Monday, April 30, 2012
Running off with the circus was always an option if things didn't work out. Carnivals played a more prominent role in american folklore in the pre internet age. There used to be smaller circus's that would travel town to town setting up their big top tents, sometimes even with the labor of the performing animals. Elephants were showman, and laborers alike as they were used to help in setup and travel. The circus life was viewed as an alternative life, with many mysterious and exotic people traveling like a family from show to show, across the country all in the name of wooooo-ing the crowd. Acrobats, stunts, animal performances and clowns held down the main stages while tattooed, strange and odd others worked their magic on the sideshow. Well....remember this in a time before we had the answers to the world at our fingertips via the internet, and in order to let people know the circus was coming to town promotors would go out and hang posters of upcoming dates and special attractions that would be coming in to town. Once at the circus the sideshow banners helped create a strange ambiance of what lied in the little tents. These posters and banners are an important part of American folk art and a lot of the imagery that we know and love today came from these posters.