on halloween, october 31, 1926, harry houdini died from peritonitis - allegedly a result of heavy blows to his abdomen from a mcgill university student that ruptured his appendix. he was only 52 years old. while the punches to his abdomen may have contributed to the rupture, houdini had suffered from appendicitis in the days that lead up to the incident. but the blows may have accelerated the rupture.
so ended the amazing career of ehrich weiss - not only a magician, but also movie actor, escape artist, author, debunker of spiritualists, and an early aviation pioneer! if that list isn't long enough, add to it competitive runner! yes, in the 1890s the young ehrich weiss competed in road races in nyc!
every year, for the decade following his death, his wife, bess, held a seance on halloween to see if houdini would manage the impossible - communicate from the great "beyond." with no proof of any bona fide messages received from houdini, bess no longer continued the seances. but that didn't stop magicians and houdini fans from continuing the spooky tradition.