy to Paris, the performers worked their way around Southern France, entertaining the First, Seventh, and Ninth Armies. During the Battle of the Bulge — when the U.S. Army broke through the Ardennes Forest and the enemy at Bastogne surrounded the entertainers — the Jeep Show troupers were rescued by none other than General Patton's Third Army.

The war was declared over on May 8, 1945. A week later, Mickey's show unit entertained at the Pottsdam Conference. Sharpe was invited to do close-up at the dinner table of the Big Three — Truman, Attlee, and Stalin. When Rooney headed back to America, Hip! Hip! Hooray began a celebratory tour of theaters in France, this time giving Al the opportunity to perform with Marlene Dietrich, Joe E. Brown, and Celeste Holm.

Later that summer, Al was on his own and he went on to London, where he enjoyed an extended engagement at the Albany Hotel. This was followed by a run at the Bagatelle, where he met Jon Martin, the British magical mechanic who built a pair of custom birdcages for Al's act.

Returning to Paris to work at the CafŽ Baccarrat on the Champs Elysees, Al encountered Alan Keith, a sophisticated sorcerer who would soon appear as an enigmatic persona in Sharpe's literary endeavors. Al also met Guy Bare, the creative craftsman who engineered props and scenery for the Folies Bergere. Guy fabricated several pieces for Al's act and was instrumental in getting him a spot in the Folies show....

...Being a native Texan, Al's Labor Day weekends were usually set aside for the annual Texas Association of Magicians Conventions. In 1953, in an effort to encourage professionals and semi-pros to compete, Al set up a "revolving trophy" that awarded originality. The trophy remained in the possession of the winner for a year and passed on to next year's winner, unless someone won two years consecutively, then the trophy was kept. The first Al Sharpe Award for Originality in Presentation went to W.C. "Stubby" Stubblefield at the '53 TAOM Convention in Houston. Successive winners would be Mark Wilson in '54, Robert Gurtler (André Kole) in '55, Sam Berman in '56, and Ramon Galindo in '57. When Galindo won the Sharpe trophy again in 1958, it was retired.

In 1954, public relations executive and magician Robert Parrish convinced the owners of The Gaslight, an exclusive key club on Chicago's North Rush Street, to feature magic regularly in their showroom. Al performed twice a night for two weeks, alternating with Parrish every two weeks, for six months. About the same time, Al's friend, Marvyn Roy, who'd already made a name for himself with "Artistry in Light," started performing the act on ice at the Conrad Hilton. When Marvyn told Al that acts on ice demanded higher fees, Al took skating lessons and mounted his nightclub act on ice....

...By 1956, the Al Sharpe Studio of Magic had moved to an upstairs office space in the Woods Building on West Randolph Street. And because Mr. Sharpe had built up quite a sizeable practice as a civil law and tax attorney, numerous were the times he'd have to shut down the shop to "run over to the courthouse and take care of a legal matter." Finally, in the spring of 1957, Al sold the shop to Clarke "The Senator" Crandall, who ran it for two years before closing it. ...

...In late 1960, Sharpe was retained by the American Guild of Variety Artists to audit and ferret out the corruption that had taken over certain branch offices of the performers' Union, which was, and still is, affiliated with the AFL-CIO. It was a time when gambling and racketeering were prevalent in most of the mob-owned nightclubs under AGVA's jurisdiction, and allegedly mobsters had infiltrated the Union's offices. "AGVA is divided into three regions: the West Coast, the Central, and New York or the East Coast," Sharpe explains. "New York was corrupt, but the branch offices in the Central area had the most corruptness. When the Union decided they wanted to eliminate the problem, I was hired as the appointed attorney to the regional director of AGVA's Central to clean it up."

Sharpe began with the Dallas branch, which took two years to get straight, then moved to St. Louis for about nine months, on to Denver for a month, and back to Chicago. Basically, he was assigned the task of firing the staff members in each of the branch operations, going through the books, and then making legal decisions as to how to reorganize the offices.

Al was prohibited from performing while serving as AGVA's legal advisor. So, as an outlet for his magic, he turned to writing. In 1961, he authored and self-published a book he called Expert Hocus Pocus. The slim volume contains many of the routines he used in his nightclub performances over the years...

