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Werner Dornfeld

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Werner Dornfeld

Cover of Genii (1956)
BornWerner Ferdinand Dornfeld
October 07, 1892
Chicago, Illinois
DiedSeptember 05, 1982 (age 89)
Chicago, Illinois
CategoriesBooks by Werner Dornfeld

Werner "Dorny" F. Dornfeld (aka Dornfield) (October 7, 1892 - September 5, 1982), a National President and then Dean of the Society of American Magicians, performed on vaudeville stages and attended many magic conventions.


As a soldier in World War I, he became a member of the variety show. Dorny became involved with the I.B.M. and was given Number 4, though he claimed to be the first official member since the others were all officers.

He was a close friend of Houdini and Thurston. Howard Thurston had asked him to head his No.2 show, but he chose to be a magical MC for a lot less money and a lot fewer headaches.

The Chicago SAM Assembly #3, which he was a founder member, was named in his honor. He was also a member of the Magic Circle, the Dean of the Mazda Mystic Ring and the Wizards' Club in Chicago.

Dorny regularly penned a column for Abbott's Tops magazine.

Honors and Awards



  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 27, No. 11, January 1948, I.B.M. NUMBER 4 by Frances Ireland, page 15
  • M-U-M, Vol. 41, No. 7, December 1951, DORNY magician-of-the-month by LESLIE P. GUEST, page 187
  • Cover Genii 1978 April
  • M-U-M, Vol. 71, No. 6, November 1981, Dorny – DEAN OF AMERICAN MAGICIANS by Chuck Stanfield, page 16
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 62, No. 9, September 1982, OUR COVER, DORNY, page 38
  • Genii, Vol. 46, No. 10, October 1982, Obituaries, Werner F. "Dorny" Dornfeld, page 691
  • M-U-M, Vol. 72, No. 5, October 1982, Broken Wands, Werner F. "Dorny" Dornfeld, page 34
  • Cover Magicol No. 134 (February 2000)
  • Bio-bibliographisches Lexikon der Zauberkünstler Edition Volker Huber, April 2002, page 84
  • Cover Genii 1956 January