Steve’s Photo Corner

Harry Houdini photo

 

 

 

Veteran Steve Gibson has discovered some old photographs of the early days of Vancouver.

 

 

 

 

 

On March 1, 1923, world famous escape artist Harry Houdini, who was in Vancouver as part of a vaudeville show performing at the Orpheum Theatre, took up a challenge to be hoisted high into the air while shackled and tied up in a straitjacket outside The Sun building at 137 West Pender. About 10,000 people showed up to see if the famed “master of escape” could wriggle his way out of his predicament. Two Vancouver police detectives were tapped to bind Houdini, who was then hoisted up hanging upside down from his ankles. It took Houdini only 3 minutes and 39 seconds to extricate himself from the straight-jacket. A film of the escape was shown that night at the Orpheum, with Houdini in the audience.

1923 - Photograph of Harry Houdini being prepared to hang outside the front of the Vancouver Sun newspaper office (Source of photo - City of Vancouver Archives).

1923 – Photograph of Harry Houdini being prepared to hang outside the front of the Vancouver Sun newspaper office (Source of photo – City of Vancouver Archives).

Photograph of Harry Houdini hanging from a 3rd floor outside the Vancouver Sun newspaper office (Source of photo - City Vancouver Archives)

Photograph of Harry Houdini hanging from a 3rd floor outside the Vancouver Sun newspaper office (Source of photo – City Vancouver Archives)

Harry Houdini upside-down in Vancouver 1923

1923 – Photograph of Harry Houdini hanging upside down in front of the Vancouver Sun newspaper building in Vancouver, BC (Source of photo – City of Vancouver Archives).

1923 - Photograph of the crowd watching Harry Houdini escaping from a straight jacket while hanging three stories in from of the Vancouver Sun newspaper building (Source of photo - City of Vancouver Archives).

1923 – Photograph of the crowd watching Harry Houdini escaping from a straight jacket while hanging three stories in from of the Vancouver Sun newspaper building (Source of photo – City of Vancouver Archives).

1923 - Photograph of the marquee at the Orpheum announcing the first appearance in this city of Harry Houdini - the Genius of Escape.

1923 – Photograph of the marquee at the Orpheum announcing the first appearance in this city of Harry Houdini – the Genius of Escape.

On October 31, 1926, Harry Houdini passed away from a ruptured appendix at the Detroit’s Grace Hospital, aged 52.  He was surrounded by his wife and brother.  To learn more about Harry Houdini, check out this website here.

1899 - Photograph of Harry Houdin.

1899 – Photograph of Harry Houdin.

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