...During Al's two-year tenure at the Dallas AGVA office, he often opened a door or two for his fellow magi. Harry Blackstone Jr. showed up in 1962, not long after earning his master's degree at the University of Texas, looking for work. "Harry had left his job with the radio station [KTBC] in Austin and he really didn't have an act, yet. So I called up Jack Ruby, who owned the Carousel Club, and told him that there's a guy in town whose father was a famous magician. Right away, Jack offered to audition Harry on the midnight show." Blackstone put together some card tricks and did his father's Rope Tie and injected some comic relief into the Carousel's bill of exotic dancers. The audience loved him. Jack Ruby loved him. And the strippers loved him. Blackstone ended up working almost six months at the Carousel before heading out to Los Angeles, where he'd soon launch a magic career by going on television with the Smothers Brothers.

When Sharpe left Dallas in May of 1962 to go to the AGVA office in St. Louis, he offered magician Tom Palmer the branch manager position, a job Palmer would take and keep until February of 1964. Not long after Al completed his clean-up duties in St. Louis and Denver (where he had to fire the same AGVA rep he knew from his college days), he returned to Chicago and soon found out that his legal services were no longer needed.

"About that time, because of my experiences with union negotiations, I was invited to join a well-established Chicago law firm and become a partner."....

...Sharpe had been gone from the Dallas AGVA office for a little over a year when, in the summer of 1963, Carousel Club owner Jack Ruby became totally disgruntled with the union's policy permitting non-professional strippers to perform at nightclubs under AGVA's jurisdiction. He was adamant that the competition was employing inexperienced girls and promoting "amateur nights" in a manner calculated to destroy his business.

About a week before the Kennedy assassination, Ruby received a letter from AGVA branch manager, Tom Palmer, stating that modifications to the policy were being considered and amateur nights "would not be tolerated." The letter upset Ruby; his discontent with the Dallas office grew acute. He called Sharpe at the AGVA office in Chicago, soliciting his help. Al suggested that Jack mail a copy of Palmer's letter and he'd look into it. Not long after Ruby's call, on November 21, Sharpe's services were suspended by AGVA.

On November 23, the day after the JFK assassination, Sharpe and his wife phoned the Dallas AGVA office to tell Tom Palmer of Al's termination. Because Tom was not in the office to take the call, the secretary was told of Al's misfortune. Before they hung up, Sharpe gave the secretary a message: "Tell Jack not to send the letter today, it would be awkward in Chicago."

The secretary did not tell Palmer of her conversation with Al until the next morning. And she never attempted to "tell Jack not to send the letter..." It didn't matter. Jack Ruby had been arrested and jailed for the murder of suspected presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. The following day, Tom contacted the FBI, informing them of the phone call from Al.

On November 25, when FBI agents interrogated Al Sharpe in Chicago, he explained why it would be "awkward" for Ruby to send the letter. According to the agents' report, filed November 26, 1963: "Sharpe described Ruby as a person who became excited when a disagreement occurred..." That FBI report became Warren Commission Exhibit No. 2323 and was part of the Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy, that was submitted to the President on September 24, 1964. ...

For the next 20 years, as Sharpe diligently pursued his profession of attorney at law, he managed to find the time to acquire an impressive arsenal of card artifice and effects. He became a connoisseur and collector of some of the finest card magic of the time, card magic that he would share with other enthusiasts when he published the books that are now known as the Expert series.

Sharpe's Expert Card Conjuring was released in 1968. Disciples of Ed Marlo were amazed at the amount of new material that Al had obtained and written up for Marlo — over 60% of the tricks and moves in this volume are attributed to the man.

When Al was ready for retirement from the legal world in 1980, he and his wife, Lorraine, had already decided they wanted to move to California. Al had always fantasized of having a home with a theater, a place where magical soirees could be staged on a whim. This dream probably stems from his memories of the theater at Brookledge, the location of the Floyd Thayer Studio of Magic that, in 1942, became Al's friend Bill Larsen's home. "We looked at a lot of Hollywood directors and movie stars' homes that had screening rooms, but all these houses were too big. We finally found one we liked; it was Constance Bennett's house in Beverly Hills." Constance was the sister of Joan Bennett and starred in the late 1930s Topper movies. Tom Palmer, now Tony Andruzzi, came out and helped Al build a jewel of a stage in the center of the living room...

