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Houdini Museum

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Title: Houdini Museum  
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Subject: Harry Houdini, Jackie Vernon (comedian), Bess Houdini, Magic (illusion), Pennsylvania
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Houdini Museum

The Houdini Museum
Slogan The Only Building in the World dedicated to Houdini.
Location 1433 N. Main Avenue, Scranton, Pennsylvania, USA

The Houdini Museum was established in 1988 at 1433 N. Main Avenue in Scranton, Pennsylvania, USA. It is in a turn-of-the-20th-century building that has been entirely renovated. Houdini performed in Scranton and did several special challenges there. His brother, Hardeen, also appeared in Scranton and in its sister city, Wilkes-Barre. Documents and letters attesting to this are on display at the museum and on its website.[1] Houdini performed at the Poli Theater for S. Z. Poli in Scranton, that was part of the Keith-Albee-Orpheum circuit at the time. This would later become the RKO movies circuit.

The Houdini Tour, show and museum attraction is one of Scranton's most popular things to do and is highly rated. Stories about the museum and its performers have been featured in recent years on television shows throughout the world. The live show at the museum includes two of the best, nationally known magicians, Dorothy Dietrich and John Bravo (aka Ray Carter and Dick Brooks).[2]

The Houdini museum covers Houdini's career and facts about Houdini. The Houdini Museum has national and international significance, especially since the tragic fire of an exhibit in Niagara Falls in May 1995. A part of the exhibit was on display for 13 years at the Magic Towne House in New York City.[3]

The Houdini Museum features memorabilia, artifacts, mannequins and films of the master magician. The Houdini Tour also includes a magic show as part of the tour.[4]


The Houdini Museum was created by Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brooks (aka John Bravo and Ray Carter) as a tribute to magic's greatest legend. In part the exhibit includes collectibles from both her and his collection as well as artifacts given to Mr. Brooks by his father, who actually saw Houdini perform. Parts of the collection were on display at their show spot in New York City, The Magic Towne House for 15 years, from the 1970s to the 1980s, when they moved it to Scranton, PA.

Also on display for many years at the New York location was the Society of American Magicians replica of Houdini's bust at Houdini's grave site and a large oil painting portrait of the magician, two items that the Society could not store. They were in the museum for safe keeping. On September 27, 2011 The Houdini Museum along with "Houdini Commandos" Dorothy Dietrich, Dick Brooks and Steve Moore replaced the statuary Houdini bust that was missing at the grave for 36 years with the permission of the administration of the cemetery and Houdini family members. This project was fully funded by the not for profit Houdini Museum at a cost of about $10,000. The Society of American Magicians no longer cares for the site. That currently is done by Scranton's Houdini Museum and the administrators of the cemetery with the help of volunteers and donors.

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Unique museum best nationally known magicians". 
  3. ^ "Worth a Stop". 
  4. ^ Efthimiades, Michael (August 23, 1996). Pocono Weekend. Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania: The Pocono News. pp. 10 and 11. 

External links

  • Houdini Museum website
  • Psychic Theater website
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