Friday, January 20, 2012

Circus Parade



We wrap up Circus Week with this photograph of a Circus Parade. The picture was taken in New York in the early 1900's. Back in the day, when the circus came to town, they would hold a grand parade. The parade was free, and you could see many amazing things, drawing you in to wanting to see the main show. Brilliant strategy, and it worked well.

12 comments:

  1. Love your Blog !
    Watch the movie, Water for Elephants" horrible how they treated circus animals.

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  2. My husband & another school teacher rode elephants down the main street of our little town in the early 1980s to attract interest in the circus. He said it was a long ways down from up there.

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  3. As recently as 1978 a circus used to come to Lafayette, Colorado. There were acrobatics, clowns, a trapeze act, and carnival booths. We had young children so we took them to see the main show.

    Half way through the show they stopped and vendors made their way through the audience selling cotton candy, popcorn and drinks. The ringmaster announced several times that vendors were making the rounds. Response must have been tepid, because he finally announced that as soon as the refreshments were sold out the show would continue. I suppose that they were having a hard time making ends meet.

    There hasn't been a circus here since then, although carnivals still regularly hit the mall parking lots.

    Some times while traveling the highways, you will see abandoned sections of road off to the side, or an abandoned bridged which is not connected to a road anymore. These evoke feelings similar to what I felt when I saw that last circus.

    Now we have the Cirque de Soleil which has a new show every year, but I haven't yet gone to it. I'll have to ask my sons if they've taken the grandkids to the circus or carnival.

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  4. Quick story... About 10 or so years ago Ringling Brothers was in town. My cousin Ed used to work a jack hammer on the big dig project in Boston. He was sitting in his truck, taking a lunch break and all of a sudden police were coming down the street clearing people and cars out of the way. He didn't pay much attention as he was already on the side of the road. Continuing to munch his sandwich, he looks in the rear view mirror and now see's a hoard of elephants coming down the street. It's a circus parade! An elephant brushed up against the side of the truck denting the whole thing and ripped off the side mirror. Ed then calmly calls his boss and tells him he just got in an accident with the truck. An elephant sideswipped him. LOL. The boss thought he was joking around but Ed says, "Seriously, I just got hit by an elephant". The first time I heard that story I laughed so hard.
    Have a nice weekend all.

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  5. Several circuses used to winter in Hugo, Ok, just north of Paris, Tx. As a result, there are several circus people buried in the Mt Olivet Cemetery. If you ever get a chance, it is worth a few minutes of your time to wander in the circus section of the cemetery. Their headstones are very unique and in most cases reflect their position in the circus. The headmaster is standing welcoming everyone to the cemetery, the clown headstone is a bench with the notation, "have a seat on me." the different artists have other headstones reflecting their circus occupations. Very interesting.

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  6. Wonder where all the kids are, only grownups lining the street.
    I only remember going to one circus although I have had my share of carnivals.

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  7. Many, many years ago, when my cousin Greg was about six, the circus came to Baltimore, and his dad took a bunch of us kids to see the circus parade. Greg wanted his dad to buy him a balloon, and when Uncle Bob told him No, Greg said, "Fine. I won't watch the parade if you won't get me a balloon" and he sat on the curb with his eyes closed for an hour!

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  8. EU TAMBÉM ASSISTI O FILME ONDE ELES MALTRATAM OS ELEFANTES,MUITO TRISTE.AQUI NO BRASIL HOUVE MUITOS CASOS DE CIRCOS QUE FALIRAM E ABANDONARAM SEUS ANIMAIS EM JAULAS PELAS ESTRADAS.ISSO É LASTIMÁVEL,TUDO ISSO CONTRIBUI PARA COM MEU HORROR AO CIRCO

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  9. Have you read "Water for Elephants"? It gives a quite interesting picture of circus life in the first half of the last century. (Which is where your old pictures come from.)

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  10. If you go to that very location in the picture, some of the original elephant droppings remain to this very day.

    John

    24F ~2-3" of snow, still coming down.

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  11. Here in Rhode Island, the Ringling Brothers Circus used to come to Providence every year and set up a tent in a field just outside of Providence. However, that was before the tragic circus fire in Hartford, CT in 1944.

    That was before my time, but I have some photos that my dad took of the animals being unloaded and the tents being put up.

    Today that field is an industrial development. The circus still comes here, but it's not as popular as it used to be and it's indoors and the Civic Center.

    Those days are long gone.

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  12. My Dad told me that when the R.Bros,B&B came to town in the Big Apple the animals arrived by train and were marched to Madison Sq. Garden. The only way to get them there was to walk them.(1900-1920 The best part of the circus was
    walking backstage where the anuimals were fed, watered and groomed for the big show. It was open to the public after you bought tickets. Up close and personal, smells and all.

    Frank Dee

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