Help us get to over 4,000 biographies in 2018.

If you know of a past magician not listed in MagicPedia, start a New Biography for them or Email us your suggestion.

John Lawrence McKissock

From Magicpedia, the free online encyclopedia for magicians by magicians.
Jump to: navigation, search
John Lawrence McKissock
BornApril 27, 1869
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
DiedApril 5, 1964 (age 94)
Lake Worth, Florida

John Lawrence McKissock (1869-1964) played in schools and the old Madison Square Garden in New York City for two years. One of his pupils in Pittsburgh, Pa., was Louis (Silent Mora) McCord.


He took up magic as a hobby when he was 7 years old in Pittsburgh, Pa.

His brother, Albert, used to work with him, and they were with all kinds of shows including the old medicine type. John was one of the first to use the levitation of a girl in a cabinet, with his sister the subject because of her long hair.

Mora wrote an article about McKissock that was in the Linking Ring in which he tells of John's first interest in magic was seeing a farmer open a pea pod, remove one, swallow it and reproduce it from his eye.

McKissock knew all the leading magicians and met them in his early life. He was an expert mechanic and created many mechanical magic effects. His first magic lesson was the four balls under hats and finally producing a glass of beer or orange from under each hat. That was shown to him by John G. Scheidler of the old Barnum and Bailey Circus Side Show.

He settled in Lake Worth, Florida in 1912 and opened a plumbing business. He was a 33rd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and always active in the work until illness forced him to retire from it.[1]


  1. The Linking Ring, Vol. 44, No. 5, May 1964, Broken Wand, John Lawrence McKissock, page 97
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 32, No. 1, March 1952, John Lawrence McKissock, "Florida's Grand Old Man of Magic", by Jim Anderson, page 38
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 35, No. 1, March 1955, John Lawrence McKissock Of Pittsburgh, Pa. and Lake Worth, Florida, by "Silent" Mora, Magician, page 51