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Houdini at Diggers Rest

Join this Vicfix campaign to learn how Harry Houdini made aviation history in country Victoria

Vicfix is improving the searchability of digitised newspaper articles and making the hidden details of Victoria's rich history available for everyone.

About Houdini at Diggers Rest

Harry Houdini (1874–1926) was a US magician, illusionist and escapologist with a genius for self-promotion. Enthused by the emerging technology of aviation, he brought his newly purchased Voisin biplane to Australia in 1910 and made three successful flights outside Melbourne, at Diggers Rest.

Newspaper reports keenly detailed Houdini's ascents, which took him to a height of 100 feet (30 metres) over a distance of six miles (10km), staying aloft for 7.5 minutes. Houdini announced he would fly over Melbourne but in fact he never flew again. He's popularly seen as setting the record for Australia's first manned flight, but history now grants this laurel to Colin Defries, who took to the skies in December 1909.

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Houdini at Diggers Rest

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