Envelope found in Houdini's desk - from a health and nudism advocate
Just think- you can own a piece of magical history- something that was handled by the great Harry Houdini in his daily life! This is a one-of-a-kind collectible, perfect for framing.
What a great gift!
This is one of the envelopes found in Harry Houdini's personal desk. It is postmarked February 13, 1925 from New York, NY. The return address is from The Christian Work, 70 Fifth Ave., New York, NY
The Christian Work was a weekly newspaper printed from about 1902 through at least 1925. While the publication reported on topics of the day from a Christian viewpoint (including no doubt the WWI fundraising efforts of such groups as Houdini's Sons of Rabbis), the correspondence in this envelope may well have been from Henry Huntington, editor of The Christian Work for most of the 1920's.Henry Strong Huntington Jr. (1882-1981), was a Presbyterian minister who advocated the healthful advantages nudism. He established the Burgoyne Trail Nudist Camp near Otis, Massachusetts. He was also editor of the magazine, The Nudist.Houdini was a passionate advocate of physical health regimens and quite interested in the health benefits of nudism. His famous pose with his hands in shackles, clad only in a loincloth, demonstrates clearly that Houdini was proud of his body and not shy about showing it off.Perhaps it was this common interest in promoting natural health that was at the heart of this correspondence.
See a larger version of the image here.
In the late 1980's, magician Peter Monticup (owner of MagicTricks.com), purchased Harry Houdini's ornate personal desk. The desk had been in storage in Houdini's former NYC home from 1926 until it was sold in 1980. Peter purchased the desk from this buyer, along with some other personal items from the Houdini home.
The desk had a number of secret compartments and hidden drawers. Inside one of the drawers was a stack of envelopes from correspondence Houdini had received. The envelopes were from all different sources- his lawyers, his fans, fellow magicians, etc. He even wrote notes on some of the envelopes, either noting the importance of the contents, or just scribbling on them as scrap paper.
In researching each of the envelopes, we've found an important connection to an event or person in Houdini's life. Of all the thousands upon thousands of letters he received each year, he saved each of these envelopes for a reason.Houdini was a notorious "saver".These envelopes were used as his personal Rolodex (address directory).
You provide the frame if desired.
This is a standard size envelope (about 3.5" x 5"). It's old, it's been through the mail, it's yellowed. Houdini tore it across the top (probably with a dull letter opener) to remove the contents. This envelope is in "AS FOUND" condition.
DISCLAIMER: Though these envelopes are absolutely original and absolutely came from Houdini's desk, we cannot be totally sure of the contents of the correspondence that was sent in the envelope, because the envelopes in the desk were all empty. What you read in the description above is our BEST GUESS about the contents of any correspondence, based on our research and our own conclusions.
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