...It's been over three-quarters of a century since Al the Boy Wonder & His Wonder Dog Scat trekked the countryside, performing in those one-room schoolhouses. In the years that ensued, the boy became the master of a craft that enabled him to travel the world and enjoy a profession of entertaining and mystifying millions of people. Along the way, he shared those invaluable experiences and earned the utmost acclaim of his peers. This year, at the annual Magic Collectors' Weekend, which takes place in May in Kansas City, Missouri, Alton Sharpe will be the Guest of Honor — a fitting tribute to a man who has honored the art of magic and mystery his entire life.

According to Alton Sharpe, the illusionist Blackstone Jr. went directly from working at LBJ & wife's Austin, TX television station to working an extended series of midnight "engagements" at Jack Ruby's Carousol Club, and then to international stardom....

The FBI's Nov. 26, 1963 interview of Sharpe includes no reference to Blackstone Jr,:

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/...bsPageId=145424

Sharpe also reveals that both he and Tom Palmer at the Dallas AGVA Union office were accomplished illusionists who were still friends into the 1990's....

http://www.people.com/people/archive/artic...0072069,00.html

* October 30, 1978

Harry Blackstone Jr. Is a Real Cut-Up, but Wife Gay Keeps Her (and His) Act Together

You are about to witness the most sense-confounding drama on the stage today," the tall, goateed man bellows to a packed auditorium in Oshkosh, Wis. "Thirty-six inches of solid steel blade turning at 2,000 revolutions per minute will cut through lumber like a hot knife through butter. I can assure you, anything or anyone placed beneath it would have the same thing done to it"—or her.

Harry Blackstone Jr., 44, is really saying: "Ladies and gentleman, I am about to saw my wife in half." It is only an illusion, of course, despite the whining blade and sawdust, but Gay Blackstone, 30, the sawee, still is not wild about it. Especially since she also gets shot from a cannon, turned into a tiger, levitated and subjected to countless other indignities in the course of the show. Fortunately, the Blackstones have two formal agreements in their five-year-old marriage: (1) never to go to bed angry with each other and (2) never to go onstage angry with each other.

Their commitment is now being thoroughly tested, for they are barely a month into a cross-country tour that will take them to 110 cities in 27 states by March. Blackstone's show—it travels with a moving van full of equipment, two buses and a menagerie vehicle for such co-stars as Sebastian the jackass, Misty the 6,500-pound elephant and Bolma the Bengal tiger—is probably the most ambitious since the spectacles mounted by Harry's late father, the Babe Ruth of magic, in the 1940s. "I am responsible for the livelihood of 29 people," proclaims Blackstone, who rarely drops his ornate onstage diction even when asking the time. "I think I will succeed and my confidence is not unfounded."

He has the active support of third wife Gay, who not only plays foil but also co-produces the extravaganza. A close friend says the Blackstones are "two personalities working toward the same goal—they're busy, hectic and overbearing." But the consensus is that they're good bosses to work for considering the pressure. Gay professes to have no problem accepting second billing. "I had so many friends who were so unhappy trying to be stars," she says. "I love to perform but I don't have to be a star."

Originally she had more showbiz ambition than Harry. While he had made his stage debut at six months in his father's act, he later had qualms about picking up the wand when Harry Sr. passed it on: "I thought one legend in a household was enough." Inevitably, he learned the tricks of his father's trade, but after finishing high school at 15 (his childhood friends included future playboys Peter Revson and Lance Reventlow), he graduated from Swarthmore, then studied theater arts at Southern Cal and the U of Texas before enlisting in the Army. His father, who once pickpocketed a presidential bodyguard's revolver while performing for Calvin Coolidge, lost a multimillion-dollar fortune during the Depression. So after being mustered out, Harry Jr. edged back into show business, first as an announcer at the Lyndon Johnsons' TV and radio station in Austin, then as a manager for West Coast companies of Hair and associate producer of the Smothers Brothers TV show. Finally, at Tom Smothers' urging, Harry returned to performing on television and the international club circuit seven years ago. ...

