circus act

      URSULA-BLUTCHEN-THE-POLAR-BEAR-PRINCESS

      Ursula Blütchen – The Polar Bear Princess

      The ‘Polar Bear Princess’, Ursula Blütchen, was born in Dresden, Germany on June 6, 1927 to an average working class family. Widely regarded as the most sensational animal trainer to have ever lived, Ursula’s unusual career didn’t begin until she was her mid 20’s. Initially hired in 1952 as a cleaning woman for the soviet…

      Sword-swallowing

      Sword Swallowing – The Most Dangerous Sideshow Stunt

      Sword swallowing is arguably the most dangerous and misunderstood of all sideshow stunts. It is dangerous due to the physical proximity of cold steel to the internal organs of the performer and misunderstood as, more than all the sideshow arts, sword swallowing is commonly perceived to be the result of trickery. Sword swallowing is very…

      ZAZEL – Presenting The First Human Cannonball

      On April 2nd, 1877 English-born Rosa Richter debuted a spectacular finale to her aerial act at the newly constructed Royal London Aquarium. The 16-year-old ‘Zazel’ descended into the depths of a cylindrical tube of cold metal and, with a great explosion, was propelled some 70 feet into the air and over the heads of amazed…

      JOHN HOLTUM - The Cannonball Man

      JOHN HOLTUM – The Cannonball Man

      At one point in history every circus, carnival, and vaudeville hall had a strongman on hand to astound spectators. The image of a mustachioed man clad in leopard print while hoisting a bending barbell high aloft is still synonymous with circuses. The spectacles these men provided ranged from the highly impressive the the borderline mundane but in a golden age populated with hundreds of contemporaries an individual simply had to go the extra mile to ensure fame and fortune.

      John Holtum elected to stand apart by becoming a human target. Holtum caught cannon balls fired directly at his him from point-blank range.

      tom-king-the-albino-ice-king.jpg

      TOM JACK – The Ice King

      In 1900 a young mystifier took Europe by storm and perplexed Scotland Yard with his ability to escape from all marshal restraints. That man was none other than Ehrich Weiss, the master escape artist better known as Harry Houdini. Houdini actually owed a lot to the human marvels he shared the stage with when he…