Ellisdons...The background history

Chat about specific magicians and their shows, their careers and their place in the history of magic.

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Ellisdons

Postby Khardoma » Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:56 pm



Many thanks. I look forward to seeing the photo.

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Postby mark lewis » Tue Jan 04, 2011 5:16 pm

I used to go down to Ellisdons on a regular basis to watch Jon Tremaine working. He was just as good at close up magic as he was at mentalism. He spent a lot of time demonstrating things he didn't sell too. I bet Ellisdons would not have approved.

I had been studying magic for two years and had never met a magician and I was pretty good even though self taught. Jon told me about the London Society of Magicians who had a junior section and I was doomed from that day forth. I started to meet with other magicians and I am sure it retarded my progress since most of them were and still are bloody awful. They were a very bad influence.

Jon had a fantastic three card monte that he has never revealed in print. I have always wondered about it. He did reveal a tiny part of it in his book of card tricks for beginners but it was only a small fraction of the routine which I think he called the Scarlet Pimpernel or something.

He also used to do a trick with small silver paper balls which I later found out was really a variation of Ramsey's four little beans trick. Anyway that one I learned and have been doing ever since.

Corinda used to come in and visit him in Ellisdon's and it was there that I actually saw Corinda do the centre tear exactly as described in the 13 steps to mentalism.

I used to get the tube to Ellisdons in my school lunch hour which was quite a feat since my school was in Bethnal Green and Ellisdon's was in Holborn. I had a 90 minute lunch break so it was quite a dash to get there and back.

I first got the Royal Road to Card Magic from Ellisdon's by mail order and that was the turning point in my magic career. I suppose I owe them a lot.

But here is a little story. For years Ellisdons tried to get their merchandise into the magic department of Gamages and they were baffled as to why they were always turned down by the buyer. They couldn't figure it out for years. But I know why and will reveal the secret.

Harry Baron was the buyer of the magic department and he always turned down the reps from Ellisdons and instead ordered all his stuff from Kaymar Magic instead. And who do you think owned Kaymar Magic?
Harry Baron of course!

Gamages never knew................................

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Ellisdons

Postby Khardoma » Tue Jan 04, 2011 6:23 pm

Crikey! You must have shifted to get from Bethnal Green, see and maybe buy some magic, and then get back again all in 90 minutes!! What did you buy - a magic carpet?

You mention The Royal Road to Card Magic and my eye glanced up to my copy, which is a third impression. Coincidentally, it was published by Faber & Faber who were three doors up from where I lived in 1948 and it was printed by Purnell in Paulton, Somerset. Paulton was a mile from the village I lived in three years ago. They finally closed down about 4 years ago.

I am amused by your anecdote about the buyer at Gamages. I suppose my 'sort of' association with Kardoma (thank you for the spelling correction) was a bit like Fagin & The Artful Dodger - I think Ellisdons sold quite a few sets of Chinese Rings when I was asked to demonstrate them. No reflection intended on Kardoma! :twisted: :twisted:

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Postby mark lewis » Tue Jan 04, 2011 7:08 pm

Alas I often used to be late getting back to school. However, in those days I could think of nothing but magic. I used to eat, sleep and dream it.
School was of secondary interest.

Nowadays I hate magic. I can't bear to watch anyone do it even if they are good which they usually aren't. I yearn for the old excitement but alas, I think it has gone for ever and has been gone for some time. Sad I suppose.

Be warned you young people. It could happen to you.

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Ellisdons

Postby Allen Tipton » Tue Jan 04, 2011 9:30 pm

Oh dear Mark- I think you are right.
It doesn't seem the same now.
The thrill, the friendships, the excitement of sharing,the Great Ones on the Halls,even the brotherhood seems to have slipped away.
The Youth who sits through one's lecture with a pack of cards fastened to his hand!
Or are we beginning to get on in years??

