The Magician And The Cardsharp

After 20 years of looking for someone who could perform the “middle deal,” Dai Vernon had pretty much decided this supreme piece of sleight of hand was a fable. Then, one night in a Wichita jail, a prisoner told Vernon he’d seen a man do it…

One rainy afternoon in January 1932, Dai Vernon, the greatest sleight-of-hand artist in the world, sat in the Innes Department Store in Wichita, Kansas, bored out of his mind. The 37-year-old Vernon had come to Kansas with his wife, Jeanne, and their young son, Ted, for the new year, lured by invitations from his friend and fellow magician Faucett Ross and the promise of work cutting silhouette portraits of customers at the store. Ross had helped the Vernons get settled, and the two men did nothing for several days but practice and talk magic.

 
 
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