shaken & stirred

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"the day the clowns cried"

A site called History Buff, which apparently collects period newspaper accounts of various historical events (among other things), has photos of the worst circus fire in history.

I've actually seen them before, but still they're pretty damn amazing.

See also freak accidents resulting in death:

At Enid, Oklahoma T. John Ralston was sitting on a porch in front of the Glass Mountain House, smoking and enjoying the coolness of the evening. Suddenly a bat darted into his face, either designedly or by accident, and both eyeballs were punctured. Efforts at restoring his sight failed and he was blind for the rest of his life.

A meteorite as big as a man’s fist struck the arm of Reverend M. R. Horton of Harrison Courthouse, Virginia setting his coat on fire and seriously burning his arm. The meteorite then hurled itself deep into the Earth and when it was dug up it was still too hot to handle. Reverend Horton, though badly burned, lived.

And there are audio clips, mostly vanilla but including P.T. Barnum's commercial for his circus--possibly the first recorded commercial.

How I love this stuff.


  • At 9:16 PM , Anonymous eek said...

    Awesome! I'll add this to my circus research.

  • At 9:16 PM , Anonymous eek said...

    Awesome! I'll add this to my circus research.

  • At 12:09 AM , Anonymous Darice said...

    Wow... is that the circus disaster Connie Willis referenced in Passage? I hadn't seen the photographs before. Terrifying. Thanks for the link.

  • At 9:21 AM , Blogger gwenda said...

    I think it is... it's definitely the one that Stewart O'Nan wrote about in The Circus Fire. (Title's not much of a stretch, huh?)


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