Help us get to over 8,676 articles in 2023.

If you know of a magician not listed in MagicPedia, start a New Biography for them. Contact us at

Robert Nickle

From Magicpedia, the free online encyclopedia for magicians by magicians.
Jump to: navigation, search
Robert Nickle
BornJohn Newbanks
May 2, 1842
Troy, New York
DiedNovember 5, 1889 (age 47)
Washington, D.C.

Robert Nickle (1842-1889), born John Newbanks in Troy, New York, began his career as a magician after purchasing Jim De Barr's show and went on to become one of the most successful magicians of his day. De Barr also provided him the name "Nickle" because he had said he "wasn't worth a dime".


He often told people that his real name was "Charles Robert Nicholls" and attributed his start in magic to Alexander Herrmann.

Nickle was known for performing and popularizing the Breakaway Fan.

Walter Edwin Floyd, was first associated with magic when he began working as an assistant to Nickle at the age of 18.

He died at a relatively young age, collapsing after a show at the Globe Theater in Washington, D.C., from a combination of heart failure, tuberculosis and alcoholism. He was picked up unconscious in the streets of Washington and carried to a hospital where he died. Nickle was later buried in a potter's field somewhere near Washington.

His death certificate was printed in the Conjurers Monthly Magazine.