This was a midway grind show.
It was composed of 6 inch mechanical people that performed
simple tricks. Each worked off cables and gears and it was most
amazing in it’s time… 1914. In the ticket box Walter Estes, on
the left Auto Durkee and his wife on right Molly Durkee. These
folks are all related to Billie Henderson Schuller and Peggy
Henderson MacDonald. This kind of show was found on fairs,
carnivals and circus midways. There were many different shows
each presenting something new and odd. For instance… freak
animal shows, mummy shows, pit shows consisting of snakes etc.
and the list goes on. Find or build something different, then
put up a two pole top and you have a show….that’s the definition
of a grind show. You stay open till close. There is no beginning
or ending of a performance. It is a continuous sale of tickets.
In the back ground can be heard a constant bally of the odd and
unusual that can be seen inside the tent. Hence the name GRIND,
because it is a grind to work all day long.
There is another type of grind
show, it’s name is a “Ding Show”. The Ding Show sells no
tickets….. it works on donations. One person can operate this
show. On the way into the show you pass through a bally curtain.
Just before passing there is a ding box where you drop your coin.
In the box there is a small bell that is placed so that when the
coin is dropped in, it hit the bell making a dinging sound. Hence
the name DING Show. Oh yes if the owner of the show that is
sitting over in a corner of the tent does not hear a ding …………..
You are thrown out of the show quickly.
Thank you Billie - click here for
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