||The Circus Collection consists of materials assembled from other Performing Arts
collections. It is divided into six series: I. American Circuses, II. Foreign
Circuses, III. P. T. Barnum, IV. Dime Museums, V. Wild West Productions, and VI.
Posters and Playbills. The bulk of the collection dates from the late nineteenth
century and the early twentieth century.
||The American Circuses series contains materials related to individual circuses as
well as the performers and administrators associated with them. This series consists
of newspaper clippings, photographs, posters, programs, and musical scores, with
bulk of the material dating from the mid-nineteenth century through the early
twentieth century. Included in the American Circuses series is documentation of
Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus, the Ringling Brothers Circus, John Robinson's Circus,
the Sells Floto Circus.
||The Foreign Circuses series also contains clippings, photographs, posters, and
programs, as well as numerous scrapbook pages. The majority of the material in
series covers British circuses and dates from the late 1800s.
||The third series pertains to the showman P. T. Barnum (1810-1891) and contains
photographs, posters, programs, and scrapbook pages related to Barnum's Circus
Museum and the performers who worked for and toured with him, both in Europe and
the United States. General Tom Thumb and Siamese twins Chang and Eng are especially
||The Dime Museum series consists of cabinet cards of various Dime Museum and circus
and carnival sideshow performers. Many of the performers depicted are not
individually identified on the cabinet cards, but the cards are divided by type
||The fifth series contains newspaper clippings, photographs, programs, and scores
documenting the Wild West productions of the late 1800s. The bulk of the material
related to Buffalo Bill Cody (1846-1917) and his Wild West Show. Other individuals
featured in the series include Annie Oakley, Ned Buntline, Calamity Jane, and
||Posters and playbills make up the final series, which is divided into four subseries:
A. American Circuses, B. Foreign Circuses, C. Wild West Shows and Rodeos, and
Circus Performers. The bulk of this series consists of posters for American circuses
such the P. T. Barnum Circus and Museum, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, Adam
Forepaugh Circuses, Hagenbeck-Wallace, Ringling Bros., Barnum & Bailey, and
the Sells-Floto Circus, among others. Most of the foreign circus material pertains
to performances in England.
||The materials in the Circus Collection were gathered together by Performing Arts
staff, with the majority of the material assembled from the Davis-Kendall