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By Marc Hartzman

A desirable investigate the historical past of the yankee sideshow and its performers. study what is genuine, what is pretend, and what is simply downright weird and wonderful. you have got most likely heard of Tom Thumb. The Elephant guy. Chang and Eng, the unique Siamese twins. yet what approximately Eli Bowen, the legless acrobat? Myrtle Corbin, the four-legged lady? Or Prince Randian, the human torso? most of these and extra have been stars in the course of the heyday of the yank sideshow, from 1840 to 1950. American Sideshow chronicles the lives of actually outstanding performers, analyzing those courageous and amazing curiosities, not only as sideshow sights, yet as humans, delving into the lives they led and the way they have been in a position to overcome their abnormalities. American Sideshow discusses the increase and fall of the unique sideshows and their next substitute by way of brand new self-made freaks. With the development of contemporary medication, the actual abnormalities are disappearing, both via therapy or prevention; and, paradoxically, those self same technological developments now give the chance to alter bodies at will. it truly is extraordinary how effortless it's to have your tongue forked, horns surgically implanted, or your earlobes got rid of. There also are modern day giants, fire-eaters, fire-breathers, sword-swallowers, glass-eaters, human blockheads, and, oh, a lot more. those attention-grabbing personalities are celebrated via intimate biographies paired with gorgeous pictures. nearly 2 hundred performers from the prior a hundred and sixty years are featured, giving readers a complete and infrequently superb view of the historical past of the yankee sideshow.

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Extra info for American sideshow: an encyclopedia of history's most wondrous and curiously strange performers

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The baby was just like Mom—eighteen pounds, twenty-seven inches—but sadly, she died shortly after birth. The colossal couple settled in Seville, Ohio, where they built a home designed just for them. Doorways were eight and a half feet high, ceilings reached to fourteen feet, and oversize furniture was constructed to provide a rare treat for giants, comfort. But soon the pair would need money. They took advantage of the gift nature had given them and joined W. W. Cole’s circus, touring as the Tallest People on Earth.

LIFTO - Born circa 1970 SCOTT BAKER - Born 1948 THE BINDLESTIFF FAMILY CIRKUS, KEITH NELSON and STEPHANIE MONSEU - Nelson: Born ... SES CARNY - Born 1980 TIM CRIDLAND, ZAMORA THE TORTURE RING - Born 1963 MATT "THE TUBE" CROWLEY - Born 1962 EAK - Born 1962 THE ENIGMA and KATZEN - The Enigma: Born 1968 Katzen: Born 1974 JOHNNY FOX - Born 1953 GEORGE THE GIANT - Born 1969 THE GREAT FREDINI - Born 1965 THE GREAT NIPPULINI - Born 1974 THE GREAT THROWDINI - Born 1946 INSECTAVORA - Born circa 1970s THE LIZARDMAN - Born 1972 JENNIFER MILLER - Born 1960 ALEXZANDER MORROW, THE JUNIOR TORTURE KING - Born 1989 HARLEY NEWMAN, PROFESSIONAL LUNATIC - Born 1951 THE PAIN-PROOF RUBBER GIRLS, ULA and SÄRKA - Born circa 1970s TODD ROBBINS - Born 1958 JIM ROSE - * Born 1956 DANIEL BROWNING SMITH, THE RUBBER BOY - Born 1979 BRUCE SNOWDON - Born 1946 RED STUART XXVIII - Born 1951 VIVIAN WHEELER - Born 1948 MICHAEL WILSON, THE ILLUSTRATED MAN - 1952-1996 EGRESS From Under the Tent to Across the Web Selected Bibliography Index of Performers, Showmen, and Other Notables About the Author JEREMY P.

At age thirteen he began exhibiting his talent with Major Brown’s Coliseum, and the act earned him his moniker. , and late in life, the Coney Island Dreamland Circus Side Show. He occasionally was teamed with the Armless Wonder Charles Tripp. The two were featured in a famous photo with Bowen steering a bicycle being pedaled by his armless partner (see page 282). At age twenty-six, Bowen married Mattie Haines, who was just sixteen. The two produced four fully limbed sons. According to his great-great-granddaughter Gabrielle Bowen, he did not like little boys and wanted daughters.

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