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Re: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs

Dustin, thanks!

(And I am planning to be at the event Wednesday evening. See you there!)

--Tom
by Tom Sawyer
02/23/15 05:01 AM
 
Forum: Buzz
Topic: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs
Replies: 6
Views: 701

Re: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs

Jon, thank you! --Tom
by Tom Sawyer
02/22/15 11:59 PM
 
Forum: Buzz
Topic: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs
Replies: 6
Views: 701

Re: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs

Marty, thank you for your kind remarks. They are much appreciated! Bill, yes, I already knew about that. Your post doesn't indicate that your quotation was from a post I had originally written for a different blog. When I re-posted it, I indicated that I had written the post more than four years ago...
by Tom Sawyer
02/22/15 09:25 PM
 
Forum: Buzz
Topic: Groundbreaking new work on Edwin T. Sachs
Replies: 6
Views: 701

Re: 2014 in Review

This reminds me of an incident in which the facts were roughly along the following lines. It was about 30 years ago, and I was at a Magic Castle swap meet peddling Professor Hoffmann: A Study , by J.B. Findlay and me, copies of which were on display on the table. A guy came up to the table, stared a...
by Tom Sawyer
01/12/15 02:32 AM
 
Forum: Buzz
Topic: 2014 in Review
Replies: 21
Views: 2393

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, Most of you probably remember the " Erdnase 216 " pack that was issued by the Conjuring Arts Research Center. They mentioned a theory that this back-design may have been the design portrayed in The Expert at the Card Table . Of course, this is highly debatable, but in any event, it...
by Tom Sawyer
01/11/15 07:31 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi Bill,

Somebody noticed! But seriously, yes, I very recently took down a lot of posts. Later today I expect to go through some of them and maybe put some back up. (But even now there are still more than 40 posts up.)

--Tom
by Tom Sawyer
01/10/15 05:14 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

My "1905" Drake (dated 1905 on the title page, but not necessarily printed that year) probably has 8 signatures, not 7. I can definitely say that the first signature ends with page 30, but it has 32 pages, because the first leaf in the book is blank. I can also say definitely that the last...
by Tom Sawyer
01/09/15 07:19 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, Another great post by John that is relevant here is this one: Link . On Google Books is a Drake copy of The Expert at the Card Table with an address of 179 N. Michigan Avenue on the back cover, 178 pages. The book indicates that it was a "Punctuality Prize" awarded in 1932. Drake u...
by Tom Sawyer
01/09/15 03:34 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, In a different thread, Bill Mullins made mention of an eBay auction relating to a blue-cloth version of The Expert at the Card Table , with "Expert at the Card Table" stamped in black (in script) on the front cover, published by Drake. The final price was $488. There were 7 bidders...
by Tom Sawyer
01/08/15 07:39 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

I suppose that susceptibility to damage depends to a large extent on the materials involved. For example, it's my understanding that electrotype molds would be softer than stereotype molds, since the latter involve the casting of molten metal, and the former do not. Also, one might expect foundry ty...
by Tom Sawyer
01/04/15 01:10 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, By the way, the topic of Dai Vernon and the extent of his role in the search for Erdnase has been discussed elsewhere in this thread. David Alexander expressed his view that Vernon took little, if any, active part in investigating Erdnase's identity (though at the time he said that, he appar...
by Tom Sawyer
12/31/14 07:41 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Dai Vernon discusses The Expert at the Card Table at some length in his column in the August 1970 issue of Genii , but to me that column makes it pretty clear that he did not have much idea of who the author might have been. It is not as though he had narrowed it down to two or three people, or anyt...
by Tom Sawyer
12/29/14 01:58 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: Respect for Doug Henning

Hi Richard, Brad's post shows the problem with including David Copperfield's name, but I'll elaborate a little in this post. One of the first things I tried in an effort to avoid the problem was to preface names with the word "magician." It was not a perfect solution. And I just tried agai...
by Tom Sawyer
12/26/14 02:52 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: Respect for Doug Henning
Replies: 162
Views: 20890

Re: Respect for Doug Henning

Hi Jon, There are definitely weaknesses in graphs like the one I showed. However, here is another , for a different time period and with more smoothing. I imagine it would be difficult to "argue-away" the apparent significance of Dunninger and Kreskin. Of course, the graph ends in or aroun...
by Tom Sawyer
12/25/14 07:29 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: Respect for Doug Henning
Replies: 162
Views: 20890

