Biggest Collection of Live and Museum Curiosities Here


Curious crowds gave Barnum's successor  museums a rushing business Christmas day, according to the management of the show.


It opened Wednesday for a stay of a week in Wichita, at 122 West Douglas.


The museum includes what is said to be the largest collection of live and museum freak now traveling the country.


The feature of the show is a Japanese wood-carving valued at $25,000, his carving is the statue Carver  life sized and, according to authorities, the most perfect anatomical reproduction ever Carved.  It was assembled by the carver from over 2000 pieces of wood with an ordinary carving knife.


Also included are a number of live freaks. Ralph Johnson billed as the fish man man a remarkable curiosity. A woman whose bones have never  matured and has always lied in a reclining position.  A mentalist believed to be Americas youngest, a magician, a horse like man, and many others.


In the museum section are a endless variety of curious and interesting exhibits.  Among them are  complete illustrations of many of Robert Ripley's "believe it ore not" items, in reproduction of the world fames freaks of P.T. Barnum's original museum, the most perfectly preserved human body mummified by natural causes that is known today, example of shrunken and preserved human heads taken by Ecuadorian Headhunting Indians and a hundred unusual exhibits.


Ito on display Maui 1927



Successor to P. T. Barnum's  Great Show Will Be Exhibited Here


One of the largest and most unusual traveling museums of freaks and curiosities to the world is the attraction offered Wichita for Christmas and the days immediately following at 122 West Douglas.  It terms itself the successor  to P. T. Barnum's great show and among its many exhibits includes wax models of the freak made famous by the first great show man.


Both live and museum freaks are included in the many exhibits.  The most valuable and one of the most interesting exhibit is the original self-sculpture of Ito Hamachi the greatest of all Japanese wood-carvers.


The statue is life size and was fashioned by Ito over a period of many years with an ordinary carving knife.  More than 2000 separate pieces of wood were used in the statue, and  it generally said to be the most perfect piece of anatomical reproductions in the world.  It is valued at $25,000.


Ito carved his statue more than 70 years ago, but it is perfectly preserved even to the hair which he plucked and transplanted from his own head one single hair at a time.


Among the live entertainers and freaks are Professor Davidson magician, Miss Lucille the youngest mentalist in the country, who gives an interesting and clever demonstration of mental telepathy and mind reading, Eco the horse like man, one of the most versatile and inspiring freaks in the business; Alfred the amphibian boy, one of natures curiosities; and Medusa, goddess of the son a woman who never since her birth on a Japanese sailing vessel on route to the United States from Australia has stood or set upright.   Medusa's bones have never matured and are as flexible as India rubber.


An interesting exhibition in the museum section is a collection of shrunken and mummified heads, made by the Ecuador head-hunting Indians.  The collection is very valuable and is the only on e of its kind which is displayed in a traveling museum.  The four others that exist are in large eastern museums.


Another feature exhibit is one illustrating with the articles.  Many of the "Believe or Not" items appearing in Robert Ripley's daily feature in the Beacon.  Among these are the platypus, the four legged animal that lays eggs like a chicken, and an exhibit which proves that the emblems of the Elks Lodge are made from the tusks of a walrus, not from the antlers of the elk.


A wide variety of other freaks  and museum curiosities are also displayed.


Among these are the most perfectly preserved mummified body in existence, loaned to the museum by a Kansas City undertaking establishment: several antique and valuable paintings; a dress made in Japan for the famous actress Jeanne Engle's, (a former Ziegfield star, died 1926) at a cost of more than $3,000, and others.


Articles and Photograph courtesy of Lynne Bell


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