Tag Archives: David Copperfield (illusionist)

today’s birthday: Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin (1805)

Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin (1805)

Considered the father of modern conjuring, Houdin was a French magician after whom Harry Houdini named himself. Trained as a watchmaker, he was mechanically savvy and used this to his advantage in his act, employing mechanical devices and the newly discovered phenomenon of electromagnetism to create his illusions. Unlike magicians who relied on supernatural explanations for their feats, he openly attributed his magic to natural means. Why did the French government send him to Algeria in 1856? More… Discuss