Thursday, May 31, 2007

To Pat Cashin

SAVE0806, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

I well remember Kenneth Waite from the Cole Show, seen here with Otto.
How does he compare with the picture below?

Al G. Barnes Circus 1919

SAVE2901, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Pictures of some old time clowns, a few have been on the Blog before. Only one I recognize is Kinko.
These guys learned their craft on the smaller shows, fairs, parks, etc. before graduating into Vaudeville and the bigger circuses.
In other words the Ringling Show hired a finished product rather than the On Job Training that goes on today. The clowns seen last Thursday were incredibly athletic and ran around a lot, too bad they weren't paid by the mile. An attempt was made at a clown walkaround with pretty grim results, since there was no track or ring curbs, they wandered around the obstacle course.
As the pre-show flotsum & jetsum were being herded back into their seats, the clowns were involved in a bicycle ramp-jump act usually seen done by High School kids. Nuf Ced.
As previously stated, "The show should have started with the National Anthem!"

Joe Lewis

SAVE2900, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Circus

SAVE0023, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Kenneth Waite Troupe

MAIL0194, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Lou Jacob

MAIL0546, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Paul Wenzel

SAVE0022, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Ringling-Barnum Circus

SAVE0804, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Earl Shipley

SAVE1803, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Shorty Evans with his trained rooster

SAVE2899, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Howes Great London 1922

Chick Yale

SAVE2898, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

"The funniest barrel and table rock in Show Business since 1909."

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

From Dave Orr

TO: CFA & OABA Committees
From: David Orr, 2007 CFA Convention Committee
OABA Circus Fans Representative
CFA Circus Relations/Animal Committee
Subject: CFA Hershey Convention / OABA Circus Fund
Raffle In Memory of Fred Logan
A total of $1567.00 was raised from May 20th - May 25th during the 2007 CFA Hershey Convention. The monies have been forwarded to the OABA Circus Fund from the convention in memory of Fred Logan.
I would personally like to thank those generous fans that bought raffle tickets. We had some great prizes that were donated and given out during the Friday, May 25th CFA Banquet. We operate this raffle at zero expense.
See you all during the 2008 CFA Sarasota Convention.

From John Goodall

1945 Circus Poster, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.


Buckles on 12-15-06 you published the above photo. It ties in nicely with today's Alfred Court-Wilson Storey photo # 5.

Alfred Court- Wilson Storey #1 (From John Whitfield)

ALFRED COURT, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

I was married to Tina Storey and I have in my possession many photos of Alfred and
his nephew Wilson Storey with the cats and Alfred in his later years with photos he
sent to Wilson plus a couple cards from Damoo. Here are some photos of the cats.
John Whitfield
The photo of Court was taken in Europe prior to the RBBB tour. Wilson with the
cats was in 1943. The picture with the ladies was probably same year but photo
is not dated. I included the photo of Wilson, Pugh, Collins & Stinson as a filler.
John Whitfield

Alfred Court- Wilson Storey #2

RENEE & ALFRED COURT 1968, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Alfred Court- Wilson Storey #3

WILSON STOREY-COURT ACT -1943, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Alfred Court- Wilson Storey #4

WILSON STOREY CAT ACT-COURT, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Alfred Court- Wilson Storey #5

LADIES IN COURT ACT, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Clyde Beatty-Cole Bros. Circus 1980

BEATTY HONCHOS - 1980, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

From Mark Rosenthal

"Pit Bulls are for sissies!"

From John Goodall

photo_water, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

From Richard Reynolds

rino001, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Great photo for the rhinocerologists.

I think this animal has been performing with the German Circus Barum for 20 years. This show has always been very strong in the animal department - -giraffe, hippo, zebras (large group) and wonderful caged animal acts including one with Persian leopards.


