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Harry Mendoza

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Harry Mendoza

Cover of Genii (1948)
BornHarry Bernard Solomon
January 19, 1905
New York City
DiedFebruary 15, 1970 (age 65)
Houston, Texas
Harry Mendoza (1905 - 1970) was the stage name of Harry Bernard Solomon (also known as "Ata Sun Gai", "Mister Fi Ying Yu", "The Shanghai Jester" and "Bernard, The Devil's Friend".


His father was a manager for Frederick Eugene Powell and, at the age of nine, he saw a performance by Ching Ling Foo which further spurred his interest in magic.[1]

Mendoza was a professional vaudeville and club show magician for decades. He was doing magic semi-professional by the age of 12 (doing camp shows during World War I) and then full-time starting in 1923.

He was a member of the S.A.M., I.B.M. and Demons Club[2]and had the column Thru the Slanting Eye in Genii. [3]

In 1943, he was the first American magician to go to Australia with the U. S. O. Camp Shows.[4] Later traveling and performing at more USO Camp Shows in Alaska, the Aleutian Islands, England and France.

He later appeared in several motion pictures as an actor and also worked as a technical director on others.

A founder member and Vice-President of the Academy of Magical Arts, he was on the Board of Directors from 1963 until his death.[5] He was also president of SAM Assembly No. 22 in 1941-42 [6]

Mendoza retired to become a salesman in Hollywood. His final performance was on the stage at the Trouper's Club, on August 18, when he did "Mor Watah" (More Water) as taught him by Long Tack Sam. One of his feature effects was the Linking Rings.


  1. Obit, Linking Ring, May, 1970
  2. Who's Who in Magic, Sphinx, July, 1932
  3. Cover Genii 1948 May
  4. Linking Ring, August 1943, page 52
  5. Obit, Genii 1970 February
  6. Obit, MUM, May, 1970