THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO MY TWIN BROTHER, BILL DYKES (1943-1995). WE WERE NOT ONLY BROTHERS BUT PARTNERS IN BUSINESS AND BEST FRIENDS! AND TO ALL THE "BUTCHERS" THAT HAVE PASSED ON TO THE BIG LOT IN THE SKY!

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Friday, November 30, 2012

 
Book Report: Sights and sounds under the big top
When I was a kid one of the biggest deals of the year was when the Al G. Kelly and Miller Brothers Circus came to town.
By: Dave Wood, columnist, River Falls Journal
November 29, 2012
When I was a kid one of the biggest deals of the year was when the Al G. Kelly and Miller Brothers Circus came to town.
It was a mid-sized circus, nothing like Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, which always stopped in Eau Claire. But it always featured 20 elephants and made sure we high school students knew we were finally growing up.
That’s because when the show came to town, boys were dismissed from high school to help put up the three-ring big top, for which we were given free passes and a mammoth breakfast at the mess tent, along with the real circus hands.
So it was with excitement that I opened a beautiful new book, “The American Circus,” edited by Susan Weber, Kenneth Ames, and Matthew Wittmann (Yale University Press, n.p.)
It’s a fascinating look at the development of the circus in the U.S. with 17 essays ranging in topics from how our circus culture differed from Europe’s, chapters on circus posters in startling colors, a remembrance of the circus’s parade down main streets all over the U.S.
I learned about circus companies who never made it to western Wisconsin, like Forepaugh’s, and ones that had, like The Cole Brothers.
I learned that even F.D.R.’s WPA got into the act during the depression and operated a federally funded circus in New York City for four years.
read more:
http://www.piercecountyherald.com/event/article/id/103605/publisher_ID/19/

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