Friday, February 17, 2006

Eloise Berchtold and "Koa" 1960

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Looks like she was at a fancy dinner event. This was and will always be the best female trainer of any animal. Everyone loved Eloise.

Bob Cline said...

OK Rebecca, Is that JC standing in th background? They were married at about this time.
Bob

Anonymous said...

No that is not JC and they were not married at that time. He had been thou another wife then.

Buckles said...

JC was at the OABA meeting last Saturday and he certainlyu has a way of bringing the conversation back to earth.
We were all in agreement that the new USDA laws were doable until he pointed out something we had missed, a circus must have a Vet on call at all points of exhibition. With the exception of Ken & Nicole the cost for this, for a show playing seven towns a week would be difficult not to mention an expensive retainer.

Anonymous said...

One time I was at an OABA convention in Chicago. Linda and I were to me JC in the lobby of the Palmer Hotel. As JC keeps his own time we were there for hours. Linda and I could have made a fortune for all the times we were propsisioned{?] We were really Pished. JC thought it was sooo funny. He always did have a different sense of humor.

Anonymous said...

Funny story [to me anyway] I have always called John, JC, it seems to be catching on. Once we were haveing an argument and I told him: "Just because your initials are JC that does not mean you are Jesus Christ" He did not believe me.

Anonymous said...

The actor who played Shindler in Shindlers List reminds me of JC. I have the tape of the movie and the scene before intermission where he and his lady friend are on horse back looking down at the getto is how I always remember JC. Of course this is through the eyes of love.

Buckles said...

The memory of JC I will carry to the grave with me was in 1963. We were making a 4th of July date in the old Chicago Coliseum in which John's Horse Fantasy was also booked.
We got the elephants quartered in the building a day early and my wife, mother, father and I decided to visit the Ringling Show playing in the Amphtheater.
As we were leaving the building we met John outside and while we were chatting a black lady nude from the waist up came out of nowhere, wrapped her arms around his neck and hung on like grim death.
I didn't know what the Hell to do. John kept trying to free himself all the while saying "Madam!", "Madam!".
He finally broke loose and departed the scene with considerable assiduity.

Anonymous said...

Probably a peta plant. Sounds like something they would do. JC was not the huggable kind.

Buckles said...

Interesting that you would mention that about PETA. At this moment in 1963 in Baraboo, John Herriott was forming an alliance among elephant men that he called "Professional Elephant Trainers Association" which we referred to as PETA.
My father died the following winter and at his funeral was a nice floral display from PETA.
Fortunately at that time sanity ruled the day.

Buckles said...

I forgot to mention, Ben was there also, pretty exciting stuff for a 10 year old.

Anonymous said...

This looks a lot like the Drake Hotel in Chicago. That are the enterance to JC,s house.

Buckles said...

The man in the background might actually be a hotel employee. She is obviously worried that the tub might slide back on the slippery floor when "Koa" backs up against it.
So he has been asked to prop his foot against it.

Bob Cline said...

Please help clarify this just a little. JC owned Koa as I understand it. Eloise trained and performed her for a few years. In this time frame, they were married for just a brief period of time. Koa was eventually given to the Cincinnati Zoo. I've read about this in several accounts so now I need to know if it's correct or not because I included this in my book. Thanks,
Bob

Anonymous said...

Bob, check with Giovanni Iulianni about Eloise He has already written a book about her death. It is in French. He is also writing about My life and Eloise. She has been my mentor for the way I live my life and it has almost killed me trying to live up to her standards. Jackie Zarbini translated some of it for JC. [the book] Out of respect to Herta I don't make public JC,s private life. You might call JC for some answers. He is very approchable and I have never known him to lie about anything. He just lives in a strange world.

Anonymous said...

Koa was a MALE. Very jealous and protective of Eloise. I had always thought it would be KOA that would kill Eloise. JC even told her he would. Eloise just laughed.

Anonymous said...

It is just like Eloise to worry about KOA falling, not that the man would be crushed if KOA fell on him. I have been going to court for three years defending one of my dogs that was accused of biting some jerk. The plaintiff finally dropped the case. Thanks Eloise for teaching me to never give up when animals are envolved.

Anonymous said...

Another spin on who owned Koa: I know Eloise was at the Toledo Zoo in 1963 training her mixed cage act and working Koa. I don't know exactly when she left the Zoo but she had the cage act and the Paramont Bears, with the motorcycle-riding polar bear in 1966 on Polack (is that right Buckles?). I heard that she got the elephant and the bear act when she and JC split. She left Koa at the Cincinnati Zoo but she retained ownership. He became unmanageable, she couldn't be contacted (according to the Zoo's Gen. Curator) and Koa was euthanized. Eloise wasn't happy but where would you go with a tough bull African in 1967?

Anonymous said...

Dear Buckles. Barbara Byrd show my the OABA draft white paper today that came out of the meeting. I'm wonder about teh issue of "vet on call?" Whether a show vet on-call else, and a local vet referral (not used unless it's necessary) meets the mark? In the draft white paper I scratched my head a bit when it came to the endorsement of existing regulations right down to the local level. There are already some difficult local regulations.

Ben Trumble

Anonymous said...

Jim. I worked with JC.s bears before I went with Kelly Miller in the 60's with the leopard act. Eloise only had KOA at this time. So many stories have been told that it gets very confusing. Did we not forget another person during this time period? I am trying so hard to keep foot out of mouth and we all know how hard that is for me. Follow the ARROWS from 1956 to 1966. I always said JC married so he would not have to pay a salary. That is a JOKE.

Anonymous said...

Just how many VETS out there would know what to do for a wild animal? One killed one of the animals I worked with with his stupidity. Would not listen to me. What does a female know? It was Eloises favorite leopard KIM. This animal did all the main tricks in the act. I am a VET TECH and have found very few Vets that would even see a wild animal. This is just another way for the USDA to gouge the Circus. Look at the one who killed SUE.

Anonymous said...

I just remembered something. While verifying dates for my book, I spoke to a nice lady at the Cinn Zoo. She said records showed Eloise never worked or volenteered there as I had been lead to believe. She did say when Eloise placed KOA she mentioned Eloises husband was there. Eloise was with Berry at this time so maybe they did not correct the Zoo lady. Then again it could have been JC with her, but they were not married. Eloise told me she did not consider herself divorced as she did not believe in it. Those words came from her mouth to my ears at breakfast one morning in Libetyville IL in 57 or 58. The year Nixon and Kennedy ran for president.

Anonymous said...

If we get some dates confused it can be blamed on our age. Thats one good thing about being a senior citizen. Having memorys to share with the world is another. If we could just skip the aches and pains it would be wonderful. No one told me ageing hurts like hell.

CIRQUECAPELLEMEISTER said...

Buckles,
Hope all is well with family.
Wondering how GG Engesser is?
Living in Missoula, Mt. and enjoying the homelife.
Here is my email:
rosio-bewes @ bresnan.net
Sincerely,
R. Rosio

Unknown said...

Hello Eloise would be my Aunt My grandma is her sister an I'm very interested if you know anything or would like to talk

Unknown said...

Eloise would be my wife's great aunt her grandma talks of her sister often for those that know her we would like to talk...

Abby Rose said...

Hi Ezra Eloise is my grandmothers cousin. Her name was Eloise as well, Mary Eloise. Do you know anything about JC?

bebo1953 said...

The picture above looks like it may have been taken in the Museum of Science building at The Toledo Zoo (Toledo, Ohio). She performed there in the early 1960's.