Sometimes it feels like I’m perpetually cleaning out my office. This time I found a super rare Kraft’s Famous Magic Kit. This is a punch out magic kit that was created by Harlan Tarbell!
From what I’ve heard (mostly from Richard Kaufman) is that there are two versions of this punch out kit. The 1936 version for Morton’s Salt which has Tarbell’s name on the cover and the version that I have from 1938 for Kraft which doesn’t have Tarbell’s name anywhere on it.
I suspect that the Kraft version is a bit more rare than the Morton version as I’ve found many instances of that one being sold, but I can’t find a single mention of the Kraft version. I’m guessing since it lacked Tarbell’s name, less people saved them.
Sometimes the universe hands you a project you never knew you’d be working on. Last week I got a tip about an estate sale that had some magic stuff in it. The magician was named Carroll Wood, and was active in the first half of the 1930’s and was a founding member of IBM ring 59 (Seattle Magic Club). I’ll write another post about Carroll in the future.
One of the things I found for sale was the book My Life of Magic by Howard Thurston. I’ve never read this book so I picked it up.
I just picked up the book to read and noticed something inside the book:
It was signed by Howard Thurston!
This is really cool to me, when I was a kid starting in magic in the 1990’s learning from old library books, there was soo much written about him. The Rising Cards, the Five Card Vanish, the Floating Ball…soo much stuff that really got my imagination going. This was long before YouTube and all I had was pics in books and my imagination.
In the research I did about Carroll Wood and I found out exactly when this book was signed by Thurston, and it’s an interesting story that I’ll write about in the future!