Thurston and the Needles

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

Postby Bill Mullins » 08/17/10 01:03 PM

I'm reading a book (biography) and it says that the subject went to a Thurston show (ca. WWI). "One of Thurston's tricks was threading needles with one hand . . ."

I assume this is a mistaken reference to the East Indian Needle Trick. I've gone through AskAlexander looking for evidence that Thurston did the Needle Trick, and can't find any.

Does anyone know for sure if Thurston ever did the Needle Trick (swallow loose needles, swallow thread, regurgitate threaded needles)?

Which would be the "best" biography of Thurston for this kind of query? What about his touring schedule -- are there any references to his visits to Kansas City between 1912 and 1925 or so?
Bill Mullins
 
Posts: 3258
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Huntsville, AL

Postby Diego » 08/17/10 06:23 PM

Keep in mind, with time and confused/selective memories, even though it was Thurston, people and yes magicians too, can mix up names with different experiences.

Other students of Thurston might know the answer to your question.
Diego
 
Posts: 227
Joined: 06/16/08 11:29 AM

Postby Bill Mullins » 08/17/10 08:51 PM

Diego wrote:Keep in mind, with time and confused/selective memories, even though it was Thurston, people and yes magicians too, can mix up names with different experiences.


Obviously true. When I read the passage, I assumed it was accurate with respect to Thurston being the magician in question. After I went through AskAlexander looking for references to Thurston doing the needle trick and not finding any, I started to wonder.

The subject (science fiction author Robert Heinlein) grew up in Kansas City MO, and I've found reference to shows by Thurston there every winter from 1914 to 1918 (as Heinlein aged from 7 to 11), so it's entirely possible he did see Thurston. I just can't figure out the trick involved.
Bill Mullins
 
Posts: 3258
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Huntsville, AL


Return to Magic History and Anecdotes