Sunday, August 30, 2015

Pit Shows #2


9 comments:

Ole Whitey said...

There was a time when the family of someone who was on his death bed would try to catch his last breath in a glass container. That's what the sign about Jesse James' last breath refers to. Frankly I don't think anyone present would have thought to save Jesse's last breath, it being so sudden. Not that a showman would mislead the public.

Buckles said...

Anyone know what a Pickled Punk Show is!

Chic Silber said...


Yup sure do & I'll send you

a photo of a pickled pink punk

Grace Davis said...

Chic , please don't. I can't believe as a kid I would look at them almost every day as I made my rounds on the midway.

Ole Whitey said...

Years ago Ward Hall and Harry Leonard had a ten-in-one with something called Mighty Interstate Shows. Across from their show they had a single-O consisting of a pickled two-headed baby. The banner said "A 2-Headed Baby Alive- Worth $10,000" but if you looked closely the words "Would be" were after Alive, ergo "A 2-Headed baby alive would be worth $10,000."

Richard Reynolds said...

What is the origin of the term "pit show." I had always thought it meant that some critter or freak would be shown down in a pit dug in the ground.

Chic Silber said...


Yes Richard at least some of them were

The 1st time Kenny Dodd met my cousin

Mike Bourbon (who in later years clowned

in Kenny's alley on Beatty) he was doing

a severed head on a platter routine ala

John The Baptist He was in a hole in the

ground surrounded by fake cemetery grass

under a small rag of canvas (but he was

in Show Biz) Truly a Pit Show

Chic Silber said...


I've been told the early "Geek Shows"

were actually in pits to protect the

marks (& the geeks & the chickens)

Chic Silber said...


I also sent Buckles the 2 headed baby