Conjuring Credits

The Origins of Wonder

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Traveling Triumph

The effect of causing the condition of a packet of mixed face-up and face-down cards to transpose with a packet of cards all facing one way began with the title “Giant Acrobatic Cards” but is better known by the name Paul Harris gave it, “Traveling Triumph”. U. F. Grant invented “Giant Acrobatic Cards” in 1930, using eighteen jumbo cards, ten of which were double backed. This was advertised in October 1930 by H. Marshall & Co., without Grant's name being featured (see The Sphinx, Vol. 29 No. 8, p. 337). The next month, in A. P. Felsman's ad, the trick is identified as Grant's (The Sphinx, Vol. 29 No. 9, Nov. 1930, p. 388). Two years later the trick was described in Burling Hull's Stage Magic, 1932, followed by Glenn Gravatt in his Encyclopedia of Self Working Card Tricks, 1936, p. 125, and the Jean Hugard revision, Encyclopedia of Card Tricks, 1937, p. 127.

In 1955, Nick Trost published a method for the effect using a normal deck of cards, “Believe It or Not”, in The Linking Ring, Vol. 34 No. 12, Feb. 1955, p. 63.

Paul Harris followed some years later with his version, which has given the effect its more descriptive name: “Traveling Triumph” in Close-up Fantasies, Part 1, 1980, p. 89. True to the “Triumph” element of the title, Harris includes the added complication of a selected card revelation.

Further history on the development of this effect and the related effects of the Self-Shuffling or Self-Unshuffling Deck is given by Wesley James in Enchantments, 2004, p. 447.