A History of the Thumb Tip?

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.

Postby Guest » 05/22/06 09:11 AM

Can anyone suggest where I can get the history of the thumb tip?
Guest
 

Postby Guest » 05/22/06 09:55 AM

I would suggest to contact Gary Darwin....
or you can always make a search on www.magicbooks.be for some references :D

Also, according to the MLP it was invented by Professor Herwin circa 1885... ( MLP )

hope this helps,
Jacky
www.magicbooks.be
Guest
 

Postby Richard Kaufman » 05/22/06 11:26 AM

I think Max Maven gave a talk on this subject at the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History a few years ago.
Can't remember the details, but it might be of Japanese origin.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20775
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Dustin Stinett » 05/22/06 12:42 PM

He did and it was. As I recall, he referenced a book that significantly predates everything else on the subject and it was indeed Japanese. I seem to recall that the tie was started using one of the support posts for the theater.

Dustin
User avatar
Dustin Stinett
 
Posts: 5904
Joined: 07/22/01 12:00 PM
Location: Southern California

Postby Dustin Stinett » 05/22/06 02:02 PM

Yes...Dustin can read... :rolleyes:

Richard, Max's talk was on the Thumb TIE. Not the thumb TIP.

Dustin
User avatar
Dustin Stinett
 
Posts: 5904
Joined: 07/22/01 12:00 PM
Location: Southern California

Postby Guest » 05/22/06 02:16 PM

Thanks Dustin! I read that first post and started wondering if the day was getting a bit long for ya!
Steve V
Guest
 

Postby Dustin Stinett » 05/22/06 02:31 PM

No, the days are getting shorter as I am getting long in the tooth!
User avatar
Dustin Stinett
 
Posts: 5904
Joined: 07/22/01 12:00 PM
Location: Southern California

Postby Guest » 05/22/06 03:27 PM

I remember reading, probably in an old Sphinx, that someone in the late 1800s/early 1900s (not sure of the date as I'm going by memory), that the thumb tip was "invented" as a solution to Ching Ling Foo's T&R Paper. This was not the solution as the David P. Abbott Book of Mysteries explained, Abbott having learned the trick directly from Foo.

While it may have been invented elsewhere, the same idea can occur to different people at different times. The Thumb Tip may have been marketed by Martinka, at least that's the memory I have of what I read.
Guest
 

Postby Joe McIntyre » 05/23/06 02:54 PM

According to Professer Hoffmann,it was invented by J.M.Hartz.
Joe McIntyre
 
Posts: 41
Joined: 01/25/08 01:00 PM
Location: Lincoln Park NJ

Postby Richard Kaufman » 05/23/06 03:55 PM

Hartz was one of the earliest magic dealers in Manhattan.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20775
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Max Maven » 05/23/06 05:12 PM

Credit goes to an English magician, Professor Herwinn, circa 1885.
Max Maven
 
Posts: 365
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Hollywood, CA

Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 05/23/06 05:51 PM

Some info on Herwin from the October 1948 "The Wizard":

CHATS FOR CONJURING COGNOSENTI
By WU LING (R. C. RITSON)
With STANLEY COLLINS as Collaborator and Editor.

During one's lifetime there accumulates a mass of various data, some of which is referred to as "Junk" by many persons; but to the true collector it is otherwise, for it is only by these records, so preserved, that we of the present era have been able to formulate some of the true historical records of the past. Often, while glancing through these items in my files, I come across oddments and other items that give a more or less true outline of the career of someone who might be one of the "Greats," while in many cases it might be someone who has, never managed to carve for himself a niche in the hall of fame. Often, these people and their records drift into oblivion.

One item that is of interest to me is that of the late Professor Herwin, and as I was very intimate with him, I would like to give a rough outline of his career.

Professor Herwin, whose real name was William Humpage, was born at Birmingham on October 31st, 1861, and at the age of fourteen he went to reside at Bristol. His contact with a man who had a knowledge of Magic made him very keen, and his first insight into the art was the vanish of a penny in a glass of water. His skill as a mechanic enabled him to make many effects, some of which were original. He gave us the metal thumb-tip with the nail design on same; also the Siberian Handcuff Trick and the Havit Coin Trick, so at any rate he can be well termed an
inventor.

He helped Carl Stackman, who ran a Hall of Magic in Bristol, and was intimate with many old timers such as Dobler, Verbeck, etc. Later, he made many props for such famous people as the late Harry Houdini, Chung Ling Soo and Penstone, and his knowledge of the art was great.

After buying the original "Devil of a Hat" from the late C.O. Williams of Cardiff, he re-designed and improved all the original tables of Hartz. He presented this act at several small Music Halls and the photographs published here show the act at the start and also the finale. He was also constantly running into the "Spiritualists" for he presented an Anti-Spiritualistic act.

Herwin had a son, Charles, who at one time worked the Halls as "Carlini" with an act of Magic, Shadows and Chapeaugraphy, and he was intimate with and toured in the company of Charles Morritt.

Professor Herwin died at Sheffield, but his body was taken to Bristol for burial, and so ended, the career of one of the early magicians whose contribution to the art of magic was not in vain.
Also, some info on the creation of the thumb-tip from the December 1934 "The Magic Wand":

THE ORIGINAL THUMB-TIP.
A recent visit from Prof. Herwin, of Bristol, recalls the fact that he is the inventor of that useful gadget the thumbtip. Some time prior to 1885, Prof. Herwin, attaching a scrap of silk to the inside of a false finger, devised the wellknown "proof" that a silk is in the hand when the mouchoir has really disappeared. Then he thought of the thumb tip and it was one of the early models, if not the earliest, which was shown to us on its way to the museum of the Magic Circle, where that fake, which has helped to make many a magical reputation, now reposes.
-Jim
Jim Maloney_dup1
 
Posts: 1709
Joined: 07/23/01 12:00 PM
Location: Northern New Jersey

Postby Guest » 05/23/06 09:20 PM

I seem to recall Gary Darwin saying, in one of his books, that a thimble (with flesh coloured paint) was first used as a thumbtip. True or no ??
Guest
 

Postby Dustin Stinett » 05/23/06 11:24 PM

In Darwins Thumb Tip Miracles (1981) he refers the reader to Hoffmanns Later Magic (1904). That source says Hartzs invention for handkerchief production (invented, by the way, long before the false fingers came into use) was a sort of thimble, made of very thin copper.

Dustin
User avatar
Dustin Stinett
 
Posts: 5904
Joined: 07/22/01 12:00 PM
Location: Southern California

Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 05/24/06 07:23 AM

It's interesting to note that Herwin and Hartz were good friends and that Herwin received a large majority of Hartz's props upon the latter's death in 1903. Perhaps the two worked on it together?

-Jim
Jim Maloney_dup1
 
Posts: 1709
Joined: 07/23/01 12:00 PM
Location: Northern New Jersey


Return to Magic History and Anecdotes