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Topic: Still Collecting Magic Catalogs
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Apr 30, 2015 10:33PM)
As a kid long before today's digital age, we had things known as books; AKA magic catalogs. I loved getting these in the mail every few months/years and reading them sometimes the whole huge book in one day while I made out my long "To Buy" list. Today people complain if they do not get their stuff in 2-3 days, and they have full access to almost everything that we had to work many years to obtain access to, and dig through books for years to find. All we had were these black and white catalogs with short, vague, product descriptions and line drawings and the promise of being able to "Amaze and astound" others. Kinda added to the mystery and excitement but a lot of times the product would not be anything like you thought it would be. Sometimes it would be junk other times it would be even better than you thought. Back then we did not get our packages in 2-3 days, we waited 6-8 weeks, sometimes months; and with no tracking numbers. We checked the mail every day with hopeful anticipation that our box of magic would be there waiting for us, and when it finally arrived it was like Christmas, then the cycle would start all over again. Secrets and great magic were much harder to come by back then, and you had to earn them the hard way, unlike today's generation where all the info is available via an internet search. I am glad I am from the old school of learning as I appreciate the art much more. I also love DVDS and I was ecstatic when magic VHS tapes came out so that I was able to see other magicians perform, and study timing and presentation methods of others. But I still love old, huge, magic tomes and they are the reason that most magicians have no social life other than performing. I say that that proudly also lol. I still buy and collect these old catalogs as well, which I used to also read on a rainy day on my window sill, along with all my comic books, both of which I still read today along with my massive collection of magic books, some up to 2,000 pages long and magic magazine/periodical runs up to hundreds of thousands of pages which I still have yet to read. Slowly but surely! I never knew that these catalogs would one day be a novelty item that I would want to collect, but they are and I still do!
Message: Posted by: sirbrad (Apr 30, 2015 10:53PM)
I am glad I still get to experience this when I get old catalogs on eBay lol. I can certainly appreciate getting stuff fast today, and all the technology but that is because I came from the old school days of suffering and earned my way, unlike many today who have no clue what that was like and take it all for granted. That is why they are so quick to make exposure videos, they did not have to pay $400 for a Tarbell Course, they watched a video they got for free on a pirate site then made their own. But yeah those days were special and I am glad I still get to relive them!
Message: Posted by: Jerry (May 1, 2015 10:40PM)
I regret the magic catologs I threw away. The art alone was the best. It really can inspire the imagination.
Message: Posted by: GeorgeG (Aug 5, 2015 02:30PM)
I remember and miss the Abbott, Tannen, Vick Lawton catalogs as a teen fascinated with magic; it was much more exciting than the Sears Holiday catalog with all the toys.
More recently, Alan Warner used to mail a nice printed catalog of his magic, but once his magic was displayed on the internet and I had my own Warner Magic website so I added to it, he stopped making these catalogs and depended on the sites to sell his magic.
Message: Posted by: Moxahalla (Aug 18, 2015 02:04PM)
After 45+ years, I still have all of my magic catalogs, and collect the ones I didn't own.

They were/are literally an "encyclopedia" of magic---by crediting names with the most of the tricks.

How else would a youngster know what "OOM" was, or a "Hoo Coin", or what the "Aldini/Westgate Bowl Production" was..or who U.F. Grant was, etc.

Catalogs from P&L, Thayer, Tannen, & Abbotts, etc - were indeed "historical reference manuals" of magic.
Message: Posted by: Kabbalah (Aug 19, 2015 07:26AM)
I remember Tannen's used to include a book in the back of the catalog.
Message: Posted by: Jim Sparx (Jan 11, 2016 09:52PM)
I currently have a listing for a large lot of catalogs (375) in the books for sale here at MC
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Jan 12, 2016 12:35PM)


I'll PM you!