The newest Pottermore story tells us all about American wandmakers
It warms my heart that J.K. Rowling, one of the richest people (or at least richest writers) in the world, keeps on writing. I feel like that’s proof of her love for the Potter universe. She could just retire on a yacht in the Caribbean and sail away the rest of her days sipping white wine. Instead, she keeps creating.
As we’ve been covering this week, Rowling’s latest endeavor involves sharing with us (via Pottermore) the history of the North American Wizards. It’s been a lot to take in, but we need to talk about the history of the four famous wandmakers of1920s America:
Violetta Beauvais: The famous wandmaker of New Orleans refused for many years to divulge the secret core of her wands, which were always made of swamp mayhaw wood. Eventually it was discovered that they contained hair of the rougarou, “a dangerous dog-headed monster that prowled Louisiana swamps.” Yikes.
Johannes Jonker: Unlike his wand-making brethren, Jonker was Muggle-born. His No-Maj father was an accomplished cabinet maker, and Jonker turned out to be quite an accomplished wandmaker. His wands were highly sought after and instantly recognizable, as they were usually inlaid with mother-of-pearl. After experimenting with many cores, Jonker’s preferred magical material was hair of the Wampus cat.
Thiago Quintana: Quintana caused quite the commotion in the magical world when his “sleek and usually lengthy wands” entered the market. Each wand encased a single translucent spine from the back of the White River Monsters of Arkansas, and produced spells of “force and elegance.”
Shikoba Wolfe: Of Chocktaw descent, Wolfe was primarily known for intricately carved wands containing Thunderbird tail feathers (the Thunderbird is a magical American bird closely related to the phoenix). Wolfe wands were particularly prized by Transfigurers, and held to be extremely powerful, albeit difficult to master.
Rowling also dropped a hint that will likely play into the adventures of Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts, noting that North American wizards’ reclusiveness made them far less tolerant of ghosts and other magical creatures than their fellow European wizards.
Well, that’s interesting. All four entries are full of fun facts and historical background, including an answer to the question of why so little was known about the North American wizarding community until now. Harry Potter fans who haven’t examined the entries already, I suggest you do so immediately! Now if only I had a magic spell to make the movie premiere sooner…