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Rolland Hamblen

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Rolland Hamblen
BornRolland Allison Hamblen
December 26 1897
Ottawa, Kansas
DiedAugust 25 1964 (age 66)
Eugene, Oregon
Resting placeRest-Haven Memorial Park, Eugene, Oregon
Flourished1930s - 1950s
Known forCard Routines

Rolland Hamblen (1897-1964) performed in vaudeville and later was a demonstrator for the Thayer Magic Company.


Born Rolland Allison Hamblen on Dec. 26, 1897 in Ottawa, Kansas. He was a veteran of the armed forces and served in World War I.[1] He married after the war and he and his fist wife Marjorie divorced in Modesto, California in 1924.[2]

In 1935, he played bit parts as a magician in 3 movies: The Little Colonel (with Shirley Temple), Orchids to You, and Welcome Home.[3]

He married Lucille Anlauf in 1936 in Klickitat, Washington. He and Lucille resided the final 22 years of his life (1942-1964) at McKenzie Bridge, Oregon where he was a member of the Springfield Elks Lodge #2145. He toured the country with his act for many years. After retiring, he and his wife Lucille hosted an act at a Eugene, Oregon nightclub for many years in the winter months. He was credited with doing more than 2,000 card tricks and was considered to be among the foremost experts in his time. He Died Aug. 25, 1964 at age 66 of a heart attack in a Eugene, Oregon area hospital.[4]

Although he did a vaudeville act, he had a greater success performing in Moose Lodges and Elks Clubs in the small towns of California, Oregon and Washington State.

A friend of Charlie Miller, he was considered a top sleight of hand experts. Hamblen performed in many movies in the 1930's where they needed close-ups of hands in gambling or magic scenes. He also taught magic to many Hollywood actors including Orson Welles, Chester Morris and Charlie Chaplin.

He eventually married and settled into a secluded home on the McKenzie River in Southern Oregon. He worked the rest of his life in private clubs. [5]


  • Hamblen's Four Possible Impossibilities (1933)



  1., Rolland Hamblen, Eugene Register-Guard Newspaper, News item and Obituary, August 26, 1964, posted 2016 by Rebecca Boardman
  2. Modesto Evening News, November 4, 1924
  3., The Internet Movie Database, Rolland Hamblen
  4., Rolland Hamblen, Eugene Register-Guard Newspaper, News item and Obituary, August 26, 1964, posted 2016 by Rebecca Boardman
  5. Life and Magic of Billy Bishop by Billy Bishop (2000)