The Magic Caf
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Everything old is new again » » Change Bag (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

MichaelKent
View Profile
Special user
560 Posts

Profile of MichaelKent
It seems I've seen handle-style change bags in really old magic books. Can anyone provide a brief history of the change bag?
Jimmy Joza
View Profile
Special user
New York City
749 Posts

Profile of Jimmy Joza
I know a change bag (along with spring flowers and some other items still in use today) is referred to in a couple of the magic books by Professor Hoffmann from the late 1800's. But I have heard they were used before then. I, too, would be interested in this history.

Jimmy
"Those who simply walk in others' tracks leave no footprints."
tabman
View Profile
Inner circle
USA
5946 Posts

Profile of tabman
I can remember seeing a P&L Change Bag around 50 years ago. I think they were copied after the bags they used in some churches to collect momey from the people sitting in the rows of pews.... a velvet bag on a long pole. It would be interesting to see how far back they go in the magician's configuration!! Good question for sure.

-=tabman
...Your professional woodworking and "tender" loving care in the products you make, make the wait worthwhile. Thanks for all you do...

http://Sefalaljia.com
Bill Palmer
View Profile
Eternal Order
Only Jonathan Townsend has more than
24289 Posts

Profile of Bill Palmer
The earliest reference I have is Hoffmann's Later Magic, the 1904 edition. It probably appears in the English edition, as well, but I'm not sure when that was published.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Parson Smith
View Profile
Inner circle
1939 Posts

Profile of Parson Smith
Tabman,
Right you are.
You can still find magical looking collection bags and plates.
Check out this sight.
http://www.religious-supplies.com/index.......gory=394
Here kitty, kitty,kitty. Smile
+++a posse ad esse+++
Clay Shevlin
View Profile
Elite user
497 Posts

Profile of Clay Shevlin
If the question is limited to handled trick (“change”) bags, I can’t help. But the principle of the change bag is fundamentally the same as the egg bag, no? Most of you probably know this, but trick bags like the egg bag go back a long ways in time. The earliest book in my collection mentioning a trick bag was published in 1763 (it describes using a bag to produce 100 eggs and a hen!) and it has an illustration showing the performance thereof. But we know Isaac Fawkes performed with a trick bag in the early 1700s because the classic illustration of him involves this trick. I would not be surprised to learn that trick bags are a lot older than that. Since magicians have been depicted performing with pouches at their waists since the early 1400’s (at least), it only seems natural that eventually a magician would think of gaffing his pouch (one of the most innocent-looking props he has!) and including it in his act.

Posted: Apr 16, 2005 7:45pm
Bill: so far as I know the UK edition of Later Magic was first published in 1904. Clay
Bill Palmer
View Profile
Eternal Order
Only Jonathan Townsend has more than
24289 Posts

Profile of Bill Palmer
Thanks for the information, Clay. I figured as much, but one never knows.

Regarding gaffing the pouch for use in a trick -- I don't see that as very likely. The escamoteur would be very unlikely to allow people to fiddle about in his gibeciere. While he may have made some kind of provision to have a secret pocket in it, I doubt that he would allow anyone to grope around in it. This would be especially true of the ones that were used before pockets became commonplace.

Most egg bags have a compartment that opens in the opposite direction from that of the change bag.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
chris mcbrien
View Profile
Inner circle
Chicago
1235 Posts

Profile of chris mcbrien
I've got Bobo's schoolshow video from Steven's magic...he actually says (Bobo) in his act that his bag(a handled changebag) is like the bag they used to reach the backrows in churches for collection time....I thought it was interesting reference.
Chris
Bob Sanders
View Profile
Grammar Supervisor
Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
20533 Posts

Profile of Bob Sanders
What amazes me is that people have come to expect magicians to have the "magic bag" just like a wand. Knowing that it is gimmicked, they still put it in the same category as they do "a normal deck of cards".

Do they expect recording artists to have trick guitars?

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

Magic By Sander / The Amazed Wiz

AmazedWiz@Yahoo.com
revlovejoy
View Profile
Special user
Pennsylvania
765 Posts

Profile of revlovejoy
So, then, the change bag concept would certainly not be owned by any trademark/patent now, I assume?

I ask because I am working on an idea that would essentially be a change bag, but I'm trying to remove some of the obvious handling that makes people expect the funny bag that Bob Sanders refers to above. (This developing idea is specifically thematic, you'd only change things in one peculiar way in it)

But let's say I were to try to market this (pipe dream here), I would have almost no worry on the ethics of intellectual property?

PS - no they don't expect trick guitars Bob, but those magic pedals that make you sound like Hendrix, or Angus Young, or Stevie Ray Vaughn, those are expected.
Bob Sanders
View Profile
Grammar Supervisor
Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
20533 Posts

Profile of Bob Sanders
There is a lot scrambled in there.

No doubt, the improvement is yours. That is just as true of the handling as it is the physical thing. The problems get into the ethics of separating your contribution from the contribution of others. Legalities are a separate matter. One of the saddest things about the legal system is that defending against false claim isn't any cheaper than defending against a valid claim. The actual costs of the defense are seldom recovered. Again, being totally honest about what is yours and what existed prior to your improved version is critical. Still try to give credit where credit is due.

For all practical purposes, many songs were never hits until someone with a pre-existing reputation recorded them. Originality was not what made them hits.

You would pick guitars! You know I was a musician too? Of course, I played guitars. And I agree that you can learn to play them or buy a gadget. In the 50s and 60s when I was a working musician, we even thought that special tunings and using a capo (we called a "Cheater's bar") were less than honorable. That would certainly be out of place today. Today in music, the ends justify the means. (We didn't have Tab music either!)

If yours is really an effect as opposed to a utility prop, I would think you are pretty safe. How it is used is very significant. Utility props facilitate tricks but are not the tricks per se. Which are you providing?

There are some posts in Tricky Business that relate to this dilemma.

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

Magic By Sander / The Amazed Wiz

AmazedWiz@Yahoo.com
revlovejoy
View Profile
Special user
Pennsylvania
765 Posts

Profile of revlovejoy
Thanks ofr the input on my questions Bob. I will check out the tricky business section.

I'm looking at a variation on the utility prop that is so specific, the routine really would be the improvement. Without giving the idea out quite yet, let's say it wouldn't make sense to put silks in this to transform, or pretty much anything but the "prop" I'm working with. So I would say, yes, what I'm hoping to finalize would be an improvement on a utility item with a theme-specific routine.

So, the change bag concept itself would be very very old, but let's say, the classic church bag form would have a more specific provenance. Yet does anyone claim rights to that "look?" (red herring here, but the idea I'm working with is completely unlike the form of the classic bag)

Further, adding a zipper was someone's idea. If what I'm proposing utilized a zipper, but went beyond it in both method and presentation, how would I best handle that evolution?

(Tab music is my godsend for fretted instruments. I've read music, ever since 5th grade sax, but putting tab and notation side by side accelerates my learning on mandolin. And yes, in my world, anything short of pre-recorded "samples" is considered fair game as legitimate live music. But really I'm an unamplified acoustic folkie at heart.)
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Everything old is new again » » Change Bag (0 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2022 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.03 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL