Friday, July 31, 2015

To Bob Karczewski #1

Like I say, I was never was at the Sullivan Show since I had to remain behind and present an act with the Polack elephants. However the very spot they parked the elephant truck, by what is now the "Ed Sullivan Theater, was pointed out to me many times during our 19 years with Big Apple Circus.

To Bob Karczewski #2

To Bob Karczewski #3

One year Barbara and Ben presented "Opal" on the Sullivan Show.

Ed Sullivan #1 (From Eric Beheim)

Great pictures from one of our appearances on the Sullivan Show continuing a long standing arrangement done many times before by Peggy and Mack MacDonald  with "Baby Opal" and arranged by Al Dobritch.
This was the first time the show taped in Color.

Ed Sullivan #2

Ed Sullivan #3

Ed Sullivan #4

One year I sent both "Anna May" and "Opal" .

Ed Sullivan #5

Ed Sullivan #6

Ed Sullivan #7

Ed Sullivan #8

Ed Sullivan #9

Ed Sullivan #10

Ed Sullivan #11

My wife always did the "up and over" with Anna May but on this occasion came up with the idea of both of doing the trick side by side.....

Ed Sullivan #12

.....after backing out I discovered I had ripped the seat of my pants from eave to bail ring but being the consummate showman, managed pull my cape around and continue the act in a dignified and stately manner.

Ed Sullivan #13

We had just taken delivery on "Stella" and when the Sullivan people saw her they insisted on including her in the show and cobbled up this bonnet.

Ed Sullivan #14

Ed Sullivan #15

Ed Sullivan #16

Thursday, July 30, 2015

1967 Polack Bros. #1

I always thought the best dates with the Polack Show were the lengthy runs at Medinah Temple in Chicago early in the season and the L.A. County Fair later in the year as seen above.
This is when Parley Baer would have photos taken for the following years program.

1967 Polack Bros. #2

1967 Polack Bros. #3

I'm not sure what this is, looks like she's demonstrating something.
We never had it in the act, always tried to keep it moving however I must say Cecil B. DeMille got a lot of mileage out of it.

1967 Polack Bros. #4

Mounting up on "Opal" for the whirl.

1967 Polack Bros. #5

1967 Polack Bros. #6

"Opal" would step over the ring curb, mount this turntable and after a couple of rotations, kick into a  one foot stand.
I still have this contraption, one day I'll have Jim Elliot load it up in his pick up and we'll bring it down to the Sarasota Swap Meet.

1967 Polack Bros. #7

1967 Polack Bros. #8

One day at the Fair my two best friends showed up Jimmy Rossi from my circus life and Duane Bowman, who was Left Tackle on mighty Hot Springs Trojans football team.
Both were living in California, Duane starting his Trucking Company and Jimmy flying for a small L.A. Air Line.

1967 Polack Bros. #9

Louis P. Stern being confronted by "The Friendly Neighborhood Wild Man!" as Parley would say.

1967 Polack Bros, #10

Mr. Stern and myself at Parley's home in Tarzana.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

1983 Medinah Temple

Ben, Debbie Chapman and "Anna May"

1983 Circus Vargas #1

Cliff Vargas saw Ben and "Anna May" early that year at Medinah Temple and contacted us demanding they appear with his circus, a deal was made and we tried to include Ms. Chapman but for some reason she declined.

1983 Circus Vargas #2

A high level business conference.

Still More Vargas #1

Six years later in 1989, Ben and "Anna May" were with Big Apple and I booked Chico and Karen into Baraboo with the rest of the elephants leaving my wife and I at home with hopes of a season off.
First thing we did was go to the CHS Convention in Columbus where Cliff Vargas was Guest Speaker.
During one of the social events Cliff asked if I would be interested in helping Rex Williams with some training, at that point my Business Manager (Mrs. Woodcock) stepped in and the next thing I knew I found myself in a God-Awful place called Pico Rivera.

Still More Vargas #2

One day Bill Biggerstaff showed up and took these pictures.

Still More Vargas #3

Still More Vargas #4

Putting a hind-leg walk on "Brat".

Still More Vargas #5

Still More Vargas #6

My daughter Dalilah volunteered to help add a few mounts.

Still More Vargas #7

Starting Dalilah and "Joe" on the leg-carry.

Still More Vargas #8

The finished product.
Unfortunately the '89 relationship lasted about as long as John Carrol in the Army.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

To Ryan Easley #1

To Ryan Easley #2

From Chris Berry #1

Lou Jacobs and Kids (1942)

In 1942 photographer Joe Steinmetz staged a scene where Lou Jacobs applied his makeup in front of a group of circus kids. Six-year old Carla Wallenda is the older blonde girl on Lou's right side. Do we know who any of the other kids are?

From Chris Berry #2

Lou Jacobs and Carla Wallenda (1942)

In 1942 photographer Joe Steinmetz took a series of photos of Lou Jacobs applying his make-up in the presence of six-year old Carla Wallenda and other children. In this photo Lou's makeup is almost complete - and Carla seems enchanted..

Circus Vargas #1

Circus Vargas #2

Circus Vargas #3

Circus Vargas #4

Circus Vargas #5

Circus Vargas #6