...Once he began performing again, Harry had his name ("It opens a lot of doors, but they're on springs since people expect a lot") and a repertoire of 90 illusions that helped him live up to it. In 1976 he was named the official "Bicentennial Magician." Then in 1977 he gave a command performance for Queen Elizabeth's Silver Jubilee, and this year peers voted him the coveted Star of Magic, only the 11th bestowed in the 80-year history of the Magic Association. Harry has already starred in three TV specials and plays an evil magician in a just-finished Universal TV movie based on the Mandrake comic strip. He would like to have his own Broadway vehicle or TV series. ...

...She and Harry cope all right, too. Their new $190,000 bus comes equipped with a private suite and a sauna. Gay complains that it takes her four hours to wind down after a show and she wants a Jacuzzi to help her insomnia. Blackstone, however, requires only a matter of seconds to transform himself into a sawing-away, sleeping person.

I find the material you posted interesting, some people myself included have considered the statement "Tell Jack not to send the letter today, it would be awkward in Chicago," to have possibly been a reference to shooting Oswald on November 23rd, instead of Sunday the 24th. The Blackstone/LBJ/Carousel Club is an interesting angle if it can be corroborated. Of course depending on Alton Sharpe for accurate information, is an issue all of its own, and I do not say that to rain on the parade.

Jack definitely had his share of run-ins with magician's through the Carousel and his travels, say to New York.

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Guest Tom Scully
1961

I find the material you posted interesting, some people myself included have considered the statement "Tell Jack not to send the letter today, it would be awkward in Chicago," to have possibly been a reference to shooting Oswald on November 23rd, instead of Sunday the 24th. The Blackstone/LBJ/Carousel Club is an interesting angle if it can be corroborated. Of course depending on Alton Sharpe for accurate information, is an issue all of its own, and I do not say that to rain on the parade.

Jack definitely had his share of run-ins with magician's through the Carousel and his travels, say to New York.

Thank you, Robert,

Especially because John Mulholland was recruited by the CIA and received negative publicity as recently as in 2001, in the NY Times, associated with

the still controversial 1953 death of CIA's Frank Olson, the fact that Jack Ruby was "surrounded" by magicians in the days before his crime and arrest,

the lack of available sources detailing these matters is curious....too much interest in old films and still photos take in Dealy Plaza, and not enough

poking around in what went on in this area, IMO.

I've learned since earlier today that Blackstone Jr., according to a Nov., 1961, trade publication, had, after leaving employment on LBJ's Austin radio

station, taken a new position at WFAA radio in Dallas....Alton Sharpe could have been mistaken as to the sequence of the "in between" job at WFAA,

and still been accurate in his claim to getting Blackstone Jr. an audition with Jack Ruby that led to a performing job at the Carousel Club....but, I find not other source.

I have a source, Tom Palmer, in a volunteered report to the FBI, for the detail that the secretary at the Dallas AGVA office was Sharpes' cousin, Wilma E. Hughes

Bill DeMar...aka William Crowe, a magician, ventriloquist, hypnotist performing at Ruby's club during the week of JFK's assassination, testified to

the WC that he visited Tom Palmer's home during that period and that "they" taught him how to play poker....IMO, sounds implausible that a performer of magic acts, as an adult, would not know how to play poker.....

NY Times from John Mulholland:

http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.htm...783D85F438785F9

The Central Intelligence Agency hired a professional New York magician as a consultant to its project in the manipulation of human behavior, calling on him, from time to time, "to see if he could explain things people had a hard time trying to explain."....

....The manual was meant to be an aid to agents in surreptitiously administering drugs. On another assignment, Mr. Mulholland was asked to analyze the work of a "mystic" who said he had devised a system for sending.and receiving telepathic...

...and isn't this description of "expendables", displayed as this thread begins?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.ph...dables&st=0

....quite close to this description?

http://www.nytimes.com/2001/04/01/magazine...ml?pagewanted=3

.....Olson was also taken to see John Mulholland, a New York magician on the C.I.A. payroll, who may have tried to hypnotize him. Ruwet told C.I.A. investigators that in Mulholland's presence, Olson became highly agitated. ''What's behind this?'' he kept asking his friend Ruwet. ''Give me the lowdown. What are they trying to do with me? Are they checking me for security?'' ''Everyone was in a plot to 'get' him,'' he told Lashbrook. He begged them to ''just let me disappear.''

