Houdini on Belle Isle Bridge in 1906

 

A friend says Harry Houdini drowned in the Detroit River, but I'm sure he died after someone hit him in the stomach.  Who's right? B.F.

 

You are, But he almost did drown in 1906 after escaping from a sealed trunk on the river's bottom at old Belle Isle bridge.  When he reached the ice-covered surface he couldn't find the hole through which the trunk was lowered.  He might not have emerged alive except for his fine physical condition.  And he still had it 20 years later in Montreal when he agreed to show how he could take a heavy abdominal blow without injury.  But a college boxing champ threw the punch before Houdini could tense his muscles.  He collapsed a week later in Detroit's Garrick Theater and died of a ruptured appendix and abdominal damage in Grace Hospital on Oct. 31, 1926, Before his death he told friends he'd try communicating with them from the grave.

 


 

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