Rookwood Cemetery and Harry Houdini

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Grizz
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Rookwood Cemetery and Harry Houdini

Postby Grizz » Wed Sep 21, 2011 1:07 am

Spookannie

Post subject: Rookwood Cemetery and Harry Houdini


Rookwood Cemetery, opened in 1867, is the largest working cemetery in the Southern Hemisphere, and the world’s largest 19th century cemetery. It is the final resting place for over 600,000 Australians.


Quote:
Spiritualist's Grave
by Joe Nickell


Among the sites that supposedly make Australia "a very haunted continent" is the Rookwood Cemetery in Sydney ("International" 2000). One of the graves there has a profound link to spiritualism and once attracted famed magician Harry Houdini. It is the burial place of one of the notorious Davenport Brothers and the subject of an interesting story.

Ira and William Davenport toured the world giving demonstrations of alleged spirit phenomena. While the pair were securely tied in a special "spirit cabinet," the "spirits" played musical instruments and performed other "manifestations" in darkened theaters. Then on July 1, 1877, while they were on tour in Australia, the long-ailing younger brother William died and was buried at Rookwood.

Decades later, in 1910, while Houdini was himself on tour there (and incidentally entered Australian history by becoming the country's first successful aviator), the great magician/escape artist paid a visit to the grave, accompanied by two fellow magicians (Christopher 1976). Houdini (1924) found the grave "sadly neglected" and so, he wrote, "I had it put in order, fresh flowers planted on it and the stone work repaired." Subsequently, when Houdini met the surviving brother, Ira was so moved by Houdini's act of kindness that he confessed the brothers' tricks, even teaching his fellow escapologist "the famous Davenport rope-tie, the secret of which," Houdini noted, "had been so well kept that not even his sons knew it."

My own interest in the Davenport Brothers was renewed when I was able to help bring to light the contents of their personal scrapbook (Nickell 1999). I had continued my interest in the duo by locating and visiting Ira's grave in Mayville, New York. Now, finding myself in Sydney, I determined to recreate Houdini's visit to William's grave. I was accompanied again by Peter Rodgers and by another magician, Kent Blackmore (both of whom had visited the site in 1983).

The Rookwood Cemetery is huge, requiring some time for us to relocate the grave (in the Church of England Necropolis, section E, grave number 848). Armed with weed clippers and a bouquet of fresh flowers, we soon had made the site presentable once again. Like the trio who preceded us in 1910, we three magi posed for photographs to record the event (figure 4). Alas, neither William Davenport's nor any other spirit put in an appearance-as far as we could tell. But it was nevertheless an occasion to recall those who lived in earlier times and to reflect on how things have since changed yet remained much the same. For instance, while the physical manifestations of spiritualism's earlier era have largely been supplanted by mental mediumship (as practiced by spiritualists like John Edward and James Van Praagh), the attraction to alleged spirit communication continues.

http://csicop.org/si/2001-03/i-files.html




Quote:
Rookwood Cemetery - Sydney, Australia

Some older sections of Rookwood are overgrown with a riot of plants, early horticultural plants, some now large trees or groves, as well as an interesting array of remnant indigenous flora. This results in quite an eclectic mix of flora to be found within the necropolis. Many say that since so many are interred here it can't just help being one of the most haunted places where the dead are buried.

http://www.hauntedamericatours.com/HAUNTEDPLACES.htm
January 1962 - January 2012

Only 50 yrs young

R.I.P Mark



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Grizz
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Re: Rookwood Cemetery and Harry Houdini

Postby Grizz » Wed Sep 21, 2011 1:11 am

Rookwood Cemetery - Sydney, Australia

Victorian Rookwood necropolis in Sydney, but it is the grave of the notorious Davenport Brothers, famous spiritualists. Rookwood Cemetery (officially named The Necropolis and named when it opened as The Necropolis, Haslams Creek.) is the largest multicultural necropolis in the Southern Hemisphere, close to Lidcombe Station in Sydney, Australia.

The name Rookwood came some 20 years after the establishment of the necropolis, it was a means to differentiate the local village of Haslams Creek from the association of the burial ground, the village changed its name to Rookwood, and naturally the cemetery was soon known as Rookwood, the village changed its name again in the early 20th Century to "Lidcombe" (a combination of two Mayors names, Lidbury and Larcombe - Larcombe was also a Monumental Stone Mason). The cemetery retained the name Rookwood.

Approximately one million people have their final resting place within the boundaries of its almost 3 km². The "Friends of Rookwood Inc" raise public awareness of the cultural and historical value of the cemetery and also the need to ensure its preservation.

Some older sections of Rookwood are overgrown with a riot of plants, early horticultural plants, some now large trees or groves, as well as an interesting array of remnant indigenous flora. This results in quite an eclectic mix of flora to be found within the necropolis. Many say that since so many are interred here it can't just help being one of the most haunted places where the dead are buried.

http://www.hauntedamericatours.com/100mosthauntedplace.htm
January 1962 - January 2012

Only 50 yrs young

R.I.P Mark



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Re: Rookwood Cemetery and Harry Houdini

Postby Jemm » Tue Feb 14, 2012 2:01 pm

the biggest and badest and creepiest cemetery ever...with its own postcode , its so massive :panic:
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