Poof! Harry Houdini’s scrapbooks have been digitized

Houdini scrapbook

Would a light seance entail only meeting cheerful dead people? From Houdini’s spiritualism scrapbook at the HRC.

Rebecca Onion reports that the Harry Ransom Center has digitized ten of Harry Houdini’s scrapbooks. They follow his professional interests in spiritualism and magic. As was true for most performers, his scrapbooks were also a repository for clippings on his own career (and in his case, his inspiration Robert Houdin, and various competitors too.)

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In honor of US Women’s Suffrage Anniversary, Aug 26: Slate article on Susan B. Anthony’s Scrapbooks

August 26 marks the anniversary of the day in 1920 when the 19th Amendment became law, and women  in the US could finally vote.

Could Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton  be working on scrapbooks in this picture?

Could Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton be working on scrapbooks in this picture?

Susan B. Anthony didn’t live to see the day she worked so hard for. Her scrapbooks are among the many scrapbooks by women’s rights activists that show how they learned to pay attention to, critique and use the press in the fight for women’s rights. Here’s my post in the wonderful Vault column that Rebecca Onion runs at Slate, discussing how Susan B. used her scrapbooks — and of course there’s more on it in Writing with Scissors, along with analysis of Alice Dunbar Nelson’s suffrage scrapbooks, Lillie Devereux Blake’s, Elizabeth Boynton Harbert’s, and many more.

Susan B. Anthony’s scrapbooks