According to the documents (William) Colby had given the family, Olson spent an agonized night wandering the streets of New York, discarding his wallet and identification cards. He said he was too ashamed to go home to his wife and children,....

http://www.nytimes.com/2001/04/01/magazine...ml?pagewanted=4

...Frank Olson's specialty, it turned out, had been the development of aerosols for the delivery of anthrax. With the discovery in the 1950's that the North Koreans were brainwashing American prisoners, the Special Operations Division at Detrick became the center for the development of drugs for use in brainwashing and interrogation. LSD emerged as one of the interrogation drugs of choice....

......One mystery -- entry and exit stamps in Frank Olson's passport, indicating that he had been to Sweden, Germany and Britain in the summer of 1953 -- seemed to offer a crucial clue to his state of mind in the months before his death. Through Gordon Thomas, a British journalist and author of numerous books on intelligence matters, Eric learned that during a trip to London his father had apparently confided in William Sargant, a consultant psychiatrist who advised British intelligence on brainwashing techniques.

According to Thomas, who was a lifelong friend of Sargant's, Olson told Sargant that he had visited secret joint American-British testing and research installations near Frankfurt. Thomas's hypothesis is that the C.I.A. was testing interrogation and truth serums there -- not on monkeys but on human subjects, ''expendables,'' captured Russian agents and ex-Nazis. Thomas says that Olson confessed to Sargant that he had witnessed something terrible, possibly ''a terminal experiment'' on one or more of the expendables. Sargant heard Olson out and then reported to British intelligence that the young American scientist's misgivings were making him a security risk. He recommended that Olson be denied further access to Porton Down, the British chemical-weapons research establishment.

A document Eric later saw from his father's personnel file confirmed that doubts had been raised about Olson's security clearance before his death, possibly because of Sargant's warning. Alice Olson, who knew nothing about the nature of his visit, did recall that when he returned from Europe that summer, Frank was unusually withdrawn....

Frank Olson was engaged in the same type of research as Bruce Ivins at Ft. Detrick, also officially pronounced a "suicide".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Edwards...ns.27_counselor

There is also a portion of the above exceprted NY Times article, near the parts I displayed, describing a CIA assassination technique called

"dropping"....very similar to the way Frank Olson and James Forrestal died.

The Willicuts report, an investigation of the death of Forrestal was kept from the public for fifty years, pried open by an FOIA request,

and the results were met with virtually no curiousity or media interest, despite the dubious details: http://dcdave.com/article4/040927.html

I cannot stress enough that every accomplished magician, by the late 1960's had either met John Mulholland, knew people who knew him,

and if not, admired his talent and career and held him in high regard....it's a very small group of technicians.

Although the questioning of Bill DeMar brings out the fact that he changed his name from William Crowe, and Palmer told the FBI that Sharpe's original name was Brown, I find no similar questioning of Tom Palmer, even though he had changed his name for "show biz" reasons, too.

If someone can add any information or dispute the idea that Mark Wilson was acquainted with Jack Ruby, I would appreciate it.

Edited by Tom Scully
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Guest Tom Scully

What are the odds that Allen Dulles was unaware that the publishers of David Hoy's 1963 book had close ties

to CIA asset and magician John Mulholland, and that Mrs. Marshall was a good friend of the wife of Mulholland's late close friend and mentor, Houdini?

David Hoy's book, published in 1963, is available for free download here:

http://www.filestube.com/f3fdc4c4323a240503e9/go.html

I don't agree that "move along now folks, there is nothing to see here..." is the correct approach with regard to David Hoy. Hoy, as was the administrator of his college, Bob Jones Jr., was a performer, and the assassination of JFK and then of Oswald, and the creation and publication of the WCR, were a string of performances, successfully making the intended impressions on the majority in the audience, the US public....

Warren Commission "investigates" phone calls made by Ruby's club performer, Bill DeMar, aka William Crowe, to right wing chrisitian fundy, propagandist and trickster, David Hoy, graduate of segregationists and right wing extremists' Bob Jones Sr & Jr's "university"...and never looks below the surface. At the link immediately above, the WCR describes David Hoy as "a news media friend" of Crowe's!

