Harry Kellar

Born Jul 11, 1849

Harry Kellar was an American magician who presented large stage shows during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Kellar was a predecessor of Harry Houdini and a successor of Robert Heller. He was often referred to as the "Dean of American Magicians" and performed extensively on five continents.… Read More

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News + Updates

Browse recent news and stories about Harry Kellar.

  • Books Of The Times; A Trickster Right Down To His Name
    NYTimes - Aug 09, 2005
  • Now You See It . . .
    NYTimes - Dec 07, 2003
  • Antiques; Magic Casts Its Spell On Collectors
    NYTimes - Aug 17, 1986
  • Going Out Guide
    NYTimes - Apr 19, 1986


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Harry Kellar.


1849 Birth Born on July 11, 1849.


1869 19 Years Old In 1869, Kellar began working with "The Davenport Brothers and Fay", which was a group of stage spirtualists made up of Ira Erastus Davenport, William Henry Davenport and William Fay.


1873 23 Years Old Kellar spent several years working with them, until 1873, when he and Fay parted ways with the Davenports and embarked on a "world tour" through Central and South America. … Read More
1878 28 Years Old In 1878, Kellar returned to England and invested $12,000 into purchasing new equipment, including a version Maskelyne's whist-playing automaton "Psycho". … Read More


1882 32 Years Old After another world tour in 1882, Kellar was performing again in Melbourne, Australia and met a fan, Eva Lydia Medley, who came backstage to get his autograph. … Read More
1884 34 Years Old Kellar started his version of Egyptian Hall in December 1884, after renting out an old Masonic temple on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
1885 36 Years Old After 264 performances, Kellar closed the theater on June 24, 1885. … Read More
1887 38 Years Old Kellar and Medley were married on November 1, 1887 at a church in Kalamazoo, Michigan. … Read More


1891 42 Years Old Kellar returned to Philadelphia in October 1891 and opened his second Egyptian Hall at Concert Hall, located also on Chestnut Street.
1892 43 Years Old On April 30, 1892, Kellar ended a successful seven-month run at his second Egyptian Hall. … Read More


1908 59 Years Old Kellar retired in 1908, and allowed Howard Thurston to be his successor. … Read More


1922 73 Years Old Kellar lived in retirement, until he died on March 3, 1922 from a pulmonary hemorrhage brought on by influenza. … Read More
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