Saturday, February 28, 2015

From Chic Silber

Comment by Buckles:

 "This was from the opening  production number at the Circus World Theme Park in 1977.
When I mentioned this show was in the works, Bobby Johnson told me where they kept the old spec blankets stashed in Venice so I went down and strong armed a few.
No idea what year or unit it came from, made for a shorter elephant but worked out OK.
This is one of the elephants Gary Hill brought up from Texas that I named Hugo Schmitt.
Barbara will have to tell you about the costume, maybe Don Foote came up with it?"

1 more Leopard poster for Chris Berry

From Chic


I was once  scheduled to be guest speaker at the Ringling Museum 20 years ago but was called away suddenly due to the Blue Show train wreck and Johnny, seen here came to the rescue.
Reminiscent of an occasion 25 years prior to that when he was Performance Director of the Red Show and had me stand at his side next to the Band Stand and get my first look at Gunther-Gebel Williams.

With spotlights shining down on a large African Elephant, slowly turning on a tub, surmounted by a blonde guy astride a tiger I said, "Johnny, this is pretty strong stuff!.....and he replied, "Yes.....and I have to follow it with my little ponies!" 

From Chic Silber #1

From Chic Silber #2

From Chic Silber #3

From Chris Berry

About 60 years ago this week, this daub went up advertising Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey's upcoming appearance at the Boston Garden in March of 1955. In the spring of 1955 this Strobridge version of the venerable "Leopard Head" litho had only been used one previous season (1954). The original "Leopartd Heard" design, however was first produced by artist George Howe as part of a group of posters designed for Ringling Barnum by the Norman Bel Geddes studios in 1941. The basic design was reworked over the years - including this 1954 version - and continued to be used into the 1970s, arguably spanning more seasons than any other individual poster design - second only to the Lou Jacobs "See You At the Greatest Show on Earth" poster which was first a part of the litho hod in 1944 and, with a few slight variations, also used into the 1970s.

'55 RBBB #1 (From Buckles)

Smokey gave me this picture many years ago, uniformed in blue are Arky, Smokey, Hugo and Louie Reed.

Arky was dismissed shortly after this picture was taken and Reed had no intention of going on the road once the 20 "punks" were trained.
When I saw the show in Chicago, Smokey ran the Department and Hugo's agreement was to present elephants in the ring.....period.

'55 RBBB #2

This appeared in a lot of Sunday Magazine Publications.

'55 RBBB #3

Smokey at work on the baby carriages for the "Mamas In The Park" elephant number, the winter of 1954-55.

'55 RBBB #4

The end result...... a steering wheel was placed left rear whereas the ever alert elephant man could steer and still watch the elephant.

'55 Program #1

This is the Program I bought when I visited the show 60 years ago.

'55 Program #2

The finished product!

'55 Program #3

'55 Program #4

'55 Program #5

I never knew Manfred but two years later when I worked for Hugo, I chummed around with his son Huey, pronounced (OOO-VEY) who went on to become a big shot in the Auto Industry and of course Roman after that.

'55 Program #6

'55 Program #7

'55 Program #8

Friday, February 27, 2015

From April Zinc

Johnny on cassette mp3- Old Showman's Heaven -1999

At one time I purchased a cassette through Circus Report of Johnny reading his poetry. Here is the mp3 of his Old Showman's Heaven. and I've also included the track "Circus was my Thing".... what a legacy! we'll miss him.

I'm sure they're under copyright protection, but I knew you've heard these, and I'm enjoying listening to him this morning.

John Herriott #1

John Herriott #2

John Herriott #3

I'll miss you Pal

From Jim Cole #1

From Jim Cole #2

From Jim Cole #3

From Jim Cole #4

From Jim Cole #5

From Jim Cole #6

From Jim Cole #7

From Jim Cole #8

From Richard Flint

From Don Covington #1

From Don Covington #2

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Just received a call from Cindi Wells......

.....telling me her father passed away this evening at 8:30.

Thanks To All......

........for the Birthday congratulations!
To be so well thought of is humbling.....almost!     

So it's off to the Casino.....

From Anonymous

Its fun hacking my dads blog on his Birthday :)

Happy Birthday


I forgot to include this.....(From Buckles)

.....and on this grim  note I would like to apologize to those of you who send messages to the  Facebook Account my daughter set up for me some time ago.
I am always alerted here on the Blog of their numerous existence but once there it's like trying to read a Chinese menu.
I only intend this for anyone who might think they are being ignored.

Four Score #1

Eighty Years Old today.
My wife has been on a lucky streak lately. I think I'll take her out to the Indian Casino in Tampa this evening.
I just might wind up owning the joint!

Four Score #2

Four Score #3

Four Score #4

Four Score #5

Four Score #6

Four Score #7

Four Score #8

Four Score #9

Four Score #10

You can just see Ben at right scrambling to get "Sadie's" headpiece for the ground sit-up.

Four Score #11

NY Worlds Fair.