Harry Houdini’s Bean Giant ‘escape proof’ nickel-plated handcuffs - estimate $4000-8000 at Potter & Potter on October 30.

Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

The sale is titled the Salon de Magie, the name Klosterman, who ran a highly successful bakery business in the Cincinnati area, gave to his impressive magic collection assembled over five decades.

It features items from many of the most famous names in magic and illusion such as Harry Houdini, Chung Ling Soo, Harry Kellar and Robert-Houdin.

Pictured here is Houdini’s Bean Giant ‘escape proof’ nickel-plated handcuffs. These cuffs were configured to make it nearly impossible for a key to be inserted by the restrained. Even so, Houdini escaped from a set early in his career, helping secure his reputation.

These handcuffs were formerly owned by French stage magician Keith Clark, remembered as the author of the Encyclopedia of Cigarette Tricks. Clark obtained them from Houdini’s brother, Hardeen, and from Clark they passed to Dr Morris N Young, later to John McManus and finally to the Circus Museum of Sarasota before the Klosterman collection.

The working handcuffs, with key and the patent number stamped inside the cuffs, have an estimate of $4000-8000.