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Don Lawton

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Don Lawton

Cover of Genii (1956)
BornDonald Vern Lawton
March 05, 1922
Richland Center, Wisconsin
DiedJune 12, 1988 (age 66)
North Hollywood, California
CategoriesBooks by Don Lawton

Don Lawton (1922-1988) was a magic dealer, lecturer, early television pitchman and a fixture at the Magic Castle.


This highly entertaining magician impacted on St. Louis for 20 years, as performer, seller and demonstrator of magic at 4 different shops. His comedic magic style also earned him extended contracts for personnel appearance and TV commercials.

Lawton started selling magic at Will Lindhorst's Magic Den, and also had a little magic shop in the back of his St. Louis home at one time. He was known for performing effects such as Disecto, the Egg Bag and Clippo. Don also sold magic at St. Louis Magic Studio and Town House Magic shop.

In 1947, Don Lawton kept busy by incorporating magic into live television advertisements for Falstaff Beer. Later, he used coffee cans to create a passé-passé trick for Old Judge Coffee. Lawton was assisted with over 50 live television commercials for Old Judge, using such props as the Milk Pitcher and the Card Duck.

For a time, he also served on the AMA Board of Directors and as host at the Magic Castle.


  • St. Louis magical Heritage Award in 1995 by IBM Ring One and SAM Assembly 8.
  • Recipient of the Academy of Magical Arts Stage Magician of the Year Award and a Life Achievement Fellowship.



  • Cover, Genii Magazine, Vol. 20, No. 8, April 1956, Behind the “Lines of Don Lawton”, page 318, Lines About Lawton, by Ross Durbin, page 319
  • Cover, M-U-M, Vol. 47, No. 2, July 1957, Don Lawton, magician-of-the-month, by Leslie P. Guest, page 54
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 40, No. 9, November 1960, Magic Dealers Association Parade, A Few "Lines from Lawton", page 74
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 53, No. 11, November 1973, Memoirs Of A Magician's Ghost, by John Booth, CHAPTER 214 - The Lawtons: Making it in Hollywood, page 53
  • Lots of Lawton, About Don Lawton, page 153
  • Genii Magazine, Vol. 51, No. 8, February 1988, Obituary, Don Lawton March 5, 1922 - June 12, 1988, by Joan Lawton, page 559
  • M-U-M, Vol. 78, No. 3, August 1988, Broken Wands, Don Lawton, page 37
  • The Linking Ring, Vol. 68, No. 9, September 1988, Broken Wand, Don Lawton, page 121
  • History of magic in St. Louis by Don Rataj 2011