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Mail Tribune 100, Sept. 24, 1921

The following news items were drawn from the archives of the Mail Tribune 100 years ago

Sept. 24, 1921


Tremendous Crowds Witness High Class Parade at 1 P. M., Followed By Big Show-3 Rings and Two Stages Thrill Record Audience.

Double length circus cars measuring more than 70 feet each, a long movement and an up-hill grade caused the big Sells-Floto circus to arrive rather late this morning and the result was a late parade and a somewhat later performance. However; the circus is here in all its glory and that is what mainly concerns the small boy and incidentally, his dad. There are certain days in the year which have a sort of reaction over Dad and the reactionary period is most pronounced on circus day, especially if the circus trains are late in arriving. Then Dad is “the reactionary kid,” and he takes just as much delight in the circus as his small offspring.

Dads were much in evidence this morning as the circus trains pulled into the city. He enjoyed the sight of ponderous elephants tugging at big cages and wagons; massive motor tractors drawing trains of eight and ten cages toward the circus ground at a rapid clip, the hoisting of the circus tents, the feeding of the 914 people who are connected with the show and the viewing of more than 340 head of beautiful Percheron baggage horses which were soon stabled in the horse tents.

And at last, came the parade. It is doubtful if the city ever beheld a longer, more flashy or better staged street procession than that what was seen on the main thoroughfares shortly after 1 p.m. A decided feature of the parade was the open cages or dens. Every big barred wagon was wide up to free inspection of the thousands of curb spectators and each den held perfect specimens of wild beasts. It was truly a novel and exceptionally clean parade. Even the parading performers seemed to be of a higher type than that of the ordinary circus.

A Big Snappy Program

About 2 p.m. the midway of the circus was packed with a surging, noisy and hilarious mob of circus fans who clamored around each of the three ticket wagons and when the doors opened, there was a grand rush to inspect the wonders of the circus and menagerie.

The big concert band and pipe organ under the direction of Don Montgomery rendered a short but highly delightful musical program and then the circus started. And what a circus! Each of the three rings and two stages were constantly occupied with fast turning circus acts which kept the heads of the big audience bobbing from side to side until their very necks ached. Seven times the performance was stopped for “thrillers,” chief of which was the celebrated “Poodles” Hannaford Family of riders. “Poodles” kept the audience in a constant roar through his funny antics and for the first time in local circus history this city witnessed a circus act which called for repeated encores.

Taking the Sells-Floto program as a whole, it is decidedly clean and refreshing to a degree. Slang or vulgarity have not place in their entertainment and it is really a circus worth looking at. There will be another performance tonight at 8 o’clock and indications point to another large audience.

— Alissa Corman; acorman@rosebudmedia.com