"I meant to send this picture out several days ago, tho Mr. Reynolds material is probably the most detailed and interesting, his pictures are the most difficult for me to enter.
If a picture comes with a paper clip, no problem and if not, Shannon has given me a formula but for Richard's, only an envelope appears when I try to enter it and I have to wait until Shannon is available." Buckles

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

William Woodcock's letters #2

MAIL0397, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

From Bill Woodcock to Col. Sturtevant , Mar. 15, 1941

"Am enclosing two views of the writer and old Diamond. Disregard lettering on the front of them. These were made with Monroe Bros. in the winter of 1925-26.
When I joined the Atterbury Show, Diamond was just plain, dumb, incoherent "Diamond", I added the "Black" prefix, as I used to make a lecture on him before working his act. It stuck with him until his death.
You will note that with an overland show I found it unnecessary to keep him covered with jewelry, I red lighted a wagonload of chain.
With a railroad show conditions are different. A daily stroll of 25 miles with a mud show goes far toward taking the devilment out of these critters."

More on "Tusko" #1

SAVE2895, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

As John Herriott mentioned, Tusko's original name was "Ned", here he is seen with "Mena" on the M.L. Clark & Sons Shows in 1921 in Hartford, Arkansas, having just completed the walk from the previous town.
I have a picture of him doing the "bottle-walk" while on this show but alas it eludes me.

1901- Great Syndicate Shows
1902- Great Eastern Shows (W.F. Smith)
1903-21 M.L. Clark Wagon Show (Trained by Don Leon)
1921-31 Al G. Barnes Circus (Sold to "Sleepy" Gray and George Lewis early in 1931)

Tusko"s statistics in August of 1932 were:
14,000 lbs. and 10' 2" at the shoulder
17 " circumference of tusks
65" circumference of feet
2' 9" distance between eyes
18' 11" body length
(Died June 10, 1933 at the Seattle Zoo)

More on "Tusko" #2

SAVE2896, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Now with the Al G. Barnes Circus in 1922, we see "Ned" (Tusko), leading the daily street parade and being ridden by Cheerful Gardner's assistant Clyde "Highpockets" Baudendistl.
Already becoming more massive due to an improved diet and being transported from town to town but with too much time on his hands he would become more difficult.
My dad was on the Barnes Show at this time and said that "Tusko" did a single number in an end ring worked by Highpockets and it wasn't much but just laying down and sitting up was an impressive act in itself.

Sparks Parade 1920's #1

SAVE2887, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #2

SAVE2888, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #3

SAVE2889, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #4

SAVE2890, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #5

SAVE2891, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #6

SAVE2892, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Sparks Parade 1920's #7

SAVE2894, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Monday, May 28, 2007

From Dave Price

I can't add anything to the great info re B&B quarters, but I will respond regarding Memorial Day. We just got home from a visit to my parents' graves in the Veterans' Cemetery. All the graves had been decorated with American Flags and there were a number of larger flags at strategic points in the cemetery.
Mary Jane's parents likewise are in Veterans' Cemeteries: her father where he fell in Belgium (and which we visited in 2002) and her mom in Riverside California.
We are so fortunate to live in this wonderful country; long may its banner wave.
Mary Jane's 3rd Chemo treatment is Wednesday; your prayers are appreciated.

From Fred Dahlinger

SAVE2709, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

hope that you are all reveling in the freedom and security represented by Memorial Day.

The attached images should clinch the Bridgeport identification of the Ira Watts and sea elephant photo in the current Bandwagon, page 34. These are from the set personally taken by Bob Good in the 1920s, well circulated and in many collections.

The top image is taken from the south central area of the quarters, looking ENE. The low structure on the left is the building in the background of Buckles photo. You can make out the same brick pilasters, window details, etc. Buckles' photo was taken on the east side of the building on the right, the replacement wagon shop, looking northwest. There was a large door on both long sides of the structure, in the panel south of the second chimney. On the far right side you will see the single curved lead that led to the storage track where the sleepers are parked in Buckles photo. You can see some stocks and sleepers on this track in another of the Good photos, one of those showing all of the baggage wagons jammed together in a very fire-prone manner.

The bottom photo shows the central shop area. You will note that the ventilators on it are what are recorded in Buckles photo. This is not the Car Shops as I originally hypothesized. The multiple tracks shown here were on the west side of that center shop building. You can also note where there was a power pole to either side of this structure, in the same north-south position. You can see this line going across the property, E-W, in another Good photo.

