Monday, October 20, 2008

To Henry from Mike Naughton

TEY0010000903, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

Perhaps you could tell us something about this poster.


Anonymous said...

It was printed by Friedlander of Hamburg.

Raffaele De Ritis said...

The poster portrays Mann, an elephant trainer in the early 1900s.
Circus Corty-Althoff was a very prestigious big top at the time: not so big as Krone or Sarrasani but with the finest available performers. It was the only travelling circus in which Houdini ever performed. Equestrian acts were very sophisticated. They didn't owned elephants, so they booked them from the variety or circus artists' circuit. This circus was founded by French-German director Pierre Corty, and lasted up to the early 20s.
The poster was printed by Friedlander in Hamburg, the most prestigious european circus litographer of the era. Posters like this are very rare today.

Nothing to do with circus Corty Althoff of 1980s.

Mike Naughton said...

Thank you.
What was the Althoff connection to this show?

Raffaele De Ritis said...

The circus founder Pierre Corty was father-in-law to Dominik Althoff. Dominik's son, Pierre Althoff, later became the circus director, so naming it Corty-Althoff.

Anonymous said...

Wilhelm Althoff (1807-?) was the father of nine children including Dominikus (1841-1887)——who married Adele, the daughter of Pierre Corty, thus establishing the Corty and Althoff alliance——and Adolf (1852-1912), who is the great-grandfather of both Jeanette Williams and Henry Schroer. Dominikus’ daughter Maria (1875-1933) married Willy Manns, the elephant trainer featured on this poster which can be dated 1910. Manns also appears on other Friedlander posters.

Pierre Althoff (1869-1924), a son of Dominikus and brother to Maria, was the longtime operator of the Corty-Althoff circus which closed in 1927. His wife, Adele Rossi, had a brother Alfredo who presented a musical elephant act (Petie, Rosa, Pierrette, and Nellie) at the NY Hippodrome theatre in Nov 1908; the act was also on the Buffalo Bill-Pawnee Bill show in 1910.

Dick Flint