Allen Tipton

Began magic at 9 in 1942. Joined Staffs M.S at 13. Nottm.Guild of M. (8 times President. Prog Director 20years)IBM. Awarded Magician of Month 1980 By Intern. Pres. IBM for reproducing Dante's Sim Sala Bim. Writes Dear Magician column for Abra. Mag.
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Postby mark lewis » Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:36 am

Dunno. I don't seem to have the same passion any more. A few years back my niece who is a singer and musician asked me, "Do you have the same passion for magic that you used to?" I replied, "No, but what about you? Do you have the same passion for music you used to?" She replied, "No, but that's life isn't it?"

And I suppose it is.

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Re: Ellisdons

Postby hami272 » Sat Feb 26, 2011 3:54 pm

Allen Tipton wrote:Oh dear Mark- I think you are right.
It doesn't seem the same now.
The thrill, the friendships, the excitement of sharing,the Great Ones on the Halls,even the brotherhood seems to have slipped away.
The Youth who sits through one's lecture with a pack of cards fastened to his hand!
Or are we beginning to get on in years??

Allen Tipton


Hello

Not sure I'm using this site correctly. After some Ellisdon info. I know they started in London in the 1930s - when did they finish. I'm into secondhand books/pamphlets etc & I have a copy of Secrets of Ventriloquism' Prof. Foxtone, cost one shilling - orange covers plus two pieces of paper stapled and folded to make 8 pages and I want to date it. How long did the firm stay at 246 High Holborn? Richard Hamilton ( hamiltonrm@btinternet.com )

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Ellisdons

Postby Allen Tipton » Sat Feb 26, 2011 4:05 pm

Richard, If you go back to page 1, ands read my potted history of E & S plus the extras I wrote there you will find most of your answers.

Allen Tipton

Began magic at 9 in 1942. Joined Staffs M.S at 13. Nottm.Guild of M. (8 times President. Prog Director 20years)IBM. Awarded Magician of Month 1980 By Intern. Pres. IBM for reproducing Dante's Sim Sala Bim. Writes Dear Magician column for Abra. Mag.
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Ellisdons and my dad

Postby Caroline » Sun May 29, 2011 11:11 pm

Hello all, I'm not sure if you already know this but there is a pathe news reel made by ellisdons and also an out take film, both of these are on the pathe archive site. I have an original reel as it is my daddy in the film, he worked for ellisdons as a designer and was also a magician. His name was David parriss stage name Davaris. Sadly he died two years ago I would love to know if anyone has seen the film or if they remember him, thanks Caroline xxx

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Re: Ellisdons and my dad

Postby magicofthemind » Mon May 30, 2011 8:58 am

Caroline wrote:Hello all, I'm not sure if you already know this but there is a pathe news reel made by ellisdons and also an out take film, both of these are on the pathe archive site.


Hi Caroline

I've just done a search for "ellisdons" on the British Pathe site and nothing came up. Do you have links please?

Barry

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Ellisdons

Postby Caroline » Mon May 30, 2011 9:33 am

Hello, the ellisdons film is listed under boardroom jokes, the out take is also on there as out take boardroom jokes. Sorry I can't send you a direct link but I'm not that good on the computer. Best wishes Caroline x

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Postby Mandrake » Mon May 30, 2011 10:10 am

Thank you for the details Caroline, welcome to TM!

PS - The link is http://www.britishpathe.com/results.php ... room+jokes

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Postby magicofthemind » Mon May 30, 2011 10:22 am

Thanks, Both.

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Postby Pickman » Tue May 31, 2011 2:20 pm

I remember back in the 70's, a TV show (I think it was 'Nationwide') did a short film on the company, showing you around the mail order warehouse, I think it was based in Luton back then.

They also spoke to the owners and had film clips of people making the tricks and jokes, some of them actually worked from their homes.

The film was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it having bought Ellisdons items from the mid 60's till they closed down in the early 80's.

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Re: Ellisdons...The background history

Postby stevie7772 » Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:16 pm

i have a few of the mail order catalogues and also orders forms mainly from mid to late 1970s and other bits and bobs relating to ellisdons

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