Was it just coincidence that in November, 1963, Jack Ruby was in frequent. direct contact with two magicians from the actor's guild office, and employed Bill DeMar, tied to David Hoy?

From the book, Hoy's background as of 1963:

Dr. Faust is, in reality, David Hoy of Evansville, Indiana. Hoy has has a varied and exciting life.

He is a graduate of a college in South Carolina (Bob Jone University) with a B.A. degree. His major

was radio Speech and his minor, History and World Affairs. Hoy is also a graduate of a Seminary in

Louisville, and holds a B.D. degree. Hoy was an evangelist for the Baptist Church for several years

and has preached on two tours of Europe and one in South America, principally in Brazil.

In all of his evangelistic work, he used magic to gather crowds and to illustrate lessons. He is an

author of "Magic With a Message" recently republished by the Ireland Magic Company.

Hoy has been a life long devotee of magic anc credits Duke Stern, Dr. Spencer Thornton abd Jay Marshall as his three great teachers. Hoy has been featured at most leading magical gatherings where

his quick wit, magnificient performances and genuine friendship have won a host of followers.

Hoy still preaches and is currently News Director of Station WIKY-AM-FM in Evansville. Hoy is active

in politics and in the spring of 1963 made a very strong bid for the Mayorship of Evansville. Although he was not successful at this first attempt, he will continue to work hard with the Lincoln Republicans whose boy he was....

from page 30 (rather an odd line...)

While Dr. Faust (Hoy) does not practice hypnotism, he does look into a tiny crystal ball and predict

future events....

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/reply.p...335&quote=1

Posted: Nov 28, 2008 6:21pm

On Davy Hoy, get a hold of the book Super-Psychic: The Incredible Dr. Hoy by John Godwin published as a paperback in 1974. A very sympathetic bio of Hoy, but if it's true, it's hard to see how you could consider Hoy any kind of orthodox Christian during the latter part of his pretty short life. He seems like a person who went from gospel magician to a person playing the role of a psychic, to a person pretending to be a psychic. A disturbing story, actually.

[PDF] http://www.squashpublications.com/Marshall...Catalog_Web.pdf

The Magic Collection of Jay Marshall

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat

With: A one-page ALS from Mulholland to Frances and Jay Marshall on Mulholland's stationery....

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtop...16&forum=61

Frances Ireland Marshall; ran magic shop

May 28, 2002

...Mrs. Marshall was a secretary when she had an opportunity to type a book by magician Laurie Ireland--the man who became her first husband. Mrs. Marshall found herself captivated by the subject, and she ended up not just typing, but also rewriting the book, Jay Marshall said.

This project sparked her passion for magic, and she subsequently wrote 27 books and pamphlets on the subject.

Together, she and Ireland ran the Ireland Magic Co. until his death in 1954. She and Jay Marshall married later that year and continued to run the store at 109 N. Dearborn. In 1954 they changed the name to Magic Inc. and moved it to its present location at 5082 N. Lincoln.

For more than five years, Mrs. Marshall appeared every Sunday in the "Funny Paper Party," a program on WGN-TV featuring Chicago Tribune publisher Col. Robert McCormick.

She was one of only a few female magicians in the country, and she performed her magic tricks at birthday parties and for small audiences.

Mrs. Marshall, along with Bess Houdini, widow of the famous escape artist and magician Harry Houdini, were founding members of Magicgals, a group of women who perform magic. ....

http://www.nysun.com/obituaries/jay-marsha...magician/13694/

Jay Marshall, 84, Witty Magician

By STEPHEN MILLER, Staff Reporter of the Sun | May 12, 2005

...The producers soon realized that Marshall himself would be a better choice for the role. He started the show with a few routine tricks, Marshall explained to the publisher of Magic magazine, John Mulholland....

...In 1955, Marshall married Frances Ireland, proprietress of the Ireland Magic, a Chicago specialty store bequeathed to her at her previous husband's death. They reopened the store as Magic Inc. and built it into an active publishing house. Magic Inc. became the center of magic culture for Chicago, and to a certain extent for the Midwest.

http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine...06/A-Fine-Mess/

A Fine Mess

When magician and collector Jay Marshall died, he left behind a lair crammed full of his finds, from priceless Houdini posters to penny-a-pound junk.

