Tarbell's Course in Magic

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Postby Guest » 08/05/06 06:42 PM

There was a magician by the name of John Happel who passed away a few years ago. I had the honor of receiving many of his notes and tricks. In his collection I found Tarbell's course in magic. I'm not talking about the books, but the actual lessons that could be purchased lesson by lesson. This collection has lessons 1-60. All of the lessons appear complete except lesson 1. It starts on page 2 and ends on 16.

I would love any information about these lessons and/or John Happel.

Thank you. Mark.

Postby Guest » 08/05/06 09:26 PM

Hi Mark,

I have to make this quick as it is getting late, and I have a rather early tee time in the morning. I have no information on John Happel, but maybe you could give us a little more to go on. Where did he live? How old was he? Information on that order.

As far as the Tarbell Course goes, you have the complete original course consisting of 60 lessons. Sounds like your just missing page one of lesson one. Maybe someone that also has the original course could send you a copy of that page.

Here are a few links that should be of interest to you.


http://cgi.ebay.com/Book-Tarbell-System ... dZViewItem

http://cgi.ebay.com/1927-magic-trick-bo ... dZViewItem

Regards, Mark Damon

Postby Guest » 08/05/06 09:36 PM

Thank you for your reply.

John lived in Horsham Pennsylvania. I know he knew Bob Little (anyone near Hatboro knows Bob.) I found a receipt with Bob's hand writing on it (I worked for Bob as a teenager making tricks, filling orders, etc.)

John was very active in the 30-50's. In his collection there are some original magazines from The Jinx date in 1935. Although he continued to perform magic into the 60's he stopped performing somewhere in the 70's. I believed he passed away in 2002.

I could tell from his notes he was very serious in learning the art of magic.

I don't know much more about John. His daughter, Judy Lamb, still lives in the Hatboro, Pa area.

Postby Guest » 08/06/06 09:47 AM

Hi Mark,

I did some more searching for you on John Happel with very little luck. I have complete search capabilities of The Sphinx (1902-53), The Linking Ring (1923-99) on DVD's, and too countless other magic magazines through my membership to The Conjuring Arts Research Center. I only came across one refernece in a 1945 issue of Genii saying he was given his S.A.M. (Society of American Magicians) pin at a Philadelphia Assembly #4 meeting. Wish I could have come up with more for you. It sounds like your best bet for more information might be through his daughter. I think she will be flattered at someone taking such an interest in her father.

Do you still need more information on the Tarbell Course lesson sheets? Or were the links I sent enough help for you?

Regards, Mark

Postby Guest » 08/20/06 05:10 PM


Thank you for your reply. Yes, I did check out the website, thank you. I now understand why what I have did not match up with what we know as Tarbell's Course in Magic.

I also thought it was interesting to see similar items sold on e-bay. Recently there were other lessons sold.

Thank you again.


Postby Guest » 08/26/06 09:51 AM

Hi Mark,

If you want to see what the current market value for the complete original 60 lesson course is, check out Marrio Carrandi's auction item listed below.

http://cgi.ebay.com/THE-ORIGINAL-TARBEL ... dZViewItem

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