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Magic Collecting is a relatively recent phenomenon. While there were a few collectors 100 years ago, there were so few that they were known to everyone: Saram Ellison was one. When he tried to eventually sell his collection through The Sphinx, there were no takers so he left it to the New York Public Library.

Chung Ling Soo posters which now bring thousands of dollars were, only 40 years ago was being used by Davenports of London to wrap parcels of magic being shipped to mail-order customers.

The field of magic collecting has exploded in the last few decades. Although there is a growing group of collectors that are actually investing in magic collectibles, the majority of collectors have a love of magic history at the core of their interest. This group has taken up the mantra, first expounded by the noted magic historian, Dr. Edwin A. Dawes: Collect, Collate and Communicate. The following of this collecting philosophy and the rising prices of magic collectibles has tended to cause most serious collectors to specialize in a particular area. Some of the most common areas of specialization are periodicals, books, posters, apparatus and ephemera. Some collectors are specializing in a subcategory of one of these main areas. For example, in the area of ephemera, a number of collectors have focused on 8 x 10's or business cards or programs.

It should be noted that the result of this specialization and the above listed collecting philosophy is the production of a massive amount of new conjuring literature which includes many wonderful biographies, for example.

Major organizations:

Major collectors are:

Other collectors include Tad Ware (illusions), Ken Klosterman (general), Bill King (20th century magic), Chuck Caputo ( Anverdi - electronic ),among many others. Manfred Klaghofer has the largest magic set collection in the world with over 3000 magic sets which are shown in his own public museum in Vienna.(Feel free to edit this list and add more names and their specialties).

The largest collection in the United States belongs to David Copperfield, whose collection should rightly be called The Metropolitan Museum of Magic. It is a staggering collection encompassing every type of collectible in the field of magic, all in massive quantities.

The American Museum of Magic in Marshall, Michigan is the largest magic museum open to the public. The museum houses the collection of late Robert Lund. The library is open for research and studies.

Collectors resources:


This category has the following 3 subcategories, out of 3 total.