Cristobal, Michigan, is a small farm village about 20 miles southwest of New Zebedee. There is little there besides a feed store, a general store, a gas station, and a cemetery where a number of stage magicians are buried (The Specter from the Magician's Museum, 43, 90-1).
The fictitious Cristobal is based on the real town of Colon, the so-called Magic Capital of the World. Colon’s magic roots stems from it being the former home and burial site of noted magician, Harry Blackstone, Sr. The Abbott Magic Company, known for manufacturing magicians' supplies and sponsoring a 4-day magic convention each August, is the town’s biggest attraction.
Even though Colon derived its name from the punctuation mark [:], Strickland has cleverly connected the word to the Spanish name of Christopher Columbus (Cristóbal Colón) to create a name for his village.