Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Booth for Performing Fleas - £1

9ft Square Booth for Performing Fleas, with Two Grand Oil Paintings for same, price £1

This advert from was from a theatrical periodical Era Newspaper in January 1893 from a "TOM NORMAN, Silver King, Pearce's Temperance Hotel, Elephant and Castle, SE". Tom was selling up his fair equipment to allow him to travel to Chicago, USA, presumably to join up with the Worlds Fair that was there at the time. Tom Norman was quoted in his autobiography as saying "you could indeed exhibit anything in those days. Yes anything from a needle to an anchor, a flea to an elephant, a bloater you could exhibit as a whale. It was not the show; it was the tale that you told.". Nothing is currently known about the flea circus act or who bought the booth.

Read more about Tom Norman at the National Fairground Archive University of Shefield

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