Brief Biographies of Magic Inventors - Page C - D - E

  Carlo, Dr.
American born magician and magic dealer (real name Carlo Sommer) who invented the rubber dove as well as Balls of Fire (production of fire from a paper sack) and the Carlo Glass Production, marketing these effects through his Ohio magic shop.
Real name Lyle Laughlin, he had a successful career performing his sophisticated brand of magic in U.S. theaters and clubs, retiring in 1955. He is credited with inventing Three-To-One Ropes, and authoring a number of effects published in magic magazines.

From the cover of M.U.M. ,January, 1959
Carver, Bob

Bob Carver lived in Macon, Georgia, was known as the “Dean of Slycology" and was regarded as the inventor of "The Professor's Nightmare."

The effect which today we call "Equally Unequal Ropes" was possibly invented by Bob Carver c.1956, and won the IBM Originality Trophy in 1957. The judges did not believe that what he was doing was pure sleight of hand until he exposed the trick to them. It was based on the Quad Ropelets routine by Hen Fetsch (1955). Later, the effect, as performed by Paul Young at an MAES convention, was marketed by Gene Gordon (1958), who came up with the name "Professor's Nightmare."

Also invented: Progressive Coin Production

For a complete discussion on the origin of the Equal Unequal Ropes:

Thank you to Lyn Carver, Bob Carver's niece, who contacted us in January of 2020, and who provided us with some missing inforamtion about his life.

Cassidy, Bob
(1949- 2017)
Lawyer. Semi-pro mentalist. Co-founder of Psychic Entertainers Association in 1978. Edited Vibrations 1978-81 & 1984. Inventor of several mental magic effects, and author of many books on mental magic. Trustee of Jim Gerrish's Wiz Kids, Inc., in 1982.

Wrote: Laboratory Conditions (1976) Pseudo-Mentally Yours (1977), 4th Dimensional Telepathy (1977), Bob Cassidy's Mentalism (e-book), The Art of Mentalism (1983), The Principia Mentalia (1994), Messenger Discs (2002), The Bottle of Truth (2002), The Moldavian Billet Switch (2003), Quarterforce (2003), The Manchurian Gambit (2003), The Artful Mentalism of Bob Cassidy (2004), The Dart Shoot (2006) and many more...

Media: Mental Miracles with Bob Cassidy DVD, Black Box Cinema DVD (2005).
White Dwarf, Psychomatic Deck,
Name and Place

  Catcher, Jerry
Wiz Kid Member from Orange, NJ between 1986-1988. Invented the Catcher Well (1987). Died of Leukemia in 1988. R.I.P.
Chambers, Bryce
(1923 - 2007)
Born and lived his entire life in Seattle, WA.

Invented "Bryce's Screen" (c. 1950) a six-fold screen production that can be performed surrounded.

Chanin, Jack
Born in the Ukraine, fled to Poland, and finally immigrating to the USA in 1926, Jack began a career as a magician, inventor and magic dealer.He excelled in the art of sleeving, and ran Philadelphia's oldest magic studio (Chanin's Studio of Magic) until 1981, marketing hundreds of effects of his own invention.
Popularized a Mesh Egg Bag invented by Fred Culpitt through Heaney's catalog in 1924.
A favorite at magic conventions, he also performed an Oriental act as Cha-Nin. Works include: Seven in One 1928, Hello, Sucker! 1934; Cigar Manipulation, 1937; Grand Finale (aka Silks at Your Fingertips) 1937, Enyclopedia of Sleeving, 1947
Chapender, Martin

Born Harold Martin Jones in Liverpool, England, he performed professionally under the name Martin Chapender and was known largely for his billiard ball manipulations. In 1902, he was managing an insurance office in Liverpool, when he showed Charles Morritt some of his manipulations with billiard balls and cards. Morritt was so impressed with his skill and assured of his eventual success that he advised him to take up magic professionally. Near the end of 1904, when Maskelyne left the Egyptian Hall to take over his "New Home of Mystery" at "St. George's Hall," Chapender took over the entire management of the Egyptian Hall for the remaining weeks of its run. Chapender died from meningitis at the early age of 26 years old.

Chapender devised a version of the Diminishing Cards with nesting pockets within the cards. His coin vanish, "The Chapender Vanish", was published in Hilliard's Greater Magic and is considered among the best of coin retention methods. Chapender's Method of palming coins is in Coin Magic by Jean Hugard.

French amateur magician, a specialist in card magic who invented the Charlier Pass as well as a card-marking system using pin pricks. One of the more famous street magicians in the late 1800s.
Chaudet, Bill
(1921 -?)

Born Louis William Chaudet, he became known to his friends and the public simply as "Bill." Chaudet was inspireed by seeing the Blackstone Magic Show as a young man, and soon became Blackstone's protege, traveling with the show as an assistant, and finally being officially named successor to Harry Blackstone, Sr. in 1947. His wife Mary also worked as an assistant in the Blackstone show, and she was Bill's assistant when he went off on his own.

Invented: Air Mail Silk Production, Microphone Suspension and more...

Wrote for The New Conjurer's Magazine from 1947-1949, and in 1950, began writing columns for Genii ,the Conjurer's Magazine.

Italian-born stage magician (real name Ralfo Cefalo) credited with inventing the Chefalo Knot, and other rope magic effects as described in the Stewart James' Encyclopedia of Rope Tricks.
Also invented: The Girl in the Drum Illusion.
Chien, Han Ping
(1891 - 1930)
Chinese stage magician who achieved his greatest success touring the United States and Europe in the first two decades of the 1900s. He is also credited with inventing the Han Ping Chien coin magic move which was first published by Ladson Butler in a manuscript titled The Han Ping Chien Coin Trick (1917).
Chop Chop
Australian-born magician (real name Alvin H. Wheatley) who performed as an Oriental, first under the name of Tung Pin Soo, later under the name Chop Chop. He appeared many times on American TV, including an appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. He invented the Chop Cup in 1954. Don Alan used a cut-down version of the Chop Cup on a national TV show and popularized it among magicians everywhere.
Christ, Henry
Henry Christ was an American magician born in New York City. He was a gifted mathematician and from an early age developed an avid interest in sleight of hand magic. He worked for the city of New York's Department of Transportation and headed the subway's switch and signal division.