So, with Watts on RBBB 1927-1929, Henry Gentry piloting Sparks in 1929, it's the sea elephant Colossus temporarily at Bridgeport in the spring of 1928, as Richard pointed out. What's remarkable is to learn that there was still a connection between RBBB and Bridgeport following the "closure" and "departure" in the spring-summer-fall of 1927. Completely detaching from the site was obviously an extended operation, even after quarters were established in sunny Sarasota.


William Woodcock Sr.

SAVE0183, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Letter to Joe Fleming 11/7/55.

"He (Buckles) is six feet two and weighs close to 200 pounds. He is 21 in Feb. and is getting elephant simple as Hell.
He'll see plenty of it before Spring, Dory got four little female bulls off the boat at Savannah. Three Indians and a little female African.
They named the Indians Shirley, Minnie and Ione and they call the African Colonel, in honor of the notorious Col. Bill Woodcock. She is up and coming and eats everything in sight and tries to whale everyone with the show.
Not long ago, Obert sold that Dixie elephant to some people named Fullbright that operate a wildlife show in the deep South. She was one of the Christy bulls."

Al G. Barnes #1

SAVE2880, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Al G. Barnes #2

SAVE2881, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

"The Animal King"

Al G. Barnes #3

SAVE2882, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Al G. Barnes #4

SAVE2883, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

This sub-title on this 1923 picture is incorrect.
Elephant man is N.W. "Red" McKay and the elephant at right is "Ruth", Mr. Barnes first elephant, purchased in 1908.

Al G. Barnes #5

SAVE2884, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Al G. Barnes #6

SAVE2885, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Barnes and "Tusko" at circus winter quarters in December of 1927.

Al G. Barnes #7

SAVE2886, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Mr. Barnes grave site in Indio, California.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The CFA Convention has come and gone!

All that remains in the Banquet Hall of the Hershey Holiday Inn today are peanut sacks and wagon tracks!
John and I worked to a full house, in fact is was so crowded they couldn't laugh Ho!, Ho!, Ho!...................................
Plenty of people I hadn't seen in years, we posed for so many pictures that after a while I began to think maybe they knew something we didn't.
The first night there we all loaded aboard busses and gillied over to the new Arena to see the Red Show. I had had dinner with Bill Powell recently and he assured me that I would enjoy the show and he was right. I would even go so far to say that this is probably the best thing they have come up with in the past 10 or 15 years. All the bases were covered, an outstanding tiger act, top notch flying acts (two triples), two excellent dog acts, good teeter-board act and all at a high-energy pace. I even enjoyed a "Dancing with the Stars" clown gag.
Bello Nock has to be the most outstanding circus performer in the world today and this night he was at the top of his game, even the Bello Spec was well done. John Herriott said he couldn't believe it was the same show he had seen opening night in Tampa.
I'm embarrassed to say that I even found myself looking at replays on the big TV set.
This was the first time I had ever caught up the open menagerie and it was well done, Joe Frisco had everything spotless as usual and the public seemed to enjoy seeing the elephants in the outdoor exercise area.
There was a down side however, when we entered the arena, I was shocked to find that the audience had been allowed to descend upon the hallowed performing area. I soon spotted a young lady attempting to do a hand balancing act in the middle of all this confusion, while kids played with the props, housewives discussed their operations and an assortment of Goobers scratched their behinds and picked their noses while looking on.
It's a shame they don't open the show when the elephant comes in for the National Anthem and eliminate everything prior to that. John and I both agreed "Thank God, we were on the show in the years B.C. (before concessions).

From Filipe von Gilsa

SAVE1954, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 109- Wolfgang Heppner with Circus Barum 1960

SAVE2872, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 110- Jurg Jenny with Circus Nock 1979-80

SAVE2873, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 111- Alfred Kaden with Circus Carl Hagenbeck 1927

SAVE2874, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 112- Alfred Kaden with Circus Carl Hagenbeck 1936

SAVE2875, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 113- Sylva Kantor with Circus Busch 1933

SAVE2876, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

No. 114- Sylva Kantor with Circus Busch 1938

SAVE2877, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Circus Krone

5841153, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

"Colonel Joe"

From Bob Cline

5638478, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Gettero im Circus Jacky Kabelt

Circus Knie

3045901, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.