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Ed Hutchison
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Madison, MS (orig. CNY)
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In the mid 70's a magician/escape artist named Norm Sehm operated a magic shop in his basement in a suburb of Rochester, NY. Naturally, the presence of the shop in this residential location was in violation of the Magna Charta, several UN resolutions, the US constitution, and many laws of the great state of New York. As a result, Norm, was quite circumspect about allowing anyone he didn't know to visit his shop.

But, while it was probably easier to get into your local bank at midnight than to see Norm's cache of magic, it was well worth the effort as he had, by far, the largest inventory of magic that I have ever seen--more than Abbotts, more than Tannens, more than any of the well known dealers of that time.

Norm was really more of a collector than a dealer. As such he would buy a dozen of practically every new trick that came out, put one on display, and hide the rest away. He had a large home with a full basement, and exccept for small walkways, virtually all of the basement was filled from floor to ceiling with nicely organized boxes and drawers full of magic. If you asked about a coin trick, for example, Norm would ask what date you wanted on the coin, go over to a drawer and produce the desired coin.

Norm suffered a lot from a neurological condition and seldom traveled. His home was truly his castle and he filled it with his beloved magic collection. I recall him showing me one wall which was filled with various escape devices. Some had been used by Norm in his younger days, other items, he told me, once belonged to Houdini and other great artists. Norm said, "One day I'm going to kick off and my wife will come down here and sell this all as scrap iron." I hope this dismal prophecy was not fufilled and that somewhere today Norm's collection is still bringing pleasure to its owners.

Anyone know?

Ed Hutchison
Edward Hutchison

Madison, MS

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I believe it was bought by Kenna Thompson. Norm was was retired from a milk delivery route as I heard the story.
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Bill Palmer
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If Kenna got the stock, then it will go where it needs to be.
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