During the 1930's, his best friend and confidant was Dai Vernon and was a member of the New York "Inner Circle." After Vernon moved to California, Henry became friendly with Edmund Balducci, and another group soon formed at Ed's house in Brooklyn. Later in life, Henry was a close friend to Dr. Persi Diaconis, with whom he shared a love for magic and mathematics. Per his behest, all of his magic notes, papers, and personal correspondence were left to Dr. Diaconis.

Invented: the Christ Force, Color-Changing Deck, Christ Half Pass, Fabulous Four Ace Routine, and Dead Man's Hand.

Information and photo added courtesy of his grandaughter, Michele Christ and his son, Mike Christ (4/2/09).
Generally billed as "Magic Christian of Vienna", this Austrian magician's real name is Christian Stelzel. Multiple awards, including FISM First Place (Manipulation) in 1973, 1976 and 1979 plus First Place for Closeup Invention in 1979 as well. Austria has honored him for his research work on the history of magic as well as his talents as a magical entertainer and Goodwill Ambassador. Many appearances on television. Associated with Piatnik, manufacturer of trick decks. Author. Invented Ketten-Zauber and Color Changing Lighter.
Christopher, Milbourne
Major American magical entertainer, author, inventor and collector. Performed a popular full-evening show for many years. Produced and performed in the first network TV magic special, "The Festival of Magic", broadcast on May 27, 1957 on NBC-TV (a show which also featured Cardini's last television appearance). He wrote a long-running column in Hugard's Magic Monthly under the pen name "Frank Joglar", derived from words meaning "candid magician".
Invented: Telegram to Flowers, Eeire Rabbit , and the original Forgetful Freddy (c.1951).
He wrote a number of classic books on magic history, including Panorama of Magic, The Illustrated History of Magic, Milbourne Christopher's Magic Book (1977), and Houdini: The Untold Story.
Clark, Keith
Born Pierre Feyss Cartier in France, he became famous as a cigarette manipulator. He was the author of Encyclopedia of Cigarette Magic(1937), Celebrated Cigarettes, Rope Royale (1942). Many of his magic inventions have something to do with ropes and silks and will be found in Stewart James' Encyclopedia of Rope Tricks and Rice's Encyclopedia of Silk Magic.
Cohen, Al
(1928- )

Al Cohen was the proprietor of Al's Magic Shop in Washington DC for 60 years. He occasionally performed a comic magic act under the name "Pernell Zorch." He also invented some magic effects and originated routines for many standard effects.

Invented: Dots Impossible (c.1972), Dots Incredible (c.1973), The Invisible Wand (c. 1972 with Larry West), Rope-A-Rama, The Mark, One Cup and Coins, Key Ruption, Coin Funnel and many more.

Wrote and Published: Magical Mish-Mosh (And Other Tricky Trivia), 1985

Collins, Stanley
(1881-1966 )
Collins was born in London. Affected by the magic performances of Chung Ling Soo , in 1905 he began to perform as "Loo Sing." Collins invented many magic effects, largely based on mechanical and hydraulic principles. Credited with inventing the Jumping Rubber Bands in 1911. He wrote various books: Original Magical Creations (1915), Deceptive Conceptions in Magic (1920), Collin's Card Conceits (1925), A Conjuring Mélange. He also wrote numerous articles in The Sphinx, The Jinx, Hugard's Magic Monthly, Pentagram, and The Linking Ring.
Collins, Ted
(born Frederick A. Collins, 1919 - 1993)
Magician, magic teacher, mentor, owner of Mecca Magic Shop in Bloomfield, NJ. Ted was also inventor of "The Panama Rope Trick" described in the Tarbell Course of Magic, as well as many packet card effects and improvements to existing effects. He was author of Wax Fax. Ted was one of the founding members of Ring 106 and was also President, 1953-1954.  He was a founding member of the Magic Dealer's Association and in 1966 Ted was President of the Magician's Alliance of Eastern States. Ted was also one of the first trustees of Jim Gerrish's Wiz Kids, Inc. from 1980-83.

Aldo and Rachel Colombini

Colombini, Aldo
(1951 - 2014)
Born in Italy, after becoming a magician, Aldo Colombini performed often on Italian television. He also appeared on television shows in Portugal, Spain, Japan, Colombia and Sweden. He moved to the United States from Italy in 1993 and was well known to the magic world at that time because Genii Magazine put him on the cover of the January 1993 issue. Colombini produced, published, manufactured and distributed quality magic products through his former company, Mamma Mia Magic. When he married Rachel Wild in 2006, the two creative magicians formed Wild-Colombini Magic to feature many of their own products.

Invented: 4' Wave (2008), Ace-mbly and Mat-Trick (2006),Add-Acadabra (2008), Against All Odds (2006), Back Off (2009),Blank Imagination (2009), Blind Deal (2013), Blown Away (2013), Chip Chip Hooray(2009), Close Quarters (2006), Cone-Tact (2008), Cornered (2007), Countdown (2006), Cut It Out (2010), Deep Rising (2013), Dice It Up (2006), Die Spell (2006), Dig It (2007), Diminishing Prediction (2011), Double Cross (2011), Easy Going (2006), ESP Choice (2013), Face-Off (2006), Five Card Mystery (2009), Four Red Card Trick (2006),Get Off My Spread (2013), In Between (2010), Jacks In The Box (1010), Joker Dilemma (2013), Jokers All (2013), Jumbo Coincidence (2006), Jumbo Jumble (2013), Jumbo Power Aces (2011), Lead The Way (2008), Left Behind (2008), Match Play (2010),Mickey Finn (2010), Mixed Relations (2010), No Second Chance (2006), Nose Out (2010), Not Gone (2008), Paramount (2009), Perpetual Calendar (2008), Pick Me Pick Me Not with Peter Duffie (2013), Pre-Deck-Ability (2006), Professor's Math (2007), Real Danger (2008), Ringing Around Too (2008), Rope In (2006), Rope Puzzle (2006), Rubber Illusion (2008), Snip It Extra (2008), Still Ringing (2006), Super Link (2006), Tested Ten-Card Poker Deal (2006)....

Wrote: Impact (1991), The Close-up Magic of Aldo Colombini (1994), What's Up Deck? (1995), Direct Hits (1996). E-Books included: Impromptu Card Magic (2003), Baroque Cards (2004), Double Decker Two (2011), Gag Bonanza (2013), Magic You Can Use (2011) My Favorite Linking Rings Columns (2011), Standing Room Only (2011)....

Media: 4' Wave DVD (2009), A Few Good Cards DVD (2008), A Perfect 10 DVD (2012), Aces In Action DVD (2010), Aces Up Your Sleeve (2010), Aldo On Trost DVD Series - Volumes 1 - 16(2010-2014), All Hands on Deck DVD (2007), Back Off DVD (2010), Baroque Compositions DVD (2009), Blank Imagination DVD (2009), Bone-Appetite DVD (2009), Can You Hear Me Now? DVD (2009), Card Capers DVD (2007), Card Festival DVD (2008), Card Mix DVD (2011), Card Simplicity DVD (2010), Cards And Coins Parade DVD with Cameron Francis (2012), Carousel DVD (2009), Close Quarters DVD (2009). Club 71 DVD set Vol.1-2 (2013), Color Changing Knife Routine DVD (2013), Cone-Tact DVD (2009), Contact Colors DVD (2009), Cordially Yours DVD (2010), Crazy For Cards DVD (2008), Dead Reckoning DVD (2010), Double Decker DVD - Vol. 1-3 (2012), Down and Dirty DVD (2010), Easy Card Effects DVD (2009), Easy Money Magic DVD (2010), Effective Card Routines DVD (2012), ESP Card Magic DVD Vol. 5- 20 (2011-2013), Face-Off DVD (2009), Fast Paced Cards DVD (2009), Fifty-Two DVD (2010), Five Card Mystery DVD (2009), Four Suits DVD (2010), Four-Play DVD (2009), Fun With Matches DVD Vol1-2 (2012), Gagbuster DVD (2010), Gagbuster - The Sequal DVD (2012), Grand Prix DVD (2009), Grasshopper Cards DVD (2010), Impromptu Gambling Routines DVD (2009), Impromptu Journey DVD (2009), Italian Serenade DVD (2011), Karl Fulves' Epilogue DVD (2011), Karl Fulves' The Chronicles DVD (2011),Ken Brooke's Okito Box Routine DVD (2013), Knock-Outs DVD (2010), Let's Go! DVD (2009), Magigram DVD Vol. 1-16 (2012-2014), Melting Pot DVD (2009), Nailed DVD (2009), New Pentagram DVD Vol.1-12 (2012-2014),No Cards Allowed DVD (2009), Not Playing With a Full Deck DVD (2010), Oil And Water DVD Parts 1-2 (2011), On The Cards DVD (2009), One Deck DVD (2010), Outstanding Magic DVD (2008), Pabular DVD Vol 1-4 (2013 - 2014), Packet Trick Picks DVD (2008), Packet Trick Treasures DVD (2009), Paramount DVD (2009), Perpetual Calendar DVD (2009), Ping Pong Routine DVD (2013), Playing With Cards DVD (2012), Please Hold DVD (2010), Pre-Deck-Ability DVD (2009), Razzamataz DVD (2008), Ring And Rope DVD (2011), Rings And Things DVD (2012), Rope Classics DVD (2010), Rope Confection DVD (2009), Rope Melange DVD (2013), Roped In DVD (2007), Self Working Packet Tricks DVD (2009), Simply Impromptu DVD Vol 1-5 (2012-2013), Sleights & Subtleties DVD Vol 1-5 (2012-2013), Small Wonders DVD with Cameron Francis (2012), Stand-Up Cards DVD (2009), Standing Room Only DVD (2006), Still Ringing Around DVD (2007), Subtle Card Magic DVD (2009), Take Two DVD with Rachel (2008), Taking Chances DVD (2012), Tested Ten-Card Poker Deal DVD (2007)....

Colombini, Rachel Wild

(1965 - 2018)

Born in the UK, magic had been a life long hobby for Rachel Wild, and in 1993 she quit her full-time job and began pitching magic on the street in Stockport, England. Rachel specialized in creating her own line of magic products, and eventually moved indoors to her own Wild Magic Shoppe. She spent the next few years displaying her creations and lecturing on magic at various magic conventions before moving to the United States in 1998. She established Wild Magic in the USA in 1999 and became a well known magic dealer and lecturer at magic conventions. In 2006, she married Aldo Colombini and together they established Wild-Columbini Magic, merging many of their products.


  Cook, James Lister - see McRae, Campbell  
Corinda, Tony
(c.1931 - 2010)
Born Thomas William Simpson, he took the name Tony Corinda when he began working as a mentalist in the UK. He has never made his birthdate or birthplace public, but his birth year is believed to be about 1931. In 1950, he opened a magic studio where he sold all types of magic, but catered especially to mentalists. Later, he took over The Magic Shop in Tottenham Court Road in London, and by the 1960's had a second shop at Hamley's. In the 1960's, Corinda wrote a series of thirteen books on mentalism that were later collected and became the encyclopedic "Corinda's Thirteen Steps to Mentalism," published in 1968 as a complete volume by D. Robbins. His inventions are mainly from that book. There is an on-going debate as to whether Tony Corinda actually wrote the book, with rumors that both Jon Tremain and David Berglas had a hand in it. It still remains one of the essential books in every mentalist's library. Also wrote: Tele-Trickery (1961).