Re: Respect for Doug Henning

Hi All, This thread has a many insights into the broader issue of what makes a magician historically important. But interestingly, it appears that there is no consensus on the subject of where Doug Henning belongs in any orthodox hierarchy of magicians. Frequency-graphs such as the one linked-to her...
by Tom Sawyer
12/25/14 06:26 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: Respect for Doug Henning
Replies: 162
Views: 20890

Re: ERDNASE

Chris, as you indicated, I think it is likely that Drake made his own plates and never received any plates from McKinney or Erdnase. Additionally, I think it is fairly well established that Drake did acquire, and sell, copies of the first edition that were printed by McKinney. As far as I know, the ...
by Tom Sawyer
12/22/14 05:22 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: The Magic Circle

I visited The Magic Circle once, back in 1973. I was armed with a letter of introduction from John Henry Grossman, but I didn’t need it, because -- not at my request -- Elsie Findlay (J.B. Findlay’s widow) arranged with Francis White, for me to visit. (I’m sure I would not have dreamed of contacting...
by Tom Sawyer
12/22/14 12:23 AM
 
Forum: Buzz
Topic: The Magic Circle
Replies: 15
Views: 1524

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, In an earlier post, I used "32 pages" as the semi-conjectural number of pages in a typical signature or gathering in a certain Powner edition of The Expert at the Card Table . I just checked my "1905" Drake printing. The first signature is 32 pages, and it includes a blan...
by Tom Sawyer
12/19/14 11:16 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, If Drake received unbound copies, I wonder what he is supposed to have done with them. I suppose the implication of this is that he bound the copies in a "Drake" binding. If he did that, then I suppose it would be reasonable to assume that he removed the title pages and replaced th...
by Tom Sawyer
12/18/14 08:10 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Jon, the idea expressed in your second paragraph is a good idea, but I don't think anyone has attempted it. And I doubt whether it will ever happen, for many reasons, including the scarcity of a lot of the printings, their fragility, and the time-consuming nature of the task. Maybe the enquiry could...
by Tom Sawyer
12/17/14 08:06 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Bill, Well, obviously Drake may have acquired first-edition copies via the bankruptcy. But the main relevant thing we "know" is that Drake was selling copies of the first edition sooner or later. We don't really know how or exactly when he obtained those copies. Once the printing of the bo...
by Tom Sawyer
12/16/14 02:35 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, Well, I would like to make a few more comments in this post, relating to the matters recently discussed. I wrote almost all of this post before seeing Chris’s latest post, but I thought I would go ahead and post it anyway, because it sort of fleshes things out a little. I formerly owned a ha...
by Tom Sawyer
12/16/14 06:25 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, The following observations do not address every point mentioned by Chris. However . . . It has always seemed to me that the discussions of Drake receiving the McKinney plates are based on assumptions. I don’t think there is any real proof that Drake ever came into possession of the McKinney ...
by Tom Sawyer
12/15/14 06:57 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, As Bill notes above, the answers to the questions of who wrote what, and who is responsible for what, in The Man Who Was Erdnase , can be a bit unclear. The key passage in the book (relating to authorship) may be the bottom of page viii and the top of page ix. But it leaves one scratching hi...
by Tom Sawyer
12/10/14 11:26 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, I’ve been thinking about the Dalrymple-Erdnase connection that M.D. Smith mentioned. To me it isn’t completely clear what Erdnase told Smith. I assume that the most complete version is found in The Gardner-Smith Correspondence , but I think that does not add much (on that topic) to what was ...
by Tom Sawyer
12/10/14 07:02 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Professor Hoffmann and "Modern Magic"

Hi All, Those interested in “what Professor Hoffmann’s references were” in the writing of Modern Magic (which he basically wrote during the period 1872-1876) might want to check out the following link: http://lccn.loc.gov/34018843 It’s a link to an entry (which I just now ran across) for a German bo...
by Tom Sawyer
12/06/14 08:19 PM
 
Forum: Magic History and Anecdotes
Topic: Professor Hoffmann and "Modern Magic"
Replies: 0
Views: 252