By Gabe Fajuri ....

Edited by Tom Scully
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Guest Tom Scully

This was reported to some of the public and to law enforcement, less than 24 hours after Ruby shot Oswald: (From the WC Report record)

http://www.aarclibrary.org/publib/jfk/wc/w...H24_CE_2038.pdf

BARNES said BOB MULHOLLAND, NCB News, Chicago,

talked in Dallas to one FAIRY, a narcotics addict now out

on bail on a sodomy charge in Dallas . FAIRY said that OSWALD

had been under hypnosis from a man doing a mind-reading act

at RUBY's "Carousel ." FAIRY was said to be a private detective

and the owner of an airplane who took young boys on flights

"Just for kicks ." MULHOLLAND may be located at Room 1537,

Statler Hotel, Dallas, WRAP-TV, Fort Worth, Texas, or through his

Chicago headquarters ....

Stumbling through the darkness, groping for answers,

http://www.google.com/#hl=en&source=hp...b22d27f49a5e7dd

The Brass check: a study of American journalism - Google Books Result

by Upton Sinclair - 2003 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 446 pages

CHAPTER XL OWNING THE OWNERS The second of the methods by which our Journalism is controlled is by far the most important of all the four. ...

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&saf...mp;oq=&aqi=

The Brass check: a study of American journalism - Google Books Result

by Upton Sinclair - 2003 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 446 pages

CHAPTER XLII OWNING THE ASSOCIATED PRESS When it comes to the Associated Press, the clearest statement I have read was made by Charles Edward Russell in ...

http://books.google.com/books?q=times+bega...nG=Search+Books

Sinclair had polled more than eight hundred and seventy-five thousand votes, which every fair-minded man admitted was a remarkable showing when the money the Republicans had spent and their control of the press is considered....

...But the New York Times began its editorial the next morning with these

remarkable words: "The total failure of the Sinclair campaign"...

because the media, the owners of the media, and the PTB who own the owners of the media, turned off the lights and keep them turned off....

Peter,

Two fairly recent threads with information related to your topic. Olson was taken to see CIA asset John Mulholland in NYC during the trip to that

city that Olson did not survive:

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.ph...amp;hl=magician

John Mulholland Master Magician Recruited by Sid Gottlieb's TSS MKULTRA

Thread 1 of 2- Did CIA Magicians Program Jack Ruby?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.ph...amp;hl=magician

Jack Ruby and the Dallas Magicians

Thread 2 of 2- Did CIA Magicians Program Jack Ruby?

I only became aware of this in the past ten days:

Warren Commission, Volume XIV: CE 2038 - FBI report dated December ...

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - Quick View

FAIRY said that OSWALD had been under hypnosis from a man doing a mind-reading act at RUBY's "Carousel ." FAIRY was said to be a private detective ...

http://www.aarclibrary.org/publib/jfk/wc/w...H24_CE_2038.pdf

This attempt at damage control made me wonder if delivering it had anything to do with Bob Mulholland's later elevation to president of NBC, just another coincidence like the FBI undercover informant in the Warren Commission executive sessions, JFk autopsy data master manipulator Gerald Ford, later being appointed VP and then, by default, the only unelected US president:

....Richard Billings checked this story with the source, Bob Mulholland, and wrote on Februaury 14, 1967: "Mulholland said he did not speak to anyone in Dallas as he was busy with the NBC crew. He recalled that he probably heard [the Ferrie story] from John Corporan of NBC News in New Orleans." Corporan told Billings "We got an anonymous tip and one from a former assistant DA [probably Kohlman] about this man who had an airplane and that this man was in Texas on Nov. 22. This man, Ferrie, had known Oswald in the Civil Air Patrol. He was probably a homosexual. There was something about a rendezvous having been arranged to fly Oswald out of the country." Billings continues: "Corporan says he then called Garrison to find out about the tip. 'I didn't have too much success'. He then called Mulholland in Dallas...On Monday Ferrie called Corporan...Ferrie convinced Corporan that 'someone had very cleverly linked Ferrie to Oswald, knowing it looked believable. Ferrie was very upset.'" ....

Edited by Tom Scully
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