Invented: Birds of a Feather, The Billet Pencil, The Body Index, A Million to One, Quadruplation, De Profundus, The £75,000 Test, Corinda's Money Box, The Spirit Candles, and many more, all found in the book. Marketed effects include: Powers of Darkness (1958), Money Box (1958), Corinda's Billet Pencil (1959), H-Bombshell Prediction (1959), Dubbul (with Eric Mason) (1959), The Khan Slate Test (1959), Paradox (1960), Odd Man Out (1960), Pentaquin (1961), Blind Date (1961), New Floating Cane (1961).

Cornelius, John
(1948 - )

Born John Henry Cornelius. Kept his own name as a magician and as John Cornelius, won 1st prize in close-up at the 1979 Fédération Internationale des Sociétés Magiques (FISM) competition.

Invented: Pen Through Anything (1993), Bendable Pen, Perfect Pen, Rising Business Card Case, Shuffle Mat, Thought Transmitter, Fickle Nickel, Instant Pro, Unseen Forces, Deck Suspension, My First Trick, The Hundred Dollar Bill Switch and more.

Wrote: Magic of John Cornelius Lecture Notes No. 1 (1975), Cornelius Card System (1980).

Media: Creative Magic DVD, The F.I.S.M. Act DVD, The Award Winning Magic of John Cornelius by Lance Pierce (2001)

Informative Web site:

Corradin , Anton
(1967 - )
Born Fabián Antonio Corradín in Sastre, Santa Fe, Argentina, he earned his degree in Veterinary Science in 1994, the same year he discovered a group of fellow magic enthusiasts in the city of Rosario.He then became a founding partner of the GRIM (Group of Magic Illusionists from Rosario), of which he is still a member. In 1999 he received the first prize in the Inventions category at the Argentinean Congress of Illusionism. In the year 2000 the Congress of the Latin American Federation of Magic Societies (FLASOMA) took place in Mexico DF, and in this event Antón received the second prize in the category Invention and the third prize in Scripted Magic. In the year 2001 he received a prize in the category Invention in the Argentinean Congress of Ilusionism (CADI). In the 2004 FLASOMA, Antón Corradín won the 1st Prize in the categories Invention and Perfection. In the 2005 CADI, Anton Corradín was awarded the 3rd prize in the Invention and Improvement category.

Invented: Antoninus Pius's Box, Corradin Box, Mental Hammer, Money Bag, Ringing Card Case, Fish Kerchief, Prince Anton Racquet, Instant Dove Trick, Corradin's Levitation and many more.

Informative Web site:

Crandall, "Senator" Clark
American comedy magician, magic dealer, Magic Castle guru. He developed seriuously funny routines for the Card Duck and the Cups and Balls.
Culpitt, Fred
Born Frederick Willis Culpitt , in 1909 he was booked by Chung Ling Soo for an Australian tour. From 1914-1918 he filled in for David Devant in England's famous Home of Mystery, St.George's Hall. Culpitt was well-known during the next thirty years as "The Magical Comedian." He was inventor of the Costume Trunk Illusion, the Doll's House Illusion and also the "Transparent Egg Bag" with the entire front made of see-through mesh. Later, in 1953, Jack Chanin popularized it under the name "Mesh Egg Bag." He was responsible for routining the Silk to Egg trick as a sucker effect.
Curry, Paul
Best known for inventing the Out of This World card effect, and the Sliding Knot, Curry was the vice-president of the Blue Cross Insurance Company of New York, and a famous amateur magician. On March 12, 1977, the Academy of Magical Arts at The Magic Castle awarded Paul Curry with a "Creative Fellowship" award. Also invented: Touch (by 1937), Curry Turnover Change (by 1940), Out of This World (by 1942), The Power of Thought (1947), Open Prediction ( 1949), Curry's Paradox (1953) Probability Zero, Linked, (1947), The Case of the Missing Hat (1965) and many more. Linked, with the red and white ropes, was used with great success in Dean Dill's Dean's Box and in Spellbinder's 2006 Sefalaljia Revisited. The Case of the Missing Hat is more familiar to magicians as the Leprechauns and their Pots of Gold as marketed as a packet effect by Marconic.

He wrote: Out of This World (1942), Something Borrowed, Something New (1942), Magician's Magic (1965) and Paul Curry's Worlds Beyond (2001).

Daley, Dr. Jacob
(1897 -1954)

Dr. Jacob Daley was a plastic surgeon and amateur magician. Born in Russia (although some early reference say New York and others say he came to New York at the age of three), he graduated from Fordham University School of Medicine then founded the American Otolaryngologic Society for Plastic Surgery.
Several of the routines he developed were published in the Stars of Magic series. He also took the photographs for Dai Vernon's Royal Monte and Slydini's The Art of Using the Lap as a Servante.
He wrote a chapter on the side steal in the third edition of Expert Card Technique.
He died suddenly following a luncheon show before the Art Directors Club, in New York where he had just finished performing a version of Vernon's The Travelers and his own Cavorting Aces.
During the last months of his life, he evolved another of his excellent card tricks, which he demonstrated for Dai Vernon. Dai Vernon included this trick in his book The Dai Vernon Book of Magic as a tribute and called it "The Last Trick of Dr. Jacob Daley" (also known as Daley's Last Trick).


Daryl (1955-2017) was the professional name of Daryl Easton, an American magician based in Las Vegas. He was known as "The Magician's Magician". He was well known to magicians as the presenter of many teach-in videos for L&L Publishing, including Daryl's Card Revelations, Encyclopedia of Card Sleights, Fooler Doolers, Daryl's Expert Rope Magic Made Easy, Daryl Does the Full Monte, and Daryl's Ambitious Card Video.

