Sept. 7, 1906 (Friday)
HOUDINI MEETS HIS MATCH IN YORKVILLE JAIL: Harry Houdini, "The World's Handcuff King" (right), ran into some skeptics from whom he just couldn't break away yesterday at the Yorkville Prison, one of New York city's district prisons. Harry and a chatty press agent went there to demonstrate his skills to a jailer, some reporters and other witnesses. Chief Jailer Hughey Cooney was especially anxious about being made sport of by "The World's Handcuff King." Once Houdini was stripped and handcuffed to a loose belt, Cooney started to search him. He was especially interested in Houdini's mouth. "The World's Handcuff King" balked at that, saying Cooney had to wash his hands first. Cooney did that and searched the throat. Then, when Cooney had moved to the feet, Houdini jumped around and then moaned, "Ah, I have swallowed it. I can't do the trick." Later, he did escape from the cuff, while people were not in the room. But most everyone agreed that they saw him using a wire on the cuffs. Jailer Cooney was not impressed with Houdini. "The World's Handcuff King" offered to give a lecture about prison security to the officials, but they declined. Houdini and his press agent left, somewhat in a huff.
HEIRESS SPURNS HEIR-HEADS: Miss Margaret Chanler, an Astor heiress and winner of a Congressional Gold Medal, has decided to marry. The groom-in-waiting is Richard Aldrich. He's a longtime music critic of The New York Times. In the last couple of years, he wrote guides to two operas, "Parsifal" and "Ring of the Nieblung." The article in The Washington Post says she is "following the lead of several other young women of fortune and social position in promising her hand in marriage to a man of no means, but possessed of brains." I guess L. Frank Baum's Scarecrow just isn't available.
'FLOATER' GETS A LUCKY BREAK: Yesterday, a man named John Striker was walking across the Highway Bridge in Washington, D.C., and noticed a body floating in the river. He hustled to the shore and fished him out. He considered him dead and called for the "dead wagon." Then Striker began to have second thoughts. He called the Emergency Hospital and asked for the ambulance. The "dead wagon" arrived first, and the driver hoisted the body into the wagon. The ambulance arrived just as the "dead wagon" started its drive to the morgue. Dr. Glenn Jones called out, "I must be permitted to examine this body." He jumped in and detected a faint pulse in the body of the "floater," who turns out to be 40-year-old John Forsythe. The doctor raced him to the hospital, where he remained last night -- unconscious.