Biography Project – Harry Houdini

Childhood

Erik Weisz who later changed his name to Harry Houdini was born in Budapest on March 24, 1874, He moved to Appleton, Wisconsin and was sold at an auction at a very young age. The family who got him was a Jewish family. They practiced their religion every day. His father was the rabbi of a temple. Weisz’s parents cared for him when they had the chance to. Weisz would go to school and during the weekend he loved to play. On a Sunday Weisz went  to church and was surprised to see a different priest. Weisz went outside and saw his father slumped. He was fired,the family needed another way to make money.

Weisz had an idea he wanted their family to have money so he got a job. He got money for his family and got equipment for his favorite thing. MAGIC! He learned how to do tricks and performed them for a audience. His family was proud that he was making money. Not as much money as his Father made but a respectful amount. Their family could finally get what they needed thanks to Weisz. He continued to do magic and get money for his family, little did he know he was about to become  world famous magician that would be remembered for the history of the world.

 

Struggles

Houdini has gone through a lot of trouble in his life booing, jeering and throwing things at him. He would sometimes get nervous when he was doing a trick and it was taking a long time. It would be like a cliffhanger, some of his performances took 30 minutes, 1 hour. The fans would get restless. Rarely he would fail he would be really embarrassed. He wanted to get money from his acts. He went to europe to get money. His manager promised him a brass band to greet him in america and more money than in europe but when he came back there were none of anything. His manager was mad.

Houdini’s whole childhood was a struggle. His parents had trouble getting money and he had no time to play with his parents. He couldn’t really have fun until he discovered magic. He was in a lot of pain at times because of his tricks. He always said this to himself “ My brain is the key that sets me free.” It helped him relax. Houdini has had ups and downs.

 

Adult Life

 

Houdini met his wife Bess in West Brighton Beach, New York. They fell in love thier and married. Houdini did not go to college because his family was too poor. Harry could do a lot of acts with Bess. Harry lived with Bess and Bess would eventually be Houdini’s assistant.

 

Impact

Harry Houdini has many acts. They are world famous. One year he was big on bridge jumping, he would jump off a bridge with ropes trapping him into one long pencil shape. He somehow managed to survive this not so impossible act. Fans were absolutely astonished. One of his most famous acts was when his assistant Bess dropped him into a glass box full of water and she locked up the top leaving his feet sticking out with handcuffs tying them together. The audience could see the whole thing happen. THey saw everything it was hard to watch. Houdini miraculously escaped. That escape is called the Chinese Torture Cell Escape. Another trick he did was where their were ‘needles’ on thread and it seemed like he was swallowing needles. The needles were just thread that was painted silver to look like it was a needle from a distance. After all a trick’s a trick.

There was another trick where Houdini made a elephant disappear. Houdini brought a huge elephant onstage. He closed a curtain and a door and the elephant vanished the audience was really surprised. Just before one of his performances The great Houdini collapsed. He was rushed to the hospital. The doctors said that his appendix was infected and that he would die. The great Houdini died and the news startled the world. He would be the most remembered magician of all time.