Two of his most famous contributions to magic were the Hot Shot Cut, a sleight in which the spectator's chosen card spins like a boomerang out of the deck, and the Ultimate Ambition Trick which allows a card to be inserted fairly into the middle of a deck and yet appear back on top.

DeLand, Theodore

Theodore Louis DeLand, Jr. of Pennsylvania created the phenomenon of packet tricks between 1906 and 1915, during which time he marketed almost 100 tricks using specially printed and gimmicked cards and decks, many of his own unique creation.

A few of his marketed effects are: Phantom Cards - 1907, X-Ray Deck - 1907, The Devil's Own Trick (1907), Knock Out - 1908, Pickitout - 1908, Fadeaway Card - 1908, Papel Blanco - 1908, Nox-em-all - 1908, Wonder Change - 1909, Sphinx Card Trick - 1909, Two Card Monte - c. 1910, Million Dollar Mystery - 1910, Fly-a-way - 1911, Dollar Deck (aka Deland's Automatic Playing Cards) - 1913 - a combination of the Marked Deck, Stacked Deck, and Stripped Deck,The Vanishing Card, The Magic Lead Pencil, The Great Nail Puzzle

Del Ray
Born Delbert Raymond Petrosky, Del Ray learned magic from a magic set, which he received at Christmas. When he joined the army at age 17, he met Harry Blackstone, Sr., and later went with Blackstone on tour as his assistant. After two and a half seasons, Del Ray resumed work in night clubs. By the beginning of the 1950's, he had begun work on the electronic magical act for which he was to become famous.
Invented: Talking Canary, Master Card Rise, The Computer Deck, Butch - the mechanical bear, many more, most unpublished and known only by magician's memories of Del Ray's performances.
There is a review of a Del Ray performance written by Walter Zaney Blaney in Volume 29 of Genii Magazine (1964) Page 626.

Videos on TouTube:
Del Ray Close-Up Magic Tannen Jubilee 1983 Filmed by Frank Paris
Part 1-
Part 2 -
Part 3 -
Part 4 -
Part 5 -

Del Ray performing his famous Computer Deck on November 3, 1984 at the Atlanta Harvest of Magic (Gary Plants)

Magician Del Ray - Rare Stage Performance Filmed by magician Frank Paris -

"Del Ray: America's Foremost" Book & CD by John Moehring:

De Kolta, Buatier
(1845 – 1903)
Born Joseph Buatier, De Kolta was a French magician who successfully performed throughout the 1870s and 1880s in England and America. De Kolta was a contemporary of fellow French magician Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin. Many of De Kolta's illusions, such as Multiplying Billiard Balls (1875), the Expanding Die (1903) and the Vanishing Bird Cage (1875), are still performed by magicians today.
De Kolta is famous for his De Kolta Chair or Vanishing Lady illusion (1886) shown in the photo at the right..
Also invented: Ascent to Nowhere Illusion, Cocoon Illusion (1885), Spring Flowers (c.1876), Card Fountain, and many more.
De Muth, Frederick
De Muth began performing magic as an amateur in 1906. He began work at the Corning Glass Works in 1917, continuing there until 1955. In 1932, Fred de Muth presented an effect invented by Edward Massey, but manufactured by himself at the IBM Convention -"Glass Through Glass", described in John Northern Hilliard's Greater Magic (P.844). Later, Fred worked out a way to lock the glass in the frame and it was subsequently produced in plastic and sold by the millions as the "Penetration Frame." Other inventions, all employing his skills as a glass worker, included the Demuth Milk Bottle (1932), Demuth Mirror Glass, Saltrix (1932), Milk Supreme, Milk Miracle, Utility Glass, Super Tumbler, and Master Tumbler.

Beginning in the 1920's, de Muth was a regular contributer to the Sphinx Magic Magazine.

Credit: Information provided by an article about De Muth written by Rev. Gordon W. Mattice of Corning, NY, and published in the December 1971 Linking Ring, sent to us, along with the photo on the left, by Mark Damon.

Devant, David
Born in Highgate, London, England. Stage name since 1885 of David Wighton, son of Scottish landscape artist James Wighton. Learned around age 15 from a book. Debut in 1885. Pro illusionist and manipulator. In 1905 taken on as partner by J. N. Maskelyne. First president of The Magic Circle 1905-06. Gave Royal Command Performances 1912 and 1913. Left partnership with Maskelyne in 1915 to go on his own. In 1920, he retired from stage because of illness (paralysis agitans) but continued as writer and teacher.
Prolific inventor, including Artist's Dream (1893), Color Change (1893), the Vest Servante (around 1893), Birth of Flora (1895), Mascot Moth (1905), the New Page (1906) and Vanishing Motorcycle (1913).
Wrote: Hand Shadows (1901), Magic Made Easy (1903), Lessons in Conjuring (1922), Tricks for Everyone: Clever Conjuring with Common Objects (1925), My Magic Life (1931), Secrets of My Magic (1936)
Coauthored: Our Magic with J. Nevil Maskelyne (1911)
De Vere, Charles
(1843 - 1931)
Born Herbert Shakespeare Gardiner Williams, De Vere, as he later came to be known, described himself simply as a Conjurer and Humorist.He became interested in magic after seeing a performance of Professor Anderson, "The Wizard of the North." De Vere receives a great deal of mention in Hoffmann's books for inventions and original adaptations of conventional tricks of the period, primarily because he contributed information to Hoffmann, as well as apparatus for the illusrtations of "Modern Magic" and other books.
De Vere was the husband of Okita (Julia Ferrett), who performed magic in a Japanese style act preceding the debut of Okito, and the father of Ionia (Clementine DeVere) who also performed magic on the stage as the Goddess of Mystery." By 1873, De Vere had a magic shop in London known simply as "De Vere's". In 1878, he opened his shop/factory in Paris, France, aided by his sons Cyrille and Camille.
Invented a version of the Black Art Table after Hofzinser and described by Hoffmann in Later Magic as the Heller - De Vere Table, also invented a version of the Locked and Corded Boxes (ibid). Also invented the De Vere Ace Trick.
Wrote: De Vere's Book of Magic (1876)
Additional material is from The Linking Ring (June 1974)
Web sites of Interest: Postcard of De Vere; Posters of De Vere; Posters of Okita and Iona
Special thanks to Mark Damon for his Linking Ring research and contribuitions to this article.
Diaconis, Persi
(1945 - )
Discovered as a prodigy card magician by Dai Vernon, Diaconis dropped out of school at the age of 14 and went on tour with Vernon. By the age of 16, he struck out on his own as a magician. His need to know more about mathematics to solve certain magic problems convinced him to go back to N.Y. City College. He graduated with a degree in mathematics, was accepted at Harvard and earned his Ph.D. in 1974. He then joined the faculty of the Statistics Department at Stanford, and has remained there to this day.

