From Gleason’s Pictorial Drawing Room Companion, 1851
This so called “Wizard of the Age” came among us a few seeks since quite unheralded, and in the most quite manner put up his magical apparatus at the Boston Theatre, Federal Street, where he has ever since been performing, aided by this wife, to a series of the largest assemblies probably, that have ever convened within that house. There has been no evening that parquette, boxes and galleries have not been filled to overflowing, and with an audience that has universally retired highly delighted and amused with the unique and puzzling character of the entertainments. It would be impossible for us to enter into a detailed account of the elaborate and amusing experiments that are nightly performed by Mr. Macallister: but suffice it to say, that they are of the most unexceptionable character, and calculated to interest, amuse and delight, without in any way offending the delicacy of his audience. Our artist has given us herewith a very excellent picture of his utensils and automaton figures, as they appear on the rising of the curtain to the audience. The immediate feat represented as being performed by the wizard is that known as the shawl trick, wherein he produces a whole brood of hens, chickens, ducks, pigeons, lap-dogs, etc., from out of a shawl borrowed from one of the audience, and this too, without going near any place of concealment, or any assistant of his company. But this is only one of his very curious and unaccountable representations, which to be appreciated must be seen. Probably no artist of his school ever visited Boston, whose mechanical arrangements were so perfect, and whose instruments and accessories are so elaborate and fine as Mr. Macallister’s. We are gratified to see that he is reaping a golden harvest by this efforts to please. We should not fail to mention that Mr. Macallister is assisted by his wife, who is a most important auxiliary to him in the execution of his deeds of necromancy. She is dressed modestly, thought in male attire, and attracts much interest and attention by her pleasing manners and prompt enacting of the part entrusted to her skill. To her husband, she is invaluable as a most adroit assistant.
(Gleason’s Pictorial Drawing Room Companion, Vol. I, No. 27, November 1, 1851, Boston )