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Interesting Houdini Facts from the Houdini Museum in the Scranton Pocono region.

Houdini's real name:
Eric Weiss
The love of Houdini's life:
Married 17 year old Beatrice Rahner at the age of 19. They stayed together and traveled the world until Houdini's untimely death at the age of 52.
Houdini's most impressive character trait:
Loyalty to those around him and those who helped him. Houdini had only one agent in the United States and one in Europe his entire career. Houdini allowed his younger brother to do the same act in competition with himself. Houdini took off a year during World War One to promote the war effort and taught soldiers how to get out of handcuffs. Houdini took care of many in the family including his mother. Houdini promoted magic all over the world encouraging magicians to join the then small Society of American Magicians everywhere he traveled. Houdini was the organizations President for 10 years until he died, left a substantial sum in his will for the organization, and the crest of the Society of Americans is boldly engraved on Houdini's grave site.
Houdini's littlest known accomplishments:
Houdini was a pioneer pilot. Given an award for being the first to fly a plane in Australia. Houdini also has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his film career. It is in a prominent spot in front of the famous Chinese Theater.
Houdini's education:
Houdini left home at the age of 12 to seek his fortune. A self taught genius who wrote many best sellers, wrote his publicity and many movie scripts. Houdini had a huge library that he gave to the Library of Congress and the University of Texas after he died. He did not keep it for personal gain.
Houdini's dislikes:
Houdini had great disdain for those that used his art of trickery, to cheat people. He exposed frauds and cheats everywhere he traveled and because of this had many threats on his life. He exposed phoney spiritualists and gambling cheats throughout his long career. Houdini loved magicians but disliked those who copied the challenge escape that was his invention.
Biggest misconceptions by the public about Houdini:
That he ever believed in any kind of mysticism, that he died in an escape and that he did not like magicians. He did not, however, like those who copied his challenge escape act, which was his own invention. Another misconception is that he was overly obsessed with his mother, mostly due to the Hollywood biography having him retire when his mother dies, hearing her voice under water, etc. He was independent man who ran away from home at 12, and married at 19, left his mother behind and traveled the world with his wife till he died. He did, however, love his mother deeply and was shaken by her death.
Houdini's favorite quote:
We have several books with the following inscription, 'My brain is the key that sets me free.'

Press to return to Scranton's Houdini Museum.

1989-2003 by The Houdini Museum. Except for reviews, no part of any of this document may be reproduced in any form, without written permission by the authors. The graphics have been retouched, computer enhanced and resized by the authors.

Houdini Museum

Last updated: March, 2003