In 1978, he identified what he calls "the bundle of sticks" phenomenon in magic; a magician's entire performance, like a bundle of sticks, is much stronger than the individual tricks it comprises.

Wrote: Some Tauberian Theorems Related to Coin Tossing (with C. Stein), 1978
Statistical Problems in ESP Research.,1978
The Mathematics of Perfect Shuffles (with R. L. Graham and W. M. Kantor), 1983
Trailing the Dovetail Shuffle to its Lair (with D. Bayer) which is his famous paper on the need to shuffle a deck seven times before it becomes truly random., 1992

Came up with the original idea for the Linking Finger Ring effect, which was produced by Richard Himber and made famous as the "Himber Ring." Also invented: Persi’s Collectors, The Red-Black Location (with Harry Lorrayne and Roberto Giobbi - Card College Volume 1).

Media: Appears on the Video, Dai Vernon’s The Spirit Of Magic

Informative Web site ...Video Clip

L-R: Dean Dill, Johnny Carson (c. 1980)
Dill, Dean
Dean, from Glendale California, was a magician and magic innovator. He was Johnny Carson's magic teacher during the late 1980s and appeared on The Tonight Show in November 1990. His performance focused mostly on closeup effects.
Invented Blizard (1997), Dean's Box (2004), A New World (2005 with Michael Weber), Believe it or Knot, Wild Thought, Nana's Necklace, Explosion and more.

Wrote: "Intimate Miracles - the Magic of Dean Dill" which included a VHS video along with the book (1997), Extreme Dean (DVD Volumes 1 and 2) 2003

Former website (still on-line)

Dingle, Derek
Derek Dingle was born south of London. His interest in magic began when he was eight years old, and by the beginning of the 1960's he was learning much from Ross Bertram and Eddie Fechter. At the end of the sixies, he moved to New Jersey where he became a card and coin specialist on the NY Magic scene. Invented: Derek Dingle's Sympathetic Cards, Derek Dingle's Rainbow Deck, Derek Dingle's Australian Poker, Derek Dingle's Super Card Rise.
In 1971, he published with Harry Lorayne the book Dingle's Deceptions. In 1982, Richard Kaufman published The Complete Works of Derek Dingle.

Media: Stars Of Magic #4: Derek Dingle DVD; Derek Dingle's Deceptions And Delights 2-Volume DVD Set
Doebler, Ludwig
An Austrian magician whose most famous tricks were the lighting of 200 candles on the stage with one shot of a pistol, and the Flora's Flower Bouquet Production, in which he produced a seemingly endless number of flowers out of an empty felt hat. The candle trick was actually performed using electricity, a rarely seen and mysterious commodity when he began performing this trick in 1840. He retired from magic in 1848.
Douglas, Bert
Born Douglas Robert Smith in Aberdeen, Scotland, Bert became interested in magic at the age of 12. As a young magician, he took the name "Mr. Smith - The Uncanny Aberdonian." Later, when he began writing for magicians,he transposed his two Christian names and became "Bert Douglas." His first magic writing was a contribution to The Magic Wand in 1912.
In 1920, Bert emigrated to Toronto, Canada. He was author of sixteen books and hundreds of articles to UK and USA Magic magazines.
Invented: Cut and Restored Jump Rope, and many original silk magic effects in Rice's Encyclopedia of Silk Magic.
Wrote: Original Magic For All, Magic For Men, Masonic Magical Creations.(c 1927), Master Club Tricks (1934), Patter in Rhyme (1939)
Magic Café member Mark Damon has provided much helpful information about Douglas' life and works culled from The Linking Ring.

Informative Web Site:

Downs, Thomas Nelson

Born in Garwin, Iowa. Raised in Montour and Marshalltown, Iowa. Pro manipulator and card and coin worker since 1883. World-famous 'King of Koins'. Elected to the SAM Hall of Fame.

Prolific innovator in coin magic. Invented Back-and-Front Palm (1884), Click Pass (c 1900), Eureka Pass (c 1900), Downs Palm (c 1902), Edge Palm, Coins to Glass (c 1909), Coin Star, Coin Wand, Downs Change (1909), possibly Estimation (c 1909), Dime and Penny Trick (c 1917).
Many of his sleights and routines are described in J.B. Bobo's Modern Coin Magic.
Wrote: The Art of Magic, Modern Coin Manipulation
Drake, Simon
Born Simon Alexander in the UK, he used the name Drake (influenced by Mandrake) and wore white-face to avoid being caught while moonlighting from his day job in the music business in the 1970s. Drake is known more as an innovator than an inventor. The totally new dark style and fast pace of his ‘Secret Cabaret’ TV show (12 episodes for Channel 4. 1989+1992) paved the way for many of the young stars of today. Put simply, he opened up the first young adult TV slot in TV magic.
Patrick Page cited Simon Drake’s Secret Cabaret as the best magic TV series ever made. Link here:

