"The Kid Show"
The Small Tent next to the Big Top!
(that is shows of the unusual which were with a circus) were
referred to within the circus business as "the kid show: meaning
it was in the small tent and the "big show" which was presented
in the "big top".
It was not referring
to the age of the customers. When there were sideshows with
circus (I managed several over the years before going into
business for myself) had as one of the main attractions "The
Cooch Show" which was dancing strippers in the blow-off.
Some shows also had a second blow-off with a sex attraction :
Hermaphrodite - Half and Half!
Most of the other
acts were vaudeville style acts plus the jig show a band of
black musicians with a line of chorus girls, a featured singer.
and one or two comics.
It was very
important to get grown men in the show because in the sideshow
would be found "The broad mob" 3 card Monte and "The Nut Mob"
the shell game. Much of the profit of circuses that operated in
this way was derived from these games. In the circus industry it
was simply "a grift show and the men of these "mobs' were
referred to as grifters. On some of the bigger shows it was a
requirement that the grifters had to put up the sideshow banner
line each day, which was a great help since most shows only made
"one night stands" in those days.
Note the sideshow to
the left of the Big Top Main Entry
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One On One With Ward Hall
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