Horace Goldin excelled in three things. The first was cutting up women. Sorry for starting so morose.
The second was lawsuits. Goldin sued people so often that it cost him much of his fortune. Perhaps "excelled" is not the right word here.
The third was... magic. (AHA!) Goldin was one of the world's renown magicians of the early 20th century. The Lithuanian Jew was even called Britain's "Royal Illusionist". His most famous trick? Sawing a woman in half. (AHA!!!!!)
Goldin did not invent the illusion, but he perfected it... and then patented it. So those lawsuits were targeted at competitor magicians who supposedly stole Goldin's idea.
See, it all makes sense now... and is not so morose. Until you consider all those lawsuits...