The bill included The Davenports. The act consisted of Lewis and Wynne Davenport and Dave Dwyer, who was the brother of Lewis’s first wife Julia. The act went well. According to The Magic Wand, Vol. 1 No. 9: “The next item was the Davenports, and here we had a brilliant example of professional conjuring. Space will not permit to describe the act, but it went with such a swing that the majority of the audiecne forgot that they had a back to their seat, so pressed against the one in front of them. Mention must be made, however, of the humerous assistant, whose antics, whilst catching the goldfish in the glass bowl previously produced, and eating them, with or without condiments, was most comical.” The Magic Circular of June 1911 agreed: “The Davenports then presented their Humerous Magical Act, one of the most appreciated items of the evening, being really good magic and good fooling. As a matter of fact we laughed so at the show, that our notes of what was done by the leading magician of the trio are quite undecipherable.” The illustration included here is by Nathan Dean and was published in The Magic Wand.
When Lewis Davenport’s first wife Julia died in 1909, Lewis was left with no performing partner. Lewis created a new act billed as Les Davenports. This consisted of Lewis and Julia’s brother Dave who provided the comedy in the act. When Lewis remarried in 1910 his new wife, Wynne, joined the act, so creating the Davenport Duo and Wynne. Years later Wynne would explain that she disliked the notepaper because, although the design was meant to show her sitting on the two red lines, people just thought that she was standing up, but was not very tall. View Details to see how this came about. You will see the photograph of her, while she was sitting down, that was used for the notepaper. This photograph, with her feet off the floor, makes it clear that she is sitting. However, when the background is removed as on the notepaper, she just looks short. Wynne found this annoying because she was in fact tall and elegant, as in the second illustrated photograph.
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The July 2019 issue included:
– Letters from The Front by Michael Colley.
– Ephemera other than posters and programmes.
– Wynne Davenport’s stage dresses.
– Peter Warlock paintings.
– A Maskelyne designed cash register.
To see all the other e-news, click on Website e-news.
In 1926 Lewis Davenport, his wife Wynne and children Gus and Wyn toured South African theatres. They travelled there and back on R.M.S. Arundel Castle. These souvenirs made of electroplated nickel silver (EPNS) would come from this trip. The postcard showing the steamer is from the same period, no doubt also collected on the trip.
On 9 February 2012 Anne Goulden gave this talk at the British Music Hall study group in London. It follows Lewis Davenport’s performing career from around 1900 to around 1930 and explains how he juggled his time between his magic business, music hall work, and other performances. On the way it provides an overview of the different types of variety entertainment during the period.
In the 1920s and 1930s most of Lewis Davenport’s bookings were at theatres in Great Britain. However, he did tour South Africa in 1926 and South America in 1927, as well as accepting bookings in Germany and Belgium. In this talk Anne follows Lewis around Europe, pointing out the differences between UK and continental variety, as well as introducing some of the speciality acts with whom Lewis worked.
Click below to join Lewis on his travels.
Growing up in the Davenport family, Gus was surrounded by magic performances and the manufacture and sale of magic. Fortunately, he embraced it. This short article describes Gus the man and the personality and skills that led him to particular styles of performing.
Anne Goulden gave this talk at the IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth on 25 September 2014.
While Wyn toured with her parents in the 1920s, she collected autographs from many magicians and variety acts. Anne Goulden brings these characters to life in a well illustrated talk.
The Wednesday 26 September 1945 variety show is Edythe Harrington and her Gang. Edythe was one of Winifred Wynne’s sisters, making her Lewis Davenport’s sister-in-law.
Wynne Davenport was Lewis Davenport’s second wife. His first wife, Julia, died from tuberculosis in 1909.
This perpetual calendar stood on the mantelpiece in the dining room at Ivydene, the home of Lewis and Wynne Davenport, for years. The various knobs allow three things to be changed. Once a month, the knob on the base is used to change the position of the dates in the week. The other knobs control the month which shows in the top window, as well as the red line which is moved as dates are passed.
This came from Ivydene, the Davenport family home, and may date from Lewis Davenport’s and Wynne’s Golden Wedding Anniversary.