Albert Walker, magician, redux

At long last, Albert Walker, the magician of Glastonbury, Connecticut, has had his diaries reunited. Twenty-two volumes dating from 1867-1895 recently arrived on our doorstep. Unfortunately, they shed no additional light on his magic performances, with one exception. On April 20, 1867, he went to Hartford to see some Japanese performers. Inside the back cover of the volume, he made these interesting notes:

“When I am out of work I must try my performance in connection with a
lottery combined also tin pedling [sic]

I saw a new kind of juglars [sic] box at the Japanese performance in
Hartford that was made to turn over in another large one

At least we know that he was still showing an interest in his performances; however, except for a few notations about his fiddle and playing for dances, Albert remains mute about his avocation. What he does do is give us more information on his family. In 1867 his brother Charles died in Boston and Albert was named his administrator. Charles went by an alias, Henry C. West. Intriguing, and one wants to know why. That same year, in March, their younger sister Mary married John Blish. Their first child died in December, probably right after birth.

By 1884 Albert was married to “Tillie” [Matilda Schieding] with whom he had two children, Edna Elizabeth and Howard Albert. He continued to make spoons, repair and clean clocks, paint and repair wagons, and by the end of his life appears to have elevated himself to the status of “gentleman farmer,” hiring others to work for him.

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