To Perform

Have names written on cards and get cards of dead persons into envelopes marked by you. Collect envelopes and proceed to call out names. Hold one envelope to head.

"Here is the name of a dead person. Someone had the name, William Jennings Bryan, in mind. Correct?"

Look at audience, but at no one in particular. Audience believes that someone did write that name. This gives you an opportunity to tear open envelope and read what is actually written on card. Assume it is George Washington, but read aloud the name, William Jennings Bryan.

Proceed to go over envelopes calling out the "living" until you come to another one with a pencil mark.

"Here is the name of another dead person. Not LIVING, but dead. It begins with G. The initials are G. W. Who here wrote the name of a person with the initials. G. W.? Raise your hand. Ah, you wrote the name of a dead person, did you? You did. The initials are G. W. Was the first name George? It was. George Washington?"

Open envelope to see what is written on card and read the name, George Washington, aloud. Suppose card has the name, Ann Livingston, on it. Lay it face down on top of other card on table.

Proceed with this routine until you have picked out all the marked envelopes. As you still have one dead name to read, pick up an envelope containing the name of a living person and pretend it is the name of a dead one. After calling out name, you can open this envelope and take out card while you name the last dead person.

"There, I believe I have called out every name of a dead person. Did anyone write the name of a dead person which I did not call? You see that I have been able to pick out the dead people each time without a mistake."

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