In 1995 Simon opened his own permanent magic venue in London, ‘Simon Drake’s House of Magic’, which is full of magical devices, secret passages, and inventions, as well as new twists on old miracles. -

Invented: Floating Xmas Tree (1979) Pyrotechnic Dancing Cane (1981) Frozen Smoke Ring (1983), The Laser Bending (1989), Silhouette Routine (1992) Head off! (1992) Girls from Zipper (Special with Iron Maiden 1995, co-inventor) Heart Punching routine (Special with Iron Maiden 1995 co-inventor) 'Tanto' Hand penetration (2011 co-inventor) Jim Stienmeyer credits Simon with inventing a whole new principal in magic for the appearance of a girl using a new type of masking system during Simon’s Silhouette Routine.
Informative videos: - -

Ducrot, Frank
Born T. Francis Fritz, he spent many years touring the United States as a Chautauqua performer. His performance featured hand shadows, chalk talk, Punch and Judy shows, chapeaugraphy (the art of making many different hats with one small circle of felt) and many other markers of the variety performer's trade. He is known in magic circles for inventing the classic trick called the Twentieth Century Handkerchief (in 1900 - the beginning of the 20th Century) and as inventor of the original Blendo, known as The Perfection Flag Trick and the version of the Chinese Rice Bowls used by many magicians today. During his long ownership of the Martinka company, Ducrot was very successful as a society entertainer. Many of his original silk magic effects can be found in Rice's Encyclopedia of Silk Magic.

Informative article from Modern Mechanix, January, 1931 - online

  Dulay, Benson
This British magician performed in vaudeville as Benson Dulay & Company, sub-titled: The Sorcerer & His Apprentices. Inventor of the Multum in Parvo effect, in which a large glass of milk is poured into a small glass, without overflowing. Also invented Spin a Dart,
Dunn, Chris
( )

American magician from Florida. Became interested in magic in the 6th grade. Spent 10 years in the U.S. Navy as an electronic technician. Currently Vice President of F.A.M.E. - the Florida Association of Magical Entertainers of IBM Ring 170.

Originator of Dracula's Coffin (2010), Holiday (Season Changing) Die Box(2010), Curtains Box(2010), Fan Box(2010). Designer of: DIY Portable Card Fountain (2010), Electric BalloonPump (2010). Inventor of: Dracula Mirror Subtlety(2010).

Wrote: Remote Anythings (2011)

Dusheck, Steve
(1944 - 2019)
Invented: Wunderbar(1976), Waltzing Matilda (1967), Coin/Card, Surprise, Dusheck's Dollar, The Coin and Cord, Half-a-Buck, Dusheck's Diminshing Cards, Dollar Punch (1964), E.S.Pen, Dusheck's Copper/Silver Transpo, Pad-I-Add(1970), Case of Identity, By the Handful, Great Pretender, Half Back, Poly-Gripped, Confounding Coffer, Quick Change, Lethal Tender, Gung Ho Deck Vanish, Funky, Shell-A-Bration, Washout, Touché, Ringer (2005) and the list keeps growing.

Wrote: Dusheck's Thumbtip Magic (1991), Dusheck's Coin Magic (1992), Dusheck's Card Magic (1992), Dusheck's Mental Magic (1993), Dusheck's Close Up Magic (1994), Dusheck's Force Fields.

Media: The 1982 Lecture DVD

Web site:

(1892 - 1975)
Joseph Dunninger was born in New York and took to magic at the age of five.His first professional show was performed when he was at the age of seven, before a Masonic Club in New York. He billed himself as "Master Joseph Dunninger, Child Magician." By the time he was sixteen, Dunninger was an adult magician with an enviable reputation and appeared for a year at Eden Musee in New York City. Even at this age, Dunninger ranked as one of the most prominent magicians of the time and he took to a vaudeville tour with the Keith-Orpheum Circuit. During this tour, Dunninger developed the act of reading the minds of members of his audiences. This type of act had been done for years before Dunninger came along and used verbal coded messages sent from an assistant to the "mind-reader". Dunninger used no assistants. In an act of inspired marketing, Dunninger offered $10,000 to anyone who could prove that he used stooges, confederates, or assistants of any kind.
Invented: Tri-Card Mystery (1912), Cards Illusiory (1912), One Hand Production Cabinet, Oriental Tubes, Drop Model Cabinet.

Wrote: Dunninger's Complete Encyclopedia of Magic (1967), Dunninger's Secrets as told to Walter Gibson (1974), Dunninger's Monument to Magic (1974), Dunninger's Book of Magic (1979)

Duval, Ade
Born Adolph Albert Amrein he became interested in magic at age 16, when he and a friend (Andrew Blaeser ) began performing under the name "Duval Brothers." After his "brother" gave up magic, Ade continued alone and in 1928 developed "The Rhapsody in Silk", on which his later success was based. Assisted by his wife,True, he filled the whole stage with silks. After each performance, he needed four hours in order to prepare for the next performance. You can find many of his silk magic effects in Rice's Encyclopedia of Silk Magic. Inventions included: Silk Blow Dye, Vanishing Cocktail Shaker, and a method for performing the "Smoking of the Thumb."

Wrote: A Rhapsody in Silk (1962)

Easley, Bert
Born Herbert Cecil Easley in Shawnee, Oklahoma. In Vaudeville, performing as the "Tipsy Trickster", he developed "The Lean" illusion in which his feet remained flat on the floor while he leaned forwards and backwards in the most impossible fashion.When he retired from Vaudeville, he opened the Easley's Fun Shop in Phoenix, Arizona in 1947, which he operated until 1975.
Also invented: Easley Smoke Gimmick, Cigarette Case Firebowl to Flowers, Rabbit Parade.

Wrote: Doing Magic for Youngsters with Eric P. Wilson(1948).

