Houdini May Have Communicated in Death...but No One Cared

The Houdini Seances are an American tradition dating back almost a century. Every Halloween, the anniversary of Houdini's tragic death, groups all around the country gather for the chance to communicate with the Great Houdini from beyond the grave. linked

For much of his life, Houdini was quite entranced with the idea of seances, mediums, and communication between the living and the dead. So, naturally, 100s of mediums came out from behind the veil claiming to have spoken to Houdini.

But, you see, Harry H was anything but stupid. He knew that this would happen and, so, as a safeguard he told his wife Bess that if he ever really did bridge the gap between the living and the dead he would speak in a code that only she would understand. That way, she could tell the serious from the seriously insane.

For over a year, Bess tried relentlessly to make contact and even offered a large reward for any medium who could communicate with Houdini from beyond the grave. Sadly, nothing came of it for months and months.

But that's when spirtual medium, Arthur Ford, of the First Spirtualist Church turned up. He claimed that on Febuary 8th, 1929 a spirit by the name of Cecillia approaches. Ford claimed that this was his mother who had come to tel her son Harry to "Forgive".

When Bess heard of this, she made immediate contact with Ford. In her letter she wrote...

"Strange that the word forgive is the word Houdini awaited in vain all of his life. It was indeed the message for which he always secretly hoped, and if had been given to him while he was still alive, it would I know have changed the entire course of his life—but it came too late. Aside from this there are one or two trivial inaccuracies—Houdini’s mother called him Ehrich—there was nothing in the message which could be contradicted. I might also say that this is the first message which I have received which has an appearance of truth."

But, the plot thickens...

On January 5th, 1929 Ford claimed he had been given the code words that prove, once and for all, that he had made communication with Houdini.

This was the message: "Rosabelle, answer, tell, pray-answer, look tell, answer-answer-, tell"

Bess was stunned. This was the promised message, this was the code. The code was actually part of their closely guarded secret of their stage act. No one knew the code, except for the Houdinis.


This photo is by Flickr User Boston Public Library and is licensed under Creative Commons.