Re: ERDNASE

Bill, thanks for posting that information on copies of the first edition. There is a "first edition count" on the Everything Erdnase site which mentions 16 copies, mostly in the United States. On December 20, 2006, Richard Hatch (I believe it was him) mentioned that he knew of about 80 cop...
by Tom Sawyer
12/05/14 03:53 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, I’m glad Jonathan has been fairly persistent on this topic, because I find that whole question quite interesting -- and of course it is always possible that information on the distribution of The Expert at the Card Table will have some significance in determining who Erdnase was. I’ll make a...
by Tom Sawyer
12/04/14 02:29 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Roger, thanks for giving credit to my book of long ago. You make some interesting observations regarding Erdnase and Drake. I remember that comment in The Man Who Was Erdnase regarding the number of copies of the first edition in Britain. I’m not sure what they meant by “Britain,” and I suppose they...
by Tom Sawyer
12/03/14 05:14 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Bill, I see such a meeting as something that "may" have happened. If a meeting between Drake and Erdnase took place, it could easily have taken place (as you indicate) at any time during 1902, 1903, 1904, or 1905. If I had to guess, I might prefer something like 1903. Presumably, Drake's s...
by Tom Sawyer
12/02/14 07:25 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, One of the things Marty Demarest mentions (a number of posts back) is his skepticism over the existence of “any direct, personal connection” between Frederick J. Drake & Co. and S.W. Erdnase. I agree with that, based on what I have seen. Of course, any demonstrable connection between Dra...
by Tom Sawyer
12/02/14 04:12 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Marty, thanks for the kind words in the post right above Leonard's. Much appreciated. You raise some excellent points about methodologies that have been applied so far. Without commenting on W.E. Sanders, it is easy for me to agree that (potentially) the evidence that a person is Erdnase can readily...
by Tom Sawyer
12/01/14 01:39 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, I've been thinking about S.W. Erdnase, and the whole authorship controversy. I was thinking of writing a very brief assessment of the present status of “the Erdnase investigation,” with emphasis on the recent discussion on this thread -- as an introductory segment to this post. I started wri...
by Tom Sawyer
11/19/14 10:09 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, The following ties in with some of the discussion above. At least in the early days, a lot of Drake’s books dealt with “performance-related” subjects, including magic, card-sharping, hypnotism, fortune-telling, and recitations. This applies at least to the period 1905 and before. If you look...
by Tom Sawyer
11/16/14 04:41 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All,

Regarding the "similar prefaces" hypothesis discussed above, it might be noted that "our" Frederick J. Drake passed away in 1912. That date is clear from The Publishers' Weekly.

--Tom Sawyer
by Tom Sawyer
11/14/14 05:29 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, One of the better-known publishers of The Expert at the Card Table is the Gambler’s Book Club, in Las Vegas. I looked at their website, and it appears as though the version they are now selling is a Dover version. Back in the olden days, like the early 1970s, I would occasionally visit the G...
by Tom Sawyer
11/08/14 02:32 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, It is definitely useful to be familiar with the term "confirmation bias," if one is going to talk about possible weaknesses in the things people say about "who Erdnase really was." On the other hand, it appears to me that the mere fact that arguments or facts resulted fro...
by Tom Sawyer
10/29/14 05:23 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, When I wrote S.W. Erdnase: Another View back in 1991, my attitude on this specific issue was basically as follows: S.W. Erdnase's real name was probably Andrews, but it didn't have to be "E.S. Andrews." I think I got drawn into that last part by arguments that had been made relatin...
by Tom Sawyer
10/28/14 01:57 PM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Hi All, In view of the first two paragraphs of Chris Wasshuber's follow-up post (above) about the word "Erdnasen" (October 25), the whole “Earth-nose” or “Earth-promontory” idea has now gained much more plausibility in my mind. I suppose it will take some time for all that to become furthe...
by Tom Sawyer
10/27/14 04:29 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906

Re: ERDNASE

Oh, and by the way, I thought Chris Wasshuber's comment above about "Erdnasen" was quite edifying. I do not remember seeing that pointed out by anyone else. I believe that the focus heretofore has mainly been on "Erdnase," not "Erdnasen," though the existence of the lat...
by Tom Sawyer
10/25/14 06:56 AM
 
Forum: General
Topic: ERDNASE
Replies: 3063
Views: 1385906
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