Photo donated by Debbie Easley (2/4/10), Bert's granddaughter and current Corporate President of Bert Easley's Fun Shop Inc.

Eddie, Marcus
( 1979 - )
From Austin, Texas. Growing up overseas as part of an Air Force family, Marcus did not have access to magic shops or clubs. Using a magic set he received as a gift from his parents and the few magic books he could find in the school library, Marcus began teaching himself the craft when he was just 12 years old. Building his illusions from toy boxes, tape and everyday items, Marcus took his childhood passion and turned it into his career.

Awards from magicians: I.B.M. Close-Up 1st Place 1995, T.A.O.M. Close-Up 1st Place 1996, T.A.O.M. Close-Up 1st Place 2006, S.A.M. Stage 1st Place 2009, A.A.O.M. Stage 1st Place 2010, Champion Wizard Wars SYFY 2014

Invented: ODD, Loaded, Deposit, Reconnect, Empty, Splinter, Open, Fresh, Promo, Facade, Point Break, Something Borrowed, and more...

El Duco
(1941 - 2008)
El Duco was the stage name of Swedish magician Christer Gustavsson. He became interested in magicas a teen (1955), learning from a magic set. In 1979. he became asemi-pro magic inventor and mail order dealer ("El Duco's Magic") in Malmö, Sweden. He Invented and marketed over 200 effects, including "Ring in Salt", and "Fireproof". He oragnized the annual "Magic Weekend" in Sweden beginning in 1986 until the year of his death.

Also inventged: Lasso Card, Cocktail Card, Silk in Bottle, Duco's Dice, Ring and Spoon, Shrinking Die, Jumping Watch, Missing Key, Pen-Tell, Rubberband Card, Rune Stone, Your Lucky Number, and many more.

Wrote: Out of My Hands, El Duco Impromptu, Simple Ideas in Magic No.1, Simple Ideas in Magic No.2. He also contributed effects to many magic magazines.

Informative Web-site:

Elliott, James William

Born in Rumford, Maine. Learned at age 10 from amateur father. Retired as physician to be a pro cardman. Toured as 'Bosco' with the 'Le Roy-Talma-Bosco' troupe 1913-17. Invented the Spelling Trick (1910) and a variety of card tricks and sleights that bear his name..
  Ellis, Bob
Born Robert O. Ellis in Huntington, West Virginia, he was a lawyer, county prosecutor, mayor and amateur magician. Ellis gave performances for charitable groups in and around West Virginia and also was active in his local I.B.M. Ring until his death. He invented "Miser's Dream with Dollar Bills" and the "Vishnu Rope Mystery" which appear in the Tarbell Course in Magic, but his most famous and well known invention was "Out To Lunch," invented in 1947 with Clare Cummings (aka Milky the Clown). Other inventions include "Alive Box", produced by MAK Magic in 1982, a Light Bulb Cabinet, and more.
  Ellis, Jardine
Jardine Ellis was born Duncan Loren Campbell, a Scottish magician most known for his Ellis Ring prop. Because he had traveled all over the world, he called himself "The Globe Trotting Magician." After his death, George Johnson compiled a book of his effects called "A Few Jardine Ellis Secrets" which was the first exposure of the Ellis Ring to magicians. The ring did not become popular until Bertram Millidge republished it in the October 1938 issue of Magic Wand. Jardine's stage name is often misspelled without the final "e" - Jardin.

Invented: Glass of Wine/Liquid Production (c. 1900), Ellis Ring (premiered by him as a "Rod and Ring" on March 21, 1921 at the Magic Circle's Grand Séance in London). Jardine Ellis Slate Mystery (revealed to Mr. Stanley Norton in 1920 and revealed by him in the Johnson book after Ellis' death), Telepathy Experiment, Measured Cut and Restored String, Coin Levitation, The Magnetised Knife, and more.
Elmsley, Alex
Elmsley was a Scottish amateur magician, magic inventor and magic author. He was inventor of the Elmsley Count, also known as the Ghost Count, which was based on Edward Victor's E.V. Count. He wrote three sets of lecture notes: Low Cunning (1957). He then revamped these notes with changes to content for the USA to Low Cunning (1959). His final set of notes was Cardwork (1975).
He also has a two volume work Collected Works of Alex Elmsley.
His video series, "The Magic of Alex Elmsley: The Tahoe Sessions," features four videos of Alex, and includes his Torn And Restored Newspaper and Cups And Balls routines, both of which are well known among magicians.

(L-R) Arthur Emerson, Larry West
Emerson, Arthur
(1928 - )
Arthur (Art) Emerson was born in Boston, MA. He was a mail-order dealer/publisher who worked with Larry West, specializing in packet card tricks. He met Larry West in Washington D.C. in 1967, and within a year they had formed "Emerson & West", presenting original ideas for sale at Don Tanners' Magic-Fest in Columbus, Ohio.The first effect which they marketed, Color Monte, is still their biggest single item, selling over 125,000 copies. Over the years they produced over 50 magic items.
Evans, Val
Born Valentine Bagley Evans, created many effects including "An Invitation to Lunch" (1937), Extra Sensory Perception Cards (1938), There You Are (1935), Multieffect Cards, Digivision (1945), Mike and Ike, Penetrating Glass (1945), a version of Rising Cards (1944) and the "Stop Trick". A veteran of World War I, Evans was a sideshow barker before he was stricken with agoraphobia and would not leave home to go outside, which ended his performing career. He ran a magic company out of his house in Lynn, Massachusetts. He was a member of IBM Ring 122 in Boston and was the last surviving charter member of SAM Assembly 9.

Wrote: Patter, Gags and Bits of Business for Magicians (1935), Stacks and Stacks of Cards (1940), An Invitation to Lunch With Beer - Jinx no. 35, August 1937 - Page 238, Goodnight Mr. Dante, published by Goodliffe Publ., 1978

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