Lucille Ball’s Bird Cage!
This appearing cage used by Lucy was given to Ed Rosenthal by Leon M. Leon as documented by the enclosed letter from Leon and his wife "Teddy" dated November 5, 1981.
Sorry to take so long keeping my promise to add a Merv Taylor Bird Cage to your magic collection.-But BOY! Have I been busy? The cage has been squirreled away, so I needed a lot of spare time to located it; But here it is,- and here is its story, (since every item in a collection should have a story.) This "BIRD CAGE" was used only one time,- Yet more people saw it, than ever saw any other single piece of magical apparatus. You ask, "HOW COME?"
Well, Lucille Ball used it in an "I Love Lucy" T.V. Show that broke all audience records in 1952. (and it is still showing some where in the world today.) After the filming, the prop man gave the "CAGE" to me. (I was sound man on the show.) Teddy wants to add to this "LETTER"(?) – so I’ll let her take over.
(THE FOLLOWING WORDS FROM TEDDY LEON ARE WRITTEN IN SCRIPT.)
My Dears – Things have been pretty hectic since we’ve returned home. I didn’t realize how much work, mail etc could accumulate in 3 weeks. Anyway we are about caught up. We thoroughly enjoyed our time with you both – short tho it was. You are delightful hosts. Thank you for allowing us the freedom of your home. We arrived home in good time tired but happy, after three weeks of fun and games. We still talk about our dinner with you at the Brown Derby – It was quite an experience. Again, thanks for your warm and gracious hospitality. Hope we see you soon. – Fondly, Teddy.
The shorter memo seems to be a type of "form letter" Leon gave to his friends to whom he gifted part of his collection…
A PERMANENT LOAN.
BECAUSE I ENJOY SHARING WHAT I HAVE WITH MY FRIENDS, PLEASE USE THIS IN ANY WAY YOU LIKE, FOR AS LONG AS YOU LIKE. YOU MAY DISPLAY IT, PERFORM WITH IT, HIDE IT AWAY IN YOUR COLLECTION OR LEND IT TO ANYONE YOU LIKE. HOWEVER, (AS LONG AS I AM ALIVE) PLEASE DO NOT SELL, TRADE, NOR GIVE IT AWAY.- SHOULD YOU NO LONGER WANT IT, THE ONLY WAY TO DISPOSE OF IT IS TO RETURN IT TO ME.
Leon M. Leon 10718 Acama Street North Hollywood California 91602
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