This is an odd book. First of all, no author is credited. [Editor's note: It is my understanding that U.F. Grant is the author as well as the illustrator] The introduction states, "I have just turned the material for this manuscript over to Lon Tanner," and is signed "O'Neal Magic." The original date of publication is also uncertain, though the introduction mentions, "...[Several of these illusions] are items I marketed during World War II...I have decided to add seven more to the list." From this I'm guessing that the manuscript dates to the fifties, possibly the early sixties. The copy I have is obviously made up of photocopies of mimeographed pages. Whether this means I have a bootleg copy or whether this is the form in which it was originally published I have no idea. The paper does not appear old enough to date from the sixties so I doubt that I own a first printing. I'm guessing at U.F. Grant as the illustrator because the cover illustration is signed with that name. None of the interior illustrations are signed, nor am I able to determine whether they were drawn by the same hand. The copy I have is 25 single-sided photocopies stapled together with a heavier-weight paper cover. Since there's no back cover, it's possible I may be missing a page or two. All of the following illusions are designed to be made from large cardboard boxes.
2nd of 2 copies
1 Introduction by O'Neal Magic
2 The Where And How On Cartons
3 Victory Substitution--Substitution trunk.
5 The Victory Sword Box--Using wooden dowels in place of swords.
7 The Doll House
9 Sawing Through A Girl
11 Victory Girl Production--Assistant produced from two nested boxes shown empty.
13 Dog Vanish
15 Victory Headless Illusion--Box placed over head of audience member, door opened to show head vanished.
17 Victory Rabbit Carton--Flat box unfolded and rabbit produced.
19 Victory Costume Illusion--Flat box leaning against rack of costumes, box unfolded, audience member selects costume, assistant wearing costume produced from box.
21 Victory Levitation--Assistant draped with cloth rises from within coffin-like box.
23 In Again-Out Again--Assistant steps into box, immediately shown empty, assistant then steps out.
25 Victory Spirit Cabinet--No plans for this one appear in my copy of the book.
Grant, U. F.
Ulysses Frederick Grant was a magic dealer in New York City between 1925-1939 and later in Columbus, Ohio until his death in 1978. In 1944, he was joined by magic maker R.N. Menge, who added many of his own inventions to the Grant line. Inventions to which both Grant and Menge contributed were usually labled as being from "G. & M." such as the G & M Suspension Board, the G & M Passe Passe Bottles, and so on. They parted ways and became rivals about 1945. In 1964, Grant's daughter Mary Anne married Jimmy King, who collaborated with Grant on producing his own new magic effects. King eventually took over the company, renaming it Mak Magic.
Grant was a prolific inventor: The Farmer and the Witch (c 1935), Walking thru a Ribbon (c 1937), Alagen Rope (with Winston Freer c 1939), Super-X Levitation (c 1942), Temple Screen (c 1945), Devil's Newspaper (c 1948), Chink Cans (c 1949), Pig Turns 'round (c 1952), Bengal Net (1953), Cow Trick (c 1955), Chen-Lee Water Suspension (c 1962), Strat-o-Spheres (c 1962), and Candle-Lite (c 1963). Also: Bullet Proof Girl, Mystery of the Temple Jewels, Head Dagger Ches, Any Card Called For Napkin, Atomic Vision, Ball Box (Die Box), Brillant Ring Box, Ment A Flex. Many of his silk magic inventuions are described in Rice's Encyclopedia of Silk Magic and his rope magic inventions in the Encyclopedia of Rope Tricks.
Wrote: Tricks for Kid Shows, Victory Carton Illusions, 25 One Man Mind Reading Secrets, Secrets, G&M Magic Course (with R.N. Menge)
Thanks to Mark Damon for tracking down additional information and the photo of Grant at the right from The Linking Ring.
Jay Leslie remembers:"The first year of production, Grant had Jim Swoger build everything. He eventually starting using Jmmy King because it was too far to go back and forth to Swogers shop. Grant lived in Ohio and Jim Swoger in Pittsburgh.