On MONDAY, DECEMBER 16th, First Appearance, after eight years in Europe and engaged at an enormous salary,  MISS MILLIE CHRISTINE, surnamed THE TWO HEADED NIGHTINGALE.

 

The Eighth Wonder of the World.  Born in Columbus County, State of North Carolina, A.D. 1853, well educated, and possessed of splendid conversational powers, and about to converse with two different persons on different topics at the same time.  Both heads speak English, French and German, and the Nightingale sings the popular ballads of the day in the most artistic manner and dance a Schottische, Waltz, Varsouvienne or Polkas with as much ease and grace as any two separated people.  Walks on either two of four feet at will.  Cheerful, and happy, and of the most pleasing appearance.  For the past eight years in Europe, spending her time in England, Russia, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Holland, Belgium and France.  Accompanied by the Brothers Margi, BARON LITTLE FINGER, COUNT ROSEBUD,  The Baron is 30 years old of age, and 35 inches high.  The Count is 28 years of age and is 351/2 inches high.  The finest little men in existence. They will Act, Fence, and Dance.  The little gentlemen are natives of Bologna, Italy, and this is their first appearance in this country.   Far surpassing all the Dwarfs ever exhibited.  The most pleasing and marvelous exhibition on earth.


 

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF MILLIE CHRISTINE, THE CAROLINA TWIN, SURNAMED THE TWO-HEADED NIGHTINGALE, AND THE EIGHTH WONDER OF THE WORLD.


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A Circus Poster with the Conjoined Twins Millie and Christine McCoy, “The Two-Headed Nightingale,”

Circus Days in America Circus Posters at the Shelburne Museum

 

 

 

Bill of sale in 1853 when slave owner Jacob McKay sold a pair of conjoined Twins

 

 


 

 

 



 


 

 

 

 



Millie and Christine McCoy Millie and Christine McCoy J.P. Smith their Owner & Manager

 

 

  

      Above Image from an Article in the Moore's Rural - New Yorker Aug 8th 1871

 

 

Writing on  back of Card, 

 

Millie and Christine [McCoy]

Born as Slaves in Columbus Co. N.C. July 11th 1851 sold as infants for $30,000 to a man from New Orleans named Smith.

The Man bought the entire family and tried to keep them together.  The were kidnapped by by a unscrupulous guardian who toured the twins around the country without regard to the twins wishes or the behest of the family and/or mgmnt. of the twins.

 

Eventually they were reunited with their mother & family after a trial in England where the twins Kidnapper had absconded with them.  The twins toured w/P.T. Barnum among others, and died Oct. 9 1912, 17 hrs. apart - in their ten room cottage in Columbus Co. N.C.

 

     

 



 

 

 

I was born in the State of

 

North Carolina, Columbus Co.,

 

Anno Domini 1851.

 

And pronounced by scientist to be the 8th wonder of the world. 

 

Tis not modest of one's self to speak,

But, daily scanned from head to feet,

I freely talk of everything, 

Sometimes to persons wondering.

  Some people say I must be two!

  The doctors say it is not true. 

Some cry out humbug, till they see,

  And then exclaim, "great mystery."

Two heads, four arms, four feet,

All in one perfect body meet.

  I am most wonderfully made, 

All scientific men have said. 

None like me since the days of Eve, 

None perhaps shall ever live.

If marvel to myself am I, 

Why not to all who pass me by? 

I am happy too, because content;

For some wise purpose I was sent. 

Our Maker knows what he has for one, 

Whether I'm created two or one. 

 

Respectfully,

                                            MILLIE CHRISTINE.

The Carolina twin, surnamed the 2-headed Nightingale

 

 



 






 


 


 

 

Above Cigar Box Label

 

Milllie and Christine McCoy were the daughters of slave owned by blacksmith Jabez McKay. Joined at the lower spine, they learned to walk either on their rear pair of legs or on all four, in which case they progressed sideways. They were referred to as often in the singular as in the plural throughout their lives. By the time they were four, they had been stolen from their parents, kidnapped once and sold three times, lucrative earners for their succession of owners to exhibit as a curiosity in sideshows

 

Freed from slavery by Lincoln’s declaration of 1863, the girls remained with their last owner, J.P Smith, who had bought them for $30,000. Under his care and management they continued their career. Mrs. Smith taught them to read and write and honed their musical talents. They eventually became renowned performers touring the world, accomplished singers, pianists and even dancers. Fluent in five languages (‘she’ could even talk in two different languages at once), they danced and sang before the royal courts of Europe. They were a great favorite of Queen Victoria.

 

The twins soon earned enough money for their father to purchase a farm and support the rest of the family. Returning to the States in 1882, they traveled with a circus for several years, receiving $25,000 a season, an extraordinary sum in those days. In 1884 they settled down in North Carolina, building a large house on the land they had bought for their father twenty years earlier when he was freed from slavery. Until their death in 1912, they did charity work and toured intermittently.

 

Image Circa 1870.

 


 

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