Conjuring Credits

The Origins of Wonder

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All Backs

Jean Hugard's “All Backs” was advertised in The Sphinx, Vol. 28 No. 11, Jan. 1930, p. 462, and used an ungimmicked pack. Karl Fulves reprinted the Hugard instructions, adding illustrations, in Verbatim, No. 9, 1993, p. 107-112. However, David Ben has evidence that Dai Vernon showed Hugard his version of this original plot around 1920. See Dai Vernon: A Biography, 2006, p. 167–8.

Edward Marlo, in The Cardician, 1953, p. 196, claimed the plot was established by R. W. Hull with the marketing of his NRA Deck in the 1920s. However, the earliest ad for Hull's NRA Deck seems to be in Sphinx, Vol. 32 No. 9, Nov. 1933, p. 287, where Hull advertised it as “Hull's New 'NRA' Deck.” Thus, Hull's rough-and-smooth deck came in third to Vernon's and Hugard's sleight-of-hand methods. Hugard published Vernon's method in an added chapter to the third edition of Expert Card Technique, 1950, p. 459.

None of these methods involved a chosen card. Hugard worked privately on that task, but never published his method. He did describe it in a letter to Orville Meyer, dated July 18, 1939. See Gibecière, Vol. 7 No. 1, Winter 2012, p. 159.