Tuesday, December 30, 2014

From Chic Silber

From Shannon: Interesting video clip showing the special effects of the Wicked production.

Circus World 1974-77 #1

Came across this Circus World publicity photo of Ben and "Anna May" and decided to add a few more snap shots.
Jerry Digney might have had it taken.

Circus World 1974-77 #2

Post Card #1.

This is the 5-act I put together and later worked in the center ring with the Blue Show.
"Carmen", "Mudu", "Peggy", "Rebecca" and "Zina", all former Billy Smart elephants.

Seems I remember hearing that Mudu's name had been "Chi Chi" with Billy Smart which Hugo Schmitt immediately changed on arrival.

The girl out front is Miguel Vargas' daughter Marcella who both came with us on our return from Mexico after accepting this job.
I might add that Kenneth Feld told me at the time that I was the first Dept. head he had ever hired and hoped I would work out OK.

Circus World 1974-77 #3

Post Card #2

Circus World 1974-77 #4

Post Card #3.

Circus World 1974-77 #5

Circus World 1974-77 #6

Circus World 1974-77 #7

Miguel Vargas spotting at left.

Circus World 1974-77 #8

Two more suspicious looking characters in the background Gary Jacobson and Scott Riddle.

Circus World 1974-77 #9

Circus World 1974-77 #10

Monday, December 29, 2014

Perl Souder #1

Ringling Bros. World's Greatest Shows performing elephants.
Trained and presented by Edouard "Perl" Souder.

Perl Souder #2

Perl Souder #3

Perl Souder #4

The step of authority, Souder at practice in Baraboo.

Perl Souder #5

Perl Souder #6

Perl Souder #7

Perl Souder #8

Perl Souder  with "Vanita" and "Baby Baraboo".

Perl Souder #9

This date is in error.

The 12/27/02 Billboard carried a story that Lee Williams (Hagenbeck's Agent) had delivered eight more elephants to Baraboo plus a mother with a nursing calf.

"Baby Baraboo" #1

"Boo", "Black Diamond" "Bug House Alice", "Annie" and "Lizzie".
Leased from Hall's Farm to R.T. Richards Circus 1917-18.

"Baby Baraboo" #2

Al Langdon "Ding Dong" and "Baby Baraboo" with Campbell, Bailey & Hutchinson 1920.

"Baby Baraboo" #3

Dutch Wallace  with "Tommy", "Ding" and "Boo".

"Baby Baraboo" #4

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Train Layout #1 (From Eric Beheim)

Just in the past year I’ve been collecting electric trains from the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s that were made by the Louis B. Marx Company. (Unlike Lionel electric trains, you can still find vintage Marx trains on eBay at reasonable prices.) I’ve been buying them primarily to photograph them in close-up in tabletop settings. Marx trains, however, are becoming quite collectable, so my collection is also an investment of sorts. Although I don’t have a permanent train layout, I did set up some track around the base of our Christmas tree this year. By a adding a few trackside accessories and three light-up ceramic buildings that I found in a thrift store, I was able to come up with a modest, but fairly respectable layout. (Marx O-gauge trains were always meant to be played with on the floor, particularly around Christmas time!) Since some of you are also train fans, I thought I might share a few photos of my Marx Christmas layout. 

Christmas Train Layout #2

This is a Marx 999 die cast engine. Originally designed around 1941 and nicknamed “the old reliable” by Marx employees, the 999 was sold individually and in sets well into the 1950s. A plastic version was also made.

Christmas Train Layout #3

Two more Marx die cast engines, a 666 and a 333. Sold through the big retail outfits like Sears and Wards, hundreds of thousands of Marx electric train sets were sold every year around Christmas time. It is generally acknowledged that Marx made more electric trains than any other company. Modestly priced and ruggedly built, they were electric trains for the masses.

Christmas Train Layout #4

Marx was able to keep down the cost of its engines and cars through the use of lithographed tin bodies. This version of the Union Pacific M10000 Streamliner was first introduced in 1934, shortly after the prototype train went into service. Like most of Marx’s engines, it was also available with a spring-wound motor.

Christmas Train Layout #5

The Mercury, which was produced by Marx from 1938 to 1952, was inspired by the New York Central’s family of daytime streamliner passenger trains designed by noted industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss. (The last NYC Mercury made its final run in 1959.)

Christmas Train Layout #6

Introduced in 1937, Marx’s Canadian Pacific engine was copied from the Canadian Pacific Railway’s “Jubilee” 4-4-4 locomotive. Over the years, Marx produced this engine with many variations of color and details. 

Christmas Train Layout #7

One of the most colorful of Marx’s lithographed engines was this replica of a Fairbanks-Morse Diesel with the Kansas City Southern paint scheme. (One of Marx’s factories was located in Erie, Pennsylvania where the Fairbanks-Morse plant was located.)

From Chic Silber #1

A few more Beatty tops.

From Chic Silber #2

From Chic Silber #3

1968 James Bros. #1

This 120' that came with Sid Kellner's purchase of the Mills Bros. equipment was a nice size.
With two rows of quarter poles it gave a circusy effect and squeezed in pretty well on the Shopping Center parking lots we played. 
These are three of his four elephants "Ellie", "Lovie" and "Sue", when I joined, "Ellie" would go up with the quarters on one side and a fork lift on the other so I quickly slapped harnesses to these two little guys and it sped things up considerably.
I was informed by Mrs. Woodcock that if I even thought about putting a work harness on "Anna May" they could  both be contacted by long distance in Ruskin, Florida