The Davenport Collection
- a growing resource on magic and entertainment history

Helmut Schreiber

Film taken by the Davenports at the 1936 German Magic Circle convention in Munich

Film taken by the Davenports at the 1936 German Magic Circle convention in Munich

The 1936 German Magic Circle (Magischer Zirkel Deutschland) convention was the first one in Germany attended by the Davenports: Lewis, Wynne and Gus. It was a good opportunity to meet many continental magic dealers and magicians. This film, shot by the family, shows some of the attendees at the convention as well as shots of the Wittelsbach fountain in Lenbachplatz in Munich. We don’t recognize everyone but, as well as Lewis and Gus Davenport, there are good shots of Mayette, Venot, Dr Dhotel, Schreiber and Mr and Mrs Conradi-Horster. Conradi-Horster was a good friend and well known magician and dealer who supplied Davenports business with magic apparatus. A Conradi-Horster catalogue may be found here. The featured illustration shows Conradi-Horster on the left talking with Lewis Davenport.

Film of Helmut Schreiber show, Berlin, 1937 convention

Film of Helmut Schreiber show, Berlin, 1937 convention

The German Magic Circle (Magischer Zirkel Deutschland) celebrated its 25th anniversary with a congress in Berlin. The Davenport family – Lewis, Wynne and Gus – were there. The President of the Magischer Zirkel was Helmut Schrieber (Kalanag). This film of Kalanag’s show at the convention was taken by F.A. Brandt.

Film from the 1937 German Magic Circle convention, Berlin

Film from the 1937 German Magic Circle convention, Berlin

The German Magic Circle (Magischer Zirkel Deutschland) celebrated its 25th anniversary with a congress in Berlin. The Davenport family – Lewis, Wynne and Gus – were there. Gus Davenport conveyed greetings from magicians in Great Britain and entered, and won, a competition. This film, taken by F.A. Brandt, captures the proceedings and includes shots of many notables such as Helmut Schreiber, Marvelli and Ottokar Fischer. Brandt’s film has been edited in this version so as to avoid divulging magic secrets.

Blue enamelled Kalanag stickpin

Blue enamelled Kalanag stickpin

A souvenir item from the well-known German magician Kalanag (Helmut Schreiber). Much information on Kalanag (1903-1963) is available on the web. The manufacturer of the badge is B.H. Mayer of Pforzheim: their name is on the reverse side of the badge.

Noms de Theatre – stage names for magicians

Noms de Theatre – stage names for magicians

We are grateful to Paul Freeman who has given us permission to include this PDF version of his talk, which he has given in England and Austria between 2008 and 2011. Paul relates the interesting and often surprising ways in which magicians have ended up with a well-known stage name.

Still photographs from the Davenport family cine films

Still photographs from the Davenport family cine films

The collection contains cine film taken by the family, much of it from the 1930s. The film has been transferred to tape, and more recently converted to an electronic form, in order to preserve the images. During this process some of the more interesting frames have been printed out as photographs. The magician on the top sheet of photographs shown here is Gus Davenport performing in Berlin in 1937. The face of Ottokar Fischer can be seen in one of the photographs lower down in the pile.