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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Billet History (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

suhbreal
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Could any of you kind folks point me to a good source on the history of billet work? specifically the first documented usage of such?

Thanks much,
Ryan
lejon
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ELLIOTT, someone needs you....
Jerskin
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Al Mann has written on Charles Foster & Bert Reese. Annemann also wrote up Reese's methods.
GrEg oTtO

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DT3
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PM'd you Ryan.
Estabrooks
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Along the same lines..

Can anybody recommand sources for mentalism history in general?

I've read Eugune Burgers Spirit Theater (highly recommanded if you love our craft!) and would really like to read more books like that.
dmoses
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If I remember correctly there's was a BBC documentary about the history of mentalism that was available online.

There was links posted here at pennies a while ago.
"You're a comedian. You wanna do mankind a service, tell funnier jokes."
TPR by Dave Moses and Iain Dunford
IAIN
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http://www.amazon.com/Mentalism-Mind-Wil......6&sr=8-4

not what you think...well, not quite..

EDIT - the above link isn't for billets, just the use of the word mentalism...written in 1907
Dick Christian
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Estabrook,

Your basic/classic sources for mentalism are Annemann's "Practical Mental Effects" and Corinda's "Thirteen Steps To Mentalism." There are many, many other sources as well, including Tarbell, but those are the two to start with.
Dick Christian
Torkova
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I've been researching a book on Charles Foster and Bert Reese for about 4 years now. In fact, as I type this, I'm just finishing up a 10 day driving tour of New England searching for Foster and coming up with some great stuff about him!

From what I've been able to find out, Foster invented billet work for the seance table circa late 1850s-1860s. Sealed message reading (in envelopes) is even older but it seems Foster was the first to use small pieces of paper without envelopes. Reese worked with him at some point later (probably after 1873) and continued making a living at billets but without the spiritualist angle.

Torkova
p.s. my avatar is an engraving of Foster reading a billet while lighting his cigar.
Estabrooks
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Dick Christian:

Thank you. But I'm very familiar with Corinda and Annemann. Both books contains mainly effects, not the history of mind readers and mentalists. Smile
Estabrooks
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After some searching I found this book on the subject:

Mind Readers - Masters of Deception by William V. Rauscher

http://www.alakazam.co.uk/index.php?page......temid=14

Anyone familiar with it?
suhbreal
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Thanks for all of your comments.

Yes, I'm really searching for history and not methods.

Does anybody have the Reese and Foster stuff from Al Mann? Could you comment on the depth of the information?

Torkova - sounds incredibly interesting! please keep us all posted on how that project is coming along.
Jerskin
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I have the Mindreaders book and it contains a brief bio of current and past performers. I have the Al Mann booklets and they're brief (about 30 pages) but about all we have until the Torkova book comes out.
GrEg oTtO

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Torkova
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And I think you will find that it will be worth the wait.

Torkova
Jerskin
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I'm very much looking forward to it.
GrEg oTtO

MUNDUS VULT DECIPI
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