Tuesday, October 27, 2015
Here lies a great 19th Century Conjurer John Wyman, known professionally as Wyman the Wizard. He was born in 1816 in Albany NY and according to several magic history books, he was the most successful magician of his time from a financial perspective. I think that Signor Blitz would take the honor of being the most well known of that time, especially with his dozen + imitators. Though a number of newspapers dispute that fact and say that Wyman was THE most popular. Either way Wyman apparently made the most money, and unlike Blitz, Herrmann, Anderson, Heller and others he was American born!
According to Houdini, Wyman had one particular attribute that made him popular, he was honest! This is an important fact to remember because Wyman presented what were called 'Gift Shows'. Basically, all the tickets that were sold to his shows had numbers on them and every ticket received a prize depending upon the number. Wyman apparently gave out some really good quality items, among them, watches, table sets, family bibles, silver plated ware and more.
To read more about the life of Wyman the Wizard, please visit the following link
Wyman is buried next to his wife in Oak Grove Cemetery in Fall River Mass. His grave is in Lot 105, Oleander Path. John Wyman died July 31st 1881.
Photos courtesy of fellow magic historian Gary Hunt!