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Great Reno

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Great Reno
BornFrancois X. Renaud
July 29, 1890
Southbridge, Massachusetts
DiedJanuary 27, 1965 (age 74)
Southbridge, Massachusetts

Frank Reno (1890-1965), "The Great Reno", performed as an escape artist throughout the United States.


Reno began his career in show business at the age of 16 touring the vaudeville circuits in the United States and Canada, not only as an escape artist but later in an acrobatic act.

Reno toured the country with Hunt Brothers Circus for three seasons, performing his escape feats for circus crowds. In the late 1920's, he performed one of for the Southbridge, Mass, residents when, cuffed and chained, he leaped off River Street Bridge to free himself.

He was a friend Harry Houdini and later worked with Houdini's troupe.

Reno amassed a collection of some 400 restraining irons, including handcuffs, padlocks and chains. His collection was reputed to be one of the largest in the world at the time. [1]

Norman Bigelow, as a teenager, apprenticed to Reno.


  1. Obit, Linking Ring, August, 1965