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!
About this envelope:
This is one of the envelopes found in Harry Houdini's personal desk.
The postmark is Mar 14, 1922.
The return address is: Paul Chute, 776 Beacon St., Boston Mass.
The envelope is addressed to Houdini, but the address was incorrect.
Paul Jones Chute was a vaudeville dancer specializing in "aesthetic" (interpretive) dance. He eventually became the premier dancer with the Boston Opera by 1909. After retirement, he was known for his intimate yet flamboyant parties featuring celebrity guests. Could it be that Mr. Chute was inviting Houdini to such a party? Perhaps showing his eccentricity, Chute used an envelope from Dean Academy (though no connection between him and the school could be found) and he addressed it incorrectly in a wobbly hand. It still made it to Houdini's desk!
See a larger version of the front of the envelope here.
See a larger version of the back of the envelope here.
The story behind the Houdini Envelopes:
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).